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Takeaways from Wizards' last-second loss to Pacers

Takeaways from Wizards' last-second loss to Pacers

With the chance to win both games of a back-to-back in reach, the Wizards couldn't cash even as Bradley Beal's long jumper -- appeared to be a three but his foot big right toe was on the line -- tied the score. Paul George did them in again Monday night on both ends, but someone else hit the game-winner for the Indiana Pacers. 

Thaddeus Young got the ball on a broken play on an inbounds, drove to his left and lofted up a left-handed shot for a 107-105 victory at BankersLife Fieldhouse. Beal had a chance with 0.9 seconds to win it on a catch-and-shoot from the corner but the ball went off the rim as the buzzer sounded.

George, who went for 40 in their first meeting a season ago and made two foul shots at the end of a game last year for victories, had a five-point spurt late in the fourth quarter to break open a close game. The Wizards, however, responded with a 7-2 run to bring it down to the wire.

The loss ended the Wizards’ three-game winning streak. It’s the first of a three-game trip to the Midwest that includes stops at the Chicago Bulls on Wednesday and at the Milwaukee Bucks on Friday. 

Marcin Gortat (21 points, 13 rebounds) had his 15th double-double to lead the Wizards (12-15). John Wall (19 points, 10 assists) had his 16th double-double, Bradley Beal (22 points, three assists) and Otto Porter (17 points, nine rebounds) contributed as well.

George (27 points, nine rebounds) and Jeff Teague (23 points, 10 assists) led the Pacers (15-14). Myles Turner (20 points, eight rebounds, five blocks) and Young (12 points, 11 rebounds) were factors as were C.J. Miles (10 points) and Al Jefferson (10 ponts) off the bench.

--Beal picked up his fourth foul on a reach-in on Turner at 10:33 of the third quarter. He’d missed a runner and had been scoreless after scoring 10 in the second quarter. But Beal, who was defended by George to cool him down, also missed open looks. In the second half, George was incredibly physical with Beal who had difficulty getting free on screens but George picked up his fourth foul by 6:15 of the fourth quarter.

--Turner, a center, was a coverage problem as he was able to get open looks from the arc. He was 8-for-13 from the field, including 1-for-2 from three-point range.

--Teague lived in the paint. He scored 11 of his points in the third quarter when Indiana made its run and took a 88-79 lead entering the fourth. The Wizards entered the game 2-11 when trailing in that situation. They were 9-2 when leading going into the final 12 minutes.

-- Jason Smith returned from a right hamstring injury that kept him out Sunday and he made two open jumpers on his only two shots. He went to the bench after the four minutes because he picked up three fouls. Andrew Nicholson (6 points) filled in.

--Tomas Satoransky has played sparingly, but when Kelly Oubre had a putback off a scramble the opportunity was created by the guard battling with three Pacers. Then Satoransky found Porter slicing for a layup that forced a timeout with the deficit down to 79-75. But Satoransky was beaten in the paint by Teague, biting on his upfake as the Pacers went back up 92-88 and shot an airball on the next play while wide open from three-point range.

[RELATED: Wall grants 'biggest fan's' birthday wish]

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Middleton outduels Beal as Bucks bury Wizards

Middleton outduels Beal as Bucks bury Wizards

The Washington Wizards lost to the Milwaukee Bucks 151-131 on the road on Tuesday night. Here are five takeaways from what went down...

1. The Milwaukee Bucks may appear from afar like a one-man show; Giannis Antetokounmpo and a supporting cast of good, but nowhere near great players. On Tuesday night, the Wizards got to see the Bucks without their MVP, as he sat with a shoulder injury. Turns out they are still very, very good.

Milwaukee led by as many as 32 points and won by 20 as they demolished the Wizards for much of the night with the exception of some isolated second-half runs.The Wizards would end up cutting the lead to seven midway through the third quarter, but overall they were no match for the league's best team.

The Wizards fell to 15-31 on the season, while the Bucks improved to 41-6. That puts them on pace for 72 wins, which would tie the 1995-96 Bulls for the second-best regular season record of all-time.

2. We know the Wizards aren't a good defensive team. In fact, they might be the worst defense in today's game and are arguably one of the worst in league history.

But it was still shocking to see what the Bucks did to them in the first half of this game. Milwaukee made history in several ways by scoring 88 points by the break.

