When the Magic made their run on Sunday in the first half to get the lead to double-digits, and late in the fourth when the Wizards made their run, three-point shooting was the difference. The communication wasn't there as the Wizards made bad choices whether it was going under on a screen for D.J. Augustin or the frontline being late in covering a shooter on a switch.

The Wizards were falling far behind within minutes of the second quarter because of botched rotations. This is what grew the deficit to as large as 17:

The effort is there by Brandon Jennings. He hustles back to stop Mario Hezonja's drive to the rim and runs out to challenge Augustin at the three-point line.

Kelly Oubre gets caught underneath the screen by Stephen Zimmerman and Augustin, who'd drained a three in the previous clip, gets another clean look. With a 7-2 wingspan and an ability to defend point guards in space, Augustin can't get these kinds of looks. Oubre clearly was playing him more for the drive because Augustin can cause havoc there, too, but Ian Mahinmi was behind him to help with that containment if needed. (Note: Yes, that screen should be illegal but the way it's officiated for all 30 teams is as a legal screen therefore that's not a missed call. Just a questionable interpretation of the rules in regards to screening which is a completely different issue).

 

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Markieff Morris' reaction time is off. He gets trapped under the pindown from Mario Hezonja, which is OK because the Wizards were switching these. Hezonja was now his man. Morris was slow to react and ran into Zimmerman's cross screen. The deficit was 37-27 and growing. 

In the fourth, repeated big threes from Bojan Bogdanovic were needed to keep the Magic at bay. That's because the three-point defense wasn't good enough.

This is a case of knowing your personnel. Beal made a move to get the loose ball after the deflection, but when he realized Bismack Biyombo was going to beat him to the ball he should've peeled back to Terrence Ross. Instead, he pressures Biyombo who makes an easy pass to Ross, who scored eight of his 20 points in the fourth quarter, for an open three. There were four seconds left on the shot clock. You take your chances with Biyombo shooting from that distance rather than red-hot Ross stepping into an open look.

This shot by Evan Fournier broke a 100-100 tie because Morris didn't anticipate Biyombo's screen and hesitated on closing out an elite shooter. And he didn't contest it either.

Bad three-point defense is what got the Wizards in a 2-8 hole to begin the season. The Magic made 14 (40%), the Raptors made 11 (44%) and the Jazz knocked down 11 (45.8%). The latter two were losses and the former easily could've been one, too.

 

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