The Washington Wizards defeated the Guangzhou Long Lions 140-111 in the preseason finale at Capital One Arena. While top dogs John Wall and Bradley Beal were given the night off, it was the youth who shined on Friday night. First-round draft pick Troy Brown Jr. had a great performance and Devin Robinson had a few statement dunks.
Over on the starters side of things, Otto Porter Jr. and Ian Mahinmi each chipped in 11 points. Both players look to make an impact on opening night. Scott Brooks joked on Media Day to get on Porter about shooting more and he made all four of the shots he took including both three-point attempts in his brief eight minutes of action.
With the Wizards likely starting the season without Dwight Howard, the center role on opening night will belong to Mahinmi. 11 points on 5-of-6 shooting and four rebounds in 11 minutes of play ain’t too shabby.
We even got a special appearance from Jodie Meeks, who had eight points and four assists in the second half. It was his first preseason and first game action since last season as he finishes up his suspension for performance-enhancing drugs with 19 regular season games left. Here’s what was said inside the locker room.
On Troy Brown Jr.’s performance:
“I thought everybody played well. Troy made some good decisions. He was aggressive on his decisions – that’s something we’ve been working on with him. I thought he’s a guy who can fill the stats sheet up type of player and I thought tonight he was really good. I thought a lot of guys were good. Devin [Robinson] came in with great energy and his athleticism showed tonight. Overall, it’s been a good training camp. It’s a good way to close preseason with everybody playing well going into our next four or five days of practice.”
Troy Brown scored 21 points shooting 6-of-9 from the field to go along with eight rebounds and four assists. Each assist was a perfectly placed pass, including a few of them coming through traffic. His vision and his defense made some wonder if he actually was 19-years old. 14 of Brown’s 21 points came in just the second quarter and it help the Wizards take control of the game.
Troy Brown Jr.
On sharing the floor with Devin Robinson:
“I mean it was fun honestly. I felt like we enjoyed it, we were all out there just playing basketball, playing together, and I felt like everybody was having fun and just enjoying the moment.”
Devin Robinson led the Wizards with 23 points in a monster second half that saw the home team take control. While he shot 9-of-11 and had six boards, it was his dunking that made the highlight reel. He had a few good ones in summer league and in a reserve-heavy contest for the Wizards, it was certainly his time to shine. Robinson might not get any playing time with the big club but we’ll be fortunate enough to still keep tabs on him when he suits up for the Capital City Go-Go.
The second-year player has bounce. Just watch.
Apparently, he’s dunked over three teammates at practice although he wouldn’t drop any names. It’s okay. Some mysteries are better left unsolved.
He also noted what it was like seeing the youth of the Wizards organization get an extended look of action.
“It felt good. We’ve been practicing with each other for the Summer League, so it was good to be out there on the court for an extended amount of minutes and show what we can really do.”
The Wizards open the regular season on Thursday at 8 p.m. against the Miami Heat at Capital One Arena.