x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

Washington Wizards on the verge of a disappearing act in NBA play-offs

If this is, in fact, the end of the road for the Washington Wizards, let us take a moment to appreciate one of the more enjoyable stories of the play-offs.

John Wall, left, Nene, right, and their Washington Wizards teammates have put on an entertaining show during the play-offs so far, but the curtain may be ready to fall on their act.  Rob Carr / AFP
John Wall, left, Nene, right, and their Washington Wizards teammates have put on an entertaining show during the play-offs so far, but the curtain may be ready to fall on their act. Rob Carr / AFP

If this is, in fact, the end of the road for the Washington Wizards, let us take a moment to appreciate one of the more enjoyable stories of the play-offs.

The Wizards are a team that went against all logic before the season and, get this, tried to get better.

They entered the season actually wanting to make the play-offs, and it is a good thing they did. In the past couple of weeks, Washington has given us a rejuvenated Nene – always a joy to watch when he is healthy and motivated.

We got an extended look at perhaps the most exciting young guard pairing in the league in John Wall and Bradley Beal, and the team even reminded us that Drew Gooden used to be kind of decent.

They steamrolled the Chicago Bulls and met up with the Indiana Pacers in the second round – an enticing upset possibility.

Washington are instead trailing 3-1, with tonight’s Game 5 set to be played on the Pacers’ home court.

Not that it is safe to put anything past this year’s Pacers, but they look likely to finish off the entertaining Wizards and advance to the Eastern Conference finals, as everyone assumed they would in the first place.

But it would be fun if the Wizards could mount a remarkable comeback.

Perhaps Wall and Beal can catch fire for three straight games and put the Pacers on the run.

Stranger things have happened. Especially with this Indiana team.

jraymond@thenational.ae

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