In their season opener at the Verizon Center, the Washington Wizards blew a 23 point first half lead to fall to the New Jersey Nets 90-84. New Jersey mounted their comeback mid way through the second quarter, led by Deron Williams who finished with 23 points, eight rebounds, and eight assists.
John Wall struggled against Williams on both ends of the floor. He finished just three of 13 on the night while committing four turnovers. It was a rough night for Wall, especially down the stretch as Williams and the Nets took the lead and control of the game.
Ronny Turiaf provided a nice spark off the bench and while he will never fill it up on the offensive end, he could be a key energy guy for the Wiz this season - as many expected. He was +12 against New Jersey as he disrupted the Nets in the paint and was not afraid to step in an take a charge on several occasions. Turiaf was on the floor in place of Javale McGee at the end of the game. McGee finished -13 against Jersey and was just one of six from the charity stripe.
There was a bit of good news in the fourth quarter for Washington, as Nick Young, who was carried off the floor with an apparent ankle injury, returned to the game and appeared to be healthy. Young led the Wizards with 16 points, coming off the bench for Flip Saunders.
It was definitely a squandered opportunity for Washington, as they wasted some hot shooting early on and blew a big first half lead against a team that is not expected to be very good. They now take the show on the road to face the Atlanta Hawks on Wednesday night.