Those 88 points were the most ever allowed by a Wizards/Bullets team in any half. They were the seventh-most scored in a first half in NBA history. And they were the 20th-most scored by any team in any half.

The Bucks actually broke their own record against the Wizards. Last February, they scored 85 points in the first half against Washington, which at the time was the most ever scored against the franchise in a first half. At least that time they had Antetokounmpo.

This, by the way, was the sixth time this season the Wizards have allowed 140 points or more. That is the most 140-point games allowed by a team in a single season since the 1990-91 Nuggets. 

That Denver team had 24 such games, so well ahead of the Wizards' pace. But this is only Game 46 of 82 for Washington, so don't sell them short.

3. The reason why the Bucks were able do that without Antetokounmpo was because their second- and third-best players, Khris Middleton and Eric Bledsoe, stepped up and played like All-Stars. Middleton may very well be in the annual showcase next month.

Middleton had a career-high 51 points, 28 of which came in the first half. He went 7-for-10 from three.

Bledsoe added 32 points, including 22 in the first half. He was 11-for-20 from the field. He also had 10 assists and six rebounds, as he bullied the Wizards - even their big men - on the boards.

4. The Wizards were able to stick around and make it interesting because Bradley Beal also put in an All-Star performance. He dropped a season-high 47 points with six assists in 38 minutes.

It was Beal's sixth 40-point game of the season. Only James Harden (16) and Trae Young (8) have more. Beal now has 18 career 40-point games, third in franchise history behind Gilbert Arenas (28) and Walt Bellamy (23). 

5. It wasn't of the Antetokounmpo caliber, but there was a pregame injury update for the Wizards that is worth noting. Backup guard Jordan McRae wasn't able to go due to a sprained right ankle.

McRae rolled his ankle on Sunday against the Hawks and it is apparently more serious than his previous ankle injury, the one to his left ankle, that he suffered on Jan. 17 against the Raptors. That one appeared to be very severe at the time, yet he was able to play in their next game.

It is unclear how long McRae will be out, but the Wizards are expected to get rookie Rui Hachimura back, perhaps within the next week.

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Wizards fail to contain Khris Middleton and fall to league-leading Bucks by 20

Wizards fail to contain Khris Middleton and fall to league-leading Bucks by 20

The Bucks didn't have Giannis Antetokounmpo, but it didn't really matter in the end as the Bucks downed the Wizards 151-131 Tuesday night in Milwaukee. 

The Wizards trailed by as many as 32 in this one, and were down 25 at the half, but as we've learned with this team, they never truly go away. And they always give us a few moments worth watching again. 

Here are some of the best moments from Washington's loss at Fiserv Forum. 

Kobe Bryant tribute

Tuesday was the Bucks' first game since Kobe Bryant passed away Sunday in a helicopter crash so after they won the tip, they took a 24-second violation to honor the late NBA legend.

The Wizards already participated in a similar tribute against the Hawks but took an eight-second violation on the following play regardless. 

The entire sports world was gutted by Bryant's tragic death, and as we continue to see tributes dedicated to him every day, it shows just how far his reach was as a global icon. 

Beal posterizes Lopez

As we stated before, the Wizards were down by as many as 32 points and faced a 25-point halftime deficit. They were able to get things close at the end of the third quarter and into the fourth, and much of the credit should go to Beal's loud poster dunk over Brook Lopez. 

Beal was so pumped up after this slam that he got a technical foul for taunting Lopez after the play. Beal secured a career-high sixth 40-point game of the year and went shot-for-shot with Khris Middleton throughout the second half. 

Middleton just couldn't miss. At all. 

Thomas Bryant draws the Wizards close

There was a time that the Wizards nearly clawed their way into a one-possession game with the NBA's best team. Thanks to Beal's heroics of course, but also Thomas Bryant's finishing inside. 

Bryant had a double-double in the game in what was his best game since coming back from injury. 

Interestingly enough, he played his best at the center spot and not power forward. Scott Brooks has been starting Bryant next to Ian Mahinmi and it's resulted in clunky offense and embarrassingly bad defense for the Wizards. 

After this game, Brooks may want to think about changing up the starting five. 

Click here to download the MyTeams App by NBC Sports. Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream Capitals and Wizards games easily from your device.