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John Wall, Bradley Beal and Wizards keep doing things they haven't done in decades

John Wall, Bradley Beal and Wizards keep doing things they haven't done in decades

The 2016-17 Washington Wizards have accomplished so many things the franchise hadn't done in decades that it's legitimately hard to keep track, that it's almost inevitable an attempt at listing them will feature some sort of exclusion or oversight. 

Simply put, it's a long list. Here are at least most of the things that this year's Wizards have accomplished, that no Wizards or Bullets team before them had done in decades:

- won their division for the first time since 1978-79, breaking the longest division title drought in all of U.S. pro sports at 38 years

- won 47 games, marking the team's best record since 1978-79 when they won 54 and reached the NBA Finals

- clinched home court advantage in the first round of the playoffs for the first time since 1978-79

- won 30 games at home for the first time since 1988-89

- won 17 straight games at home for the first time since 1974-75

- scored 100 points or more in 23 straight games for the first time since 1988-89

- most three-pointers in franchise history (720)

- John Wall's 50 double-doubles are most in franchise history since Moses Malone had 50 in 1987-88

- Wall's 815 assists are the most in franchise history for a single season

- Bradley Beal's 215 three-pointers made are the most in franchise history

- Wall's 4,594 career assists are the most in franchise history. Earlier this season, he edged Wes Unseld's 3,822 (1969 to 1981)

- Wall's 870 career steals are the most in franchise history. He beat Greg Ballard's previous mark of 762 (1978 to 1985)

[RELATED: 5 must-see moments from Wizards' win over Hornets]

The 47 wins and 720 threes marks, plus Wall's 50th double-double were all set on Tuesday night against the Hornets, as the Wizards once again made history like they have so many times this season. Throughout the night, there were some clear reminders of that at the Verizon Center. 

Before the game, head coach Scott Brooks remarked how the team wants to win 50 games, specifically noting the 38 years since they last did. In the locker room pregame each player had a 2016-17 Southeast Division championship hat in their stall. After the game, as he spoke to reporters, power forward Markieff Morris was wearing his and explained the sense of pride he currently feels being a part of a team that is taking their franchise to heights they haven't been in decades.

"It's the first time I've won a division. I saw [the hat] in my locker. I'm going to go home and give it to my mom," Morris said.

"It's amazing, man. Especially when you have the group of guys that we have. Everybody is really close. The coaches, the training staff, guys just work all-around here. It's a great group of people. It's unbelievable that it's been that long [since they had 47 wins], but we're happy to be here now. We're going to try to get to 50 wins and do something in the playoffs."

Bradley Beal has been in Washington much longer than Morris, who was traded to the Wizards in February of 2016. Beal was drafted in 2012 and has since seen the organization rise from the NBA's basement to where it is now.

"It's great. This is my first time in my career being part of a historical team, a team that has the opportunity to get 50 wins. That's definitely a goal of ours. That would be great for the city and the organization. It's an awesome thing. We're breaking tons of records this year. John broke the assists record. I broke the 3-point record. It's been fantastic. It's been a great run. It's kind of crazy. It's my fifth season and it's kind of flew by. It's just life. That's hoops. We've been having a good year. We want it to continue and it hasn't ended yet… we've still got a lot of unfinished work to do," he said.

Wall can speak to that rise even more. The first overall pick in 2010, Wall has been the driving force behind their ascension. He was the first piece and the first step in all of it.

"[Shoot], I've been on the worst [teams]. I've been here from the beginning when it was the worst and we won 19 games. The way this organization has evolved where a lot of guys have worked out and got better at their craft, having a new coaching staff and guys just buying into it, it's a big accomplishment for us but we still want to hit 50. We want to finish strong and prepare ourselves for the playoffs. 

"We feel like we have a special team if we stay healthy. Just play at a high level every game and we have something special we can do here. You never know what can happen in a [playoff] series. But it's great. Everything we have accomplished this year, it shows that this team stuck together. When we were going through our downfall, nobody pointed anybody out. We just stuck together as a group and said let's get out of this hole. It's great to be on a winning team."

Wall, Beal and others have ushered in a new era for the Wizards. Clearly, they want to keep going and mark even more exclusive territory.

[RELATED: Scott Brooks on Steve Kerr's apology, NBA's unwritten rules]

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Five observations from Wizards' 119-95 blowout win over the Cleveland Cavaliers

Five observations from Wizards' 119-95 blowout win over the Cleveland Cavaliers

The Washington Wizards beat the Cleveland Cavaliers 119-95 on Wednesday night. Here are five observations from the game.

