Wizards fall in OT to Thunder
The Wizards couldn't overcome the ejection of Nene and blew a chance to win for the first time at the Oklahoma City Thunder in falling 106-105 in overtime Sunday.
It marked their second consecutive overtime game for Washington which had beaten the Brooklyn Nets 112-108 at Verizon Center on Friday.
The Thunder (5-1) were held to 10 points in the second quarter, the fewest in franchise history, as the Wizards took 42-37 lead.
The Wizards (2-4) controlled the second half and had victory in hand until the momentum changed with Nene's ejection with 3:19 left and ahead 92-82.
Al Harrington drew a charge on Russell Westbrook and as Nene went to help him up, he shoved Westbrook who then retaliated.
Kevin Durant led his team on a 9-0 run, punctuated by an assist to Serge Ibaka for a dunk. Bradley Beal had consecutive baskets to give the Wizards a 96-93 lead but a three-pointer from Durant tied it.
The Wizards fell down quickly in the extra period 100-96 but were able to regain the lead 105-102 when Marcin Gortat got around Thabo Sefolosha for a layup. But Gortat missed the free throw to make it a two-possession game.
Durant blocked a shot attempt by Trevor Ariza with the shot clock winding down and was fouled on the breakaway. His two free throws gave Oklahoma City the winning margin.
John Wall's layup on the last play of the game missed the rim. It appeared that Jeremy Lamb hacked him on the shot, but a foul wasn't called.
Nene had 14 points, seven rebounds and six assists. Ariza had 15 points and five rebounds.
For Oklahoma City, Durant had a team-high 33 points, 13 rebounds and six assists. Serge Ibaka contributed 25 points and 12 rebounds.
Turning point: Nene's ejection. Losing him put the Wizards out of sync and inspired the Thunder.
Best in show: Beal. He scored a career-high 34 points on 13-for-23 shooting, including 6 of 8 from three-point range. Every time the Wizards needed a clutch basket, Beal delivered. He also had six rebounds.
Needs improvement: The foul shooting prevented the Wizards from pulling away early. They missed nine attempts in the first half of this game, shooting 6-for-15, and could've led by double digits. They finished just 13 of 26. Ariza missed all five of his attempts. Nene missed 6 of 10.
Clutch plays: The bench did its part with Martell Webster and Harrington helping stuff a possible run by the Thunder late in the fourth quarter. Webster hit a mid-range jumper to push the lead back to 85-76 and Harrington took a charge from Westbrook. Harrington made another three-pointer to interrupt another run but the Thunder had one more in them. Harrington had 11 points. Webster contributed eight.
Key stats: Wizards were beaten in second-chance points (20-4), fast-break points (20-4) and offensive rebounding (16-7).
DNP: Jan Vesely and Glen Rice didn't touch the court again and have yet to play this season. Garrett Temple and Trevor Booker (left index finger) didn't get off the bench, either, as Wittman has tightened his rotation. Booker had been starting at power forward until Nene returned from a left calf strain.
From the locker room: "We played extremely well. Oklahoma City, credit for coming back. They made shots. All we needed to do in the last couple minutes of regulation is make one shot, make a couple free throws, the game's over when they were making that run. I thought our guys played their tails off tonight. Came up short. We had good looks at it. We just couldn't make a shot and they came down and made shots. I guess that's what it boiled down to. I take that shot at the end of the game, John going to the basket, every time. We don't convert it. Missed 13 free throws. Coming into a place like this, go 13-for-26 (at the foul line) and you still have a chance to win the game. This one hurt, but I'm proud of them. They busted their tails, gave themselves a chance." -- Wizards coach Randy Wittman
"We got to pull that one out. We're up 10 with (three) minutes to go. We got to bear down and get stops on the other end and knock them down when its crunch time. You can't fault with the way (the Thunder) played. You got to give them credit. They won. That game was definitely in our hands. It was in our control. We let it slip away." -- Beal
Up next: The Wizards will practice Monday and Tuesday before playing their second game of this three-game road trip at the Dallas Mavericks on Tuesday (CSN+, 8:30 p.m. ET).