The Washington Wizards lost their fifth straight game of the new season on Thursday evening when they fell to the Chicago Bulls 133-130.
A strong 28-point showing from Bradley Beal wasn’t enough to put his team over the edge, and the 27-year-old acknowledged his frustration with that fact after the outing.
“Yeah, everybody’s pissed,” he said. “We’re pissed off, yup. But in a good way. We’re pissed off.”
Despite his frustration, Beal conceded that the only thing that he and his teammates can do at this point is work harder and get better.
“Everybody has their own ritual. I’m not changing mine,” he said, “But I have to be better…We gotta rally together. We gotta do it together.”
Wizards coach Scott Brooks was also exasperated after the fact, but he stressed that Washington still had plenty of time to get its act together.
“There’s a lot of season left,” he said. “That first win is always going to be tough.”
Part of what makes the Wizards’ loss to the Bulls so painful is the fact that, well, Chicago isn’t an especially good team either. The Bulls lost their first three games of the year, only to turn around and beat the Wizards twice in three days.
Even worse, the Wizards lost despite the fact that Chicago was without four players who are going through the NBA’s COVID-19 health and safety protocols. The Bulls played without Lauri Markkanen, their second-leading scorer and top rebounder, plus forward Chandler Hutchison and guards Ryan Arcidiacano and Tomas Satoransky.
Washington center Thomas Bryant scored 28 points alongside Beal, and the newly-acquired Russell Westbrook chipped in 22 points, 10 rebounds and 11 assists. On paper, if you look at individual statistical contributions, the Wizards look like a very solid team. Yet for whatever reason they can’t seem to put it together.
“We don’t do moral victories,” Beal said after the game. “I have to do better on the floor. I have to close the game out.”
Fans took a close look at this OJ Simpson photo and lost their minds. https://t.co/8BUpha9b8g
— Game 7 (@game7__) December 29, 2020
Beal’s next opportunity to secure a win will come on Friday, in a road showdown against the Minnesota Timberwolves.
If Washington doesn’t get it together and start stringing together some victories, it’s safe to assume that the trade chatter will once again start growing louder.