The Wizards will look to get back on track Friday as they take on the Minnesota Timberwolves. As of November
For Washington, the issue has not been on the offensive end. Bradley Beal’s efficiency is
Rui Hachimura has bounced back with strong performances against Cleveland and Boston. After scoring zero points against Indiana, he scored 21 points in back to back games.
In the past, Washington’s bench has been a weak point when it comes to offensive production. But that has not been the case so far this season. Both Moe Wagner and Davis Bertans are providing scoring and three-point shooting off the bench. Wagner is currently averaging 10.9 points per game on 36.8 percent shooting from the three-point line.
Bertans is averaging 11.8 points per game on 43.8 percent shooting from the three-point line.
Ish Smith has also contributed well off the bench, averaging 7.2 points and 4.1 assists per game.
Clearly, offense isn’t the problem. The issue is on the defensive end where they have given up 117.8 points per game in November. Washington’s defensive struggles don’t appear to be a result of lacking energy.
This team just might not have the personnel to be a solid defensive unit. There is going to be a weak spot in the lineup, regardless of what unit Scott Brooks decides to go with. Washington doesn’t have a center that can protect the paint or a point guard that can keep his defender in front of him.
Looking at Washington’s lineup, Bradley Beal might be the best defensive player just on experience alone. But his defense is going to take a hit as a result of his offensive responsibilities.
Minnesota is 7-4 this season and is currently on a two-game winning streak. Their last game was on Wednesday against San Antonio, which resulted in a 129-114 victory.
In the month of November, Andrew Wiggins is averaging 29.1 points per game. Over the last 5 games, Wiggins averaged 31.6 points per game.
Karl Anthony Towns has averaged 24.6 points and 12.2 rebounds per game in November. Towns also didn’t play in the first meeting on November 2nd, due to suspension. Without Towns, the Timberwolves were still able to win 131-109. With him in the lineup, it will be interesting to see how Washington’s defense will try to slow down Minnesota.
In order for Washington to win this game, it starts on the defensive end. The defense will probably be a topic of discussion all season, but that’s the reality with this team. Especially when facing two talented players in Towns and Wiggins.
There is no point in scoring 115-120 points if you give up 130 points. Everything starts on the defensive end.