Game Three – Nets vs Wizards
Likely without John Wall, the Wizards only possess one real threat, and according to some, that threat might even find himself wearing Brooklyn threads by next year. But whether or not those rumors hold any stock, Bradley Beal remains as Wizard for now, and an increasingly difficult player standing between the Nets and a playoff berth.
During their most recent game, the Wizards managed to comeback from a 37 point onslaught dealt by Brooklyn during the third quarter and win the game 110-106. As expected, Beal led the way with 30 points, five assists and five rebounds. Once again, Beal singlehandedly willed his team to a victory, while the Nets customarily blew another lead during the game’s late stages.
But luckily for the Nets, the Wiz kids wield very little firepower beyond Beal, as secondary scorers Davis Bertans and Rui Hachimura both average fewer points per game than Beal combined. With that understood, stopping Beal essentially stops the Wizards, giving way to a hypothetical Nets victory.
To do accomplish this, the Nets must successfully frustrate Beal with constant double teaming and aggressive play.
Although he appeared almost entirely unstoppable this year, Beal showed some serious difficulties once faced with multiple defenders at once against the Boston Celtics and Toronto Raptors last year immediately following Wall’s injury.
Although evidence aged two years might not exactly feel too accurate, it astonishingly enough remains the most recent evidence depicting any struggles from Beal.
Furthermore, getting out to a quick start seems likely to help the Nets as well. With a greater deficit at hand for Washington, the more inclined Beal will feel to play “hero ball,” and consequently begin taking low percentage shots. Also known as a clutch shooter, this strategy keeps the Nets away from any situation that leaves Beal with the ball and a chance to win the game at the buzzer.
Ultimately, this game remains one we expect the Nets to win, and one they quite frankly need to when considering the other teams still lying ahead of them.