Wall blocks Deron -- then Webster blocks the camera
NEW YORK -- Closing out games has as much to do with defense as it does offense. The Wizards had the second part down in Wednesday's win at the Brooklyn Nets. They scored 113 points. So while Bradley Beal hit the most memorable shot, John Wall sealed the win with a block and it's yet another reason why he should have the edge when it comes to being an All-Star.
Trailing 109-104 with 21 seconds left, Deron Williams took a missed free throw from Martell Webster end-to-end with the hope of making it a one-possession game. As he rose to drop in the layup, Wall climbed over and swatted the shot away. Webster collected the ball, was fouled and made two free throws.
The Wizards (11-13) had won their second game in a row after a four-game losing streak.
"We just got the big stops. We did the things defensively," Wall said. "We knew they were going to make a run. We just stuck with ourselves."
The last time the Wizards played against Williams at Barclays Center, he torched them with an NBA-record nine three-pointers in the first half en route to 42 points in a 95-78 victory.
Yeah, I remember," said Wall. "That first quarter he had something like 22 points. I think he had 34, 35 at halftime. It was a barrage. ... I knew he was playing well coming off the ankle injury. I just wanted to be physical with him and not let him get any easy looks."
Six of Williams' 15 points Wednesday came in the final two minutes as the Nets tried desperately to come back. Head-to-head, Wall has the edge in two victories this season. Williams has been held to to 10-for-27 shooting for 29 points points and 16 assists. Wall is 12-for-31 for 38 points and 20 assists.
Williams trailed Wall in the first returns of All-Star ballots in the popular vote from fans, but even when it comes to the reserves selected by coaches and general managers around the league Wall should have the edge there, too.