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The Wizards Made The Playoffs! The Wizards Made The Playoffs!

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ESPN - John Wall was waving his towel as time expired. He joined his teammates at center court and did a little dance in the middle of a celebratory huddle. He gave Bradley Beal a bear hug from behind and also hugged and thanked coach Randy Wittman. Wall will soon be making his playoff debut, and the Washington Wizards will be there for the first time since 2008, having clinched an Eastern Conference berth Wednesday night with a 118-92 win over the Boston Celtics. “It’s everything I’ve been waiting for,” said Wall, the No. 1 overall pick in the 2010 draft, “as being a point guard, and trying to learn how to lead in this league, and become a better player. But also I think the fans deserve it. I mean, the tough times they’ve been through, booing us and us feeling bad when we’re not playing good or playing the right way.” Wall had 13 points and 10 assists in one of the Wizards’ easiest wins in recent history. It was their biggest margin of victory this season, and their 62.5 shooting percentage was their best in a game since 2001. The Wizards’ last playoff appearance ended a streak of four in a row with coach Eddie Jordan and franchise point guard Gilbert Arenas. More was expected, but Arenas brought guns into the locker room and became a felon, precipitating a stunning decline for himself and the franchise. Team president Ernie Grunfeld got rid of Jordan and went through two more coaches before settling on Wittman, whose career record is 141 games below .500.

 

I’m not putting this up there with the 1980 Miracle on Ice, but sometimes it sure as fuck felt like the Wizards would never make it back to the playoffs. What a completely different team this one is than the last one that made the playoffs with Gilbert Arenas running the show and bringing guns into the locker room and taking shits in Andray Blatche’s shoes. Now the team is actually likable with Wall being one of the top PGs in the league, and Beal quickly showing he’s one of the top SGs in the league. Marcin Gortat is one of my favorite people of all time

 

 

and the veterans Martell Webster, Trevor Ariza, Al Harrington, and yes, even Drew Gooden, have all been great additions to the team.

Obviously to win a championship in the NBA you have to either be the Spurs, Thunder, Heat, or Pacers. But the fact this Wizards team despite some pretty lousy coaching and questionable draft picks made the playoffs is pretty exciting.

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And hopefully Wale starts recruiting Kevin Durant to join the team in 2016. Get on that, Wale!