After earning his first Eastern Conference Player of the Week award in the final week of 2017, Bradley Beal kept the momentum rolling into the New Year with another strong performance in a win over the New York Knicks.
BB led all scorers with 27 points on a highly efficient 11-14 shooting night and he also added six assists, four rebounds and a trio of steals.
After a competitive first half, which ended with the Wizards leading 64-63, the Wizards pulled away in the third quarter and cruised to a 121-103 victory over their Eastern Conference foe.
The highlight of the night for BB came midway through the third quarter when Knicks star Kristaps Porzingis switched onto Beal after a screen. No. 3 put a crossover move on Porzingis, which excited the crowd, and then The Panda proceeded to knock down a step-back jumper right over the 7-foot-3-inch Latvian. The play, shown below, was featured on SportsCenter’s Top Ten Plays of the night.
After the game, The Panda credited the team’s second-half defense and their ball movement on offense as reasons for the victory.
“When we continue to move the ball, we’re a great team. If we could just continue to do so, then the sky is the limit for us,” said Beal.
It wasn’t just The Panda who had a strong showing against the Knicks. All five starters posted a plus/minus rating of +20 or higher on the night, and John Wall and Marcin Gortat both eclipsed the 20-point mark along with Brad. Gortat’s 21 points were a new season high and he also added eight rebounds.
Wall chipped in 25 points and nine assists, including a perfect alley-oop pass to BB in the final minutes of the game.
The win extended Washington’s home winning streak to five games and starts the team off on the right track in 2018.
The Wizards will look to continue their strong play when they travel to Memphis to face the Grizzlies on Friday at 9:30pm ET. The game will be shown on ESPN.
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