Bradley Beal scores 20 points, Wizards rout Cavaliers 119-95
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Washington Wizards caught the undermanned Cleveland Cavaliers on the second game of back-to-backs Wednesday night.
They seized the opportunity.
Bradley Beal scored 20 points, Otto Porter added 15 and the Wizards beat the Cavaliers 119-95 for their third straight victory. Washington never trailed and led by as many as 27 points.
“We did a good job of coming out there very aggressive on the defensive end,” Dwight Howard said. “We got a lot of stops early which allowed us to get a pretty good lead.”
The Wizards got 12 points from Austin Rivers and 11 from Markieff Morris.
Rookie Collin Sexton had a career-high 24 points for Cleveland, and David Nwaba added 11 points. Playing the second straight night after topping Charlotte on Tuesday, the Cavaliers are an NBA-worst 2-12.
In addition to forward Kevin Love (foot surgery), the Cavaliers were without starting point guard George Hill (hamstring), forward Sam Dekker (ankle) and forward Kyle Korver (sore right foot).
“On the second night of a back-to-back, you have to know they’re going to throw their punches,” Cavaliers forward Larry Nance, Jr. said. “You just have to weather the storm and ride the game out, and we didn’t weather storm.”
Washington pulled away with a 15-0 run early in the second quarter, and Kelly Oubre’s dunk made it 56-32. They led 73-52 at halftime. Cleveland had a 13-2 run to get to 82-69 in the third, but Morris hit a 3-pointer and the Wizards scored seven straight points.
Cleveland committed 24 turnovers that translated into 29 Wizards points.
“This building is a tough place to play, a tough place to win, especially if you turn the ball over,” Cavaliers coach Larry Drew said. “And bad shots are just as bad as a turnover.”
The Wizards made 13 of 40 3-point attempts, while Cleveland was 4 of 21 and missed 10 free throws. Cleveland’s 95 points tied a season-low for a Washington opponent.
“We still have a lot of work to do – we still have to get better. We’re still not content with where we are,” Beal said. “We put three (wins) together, but we still have a couple more at home that we have to take care of.”
In his 556th NBA game, Washington’s Ian Mahinmi hit his first career 3-pointer on his 11th career attempt. With a minute left in the first half, Mahinmi took pass from John Wall and successfully launched from the right corner.
“I talked to John right before the play and he told me ‘get to the corner.’ So, I get to the corner, I get behind the line and I’m like, ‘if the ball comes my way, I’m shooting it,'” Mahinmi said. “So, it happened. It went in. So, it was good.”
Cavaliers: F Cedi Osman returned after missing Tuesday’s game with back spasms and scored four points in 24 minutes. … Andrew Harrison scored a season-high 10 points.
Wizards: Wall shot 3 for 10 and scored a season-low eight points in 21 minutes. … Beal hit his 900th career 3-pointer in the first quarter. According to the Wizards, he’s the youngest person in NBA history to reach 900. … Beal has scored 20 or more points in three of his last four games. … Washington’s 73-point first half was its highest-scoring half of the season.
Magic: At Detroit on Monday night.
Wizards: Host Brooklyn on Friday night in the third game of a five-game homestand.
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