Jacob Raim - WashingtonWizards.com
Congratulations are in order to John Wall, who parlayed a
phenomenal four-game stretch
into winning the Eastern Conference's player of the week award.
The award is the first for a Wizard since Antawn Jamison received it in 2008. Wall became the first NBA player in the three-point era (1979-80) to average 24.0 points, 11.0 assists, 5.0 rebounds and 2.5 steals per game, while shooting at least .617 from the field, .800 from three-point range and .857 from the free-throw line in one week. He also led the Wizards to a 3-1 record, including 3-0 at the Verizon Center. Wall had double-doubles in three out of the four games and was just one assist shy in the one game he fell short. He also shot 46% or better in all four games, with a ridiculous 76.9% over the final two games of the week. His shooting % at the rim was more incredible, as he shot 80% on trips to the hoop, which does not even include the nine times he was fouled heading to the basket. He certainly wasn't doing all of this while shooting the ball infrequently either, as he averaged over 14 shot attempts per game.
Not only did he score the ball proficiently, he helped raise some of his teammates' games to incredible levels as well with exceptional distribution of the ball and ball protection. He helped Martell Webster to a career-high 34 points on Saturday night. Emeka Okafor and Nene both had some exceptional games in the post. The Wizards as a team shot 50% or better in the three games they won which in no small part was due to the creating Wall did. In each of the four games, Wall pushed the Wizards into transition for at least 16 fast break points. Finally, his assist-turnover ratio of 3.7:1 makes his turnover-prone ways from a couple of weeks ago seem like something from the distant past. Wall has now boosted himself into the top seven in the NBA in assists per game at 7.6.
Each of the four games saw something special out of Wall. In the Cleveland loss, we saw him dish out 14 assists, which easily could have been 17 or 18 if the team had shot better than 40%. In the win over Milwaukee, he scored 23 points himself and helped facilitate 18 fast break points and a remarkable 58 points in the paint. Not to mention he also held Brandon Jennings to just eight points in 43 minutes. The win over the Hornets was probably Wall's most exceptional game of the week, as he might just have had the best shooting night of his career, shooting 10/13 on jump shots including 3/3 from three for 29 points. Finally, in the Saturday night matchup with Phoenix, he orchestrated the Wizards' offense to the tune of a season high 127 points.
So congratulations, John. This award is clearly very much deserved.
Watch John Wall's postgame remarks after each of his outstanding performances from last week:
Tuesday, March 12 at Cleveland (27 points, 14 assists)
Wednesday, March 13 vs. Milwaukee (23 points, 10 assists)
Friday, March 15 vs. New Orleans (29 points, 9 assists)
Saturday, March 16 vs. Phoenix (17 points, 11 assists)