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Wizards Fall in Opener, 94-84

Trevor Ariza was the Wizards most productive player in their season-opening loss to Cleveland. Getty Images

Not going too deep into a game review for this one. It was the season opener, and it was bad. The score was 94-84, but I don't think that adequately reflects how bad the Wizards were outplayed.

It was a slow-paced affair (89 possessions), and the Wizards were horrific on offense. Their efg was just .400, and their offensive rating was 94 -- propped up by a decent offensive rebounding effort, especially from Emeka Okafor, Earl Barron (who I thought they should have cut), and Jan Vesely.

Defensively, the Wizards were okay in some aspects, but allowed the Cavaliers to corral an inordinate number of offensive rebounds. That allowed the Cavs to have a reasonably efficient offensive performance despite 20 turnovers.

In terms of individual performances...let's just say it's not a good sign when Earl Barron, a 31-year old journeyman now with his 7th NBA team (who made the team despite poor play in the preseason), was the team's best performer. Next best: Trevor Ariza -- a guy many think should have been benched for Martell Webster.

Here are my total production scores for the game (performances compared to league average from last season; average = 100 and higher is better):

  1. Anderson Varejao, CLE -- 359
  2. Trevor Ariza, WAS -- 180
  3. Tristan Thompson, CLE -- 171
  4. Kyrie Irving, CLE -- 158
  5. Earl Barron, WAS -- 135
  6. Martell Webster, WAS -- 133
  7. Daniel Gibson, CLE -- 111
  8. Dion Waiters, CLE -- 90
  9. Emeka Okafor, WAS -- 90
  10. Jordan Crawford, WAS -- 51
  11. Jan Vesely, WAS -- 45
  12. Tyler Zeller, CLE -- 38
  13. Bradley Beal, WAS -- 35
  14. Chris Singleton, WAS -- 31
  15. Jannero Pargo, WAS -- 10
  16. A.J. Price, WAS -- -14
  17. Luke Walton, CLE -- -32
  18. Donald Sloan, CLE -- -59
  19. C.J. Miles, CLE -- -70
  20. Alonzo Gee, CLE -- -83
  21. Trevor Booker, WAS -- -127
One bit thing that jumps out is that the Wizards got crushed at PG. Both Pargo and Price were net negatives for Washington -- not just below average, negatives. Price was signed, according to Ted Leonsis, in part because of his excellent defense, but he got torched by Irving.

Washington's most productive big was Barron -- something that's not likely to happen again this season.

Rookie Bradley Beal didn't have a good game in his regular season debut, but I didn't see any reason to doubt his long-term outlook as a quality player.

Jordan Crawford was...well...Jordan Crawford.

Season Prediction

I didn't have power for awhile because of Hurricane Sandy, so I wasn't able to go as in depth as I would have liked on projecting the season. A rudimentary estimate of minutes and projected production suggests to me the Wizards are a 33-37 win team this season. I'm leaning low end, so my official prediction (which I posted on the RealGM board last night) is 33 wins.