Being tired, and excuse or not the Wizards were certainly that Saturday, isn't going to cut it with playoff seeding on the line entering the final two weeks of the season. They've got three days until what is a now a must-win vs. the Charlotte Bobcats at Verizon Center on Wednesday (CSN, 7 p.m. ET).
“That is what your profession is about. You take care of your body and icing it and getting your rest, and coming in and getting treatment if you need it and go out there and compete," point guard John Wall said when asked if playing so hard Friday to win at the New York Knicks had a negative impact on the Wizards' lack of effort vs. the Chicago Bulls on Saturday. "When you step through those lines, any fatigue goes out the window. It is all mental toughness from that point forward.”
The Wizards (40-37) scored a season-low 26 points in the first half. They trailed by as many as 28. The Bulls were the road team and playing a back-to-back, too. It was their first win in three tries this season, so there's no doubt the Wizards can beat them. They've done so in Chicago, too, though that was two months ago.
These type of games don't get any easier at this point in the season. They'll get more difficult.
"This is a good thing we can point to. You save these games. It was not unlike the Indiana game (when) we matched the aggression. Tonight, we didn't," Wizards coach Randy Wittman said. "That's what it boils down to. ... Whoever it is we play, that's what it's going to be for every game. Not just one game and the next game is going to be a little easier. The next game is going to be a little harder. The third game is going to be a little harder. I told our guys, 'Let's use this to our advantage. They beat us. ... They came in here and the punched us and they won. Let's learn from it.' ... Everybody is tired this time of year. Mentally, you can't fall into that."