The Oklahoma City Thunder lost at home against the Washington Wizards, 98-116 the final score.
This has been probably the worst loss of the season so far. Not only the performance was all around bad, but it came against one of the worst teams in the Eastern Conference, the Washington Wizards.
After an encouraging start in the first quarter, the Thunder just turned off on both ends of the floor and Washington took advantage of it. The team coached by the ex-Thunder Scott Brooks lead by three points after the first quarter and then by four at the half. As it happened at the beginning of the game, OKC came into the second half hot and took a quick four points lead thanks to an 8-0 run. However, once again, the Wizards didn’t collapse, and kept on attacking, while the Thunder weren’t able to respond on offense or to stop them on defense.
Washington won the third quarter 36-29 and besides a little spark in the middle of the fourth quarter, the Thunder failed to close the gap with the Wizards in order to make it a close game. This was the first win for the Wizards in Oklahoma City, ever.
A couple of stats which are interesting in this loss: the Wizards outrebounded the Thunder 55-41. Also, Washington grabbed sixteen offensive rebounds and turned the ball over only nine times in the whole game.
The Thunder are now third in the Western Conference, 25-14 the current record.
- No Energy
That’s it. The Wizards played with fire, they wanted this game more than the Thunder, and the energy showed in the game by them proved it. The Thunder had a couple of moments of great basketball during the game but they didn’t stick with that. Actually, they did the opposite. Sloppy defense, bad boxing out, no helping while on offense they just couldn’t score. Washington’s defense was ok, but nothing stellar, just good defense. This Thunder team has too many scoring issues to overcome, and when they play without energy on the defensive end, it’s hard to win games.
- Billy Donovan
I praised Billy Donovan after the win in Portland on Friday night, but tonight I think he deserves some blame. I thought the rotations were bad, he kept Westbrook in longer than usual in the first and third quarter and took George out instead. With Schröder in some kind of a slump, and Westbrook being not in his best shooting form, having both of them on the floor without too much offense around is not great. Also, why did the team go away from Steven Adams? He dominated in the first quarter and he took a total of two shots for the rest of the game. Two shots. One last note, Ferguson should have played more minutes, his defense was good, no need to play Dennis so much if he is not effective on offense or defense.
- Steven Adams
I know he doesn’t care, but Adams should demand the ball more in the post, especially against a team which doesn’t have a strong player at the center position. As mentioned above, he dominated in the first quarter but then he basically was cut out of the offense. Again, with the Thunder struggling all over the floor with their shooting, going into the pain should be the best option, and no one better than Adams can take advantage of it.
- Terrence Ferguson
I think Terrence Ferguson had a really solid defensive game. He has improved a lot on that end of the floor and we can see the improvements each game. Against the Wizards it wasn’t different. His offensive contribution is not much, yet, but the good thing is that he is not afraid to shoot the ball or to attack the rim.
- Dennis Schröder
Dennis has been bad lately. Shooting, passing, defense, a little bit of everything. Against Washington, he finished the game with nine points (3-10 FG, 1-3 3PT, 2-2 FT), one rebound, and two turnovers. In the past six games, Schröder is averaging 12.5 points per game while shooting 36% from the floor, 18.5% from three-point, 54.5% from the FT line. It’s quite bad considering that he is playing almost thirty-two minutes per game in this six-game span.
The Oklahoma City Thunder will play on Tuesday night at home against the Minnesota Timberwolves. Tip-off 7 pm CT.
Photos by Zach Beeker