Highlights: Mavericks 105, Wizards 95
Randy Wittman can't wait for 10 games.
Before the season began Oct. 30, the Wizards' coach said he needed about that many games to make adjustments to his rotations.
But after the Wizards dropped their second game in a row, 105-95, at the Dallas Mavericks on Tuesday night he'd seen enough.
The Wizards have failed to hold an opponent to less than 100 points (though they were successful in doing so with the Brooklyn Nets and Oklahoma City Thunder in regulation before going to overtime).
The Mavericks shot 48.8% from the field and outscored them in the paint by eight points with 40.
"We are not playing any defense," Wittman told reporters after his team fell to 2-5. "We are last in the league in points (allowed), last in the league in field-goal percentage (allowed).
"I have to change up our bench. There are something that need to be done rotation-wise."
Just one season ago, the Wizards were top 10 in points allowed per game at 95.8. They were the only non-playoff team in the group. Now they're allowing 107.4 points.
In the first two games of the season, losses at the Detroit Pistons (50% shooting allowed) and vs. the Philadelphia 76ers (51%), the Wizards permitted 130 total points in the paint. Wittman blamed the perimeter play, the lack of pressure on the ball and allowing dribble penetration into the paint -- not his bigs of Nene and Marcin Gortat.
Though the points allowed in the paint have improved since then, the Miami Heat shot 52.9%. The Wizards held the Thunder in check at 44.6% but they made a late surge to erase a 10-point deficit with 3:19 left in the fourth quarter to win that game. In the Wizards' two wins, vs. the 76ers and Brooklyn Nets, they still allowed them to shoot an average of 47%.
On the other end, the offense isn't running as smoothly with the second unit, either. But Wittman suggests those problems can be easily fixed by a defense that creates easier opportunities.
Martell Webster and Al Harrington combined to shoot 5-for-13 vs. the Mavericks. Eric Maynor was 1-for-5. Kevin Seraphin fell into early foul trouble -- three fouls in just three minutes -- and didn't score or return to the game. His replacement, Trevor Booker who had started the first three games at power forward, had his first action since Nov. 3 and didn't score in five minutes.
Webster, who signed a four-year, $22 million deal in the off-season, has been out of sync. He has had two games where he has gotten just one shot.
He has been coming off the bench behind Trevor Ariza, who is their best one-on-one defender and flourishes as a three-point shooter with John Wall setting him up.