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John Wall's anger with officiating in loss to Jazz boils over as he nears suspension

John Wall's anger with officiating in loss to Jazz boils over as he nears suspension

Aside from the $4,000 penalty that comes with the 15th technical foul on John Wall, the NBA could levy a heavier one on the Wizards' point guard after his frustrations boiled over after a 95-88 loss at the Utah Jazz.

"We didn't lose this game," said Wall, who showed marks on his left arm that drew blood that he said didn't result in a whistle. "The refs made us lose this game. We fought hard to give ourselves a chance."

Game officials reviewed a play in the third quarter when he went around a screen from Rudy Gobert and appeared to strike him with an open hand in the midsection/beltline area. Gobert reacted as if he was hurt but quickly got back into the play to continue. The two players had words with each other as well.

Wall was assessed a technical which puts him one away from an automatic one-game suspension with six games left in the regular season.

"I don't know. I was just chasing over the screen. I guess my hand accidentally hit him in the stomach or whevever it hit him at," Wall said. "That happens throughout the course of a basketball game. Guys fighting over screens. It's not like I ran into him and hit him on purpose. I didn't know what happened. The ref said it was a technical foul. There was nothing exchanged between us (previously)."

There could've been more whistles in what was a physical game throughout. Marcin Gortat was plowed over by Gobert for what appeared to be a charge but there was no call. Gobert finished the layup uncontested. Wall made a steal and missed a layup when replays showed that Gordon Hayward didn't come close to the ball and touched his arm. 

[RELATED: Markieff Morris expects to get X-ray after injuring ankle in Wizards' loss to Jazz]

The lack of calls has been a growing frustation for coach Scott Brooks and his team. Bradley Beal and Wall did attack the rim much better than they did in a 102-92 loss vs. Utah on Feb. 26. And while this one was more competitive and on the line in the final minutes, they didn't do enough to win. 

When Wall was given his 14th technical he was hopeful that it would be rescinded as was Brooks. That didn't happen after the league reviewed it. 

A couple days after Brooks suggested that his team complained too much when Markieff Morris was ejected in a 133-124 loss to the L.A. Clippers, he was dumbfounded by these events. 

"They said it was a hostile act." Brooks said. "I've been around a lot of fights back when I played. Come on, hostile act? That's ridiculous. We have to control our emotions but he's playing defense. He went through a screen. ... It wasn't controlling our emotions. If anything, it's accidental contact."

The juggling act has taken a toll. Wall has been careful not to be too aggressive in his posture towards game officials, and he still got a technical. 

"I haven't been saying nothing to the refs lately because I know what situation I've been in," said Wall, who attempted just four foul shots as did Beal. "But the way they were officiating today makes no sense. You shoot 31 freee throws to 16, We were the agggressive team that attacked the basket. I try to get something rescinded before. It never works in my favor."

The assumption is that Wall is using expletives or speaking harshly to officials, but he said that's not the case. Even a year ago, he recalled an incident in a game vs. the Orlando Magic when the he felt as if the now-retired Joey Crawford baited him by addressing him in a condescending tone. Something similar, according to Wall, took place Friday on another play.

"I asked the ref why I didn't get one call when I drove baseline, Gordon Hayward pushed me out of bounds. He said, 'Well I didn't shoot the ball, you did.' They're saying slick stuff to me," Wall said. "If I go and tell people about it, (the NBA is) not going to believe my word over their word. Once I say something they feel like is negative towards them, they're going to run to the media then I'm getting fined. If you're going to hold the players accountable you should hold the refs accountable. If you're talking to them in a respectable manner they need to talk to you in the same way." 

Aside from Wall's hard foul on Marcus Smart in a blowout of the Boston Celtics earlier in the season -- retaliation for what he felt was roughhouse tactics -- he doesn't have the reputation of a flopper or cheap-shot artist.

"Playing defense fighting over a screen. He's not a dirty player," Beal said of the technical. "Doesn't have that label. ... Kind of unfair."

[RELATED: NBA Power Rankings: Playoff picture getting clear]

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Wizards' third pre-draft workout to feature local stars including GW's Yuta Watanabe

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USA Today Sports Images

Wizards' third pre-draft workout to feature local stars including GW's Yuta Watanabe

The Wizards will hold their third pre-draft workout on Thursday at Capital One Arena, this time featuring four local standouts out of the six players attending. Highlighting that group is Yuta Watanabe of George Washington, the Atlantic-10 Defensive Player of the Year.

Here is the full list with notes on each player...

Phillip Carr, F, Morgan State (6-9, 205)

Carr averaged 13.7 points and 9.3 rebounds this past season at Morgan State in Maryland. He shot 84.6 percent from the free throw line, excellent for a big man.

Potential fit with Wizards: candidate for summer league or G-League team as undrafted free agent

James Daniel III, G, Tennessee (6-0, 172)

Originally from Hampton, Va., Daniel III played four years at Howard University in D.C. before transferring to Tennessee as a redshirt senior. He was the MEAC Player of the Year in his last healthy season at Howard. Daniel III averaged 5.6 points in 35 games for the Volunteers.

Potential fit with Wizards: candidate for summer league or G-League team as undrafted free agent

Marcus Derrickson, F, Georgetown (6-7, 250)

Derrickson hails from nearby Bowie, Md. He played three years with the Hoyas and averaged 15.9 points, 8.1 rebounds and shot 46.5 percent from three this past season. 

