The Oklahoma City Thunder are an offensive powerhouse. Add to that some matador defense and things get ugly quickly. That’s what happened Tuesday night when the Thunder dropped 125 points on the Wizards — with a team true shooting percentage of 63.3 percent on the evening, plus they out rebounded the Wizards by a dozen. All of which caused coach Randy Wittman to unload on his team.
“We don’t defend. Guys drive by us at will. We don’t have any toughness. We don’t hit anybody and rebound the ball. We’ve got guys that play 27 minutes and get one defensive rebound. I can get a rebound, I guarantee you. If you give me 27 minutes on a Saturday, I’ll get you a rebound. And that’s what it boils down to – 50-50 balls; the dirty stuff. We don’t get dirty. And that’s on me. We’ve got three days to find the guys that’ll play that way.”
That rebounding reference is to Marcin Gortat.
Wittman is right. To a man the Wizards all admitted they played like manure after the game. But the issues are deeper than just this game, the Wizards are 23rd in the NBA in defense right now, allowing 105.2 points per 100 possessions. This wasn’t just one bad game, it’s a pattern.
The past three seasons, the Wizards were a top 10 defense. If they don’t return to that form, their dreams of a deep playoff run will be sunk in the Patomic.