Wizards Year in Review: Player by player

Wizards Year in Review: Player by player
April 30, 2012, 2:58 pm
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We start with the face of the team and the biggest hope for the future, point guard John Wall.

Statistically, Wall pretty much had the same numbers in his second year as he did in his rookie season, averaging 16 points, 8 assists and 4 rebounds for the Wizards. After a curious sluggish start to the season, Wall picked up his play mid-season and closed out on a real high note, showing why he was the 1 overall pick in the 2010 NBA draft.

Wall finished his sophomore campaign with double-doubles in four of the last five games, including a spectacular 21-point, 13-assist, 7-rebound and 7-steal outing in a win at Cleveland. Wall was unstoppable in the open floor versus the Cavs, finishing and finding his teammates on the fast break.

One play against Cleveland in particular exhibited the talent Wall has. After getting the outlet pass, Wall just sprinted by the entire Cavaliers team and, with his left hand, finished at the rim with a left-handed dunk. Not many players can do what Wall did on that move.

Wall helped the Wizards close out the season on a season high six-game winning streak but they finished 20-46, second worst in he NBA. Wall averaged 14 points and 9 assists in April.

Wall has unbelievable point A to point B speed and could be the fastest player with the ball in his hands in the league. At times, though, he relies too much on his speed and can't take his foot off the pedal.

Moving forward, Wall must be able to be more of a threat to defenses by not just always going full steam ahead and forcing shots at times, but creating more plays by using different gears and using better angles offensively. Wall is a smart player, so there is no doubt he will be able to adjust his game for the future.

When the Wizards added center Nene at the trade deadline, and when Nene was healthy and playing, Wall thrived on the court. Having a true post-presence in Nene helped Wall immensely, as the pressure wasn'tsolelyon Wall to be the team's first option offensively. Also, the emergence of Kevin Seraphin on the block can only help Wall and the Wizards' inside-out game heading into next year.

It's very apparent that Wall must improve his shot. Although his field goal percentage improved from his rookie season to 42 percent, Wall made only 3 of 42 three-point attempts. Wall knows he must get up shots every day this off-season to be more of a threat offensively because teams were happy to let Wall shoot jumpers, knowing his best offensive move was getting as close to the hoop as possible.

As a point guard -- like it or not -- Wall must also be more of a leader on the court and off it. Wall will be entering his third season next year and this will really be his team. He must demand more of himself and his teammates.

If he does that, the Wizards rebuild will finally be on the right course.