Wizards Beal struggling through two games

Wizards Beal struggling through two games
November 4, 2012, 12:30 am
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The Wizards received some strong individual performances from forward Kevin Seraphin [19 points, 7 rebounds] and shooting guard Jordan Crawford [21 points, 4 rebounds] in their home-opening 89-86 loss to the Boston Celtics Saturday night.

But where were Bradley Beal and Trevor Ariza?

Beal, who on Thursday night struggled through a 2-for-8 shooting night in his NBA debut against the Cleveland Cavaliers, struggled through another tough night against the Celtics, missing all five of his shots from the field and finishing with just a pair of points from the line.

“I think my defense was pretty solid,” said Beal, who started for the second straight game but was quickly lifted for Crawford. ‘Offense, I wasn’t involved, really.

“I wasn’t asserting myself. I wasn’t being aggressive. It’s upon me. It’s not somebody else’s fault. It’s not the coach’s fault or the players’ fault. I have to be responsible for it and basically just step up.”

Taken with the third pick of the 2012 NBA draft, Beal’s outside shooting was expected to complement third-year guard John Wall. But with Wall out of the lineup with a stress injury to his knee, opposing defenses are keying on Beal.

“They’re all not letting me shoot the ball, clearly,” he said. “The other coaches and players are saying it. It gets frustrating because it’s something you love to do and it’s one of my strengths.

“When you’re not able to use those strengths it’s kind of hard to fight through it. At the same time it’s about me growing up and being a man in this league. I have to move past that because there are other things I can do well besides scoring the ball.”

Ariza, who arrived from New Orleans with Emeka Okafor in the summer trade for Rashard Lewis, was equally ineffective Saturday night, missing all four of his shots and finishing with zero points and zero rebounds in 16:40.

Asked about both players, Wizards coach Randy Wittman had the same response.

“Gotta play through it,” he said.

Veteran point guard Jannero Pargo said that’s easier said than done for a 19-year-old rookie.

“I can only imagine being 19 and starting in the NBA,” Pargo said. “That’s a lot of pressure.

“We’re all here for him and we want him to be successful. He needs to go out and play free, be aggressive and if he makes mistakes, we’ll live with that.”