NationalSportsWilliam J. Ford

Wizards Lose to Jazz Again; Struggles With Sub-Par Teams Continue

The Utah Jazz embarrassed the Washington Wizards by 47 points last month. Wednesday night’s rematch in D.C. was much closer, but the result was the same, as Utah defeated the Wizards 107-104 at Capital One Arena.

The Jazz (17-24) swept the two-game season series against Washington (23-18) despite playing Wednesday without two-thirds of its starting frontcourt, as defensive stopper Rudy Gobert (left knee) and Derrick Favors (right ankle) sat with injuries.

The Wizards were plagued by a season-high-tying 23 turnovers, eight by point guard John Wall.

“We haven’t had that type of turnover game in a long time,” said head coach Scott Brooks. “[Utah] did a good job of putting their hands on us. With all that being said, we still had a chance to win the game.”

The lead see-sawed in the final 2:30 of the game when the teams traded 3-pointers for several possessions, including one by Utah’s best 3-point shooter, Joe Ingles, who put Jazz up for good, 104-102, with 1:09 remaining.

Kelly Oubre Jr., who scored 12 points and six rebounds in 24 minutes off the bench, took responsibility for allowing the uncontested Ingles three.

Washington Wizards forward Kelly Oubre Jr. speaks with reporters after the team's 107-104 home loss to the Utah Jazz on Jan. 10. (William J. Ford/The Washington Informer)
Washington Wizards forward Kelly Oubre Jr. speaks with reporters after the team’s 107-104 home loss to the Utah Jazz on Jan. 10. (William J. Ford/The Washington Informer)

“It’s on me,” Oubre said. “I [must] do a better job of locking in [and] making sure my man doesn’t do things he wants to do.”

Utah point guard Ricky Rubio, known more as a facilitator, led his team with 21 points and four assists. Ekbe Udah and rookie guard Donovan Mitchell both scored 16 points each. The Jazz also shot 11-for-33 from three-point range.

“We’ve been talking about how we perform as opposed to what the result is, and sometimes that’s challenging to say those things and actually live by them,” said Jazz head coach Quin Snyder. “I think tonight we saw the results follow the performance.”

The Wizards are now 12-11 this season against teams with losing records, including a 116-69 drubbing by Utah in Salt Lake City on Dec. 4 that was the second-worst defeat in franchise history.

“[The Jazz] a sub-.500 team, but they’re a team that plays well,” said Wall, who had a game-high 35 points and 11 assists. “They came out and just took it away from us. It’s just another game we feel like we should’ve won.”

The Wizards’ current homestand continues this weekend with a back-to-back set against two more teams with losing records. The Orlando Magic come to town Friday, followed by the Brooklyn Nets on Saturday.

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William J. Ford – Washington Informer Staff Writer

I decided I wanted to become a better writer while attending Bowie State University and figured that writing for the school newspaper would help. I’m not sure how much it helped, but I enjoyed it so much I decided to keep on doing it, which I still thoroughly enjoy 20 years later. If I weren’t a journalist, I would coach youth basketball. Actually, I still play basketball, or at least try to play, once a week. My kryptonite is peanut butter. What makes me happy – seeing my son and two godchildren grow up. On the other hand, a bad call made by an official during a football or basketball game makes me throw up my hands and scream. Favorite foods include pancakes and scrambled eggs which I could eat 24-7. The strangest thing that’s ever happened to me, or more accurately the most painful, was when I was hit by a car on Lancaster Avenue in Philadelphia. If I had the power or money to change the world, I’d make sure everyone had three meals a day. And while I don’t have a motto or favorite quote, I continue to laugh which keeps me from driving myself crazy. You can reach me several ways: Twitter @jabariwill, Instagram will_iam.ford2281 or e-mail,

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