Potential fit with Wizards: candidate for summer league or G-League team as undrafted free agent

Junior Etou, F, Tulsa (6-8, 235)

Originally from the Republic of Congo, Etou went to high school at Bishop O'Connell in Arlington, Va. He is Serge Ibaka's cousin and didn't start playing basketball until he was 15. Etou averaged 15.0 points and 7.9 rebounds this past season.

Potential fit with Wizards: candidate for summer league or G-League team as undrafted free agent

Junior Robinson, G, Mount St. Mary's (5-5, 150)

The Northeast Conference Player of the Year, Robinson averaged 22.0 points and 4.8 assists this past season. He was a four-year starter at Mount St. Mary's.

Potential fit with Wizards: candidate for summer league or G-League team as undrafted free agent

Yuta Watanabe, F, George Washington (6-9, 205)

One of the best basketball players to ever come from Japan, Watanabe was a defensive standout for the Colonials who developed into a solid scorer by his senior year. This past season, he averaged 16.3 points, 6.1 rebounds and 1.6 blocks per game. He is known in Japan as 'The Chosen One' and both of his parents played basketball professionally. NBC Sports Washington first reported he would work out with the Wizards this week.

Potential fit with Wizards: candidate for summer league or G-League team as undrafted free agent; best chance for NBA is as defensive specialist

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Wizards' second pre-draft workout highlights quest for shooting, raises question at point guard

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Wizards' second pre-draft workout highlights quest for shooting, raises question at point guard


The Wizards held their second pre-draft workout at Capital One Arena on Wednesday and the theme of this session was shooting. They hosted six players, four of which shot 40 percent or better for their college careers. Not 40 percent for their final season, like they developed a shot over the years, 40 percent for their careers.

Those four would be Aaron Holiday of UCLA, a likely first-round pick, plus likely second-round picks Devonte' Graham and Sviatoslave Mykhailiuk of Kansas, and Zach Thomas of Bucknell who may go undrafted.

One of the outliers was Moe Wagner of Michigan, who shot 39.4 percent as a junior. The other was Johnathan Williams, who shot 33.3 percent from long range in college, but impressed in the workout by knocking down more shots than expected.

Wizards executives raved about the amount of made shots in this workout and the players they chose to host help demonstrate that shooting is a need the Wizards are hoping to address. Head coach Scott Brooks said as much in his final meeting with the media following their playoff loss.

Here are some notes on the players that addressed reporters on Wednesday...

Aaron Holiday, PG, UCLA

 - The brother of NBA players Jrue and Justin, Holiday said he is aiming to find the same success as them at the professional level. Both are good defensive players and Holiday said that is a big part of his game: 

"No pressure at all. I'm here to make my own name for myself... We all like to play defense... I just try to watch how they read guys and force guys into bad plays."

Holiday was informed his brother, Jrue, had just been named All-Defense. He was happy for him, of course.

"That's awesome. That's actually really good. I thought he would do it, too. Obviously, he's a great defender. Both of my brothers do well."

 - Bringing in Holiday was interesting because he is expected to be a first round pick and plays point guard. The Wizards, of course, already have an All-Star point guard in John Wall. Holiday acknowledged that fact, but believes he can play with both Wall and All-Star shooting guard Bradley Beal:

"It was obviously a question of why they would want me, but at the same time I know they need help on the backend, coming off the bench and playing high minutes and producing while John and them aren't on the court. Or, even playing with John Wall out there... with John and Bradley Beal out there, I could space the court pretty well for them."

Holiday would have no problem beginning his career as a bench player, if that's what happens:

"If the coach tells me to come off the bench, play a lot of minutes and get other people involved, that's what I will do. I also can play off the ball as well. I think I fit pretty good."

The Wizards taking a point guard in the first round is not that crazy of an idea. They have long been in need of a viable backup point guard and Fred VanVleet of the Raptors showed how much a really good backup can help.

Moritz Wagner, C, Michigan

 - Wagner worked out with the Bulls first and has the Nets up next. He said the Wizards workout was more intense than the Bulls, which is something we heard from many prospects last year. Washington apparently puts a greater emphasis on physical conditioning than other teams.

 - A native of Germany, and a seven-footer who shoots threes, naturally Wagner grew up a big fan of Mavs great Dirk Nowitzki:

"He was kind of our MJ. He was my MJ. He kind of shows you 'okay, this is possible and this is doable.' It's just basketball. He's from where I'm from, too. It gives you a lot of hope. It gives you a lot of belief and motivation."

 - Questions for Wagner surround his defense and whether he can protect the rim, as he wasn't a shot-blocker in college. Wagner said he is hoping to show teams how his mobility can help on that end of the floor:

"I think the most important thing that I wasn't able to show in college is that I'm able to switch the ball-screen. Especially with the way the league is going; switch on everything and stay in front of guards as a big guy."

Devonte' Graham, G, Kansas

 - Graham also worked out with the Bulls first. He has the Suns, Hawks, Rockets and Grizzlies up next. He expects to work out for 13 or 14 teams in total.

 - Graham is from Raleigh, just like Wall who was in attendance. Wall and Graham sat next to each other to chat after the workout was over:

"We're from the [area code] 919 and we all stick together. I hit him up last night."

 - Graham also knows Wizards forward Kelly Oubre, Jr. very well. They were roommates as freshmen at Kansas:

"He was a goofy dude. That was my boy, though."

 - Graham said he has been talking to Jazz star rookie Donovan Mitchell about the draft process, as he and Mitchell share the same agent.

MORE WIZARDS: 

- Diallo visits: Is the Kentucky star a good fit?
- Turgeon talks: Maryland coach talks 2018 draft
- NBA mock draft: Post combine edition

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