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State of the Wizards: Brooks on how Beal can be like Klay Thompson

State of the Wizards: Brooks on how Beal can be like Klay Thompson

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Brooks reacts to Klay Thompson's 60-point night - Wizards head coach Scott Brooks was asked before Tuesday's game against the Orlando Magic what he thought about Klay Thompson going off for an insane 60 points in just 29 minutes the night before. Once he realized where the question was going, Brooks grinned and leaned back in his chair. He then quipped: "It took me about 20 games to 60."

After the room laughed at his joke, and after the reporter point out a SportVU stat that said Thompson only touched the basketball for a total of 90 seconds during the game, Brooks told a story that Thompson's performance reminded him of. It reminded him of a film session he had with Bradley Beal on the road just a week before Thompson's big night:

"It doesn't get any better than that. It's funny, Bradley and I were watching film together just him and I last week and I told him that, I said 'you're one of the few guys in this league that can score 30 and have the ball in your hands less than a minute.' He didn't believe me. So, we looked at a couple of his clips and I [using] slow-motion and slow frames, I said 'look, there's 19 seconds on the shot clock and you've got the ball in your hands.' So, I did the clip. 'You shot the ball, it's out of your hands. Now look at the shot clock.' There was still 19 seconds. So, you shot the ball in what, .5 seconds? He's one of the few guys that can do that. Klay is obviously the same type of player. These guys that come off pindowns, they don't need the ball in their hands. They don't need to dribble the ball around the court five or six times to get a look. They've got the speed, they've got great footwork to come off [screens] and they've got the stroke. When you have bigs that set great screens like they do and we do, guys like Beal get a lot of opportunities to get points without touching the ball a whole lot in his hands."

Thompson looks like a future Hall of Famer at this point, one of the best shooters of all time who is a complete player with above-average skills on the defensive end. Putting Beal in the same category is a lofty comparison at this point.

But Beal is one of the best young guards in the NBA and there's no reason to put a ceiling on him at this stage of his career. Beal, a five-year NBA veteran, is in the middle of his Age 23 season. He's averaging 21.4 points per game on 44.1 percent shooting. Thompson was a three-year pro at Age 23 and scoring 18.4 points on 44.4 percent shooting. Beal is shooting 41.5 percent from three on 6.9 attempts per game. Thompson at the same age was hitting 41.7 percent of his threes on 6.6 shots per game.

Thompson is on a different level than Beal at this point, but he's also three years older. Beal may never get to where Klay is now, but Brooks does make an interesting point in terms of their similarities.

Satoransky's getting less minutes - Brooks' bench continues to evolve and lately that has meant less run for rookie Tomas Satoransky. The 6-foot-7 guard has not played at all in two of the Wizards' last three games, and the outlier was a 3:33 stint against the Nets on Monday.

Trey Burke has been the beneficiary of Satoransky's diminished role, logging 10 minutes against the Spurs and 12 vs. the Nets. Brooks was asked about Satoransky getting less minutes and he had this to say:

"He's putting so much pressure on himself and that's kind of norma. We've all been there as players in this league. There are a lot of things that you have to internalize and execute and the coach wants something, the four guys want something on the court. It's tough. I'm going to be very patient with him. I really believe that he's still a big part of what we do right now. He's just going to have to fit in where he fits in with the minutes. They're not going to be real consistent right now, but you never know. He just has to be ready. I thought Trey the last couple of games gave us a good lift. He has experience and he can manage... at this point he's a better scorer in the pick-and-roll setting. But Tomas is going to continue to work hard, he's a great kid that works hard.

Eastern Conference standings

Game of the week: John Wall 12/7 vs. Magic - 52 points, 8 assists, 4 rebounds, 3 steals, 18-for-31 FG, 5-for-8 3PT, 11-for-14 FT

Quote of the Week

"Our job is to wake up and just play hard. Before you made it to the NBA or got a college scholarship, you played hard every day to get to where you wanted to. To still be talking about playing hard, that's something that you should be able to do after just waking up. Everybody has a job and they have to go work hard. Our job is to come here and play hard and compete. That's the easiest thing that you should do without any contracts or any money, just come in and play basketball … if I had the answer we wouldn't be in this situation."

