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Scott Brooks issues strong defense of Wizards' locker room after John Wall controversy

Scott Brooks issues strong defense of Wizards' locker room after John Wall controversy

Tuesday must have been an interesting day for Wizards head coach Scott Brooks, as his star point guard John Wall did a series of television interviews in which he addressed criticism of himself and his relationship with teammates out in the open for the public to see.

Wall was characteristically honest and acknowledged that Marcin Gortat had irked him with a tweet and that he wasn't a huge fan of Bradley Beal's "everybody eats" comments. Fans and media took what Wall said as confirmation there were fractures in the Wizards' locker room and that Wall was to blame.

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Brooks, like his players, insists that was all overblown.

"For people to think that we're not better with John, that's for clickbait," he said. "It's unfortunate that he had to defend himself. You wish he wouldn't have to. Sometimes you have to."

Brooks cited specific games with Wall on the floor where they had high assist totals like on Christmas Day against the Celtics when they had 26 assists and earned an impressive road win. He pointed out how the Wizards are fifth in the NBA in assists per game.

Brooks also noted how Wall leads the Eastern Conference in assists per game.

"It's not like we just started passing the ball," Brooks said. "I know John is so unselfish."

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Wall's interview left the impression he has beef with both Gortat and Beal. But Brooks said he's not worried about any division between them because it's nothing out of the ordinary from his long NBA career.

"You're going to have some disagreements with players. It won't be our last one," Brooks said, raising his voice. "You wants competitive guys. You don't want everyone to just get along and have a bunch of High School Harry's. You want to be able to have guys that are competitive that will challenge each other and fight each other in practice in a competitive way. If you're not competitive then you will stink."

Brooks is also used to reading and hearing stuff through the media. He called what Wall did, airing dirty laundry on TV, as "part of being a coach." Clearly the Wizards weren't too worried about team chemistry with how they treated the trade deadline, as they had no major shakeup, just a minor deal that sent second-year guard Sheldon Mac to to Atlanta Hawks.

RELATED: KEEF MORRIS REACTS TO ISAIAH THOMAS TRADE

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Bradley Beal eliminated in first round of three-point contest, Donovan Mitchell wins dunk contest

Bradley Beal eliminated in first round of three-point contest, Donovan Mitchell wins dunk contest

It was a short night for Wizards guard Bradley Beal in the 2018 All-Star three-point contest on Saturday, as he was eliminated in the first round.

Wearing the Wizards' new 'The District' white alternate jersey, Beal shot a 15 and fell short of the top three spots to qualify for the second round. Suns guard Devin Booker won the contest with a 28 score in the final, beating out Klay Thompson of the Warriors and Tobias Harris of the Clippers.

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Beal's was undone by a slow start. He missed all five shots on the first rack and made just one on the second. He began to heat up at the third rack, but by then couldn't recover.

Here is Beal's full round:

This was Beal's second showing in the three-point contest. He finished second back in 2014 and this year said he was motivated to avenge that loss. He should have plenty more opportunities to participate in the future if he chooses.

The NBA's All-Star Saturday night began with Nets guard Spencer Dinwiddie winning the skills competition. He beat Bulls big man Lauri Markkanen in the final round.

Jazz rookie Donovan Mitchell won the dunk contest. He edged Larry Nance, Jr. of the Cavaliers in the finals.

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2018 NBA All-Star Saturday night: TV and live stream info, things to watch for dunk contest, three-point contest

2018 NBA All-Star Saturday night: TV and live stream info, things to watch for dunk contest, three-point contest

The 2018 NBA All-Star Saturday Night is here with the three-point contest, dunk contest and skills competition set for Los Angeles.

Here is all you need to know: TV and live stream info, tip-off time, plus three things to watch:

2018 NBA ALL-STAR SATURDAY NIGHT

Where: Staples Center
Tip-off: 8 p.m.
TV: TNT
Online with no cable TV: fuboTV (try for free)

PODCAST: ALL-STAR WEEKEND PREVIEW, WIZARDS AT THE BREAK 

Skills competition

Participants: Lou Williams, Clippers; Jamal Murray, Nuggets; Al Horford, Celtics; Spencer Dinwiddie, Nets; Joel Embiid, Sixers; Buddy Hield, Kings; Lauri Markkanen, Bulls; Andre Drummond, Pistons

What to know: This year's crop has a fascinating mix of guards and big men and don't sleep on the seven-footers. Embiid in particular has a unique skillset for his size. Still, it's tough to beat the guards. Watch out for Dinwiddie, who is the best passer of the bunch.

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Three-point contest

Participants: Klay Thompson, Warriors; Eric Gordon, Rockets; Devin Booker, Suns; Paul George, Thunder; Wayne Ellington, Heat; Bradley Beal, Wizards; Kyle Lowry, Raptors; Tobias Harris, Clippers

What to know: Thompson and Gordon enter the contest as past champions, as Thompson won it in 2016 and Gordon took it home last year. Thompson has the best three-point percentage among the group and is the favorite, but watch out for Beal, a past runner-up, and George who has the second best percentage. Also, Booker is one of the game's best young players and has a very smooth stroke from three.

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Dunk contest

Participants: Dennis Smith Jr.; Mavericks; Donovan Mitchell, Jazz; Larry Nance Jr., Cavaliers; Victor Oladipo, Pacers

What to know: This is all about the rookies, Smith and Mitchell, who most are predicting to win. Oladipo has been in the contest before, but didn't win. He's also the only All-Star of the bunch. Nance is the only guy who isn't a guard and his father won it back in 1984. It will be interesting to see if he does some sort of nod to his old man, now 34 years later.

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