Recap: Wizards extend series with 122-114 Game 4 win over Sixers
FINAL: Wizards 122 | Sixers 114
Wizards: Bradley Beal (27), Rui Hachimura (20), Russell Westbrook (19)
Sixers: Tobias Harris (21), Tyrese Maxey (15), George Hill (14)
The Wizards defeated the Sixers 122-114 in Game 4 of the teams’ first round series on Monday night at Capital One Arena. Washington’s win extends the series to a fifth game, set for Wednesday night in Philadelphia. Bradley Beal scored a game-high 27 points. Rui Hachimura recorded his first playoff double-double with 20 points and 13 rebounds. The Wizards have now won 11 of their last 13 home games including the regular season, play-in and postseason.
After falling behind by 11 points in the first five minutes of the game, Davis Bertans knocked down a pair of threes to kickstart a Wizards resurgence. Bertans played the entire first quarter, scoring a team-high 12 points after hitting his first three field goals of the night, including a pair of threes. His night ended early, however, after he was ruled out with a right calf injury in the third quarter. Despite shooting only 9-24 (.375) in the first quarter, Washington managed to pull within one late in the opening frame. Four times the Wizards cut the lead down to one point, but weren’t able to take their first lead until the final minute of the second quarter. A 9-2 run, highlighted by a one-hand Westbrook put-back dunk and capped by a Rui Hachimura fast break dunk, gave the Wizards a 60-58 advantage with 42 seconds left in the first half. As a team, Washington shot 13-25 (.520) from the field in the second quarter, led by eight points on 4-4 (1.000) shooting from Robin Lopez.
In the opening minute of the second half, Ben Simmons was called for his fourth foul of the night, but remained in the game. On the following possession, he was blocked at the rim, starting a fast break that led to a Beal 3-pointer. Hachimura, who finished the night 3-6 (.500) from deep, knocked down a triple of his own less than a minute later, giving Washington a 66-61 lead. Philadelphia countered with a 6-0 run to take a one-point lead. The Wizards and Sixers traded blows over the next few minutes before a 15-4 run put Washington up 14 in the final minute of the third quarter. Philadelphia opened the fourth quarter on a 15-4 run to pull within one less than four minutes into the final frame. With the game tied at 108 with just under three minutes to go in the game, the Wizards began intentionally fouling Simmons, who was a combined 0-9 (.000) from the free throw line in the first three games of the series. Simmons missed the first and made the second of the first three instances. With 90 seconds left in the game, the Sixers missed three attempts on one offensive possession before Westbrook was able to gather a loose ball and find Hachimura for a fast break dunk to put the Wizards up four. A Hachimura three on the next possession and a pair of free throws from Westbrook put Washington up by eight to seal the win in the final minute.
THREE THINGS TO KNOW
Beal hits playoff milestone, leads Wizards with 27 points
On his first basket of the night, a step-back jumper in the first minute of the game, Beal became the fourth player in franchise history to score 1,000 career playoff points. With 27 points, he’s now totaled 1,025 postseason points in his career, trailing only Elvin Hayes (1,997), Wes Unseld (1,260) and Phil Chenier (1,088) on the team’s all-time playoff scoring list. Beal shot just 4-12 (.333) in the first half, but found his rhythm coming out of halftime. He scored 10 of his 27 points in the third, shooting 4-8 (.500) from the field and 2-2 (1.000) from three, and recorded a plus-13 rating in 11 minutes. Beal is now averaging 29.5 points per game this series.
Westbrook makes an impact despite cold shooting night
Westbrook finished the night with 19 points, 21 rebounds and 14 assists, becoming the first guard to grab 20-plus rebounds in a playoff game since Jim Jackson in 2004. Westbrook’s big night marked his second consecutive triple-double and moved him into sole possession of third place on the NBA’s all-time playoff triple-double list, trailing only Magic Johnson (30) and LeBron James (28). Westbrook struggled from the field, missing his first six shots and finishing 3-19 (.157) overall, but made an impact on the game in just about every other conceivable way. Six of Westbrook’s 21 rebounds were on the offensive glass, helping drive Washington to 17 second-chance points on the night. He got to the line with ease and converted when he was there, hitting 13-16 (.812) free throws.
Embiid exits early with knee soreness
After leaving the game late in the first quarter after taking a hard fall on a drive to the basket, Joel Embiid missed the entire second quarter and was ruled out for the rest of the game just before halftime with right knee soreness. Embiid had averaged 29.3 points per game on 67.4% shooting in the first three games of the series. Without Embiid, the Sixers went small to open the second half, starting Simmons, Seth Curry, Danny Green, Tobias Harris and Mike Scott. That five played together for the first 6:22 of the third quarter and was outscored 15-11. Philadelphia’s size on the perimeter allowed the team to stick with the center-less lineup for the majority of the second half. Dwight Howard, the team’s only other true center with Embiid out, played only five minutes after halftime, all of which came in the third quarter. Harris led the way for Philadelphia, totaling 21 points, 13 rebounds and five assists in 37 minutes.
NEXT UP: Wizards at Sixers / Wednesday, June 2 / TIME TBD / Wells Fargo Center
HIGHLIGHT OF THE NIGHT