ORLANDO -- At about the midway point of the second quarter, Drew Gooden could barely make his way off the court. He was gassed and never looked like himself after making his first shot from the three-point arc. He wasn't the only one for the Wizards, who only produced 88 points in this fast-paced offense though it was good enough for their first regular-season opening victory in six years.
What had been a fast start, holding a nine-point lead twice in the first six minutes of the game, didn't last. The Wizards ruined a lot of possessions with turnovers, getting 18 total with 10 coming from John Wall and Bradley Beal.
"We got to get in shape," Wizards coach Randy Wittman said. "We got to get in better shape to play at that pace. It's a process. It's different. ... This is Game 1. We just got to keep working at it."
Gooden shot 1-for-6. Wittman only went four deep on the bench, with Ramon Sessions, Nene and Gary Neal getting the rest of the time.
Wall played 39 minutes, Beal 38, Otto Porter 37 and Marcin Gortat 36. Kris Humphries played 26, sharing his time with Gooden who logged 20.
"We have 15 guys. We need everybody to play. It's going to be tough for everybody to play 82 games the same way" Beal said. "We're going to need everybody's legs. It's going to be tough to play those minutes with this style of play. At the same time, it works for us and we have to get in shape. We have no other choice but to because Witt's not changing the system."
Seven preseason games doesn't get a team adjusted to playing for 82 games this way. They have to experience it because the intensity of regular-season games can't be simulated in practice.
The Wizards shot 33 of 84, just 39%. Wittman used a lot of three-guard lineups to spread the floor with one big in the middle. The open looks were there, particularly down the stretch when Porter and Neal missed wide-open threes.
"We were," Porter said when asked about fatigue. "We did shoot ourselves in the foot a couple times making careless mistakes. It's the first game. We're going to go learn from it.
"Everybody's going hard. I expect us to be a bit tired especially coming in the first game. The more and more we play the more we're going to settle into it."