Despite point guard John Wall’s 33-point effort in Wednesday night’s matchup against the visiting Orlando Magic, the Wizards fell 102–95, losing their sixth straight game.
The Magic took a commanding 27–18 lead by the end of the first quarter. The Wizards rallied to bring the score to 46–41 by halftime and briefly led late in the fourth quarter, but the Magic held on.
Wizards head coach Randy Wittman started Kevin Serpahin and Jordan Crawford in place of JaVale McGee and Nick Young on Wednesday night in a shakeup designed to reverse his team’s recent slide.
“I gotta get them playing back the way that they can,” Wittman said.
In only 16 minutes of play, McGee ended the night with nine points and six rebounds, while Young finished with just five points.
With most attention focused on center Dwight Howard and his uncertain future with the Magic, Ryan Anderson led Orlando to victory with 23 points and 15 rebounds. Howard finished with only 14 points and 12 rebounds, while Jason Richardson and Jameer Nelson each added 12 of their own.
Despite the win, Magic head coach Stan Van Gundy was not impressed with his team’s play.
“It’s still not a 48-minute effort,” Van Gundy told The Daily Caller. “That seems to be a real struggle for us right now, to play with energy for 48 minutes. But there were some good things, and we got a win.”
Wall’s impressive performance — which included scoring 14 points in the fourth quarter — did not go unnoticed.
“He’s a tough player to guard because he’s so good at turning corners and getting to the lane and creating plays,” said Magic guard J.J. Redick.
“I just felt in rhythm and made some tough shots and made some easier shots,” Wall said. “I’m just upset we came up with a tough loss again.”