All-Pro wide receiver Julio Jones of the Atlanta Falcons was courtside in support of the home team as the Atlanta Hawks hosted the Washington Wizards in an National Basketball Association playoff game on Friday night.
John Wall scored 42 points, Bradley Beal added 31 and the Washington Wizards withstood a furious Atlanta comeback to close out the Hawks with a 115-99 victory Friday night, winning the opening-round playoff series 4-2.
Celtics 105, Bulls 83 • Avery Bradley scored 23 points, and hot-shooting Boston pounded host Chicago to win their first-round series 4-2.
"We wanted to try to save Keef [Markieff Morris] from getting in foul trouble-I don't know if that strategy worked".
For Atlanta, Paul Millsap turned in another special performance playing over 46 minutes while finishing with 31 points, 10 rebounds, seven assists and four steals.
The Wizards will now advance to the second round to take on the Celtics in what could be an entertaining series.
Washington's bench showed up for the Wizards in Game 5, while Atlanta's bench faded. But the Bulls never really found their rhythm over the final four games with point guard Rajon Rondo sidelined by a broken right thumb.
His backcourt mate, Bradley Beal, probably won't get as much credit for Washington's victory, but in many ways, he created the spark to seal the Wizards' first win on the road.
In Coach Scott Brooks' first season with the franchise, Washington advances to the conference semifinals and will play the victor of the Chicago-Boston series. But given that they're on Eastern Conference teams with limited national exposure, it does seem they don't always get their due.
In many ways the series came down to stopping or slowing down Wall and Beal and that was something the Hawks struggled to do on a consistent basis.
Washington's Markieff Morris picked up No. 4 after 2½ minutes of the third quarter and didn't return until there were less than 6 minutes remaining in the fourth. "For young players in this league, I couldn't ask for two better guys to lead our team".
Wall either scored 29-plus points or recorded a double-double in every game this series. The other thing that worked out well for them in the first round was each player's improved floater game. They are 2-13 ATS when laying 8 or more points. These last four years have been great. Tim Hardaway Jr. scored just 15 points on 18 shots, while Taurean Prince needed 11 field goal attempts to score 10 points.
After coming back from down 22, the Hawks trailed 93-90 early in the fourth quarter. "Wall and Beal were special obviously, so credit to them".
"Nobody has taken over the series because nobody has won on the opposing team's court yet", John Wall said after Game 5.
John Wall celebrates with head coach Scott Brooks. After teammate Bojan Bogdanovic got the rebound to trigger a fast break going the other way, Wall converted the layup. Wizards take Game 1 in Boston.
The majority of those shots for the Wizards belonged to Wall, Beal and Morris, and in addition to Wall, Beal almost destroyed the Hawks himself with 31 points and three steals.
NOTES: Washington C Jason Smith entered the game with 7:33 left in the first quarter.