Philips Arena, — Five time All-Star John Wall sat out tonight’s game due to soreness in his left knee, that meant that the bench would have to step up in his absence. Wall missed nine games earlier in the season with soreness and swelling in the knee. The bench did just that making 10 of 17 three pointers in the first half.
Washington ended their five-game road trip with a big 129-104 win over the Atlanta Hawks. Bradley Beal had a complete game by scoring 18 points and five assists, but tonight contest was a real team effort by everyone. Wizards crisp passing and running the floor were the difference in tonight contest.
Washington played so well to the point where Beal didn’t play in the fourth quarter. Markieff Morris led all scorers with 23 points and six Washington players scored in double figures.
In the first half, the Wizards took advantage of strong three point shooting as they made 10 of 17 from from beyond the arc. In the third quarter the Wizards they shot 61.1 percent from the field, and they almost shot 70 percent from the field overall in the fourth quarter.
Markieff Morris matched his season high with 23 points and Washington used balanced scoring and 3-point shooting to compensate for the absence of their all star point guard in the Wizards’victory.
Washington, who had lost two straight and four of five, dominated the Hawks from the tip-off. The Wizards pulled away with a fast start in the second quarter and never looked back.
Top performer for Atlanta was Mike Scott with 19 points and Bradley Beal and Otto Porter Jr. each had 18 for the Washington Wizards.
The Wizards connected on 18 3-pointers and couldn’t miss from downtown, this matched the highest output of the season.
Taurean Prince, Tyler Dorsey, and Dewayne Dedmon each had 14 points for the Hawks.
The Wizards opened up the second quarter with an 11-2 run to put the Hawks on the heels. Kelly Oubre Jr. opened the quarter with a thunderous left-handed dunk and free throw from the charity stripe. Oubre, who had 15 points, ended the run with a 3-pointer for a 38-20 lead.
The Hawks had a difficult time defending the Wizards long-range shooting. Atlanta made only 2 of its first 16 3-pointers, the Wizards made 10 of 17 in the first half and led 61-45 at the half. Morris was on fire making each of his three 3s beyond the arc in the half and four of five for the game.
It was only the latest display of poor offense for the Hawks. Coach Mike Budenholzer said before the game he’d like to see more up-tempo possessions led by Dennis Schroder.
“I would love more pace but this might be who we are,” Budenholzer said.
Coach Scott Brooks said the knee has bothered Wall the last two games. Brooks said Wall, who was with the team, wanted to play against the Hawks.
Atlanta Hawks Tomas Satoransky made his first start of the season as the fill-in for Wall and sank a 3-pointer for the first points of the game. Satoransky had 11 points while making each of his three 3s for the game.
Atlanta have lost three straight games but Ersan Ilyasova was a bright spot for Hawks scoring 12 points and playing tough on the defensive side of the ball.