LAS VEGAS – The Washington Wizards played their final Summer League game Friday afternoon at the Cox Pavilion in Las Vegas.
The Dallas Mavericks who played without rising stars Luka Doncic and Dennis Smith Jr. led by as many as 18 points in the first quarter, but were unable to sustain the lead as they were outscored by the Wizards 26-6 in the second quarter. The two teams battled in a physical second half, going back and forth, but the Mavs ultimately finished on top, 96-92.
The slow start in the first quarter played a part in the loss. “We got to be ready to play,” Summer League head coach Ryan Richman said. “If you look at our box scores second through fourth quarter we’ve won almost every time.”
Although it was not the outcome they were looking for, the Wizards ended their Summer League with some positive takeaways.
- Troy Brown Jr. led all scorers with 25 points to go along with six rebounds and three assists as he saved his best performance for last. The No. 15 overall pick and Oregon’s first ever one-and-done looked sharp by exhibiting his playmaking abilities on both ends of the court. “He did a really good job, we’re happy for Troy,” Richman said after the game.
- Devin Robinson had another impressive outing which featured the highlight of the night and perhaps the highlight of this year’s Summer League. The Wizards two-way forward had a vicious transition slam that brought the crowd to their feet including Giannis Antetokounmpo who was sitting courtside at the game. Robinson is 6-foot-8 with a 7-foot wingspan and showcased his growth throughout all five Summer League games. He has a high ceiling if he continues to put in the work. “His strides are so vast and he has so much room to grow, that’s the beauty about Devin,” Richman reiterated after the game.
- Second round pick Issuf Sanon showed flashes of potential after finding his stroke during an impressive third quarter where the 18-year-old guard from Ukraine scored all nine of his points from deep. In addition, former 2015 McDonald’s All-American Thomas Bryant, who the Wizards claimed off waivers just a few days before Summer League commenced, had a strong game by dominating the paint to the tune of 22 points and 7 rebounds.
This will be the last time we see the Wizards in action until October 1 when they begin the preseason at home against the Knicks. Although they took an early exit and finished Summer League with an unimpressive 1-4 record, fans have a lot to be excited about as they head into this upcoming season. With LeBron James now in the West, the path to the Finals from the East has been opened. Washington improved their chances with the additions of Dwight Howard, Jeff Green, Austin Rivers, Brown and Bryant. Add that to a roster that already features two All-Star guards in John Wall and Bradley Beal as well as solid contributions from Otto Porter Jr., Markieff Morris, Kelly Oubre Jr. and Tomas Satoransky and you may be on to something. In a vacuum, the Washington Wizards will be entering this year’s training camp with one of their deepest and most talented teams they have had in a while.