Af­ter 6-Game Skid, A Mo­ment to Sa­vor

The Washington Post Sunday - - Wizards Insider - By Ivan Carter

Not long af­ter the Wash­ing­ton Wiz­ards snapped a six-game los­ing streak with a 98-85 vic­tory over the At­lanta Hawks on Fri­day night, a re­lieved-look­ing Ed­die Jor­dan was asked about to­day’s mati­nee against the Chicago Bulls at Ver­i­zon Cen­ter.

“Oh, man, can I en­joy an­other hour of cold beer and some pizza be­fore I have to talk about Chicago?” Jor­dan asked.

Jor­dan had ev­ery right to sa­vor Fri­day’s win. Af­ter a string of close losses that co­in­cided with sea­son-end­ing in­juries to all­stars Gil­bert Are­nas and Caron But­ler, the Wiz­ards (40-39) fi­nally put to­gether a com­plete per­for­mance that in­cluded a strong start, a 14-0 run to end the first half and a solid sec­ond half in which they never al­lowed the Hawks, a team play­ing with­out six reg­u­lars, a chance to get back into the game.

Jor­dan wants his team to learn from its suc­cess and strug­gles in re­cent games. When play­ers have ex­e­cuted the of­fense by avoid­ing care­less turnovers, set­ting good screens and shar­ing the ball, the Wiz­ards have suc­ceeded. But when the of­fense has bro­ken down and play­ers have taken ques­tion­able shots, they have not.

“It’s eas­ier for us as coaches when you can sit them down and say: ‘Look, you got the lead be­cause you’re run­ning the of­fense, you’re help­ing each other de­fen­sively and you’re tak­ing qual­ity looks, qual­ity shots and you’re not forc­ing any­thing,’ ” Jor­dan said. “Just trust the sys­tem. We’ve been say­ing that through­out th­ese games. Keep your pa­tience be­cause when you start los­ing like this, it’s easy to start los­ing a lit­tle bit of faith and a lit­tle bit of pa­tience.”

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