The Washington Wizards tied their season high win streak last night... with 1. Can they extend their win streak on a back to back against the well rested Chicago Bulls at home? It doesn't seem likely. In theory, this game is exactly what the reeling Bulls need. A layup.
After getting blown out by Atlanta and Houston in their past two games, Chicago desperately needs a win to right the ship. The Bulls offense hasn't been any worse than it typically is, but the defense has completely disappeared. They shouldn't struggle on defense against a Wizards team last in the NBA in offensive rating.
Stay focused and fundamentally sound
The Wizards are going to beat themselves. Especially with Jordan Crawford leading the show. In case you missed it, Jordan Crawford once said he could be better than Michael Jordan.
"I don’t tell nobody, but I feel like I can be better than Michael Jordan," Crawford said, without the slightest hint of sarcasm. "When I’m done playing, I don’t want people to say, Michael Jordan is the best player. I want that to be me. That’s how I am. That’s how I was built."
It’s not a bad shot until you miss it. That’s how it always is. I probably do take bad shots, but in a sense, we kind of need some of those shots I take. I can always improve on it and I will.
“It really comes down to if I make the shot, it’s a good shot,” Crawford said. “You know, you gotta be aggressive, regardless of what people are saying, how it is. You still gotta do you.”
This is a guy just dying to fire up as many shots as he can regardless of the difficulty. As long as the Bulls stay fundamentally strong, Jordan Crawford will chuck bad shots all game long, and miss most of them.
Revolving door of Wizards
Beyond a lack of talent, the Wizards have had significant injuries all season long altering their starting lineup. They've been without talented PG John Wall all season and veterans A.J. Price and Trevor Ariza are presently injured as well.
Emeka Okafor and Bradley Beal have been the only players to start over 20 games this season for the Wizards which likely hasn't helped their consistency any. Beyond that, the Wizards have a low talent level, a lack of discipline, and struggle to execute.
The Chicago Bulls should find plenty of success by merely being patient on offense and taking advantage of the lack of continuity of the Wizards personnel. This looks like a nice matchup for Luol Deng who will spend most of his time being guarded by Martell Webster or Garrett Temple, both of which he should be able to take advantage of.
Does panic set in if the Bulls drop this game?
The Bulls finished their "top 10" with a record of 5-4 and a game to be played later. That was better than I hoped for and would have me feeling really great about the team except for the back to back slaughters at the end. Any positivity gained from that stretch will be ruined by dropping a game to the worst team in the NBA while they come off a back to back and the Bulls come off three days rest.
It's difficult to imagine a much more embarrassing loss than to lose to the Wizards under the circumstances here. That said, I think there's almost no chance that happens. The team will be fired up and serious after their past two defeats and won't take the Wizards lightly like they have done under different circumstances.