Washington Wizards trying to get organized before playoffs

WASHINGTON (AP) — Hassan Whiteside scored 30 points and James Johnson hit a layup with 11 seconds left to give the Miami Heat a 106-103 victory over the Washington Wizards on Saturday night. Regardless of what the results are - even last night. Trailing 106-103 with less than 10 seconds remaining, Beal's three-point attempt was blocked shortly before time expired.

Then, with 2:09 left, Richardson was called for a questionable goal-tend on a Wall shot that put Washington up 97-96, with James Johnson responding with a dunk for a 98-97 lead.

Forward Markieff Morris led the Wizards with 21 points, with Bradley Beal and John Wall each adding 16 for Washington. Miami averages 102.8 points per game on offense while allowing 101.9 on defense this season.

"These guys in the locker room right now feel alive", coach Erik Spoelstra said. The Wizards trailed 104-103 at the time, but with 11 seconds to score and the ball in John Wall's hands, everyone in the stadium, including Phil Chenier, via the ComcastSportsNet broadcast, was optimistic that the Wizards could pull off a game-winning final play: "We've seen Washington execute plays in this same type of situation". The Wizards' star guard tandem of Wall and Beal, who combined to shoot only 11-of-33 from the field, each finished with 16 points. With 48 wins and only a handful of games left for the regular season, the Wizards still have a little more work to do if they want to reach 50 wins. That the final two games have meaning - an uncertainty after Friday's 96-94 loss at Toronto - had Spoelstra waxing poetic. His favorite play involves Wall throwing an inbounds pass to Bradley Beal, who successfully seals his man, and catches a lob pass for an easy lay-in under the basket. Dragic scored just three points in the first half.

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Tyler Johnson scored 19 points and Goran Dragic had 18 for the Heat. "The last play, he (Spoelstra) drew it up and we ran it in Detroit".

"We didn't do a good enough job setting the screens and executing, we've been pretty good with that". We've won a lot of close games because we have that, but tonight wasn't one of our better executed end of games.

Washington returned to action at the Verizon Center on April 4 to host the Charlotte Hornets and battled back from a 12-point halftime lead to earn a 118-111 win and snap a three-game losing streak. Oubre Jr. started in place of season-long starter Otto Porter Jr., who missed the game with back spasms.

Washington Wizards guard Brandon Jennings (7) looses control of the ball as he goes up against Miami Heat guard Wayne Ellington (2) during the first half of an NBA basketball game in Washington, Saturday, April 8, 2017.

  • Lawrence Cooper