After the surprising 3-0 start to the season, the Sixers have dropped two straight after Wednesday’s 116-102 loss to the Washington Wizards at the Wells Fargo Center (see Instant Replay).
The Wizards got a bit of revenge from last Friday when they coughed up a second-half lead of 14 point to lose by seven points in their home opener.
Perhaps Wednesday’s performance was more like what we can expect from the Sixers this season with plenty of points and lots of turnovers.
Here are a few interesting tidbits from the game against the Wizards:
1. MCW vs. John Wall, Part II
It was a much different battle between the point guards than last Friday. Instead of a free-flowing first half where John Wall lit up the scoreboard, the Sixers were able to contain him … somewhat.
Wall scored 24 points on five three-pointers with nine assists and one turnover. He spread out the scoring, too, as opposed to getting 23 of his 26 points in the first half last Friday. Wall scored nine points in the first half, 12 more in the third quarter and three in the fourth.
Michael Carter-Williams turned in another solid performance, hitting for 19 points on 8-for-21 shooting with seven assists and five rebounds. However, the rookie struggled with his shooting, going 3 for 9 on shots longer than 15-feet.
2. Running into trouble
It’s no secret, the Sixers want to run at every opportunity. Headed into Wednesday’s game the Sixers averaged 105 points per game and 50.5 percent of those came in the paint.
But with the up-tempo style, a team is prone to mistakes. The Sixers averaged 19 turnovers per game headed into Wednesday only to turn it over 21 more times.
For now coach Brett Brown will live the turnovers,
“I’m willing to let the young guys run and live with the mistakes,” Brown said before the game.
3. Anderson hits a few
Four-year veteran James Anderson has struggled with his outside shooting through the first four games of the season, hitting just 7 of 24, including 4 for 14 from three-point range.
In Wednesday’s game Anderson scored 14 points on 5-for-10 shooting with two three-pointers.
Anderson’s shooting is an important development for the Sixers. If he can hit shots at a respectable clip, he’ll create better spacing on offense.
4. Nene returns
After missing two straight games with a calf injury, Wizards power forward Nene returned to the lineup. Though the veteran big man created trouble for the Sixers in the paint and created more shots for center Marcin Gortat (19 points, 12 boards), Nene’s presence didn’t show in the rebounding column.
The Sixers out-rebounded the Wizards 30-16 during the first half, even though they trailed by nine points and won the battle on the glass, 62-49. Nene had five boards.
Nene made a difference elsewhere on the stat sheet, though. With Nene on the sidelines, the Sixers scored 74 points in the paint in last Friday’s victory. On Wednesday with Nene hanging around, the Sixers got 42 points in the paint.
5. Hawes stays consistent
It’s a contract year, so the numbers matter for Spencer Hawes. The Sixers’ lone 7-footer had 23 points, 13 rebounds and five assists for his third double-double of the season.