The Wizards have followed an NBA stereotype to a T this season.
Young teams generally have trouble playing on the road and the Wizards have taken that to an extreme. They are 14-15 at Capital One Arena this season, yet with their loss to the Blazers on Wednesday night, they are now 8-24 outside of D.C.
That's a difference of six games in the win column and nine games in the loss column. In fact, the Wizards are tied with the Warriors for the most road losses of any team this season.
The stark contrast between home and road games for the Wizards has been due to their defense. Their offense has been remarkably consistent with a 111.4 offensive rating at home and a 111.3 on the road.
But their defensive rating soars from 112.0 at home to 118.1 in away games. To put that in perspective, the NBA record for highest defensive rating for a full season is 117.6, set by the Cleveland Cavaliers last year. So, basically when they play on the road, they defend at an all-time terrible level.
In their road games, the Wizards are allowing teams to shoot 50.1 percent from the field (30th in NBA) and 39.5 percent from three (29th). That is essentially Kevin Durant in his prime.
Teams are scoring 123.6 points on average against the Wizards in road games. It's hard to win when that is the bar for your offense to clear.
The good news for the Wizards is they have more home games remaining (12) than road games (9). The bad news is that they have no realistic chance at making the playoffs if their road problems continue. And they happen to have a schedule that features four of their final six away from D.C.
Though the Wizards are much younger this year than they were last season, their road struggles have been a carryover. They went 22-19 at home last season and 10-31 on the road.
This season, they have a built-in excuse in their young roster. It was expected and, given their goals of player development, in a way embraced.
But if they have to figure this out if they want to win anything of consequence in the near future.
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