Quick Links

Ranking the wildest Wizards buzzer-beaters since 2000

Ranking the wildest Wizards buzzer-beaters since 2000

On Monday night, LeBron James and the Cavaliers snatched a victory from the red-hot Wizards thanks to a miraculous fadeaway 3-pointer with three tenths of a second left in regulation to tie the game.

The Cavs would go on to win in overtime 140-135 thanks to some Game 7-like heroics from Kyrie Irving.

While the buzzer-beater did not work in the Wizards' favor, it certainly was a memorable shot.

And it got us thinking, what are the best buzzer-beaters the Wizards have been a part of since 2000?

There are some good ones to choose from.


Honorable Mention: Cartier Martin vs. 76ers, Nov. 3, 2010

John Wall's home debut started with an elongated dance number during his player introduction and ended with a 116-115 overtime victory over the 76ers. The Wizards got to overtime because of Cartier Martin's game-tying buzzer-beater at the end of regulation.



10. Bradley Beal vs. Magic, Dec. 10, 2014

Not all buzzer-beaters are 3-pointers, but all buzzer-beaters are great.

Against the Magic in 2014, the Wizards had less than a second remaining on the clock and possession of the ball out of bounds. Andre Miller tossed a picture-perfect lob pass to Bradley Beal, who slammed it home at the buzzer. 



9. John Wall vs. Bulls, Jan. 17, 2017

OK, this is more of a game-winner than a buzzer-beater, but the circumstances make it important.

The Wizards had won five of their last eight since beating the Bulls by ten in Chicago a few weeks prior. Rookie Denzel Valentine's antics fueled the fire inside John Wall, who responded, hitting clutch jumper with five seconds left, his first-career NBA game-winner.

The monster was awoken, and the Wizards would go on to win 11 of their next 14 games before falling to Cleveland on Monday night.


8. Gilbert Arenas vs. Sonics, March 27, 2007 

As you're about to find out, the 2006-07 season was a good one for Wizards' buzzer-beaters, thanks in large part to Gilbert Arenas.

While this wasn't his most outstanding game-winner, it sure was a tough shot. Also, any time we can mention the Seattle Sonics is good for the soul.


7. Bradley Beal vs. Spurs, Nov. 2015

The Spurs are NBA royalty, and every time Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobili, Tony Parker and company are in town, the game has a playoff-like feel.

Bradley Beal and John Wall scored the final 15 points of the game for the Wizards, which included the game-winner from Beal, and an emphatic "DAGGER" call from our guy Steve Buckhantz.


6. Gilbert Arenas vs. Cavaliers. Game 6 of 2006 Playoffs 

Like LeBron James' shot on Monday night, this shot from Gilbert Arenas extended the game into overtime instead of ending it.

But it makes our list because Arenas was basically in Anacostia when he hoisted up the 3-pointer.

A playoff-extending buzzer-beater is always worthy of a mention.


5. Gilbert Arenas vs. Jazz, Jan. 15, 2007 

Gilber Arenas could do very little wrong in the winter of 2006-2007.

From Dec. 1 to March 1, Arenas scored at least 40 points six times, including a 51-point performance against the Jazz, which he capped with a mammoth dagger at the buzzer.


4. Gilbert Arenas vs. Bucks, Jan. 3, 2007 

The 2006-07 season was a highly entertaining one for the Wizards and their fans, thanks in large part to the "Big Three" of Antawn Jamison, Caron Butler.

Arenas' buzzer-beater against the Bucks spurred one of a great individual runs of recent memory, and it all started with him launching a deep 3-pointer and turning to walk away before the shot even hit the twin.



3. Michael Jordan vs. Cavaliers. Jan. 30, 2002 

Michael Jordan came out of retirement (again) to join the Wizards in the early 2000's and while he did not bring a championship threepeat to Washington, D.C., he did bring excitement back to the nation's capital.

In perhaps the signature moment of his Wizards tenure, Jordan hit "The Shot, Part II," a pull-up buzzer-beater against the Cavaliers a la his Game 5 buzzer-beater against the Cavaliers in the 1989 NBA Playoffs. 


2. Gilbert Arenas vs. Bulls. Game 6 of 2005 Playoffs 

Gilbert Arenas hit so many big shots it is difficult to keep track of them all.

While this wasn't his best buzzer-beater, it was his most important, as it helped the Wizards close out their first playoff series victory since 1982.

