In the final home game before All-Star break, and the final of a five-game homestand, Bradley Beal may have gotten his groove back. With the Sacramento Kings mounting a comeback and slicing the deficit to four twice, Beal's three-point jump shot returned to save the day.
He buried consecutive three-pointers midway through the fourth quarter to push the lead to 88-77. The Wizards (25-25) went on to win 93-84, and Beal contributed 16 points, six rebounds and a team-high five assists.
He was 4-for-5 on three-pointers which was significant. Beal had been 3-for-15 in the previous five games.
Maybe it shouldn't be a surprise as he has had ample opportunity to focus on his shot. Beal practiced for the three-point shootout over the weekend. He'll participate in the event the night before the NBA All-Star game on Feb. 16 in New Orleans. He'll also play in the Rising Stars Challenge between rookies and second-year players Feb. 14.
Beal stayed late and buried all but one on the final rack of basketballs. There was music playing on the Wizards practice court at Verizon Center to distract him. He fumbled the ball a few times which threw off his rhythm. In the end, however, Beal had his timing down, and sported some swag as he could be heard saying, "I got this."
In Sunday's game, Beal was faced with his old AAU teammate, Ben McLemore, a rookie for the Kings who was guarding him during that crucial spurt in the fourth quarter. If McLemore didn't remember how deadly Beal could be from deep, he was reminded the hard way.
"I told him not to help," Beal said with a laugh. "He didn't listen so he got burned."