“That’s like a basketball rule. You don’t shoot the ball, period. Take the turnover, especially if you’re up 20 or however much you’re up. You’re not respecting the game.”
That’s how Washington Wizards guard Bradley Beal rationalized an incident late in Sunday’s blowout loss to the hands of the Warriors, when his teammate Brandon Jennings shoved Golden State center JaVale McGee for hoisting up a three pointer with 6.9 seconds remaining in the game, and five seconds remaining on the shot clock.
Brandon Jennings didn’t appreciate JaVale McGee taking a three at the end of the game and shoved him out of bounds for it. pic.twitter.com/d3k6SqNyT5
— KNBR (@KNBR) April 3, 2017
Jennings was assessed a flagrant foul, but stood by his decision after the game, citing the same unwritten rule as Beal.
“It was very disrespectful,” Jennings said. “Thank God he didn’t go to the rack, it probably would have been worse for him. But any time like that, I think you should let (the) clock run out. I think it was already disrespectful that they were trying to get Draymond a triple-double, Steph was out there with 40. So, I just felt it was disrespectful.
“I’m old-school. Like I said, he better be glad he shot that 3 and didn’t go to the basket.”
As pointed out on Monday morning by the Bay Area News Group, however, based on the Wizards’ own definition, they have disrespected the game on multiple occasions this season. Writer Jon Becker found three separate incidents in which Washington has shot a three while blowing out a team with less than 10 seconds on the clock instead of letting it run out.
March 24 vs. Brooklyn: With Washington up 129-108 with 10 seconds remaining in the game, and 4.8 left on the shot clock, Wizards backup Trey Burke shot a 3-pointer. He air-balled it.
Jan. 27 at Atlanta: With Washington up 109-83 with 10 seconds left on the game clock, and seven seconds on the shot clock, Wizards reserve Tomas Satoransky shot a corner 3 and made it.
Jan. 16 vs. Portland: With Washington leading 120-99 with eight seconds left in the game, and 2.4 remaining on the shot clock, Satoransky launched a 3-pointer. He air-balled it.
Here’s video of those incidents, also dug up by the Bay Area News Group:
Even without this hypocrisy, the Wizards’ reaction to McGee shooting a 3 is pretty silly, as our Senior Writer Kevin Jones argued in his post-game column last night:
Complaints about running up the score should be reserved for when Middle Tennessee State plays Alabama in college football. NBA teams aren’t allowed to moan and whine when they get blown out. Score more points. Build a better roster. Blame yourself for not performing better. Lashing out about such an inconsequential play to end the game is the sign of a team focused on the wrong things
Honestly, what’s the difference between shooting a 3 and 2 to close the game? The Warriors have made the 3-pointer such a normal shot in the NBA. The Wizards are flat out wrong when they say take a shot clock violation to close out the game, too. That almost never happens.