John Wall finally returned from a knee injury on Saturday night that sidelined him for two months, this time with a new-look headband. Wall scored 15 points to go along with 14 assists (a perfect John Wall stat line if I’ve ever seen one) in his return. Wall and the Wizards blew out the Charlotte Hornets 107-93 and his return couldn’t have come at a more important stage of the season. Only weeks away from the playoffs, the Wizards were sliding hard without Wall. The shots that were falling when Wall was originally injured were hardly even open anymore and opponents were zeroing in on Bradley Beal, leaving it up to his teammates to pick up the extra slack, something they could not execute at the level they needed to. With Wall back, the Wizards are once again one of the most dangerous teams in the Eastern Conference. He’ll only have six more games to get back in the flow of the team, but they’ll be good exhibitions for whoever they face in the first round of the playoffs.
In other news, Malik Monk scored 17 points on 7-17 shooting against Wall and the Wizards. Monk continues to see extended minutes now that the season is lost and Saturday was no different as he pulled off some familiar acrobatics at the rim.
In some interesting news that could be relevant but also might not be, Hassan Whiteside, starting center for the Miami Heat, has not been happy about his minutes this season. Whiteside went off Saturday, using more than a few expletives and stating that he’s unsure about his future in Miami. So why is this relevant? Well, our very own Bam Adebayo is the Heat’s backup center, who has shown he has a real future in the league as a potential starting center. Heat fans, much like Kentucky fans, love Bam and the energy and athleticism he brings to the team. Whiteside signed a four-year $92 million contract back in 2016, so unless Miami trades him, he won’t be going anywhere soon. At this very moment, this doesn’t really matter for Kentucky fans, but as Adebayo continues to develop and if Whiteside remains unhappy, it could be something to keep an eye on as the rookie hopes to make a leap next season.
Check out the rest of the stats below. And please, for the love of everything that is good in the world, please let Anthony Davis shaving his unibrow be some sort of horrible April Fools joke.
|Malik Monk (CHA)||93-107 L @ WAS||17||7-17 (3-9)||1||3||0||0||4||-4||23|
|John Wall (WAS)||107-93 W vs. CHA||15||6-17 (2-6)||3||14||1||0||4||+16||33|
|De'Aaron Fox (SAC)||96-112 L vs. GSW||15||6-11 (0-2)||3||8||1||2||1||-9||27|
|Willie Cauley-Stein (SAC)||96-112 L vs. GSW||12||6-10 (0-0)||8||0||0||1||1||-9||24|
|Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (CHA)||93-107 L @ WAS||10||4-6 (0-0)||3||0||1||0||2||-13||21|
|Skal Labissiere (SAC)||96-112 L vs. GSW||8||2-8 (0-4)||6||3||0||1||4||+4||29|
|Jodie Meeks (WAS)||107-93 W vs. CHA||0||0-0 (0-0)||0||0||1||0||0||0||1|
|Enes Kanter (NYK)||109-115 L vs. DET||DNP-Back||--||--||--||--||--||--||--||--|
|Bam Adebayo (MIA)||109-110 OT L vs. BKN||DNP-CD||--||--||--||--||--||--||--||--|
— Def Pen Hoops (@DefPenHoops) March 31, 2018
Tonight in the NBA
There are 13 games scheduled on this fine Easter Sunday, which means 26 of the 30 total teams are in action today, which also means Kentucky will be represented well. If you’ve been missing out on the NBA this season or get tired of hunting with children for plastic eggs, take a seat and catch up all day long.
1:00 (NBATV): Sixers @ Hornets (Kidd-Gilchrist, Monk)
3:30: Wizards (Wall, Meeks) @ Bulls
3:30 (ABC): Rockets @ Spurs
3:30: Pacers (Poythress) @ Clippers
6:00: Magic @ Hawks
6:00: Pistons @ Nets
6:00: Mavericks (Noel, Aa. Harrison) @ Cavaliers
6:00 (NBATV): Thunder (Patterson, Johnson) @ Pelicans (Davis, Miller, Liggins, Rondo)
7:00: Jazz @ Timberwolves (Towns)
8:00: Bucks (Bledsoe) @ Nuggets (Murray, Lyles)
8:30: Suns (Booker, Ulis) @ Warriors
9:00: Grizzlies (An. Harrison, Teague) @ Trail Blazers
9:30 (NBATV): Kings (Cauley-Stein, Fox, Labissiere) @ Lakers (Randle)
Player(s) to watch
Well, we have our choice of who should be today’s player to watch. Everyone from Anthony Davis, John Wall, KAT, to the Harrison twins, Marquis Teague, and everyone in between will be in action. So, since we talk about the superstars a lot, let’s go with the duo in Denver. To say the Denver Nuggets have bungled away the last 20ish games of the regular season would be the biggest understatement in the history of anything. Jamal Murray has still been doing Jamal Murray things, but the team as whole goes through lengthy ruts during games where they transform from a top-five seed in the West to the Kentucky Wildcats during that four-game losing streak. The return of Paul Millsap has effectively cut Trey Lyles minutes in half, however, he’s still scored in double figures in three of his last five games, despite not playing 20 minutes in any of them. The Nuggets take on the Bucks Sunday and they have to win. Actually, every game for the rest of the season is a must-win for them if they want to sneak back into the playoffs, but a matchup against another playoff team is critical. Plus, they’re going up against Eric Bledsoe, who has been doing some amazing things in Milwaukee with Giannis Antetokounmpo over the last couple months.