Jordan Plans to Go Deep Into His Bench
EAST RUTHERFORD, N. J., April 7 — The schedule isn’t doing the injury- depleted Washington Wizards any favors as the regular season winds down. Saturday night’s game at New Jersey was their fifth in seven days, and this week isn’t any lighter, with a home game against the Nets on Tuesday and a road game at Miami on Wednesday.
The team has struggled with back- to- back sets all season, and a thin rotation will be further tested by the grind of playing on short rest. After asking his starters and reserve forward Darius Songaila to carry heavy minutes during Friday’s home loss to Cleveland, Coach Eddie Jordan entered Saturday’s game planning to play reserves such as Donell Taylor, Mike Hall and Roger Mason.
Taylor had appeared in just 40 games entering Saturday night and hadn’t played since a March 26 loss at Utah. Hall saw his lone NBA action in a brief stint at Charlotte on Tuesday and Mason mostly had seen spot duty all season.
“ Maybe their energy will help us,” Jordan said. “ We know there will be some mistakes, hopefully not 23 of them [ turnovers] like last night, but we’ll see.”
Taylor, Hall and Mason were on the court getting in some extra work prior to Friday and Saturday night’s games just in case. All three will be free agents this summer, so the final games and the playoffs could have a significant impact.
“ Just trying to stay ready,” Taylor said. “ If you get in there, you want to make the most of it. We don’t have anything to lose.”