Finally, a blowout: The Wizards' season so far has been largely defined by them making things harder than they need to be. On Wednesday, it all came together in a game in which they cruised to victory. Finally, they got an easy one.

Sure, it helped they were playing quite possibly the worst team in the NBA. But over the past year, these situations haven't always meant a guaranteed win. The Wizards have a habit of playing down to their opponents and, for once, they did not.

The Wizards led by as many as 27 points in this one. They scored 41 in the first quarter, their most in an opening frame since 2014. Though the Cavs made it slightly interesting in the third quarter, the Wizards were essentially in complete control from start to finish.

Important rest: The Wizards haven't blown out teams often since the beginning of last season. At least, they haven't had many games so lopsided their starters could take the end of the night off.

Last season, they won by 20 or more points just three times. Considering there were 168 such games in the NBA last year, that isn't a whole lot.

Against the Cavs on Wednesday, the Wizards only needed to play John Wall 21 minutes. Bradley Beal played 28, Otto Porter Jr. 26, Markieff Morris 21 and Dwight Howard 20. It was a stress-free victory and every team needs those every once in a while.

Welcome to the league, rook: The box score will show that Cavs' rookie guard Collin Sexton had a big night offensively. The No 8 overall pick in the 2018 draft scored 24 points and shot a solid 9-for-16 from the field and looks like an excellent building block for Cleveland.

But a closer look reveals Sexton had a bit of a 'welcome to the league, rookie' game. Wall and Beal ate him alive on defense and forced him into four turnovers, all in the first half, with relative ease.

There was one play that exemplified Sexton's night against Wall, in particular. Wall got to the rim on an and-1 play that saw Sexton turn all sorts of ways as he tried to stay in front of the five-time All-Star:

That's a brand of sauce Sexton had probably never seen before.

Depth on display: The Cavs are so bad without Kevin Love, that big picture conclusions can't be drawn from the success teams have against them. That said, the Wizards showed an impressive level of depth on Wednesday.

Their core bench players all registered double-digit plus-minus ratings. All five members of their second unit - Tomas Satoransky, Austin Rivers, Kelly Oubre Jr., Jeff Green and Ian Mahinmi - scored eight points or more.

One category of stats tells the story best and it involves Wall. The Wizards' star only scored eight points in 21 minutes. He shot 3-of-10 from the field and had three turnovers.

The Wizards had not won a game with Wall scoring eight points or fewer since 2014. They hadn't won with him playing 21 minutes or fewer since 2013.

Wall has been so important to their success over the years that they rarely win when he has off-nights. They haven't won when he's put up numbers that bad in years. 

Yes, it's the Cavs. But the Wizards have the depth now to be less reliant on Wall. That's a good thing for everyone.

Mahinmi hit a three!: Wizards fans who showed up on Wednesday night saw something no other NBA fans had ever seen before. You could say they saw history.

That's because Mahinmi, playing in his 11th season, made his first ever three-point shot. Yes, that's right. After missing his first 10 career attempts, Mahinmi finally got one to go down.

It was a special moment, particularly on Twitter, where the phrase 'Ma3nmi' could be used for the very first time during a regular season game.

All kidding aside, Mahinmi deserves some legitimate credit here. He worked diligently over the summer and all throughout the preseason to develop a game-ready three-point shot. At the end of every Wizards practice and shootaround, he can be seen taking shot after shot from long range.

Despite having already played a decade in the NBA, Mahinmi is still adding to his game. Even his biggest critics should be able to appreciate that.

Ironically, on the night Mahinmi hit his first three, Beal made his 900th.


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Bradley Beal becomes youngest player in NBA history to reach 900 career 3-pointers

Bradley Beal becomes youngest player in NBA history to reach 900 career 3-pointers

Before Wednesday's Wizards-Cavs game, J.R. Smith held the record for youngest NBA player to reach 900 career 3-pointers. 

With 4:31 left in the opening quarter. Bradley Beal caught a pass from Otto Porter and knocked down his 900th career triple

The 25-year-old is a career 39 percent 3-point shooter. Through 13 games this season, Beal is stroking it at 34 percent, but scoring in a variety of ways this season with an average of over 22 points per game. 

Washington is looking for its third consecutive win.