It was the start of Arenas' run of clutch shots in Washington, D.C.


1. Paul Pierce vs. Hawks. Game 3, 2015 NBA Playoffs

Paul Pierce made a career of hitting clutch buckets, and in his first season with the Wizards, he hit the most clutch of buckets.

The Wizards and Hawks were tied on the scoreboard and in the playoff series.

With time winding down and overtime looking imminent in Game 3, "The Truth" called "Game" and hit a fade-away bank shot at the buzzer to give the Wizards the victory, and a 2-1 playoff lead.


Did we miss any? Be sure to let us know in the comment section below!


Quick Links

2019 NBA Draft prospect profile: KZ Okpala

USA Today Sports Images

2019 NBA Draft prospect profile: KZ Okpala

The Washington Wizards will have the ninth overall pick in the 2019 NBA Draft. Here is the latest in our series on draft prospects who could fall around where the Wizards will select...

2019 NBA Draft Wizards Prospect Preview: KZ Okpala

School: Stanford
Position: Forward
Age: 20
Height: 6-10
Weight: 210
Wingspan: 7-2
Max vertical: 37 in.

2018/19 stats: 16.8 ppg, 5.7 rpg, 2.0 apg, 1.0 spg, 0.5 bpg, 46.3 FG% (5.9/12.7), 36.8 3PT% (1.1/3.0), 67.1 FT%

Player comparison: Kyle Kuzma, Gerald Green

Projections: NBC Sports Washington 25th, NBADraft.net 23rd, Bleacher Report 27th, Sports Illustrated 29th, Ringer 41st

5 things to know:

*Okpala is a tall, lanky wing who loves to drive from the perimeter to the rim. He made the All-Pac-12 team this past season after improving his scoring average from 10.0 points as a freshman to 16.8 points as a sophomore. He also increased his rebounds per game average from 3.7 to 5.7.

*He is arguably one of the most athletic players in this class. At 6-foot-10 in shoes, he has great size for a wing player and measured at the NBA combine with a 7-2 wingspan. He also has an impressive vertical leap of 37 inches which would be good even for a point guard. He is also fast in the open court. Teams will be enticed with his ceiling on both ends of the floor.

*Okpala scored a lot in college but has a raw offensive game. He isn't fully there as a ball-handler and has an improving, but still inconsistent outside shot. The fact he made a leap from his freshman to sophomore year as a three-point shooter was a very good sign. His 36.8 three-point percentage on three attempts per game is encouraging but does not offer any guarantees that he can stretch the floor at the next level. His 67.1 free throw percentage doesn't help his cause.

*He is just the third player from Stanford to leave for the NBA before his junior season, joining the Lopez twins, Brook and Robin, who were first round picks in 2010.

*Okpala is the son of two Nigerian immigrants. He had a 4.4 GPA in high school.

Fit with Wizards: Okpala would fill a need for the Wizards in that he is a forward and they don't have many of those under contract for next season. He would also give them a young player with high upside, something they currently lack.

But Okpala also seems to offer decent bust potential. Ever since Kevin Durant came into the league, there have been a lot of players like Okpala to come along, ones that are tall enough to play inside but prefer to work on the perimeter.

Sometimes that can work, like with Giannis Antetokounmpo or Brandon Ingram (sort of). But for every success story, there seem to be a lot of guys like Perry Jones and Thon Maker.

Okpala seems very much like boom or bust, and the Wizards may not be able to afford taking a chance like that.

Best highlight video:


Quick Links

Neil Olshey signs extension with Trail Blazers, off the table for Wizards job

Neil Olshey signs extension with Trail Blazers, off the table for Wizards job

After Tim Connelly decided to re-join the Nuggets rather than take the Wizards' vacant front-office position, Washington has been forced back to the drawing board.

The Wizards have interviewed Thunder assistant general manager Troy Weaver, former Hawks general manager Danny Ferry and Wizards interim team president Tommy Sheppard.

In addition to those names, NBC Sports Washington's Ben Standig reported the team could have interest in Trail Blazers president of basketball operations Neil Olshey. 

That option was eliminated Friday when Olshey signed an extension to remain with Portland. 

With Connelly and Olshey off the table, there are fewer high-profile candidates left for the Wizards to consider as replacements for Ernie Grunfeld. 

Standig noted that Warriors assistant general manager Larry Harris could also draw interest from Washington. 

The franchise is running out of time to find their new front-office leader with less than a month remaining before the NBA Draft.