CLEVELAND — The Wizards have lost two straight and had a darn good chance to win both. The first came Friday, falling in double overtime at home to the Spurs. The second came Saturday on the road vs. the Cavs.
In that game, the Wizards led by nine points with 5:20 remaining. They scored just two the rest of the way. (Related Dribbles.)
Part of it was the Cavs’ decision to tighten defense. Part of it was the Wizards were mostly a one-man show, with only Kyle Kuzma (32 points) consistently delivering.
“You can play 42 solid minutes, last six kind of got away from us,” coach Wes Unseld Jr. said. “We just have to be better down the stretch.”
Clearly, the Wizards miss star shooting guard Bradley Beal, out for the year with a wrist injury. They are still waiting on forward Kristaps Porzingis to make his debut after a trade with the Mavericks.
They reportedly are also set to bring back guard Tomas Satoransky, waived by the Spurs.
“I’m not really sure if that’s something that’s going to happen or just discussions,” Unseld said. “It’d be good to have another guard with size, positional size. But we’ll just have to wait and see if that happens.”
Until then, the Wizards will have to rely almost exclusively on Raul Neto and Ish Smith — who had a nice game vs. the Cavs — to get it done when it comes to handling the ball and setting up the offense.
On the bright side, the Wizards (27-33) are just a couple games out of the final play-in spot. The fact they are keeping things close gives them hope that once they get a little more help, perhaps they will finish games stronger.
Unseld obviously would be a big fan of that.
Sam Amico is senior NBA writer at Hoops Wire. Follow him @AmicoHoops.