Pistons no match for Beal, Wizards
Bradley Beal missed his first two shots, but playing through a left knee bruise he scored 10 of his 15 points in the last 3:35 of the second quarter in the Wizards' 106-82 blowout of the Detroit Pistons.
“I thought he was fine. I have to kind of read the situation early in the game on how teams are playing him and get a good feel," Wizards coach Randy Wittman said. "He said there was no lingering effect of what happened last night.”
Beal started Saturday, the day after going down hard when he clashed knees in a game at the Minnesota Timberwolves, and only needed to play 20 minutes. It was an emotional 24-hours for the second-year guard, who already had missed nine games earlier this season with a stress reaction in his lower right leg.
"It was up and down. At first, I was mad and nervous because I didn't know. Whenever it's the knee, you always think the worst no matter how many times people tell you to think positively," said Beal, who had a negative X-ray and MRI. "You always think, 'What's the worst that could possibly happen to you?' But it wasn't really killing me like that. My knee wasn't really throbbing when I went to sleep so that was a good sign, and I woke up and there was no pain at all. I was fortunate and happy after that."
The Wizards (13-14) went from a 50-41 lead during that spurt to being up 62-41 at the half. Beal made two three-pointers. Three of his four buckets during that stretch came from assists by John Wall, who found him in the corners for the long-range shots.
"Those two were great finds by John. As soon as I hit the first one, it came right back to me," Beal said. "And it just shows his IQ and the chemistry we both had. He got me going with those points."
This was the perfect scenario for Washington. Although Beal started and still was on minute restrictions because of previous injury, the Wizards led by double digits most of the way which allowed Wittman to him and his other starters.