- John Wall on the Wizards' defensive effort against Orlando on Tuesday night

Tweet (or Instagram) of the Week

Road ahead

Mon. - 118-113 win at Brooklyn Nets
Tue. - 124-116 loss vs. Orlando Magic
Wed. - OFF
Thu. - 7 p.m. vs. Denver Nuggets (CSN)
Fri. - OFF
Sat. - 7 p.m. vs. Milwaukee Bucks (CSN)
Sun. - OFF

[RELATED: Wall faces music alone, questions Wizards' effort]

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Celtics and Sixers may go relatively unchanged this offseason, as stars have gone elsewhere

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Celtics and Sixers may go relatively unchanged this offseason, as stars have gone elsewhere

The 2018 NBA offseason in just three weeks has become one of the wildest summers in the league's history between LeBron James signing with the Lakers, and all the characters that followed him, to DeMarcus Cousins surprising everyone to sign with the Golden State Warriors, to Kawhi Leonard getting traded to the Raptors.

As crazy as it all has been, two teams in the Eastern Conference stand out for so far doing very little, either by choice or circumstance. The Celtics and Sixers, the two teams most see as the favorites in the East, appear at least so far to be running it back with the same group of players.

This appears to be the Celtics' intention. After overhauling their roster last summer, they clearly see an opportunity to take a step forward as-is. Boston was one win away from the NBA Finals and will return Gordon Hayward and Kyrie Irving from injury. With James gone to the West, they can improve significanly just by keeping it all together.

Boston re-signed Marcus Smart and Aron Baynes. Their biggest addition this summer so far has been their first round pick, Robert Williams.

The Sixers, unlike the Celtics, didn't appear to plan on doing it this way. They wanted James and missed out. They reportedly had interest in Paul George and Kawhi Leonard, but both went elsewhere. There are no stars left to sign in free agency and the trade market may be drying up.

Philly made some minor moves like trades for Wilson Chandler and Mike Muscala. They may also have a deal for Kyle Korver in the works. They also had two first round picks in Zhaire Smith and Landry Shamet.

There's a chance the Sixers got better than people think, as many of the moves they made seem smart. But they didn't reel in a big fish and will probably come back for the 2018-19 season with a team very similar to the one that made the second round of the playoffs this spring.

The fact the Celtics and Sixers may stand pat is probably a good thing for the rest of the East. Both teams may improve naturally if they are healthier and if their young players continue to ascend. But neither made a game-changing addition, one that would solidify either as an unstoppable superteam in the conference. 

The West is overloaded with title contenders and All-NBA players. The East, meanwhile, is much more open and it may end up staying that way mainly because Boston and Philly have been quiet so far this summer.

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Wizards set introductory press conference for Dwight Howard

Wizards set introductory press conference for Dwight Howard

Wizards team president Ernie Grunfeld has stayed relatively busy this summer crafting his new-look lineup for the 2018-19 season. 

One of the team's key additions, Dwight Howard, is set to be introduced as a member of the Wizards on Monday. 

NBC Sports Washington will air the introductory press conference live at 1 p.m. while also streaming it online.  

Ernie Grunfeld and head coach Scott Brooks are both expected to be in attendance. 

The 32-year-old big man is coming off a 2017-18 season with the Charlotte Hornets in which he averaged 16.6 points and 12.5 rebounds per game. 

Since leaving the Orlando Magic after eight seasons in 2011, Howard has played for four different teams in the last six years. 

Howard is an eight-time all-star and a three-time defensive player of the year. 

 

RELATED LINKS: 

John Wall's take on Dwight Howard 

Wizards make Dwight Howard free agent signing official 

By the numbers: Is new Wizards center Dwight Howard still in his NBA prime?