Rui Hachimura and Troy Brown Jr. lead Wizards in first exhibition game
For the first time in over four months, the Washington Wizards played an NBA basketball game. The loss to the Denver Nuggets in the first of three exhibition games is not significant. How each of the players performs, while the organization is carefully evaluating them, is important.
Rui Hachimura led the way with 18 points and 9 rebounds. He was aggressive with a team-high 14 shot attempts.
Troy Brown Jr. discussed post-game how his utility knife of a game allows him to help the team in different ways as the situation dictates. The former first-round pick had 12 points, 6 rebounds, 5 assists, and 3 steals in a game where he was asked to do more ball-handling and facilitating than ever before without Bradley Beal and John Wall.
Thomas Bryant started the game at center even though he was on a strict 8-minute restriction after recently joining the team following a case of COVID-19. In limited run, the big man was involved.
Isaac Bonga has a lot of hype around him since he has worked on his diet and strength to take fuller advantage of his athletic build that his peers are saying is showing up in practice. On paper, Bonga struggled with just 5 points on 1-6 shooting and fouling out with 7 minutes still to play in the shortened 40-minute game. Bonga was a game-high +18 along with Denver's Bol Bol who had 16 points, 10 rebounds, 6 blocks, and 1 drug test awaiting him in the locker room.
Washington struggled to shoot from the field in general on Wednesday including splits of 37, 27, and 69 percent. Scott Brooks was glad that his team was still passing the ball as evidenced by 22 assists on a mere 31 field goals made.
The Wizards will play their second of three exhibition games against the Los Angeles Clippers on Saturday, July 25 at 8 pm from Orlando, FL. The Wizards lost both regular-season matchups against the Clippers, 150-125 and 135-119.