Just a few short years ago, Paul Pierce was a veteran leader on a Washington Wizards team that made a run to the second round of the playoffs. He believes it’s that type of leadership that is missing from the current iteration of the squad and it’s time for two of his former teammates to take responsibility.
Five years after Paul’s time in D.C. much of the core of the team remains the same, led by star backcourt partners John Wall and Bradley Beal. But Washington has done nothing to progress beyond the heights reached the team Paul played for.
The Wizards entered the 2018-19 season with a golden opportunity. With LeBron James’ move to the West, the East is truly a wide-open race, and it’s been foretold for a long time that Washington has the potential to be a top-four team in the conference.
But the Wizards just haven’t been able to get out of their own way so far this season.
Through the first eight games of the season, the Wizards have posted a 1-7 record and have struggled from beyond the arc and on the glass. The Wizards offense ranks below 25th in the NBA in the following categories: three-point field goal percentage (T-26th), second-chance points-per-game (25th), rebounds-per-game (27th), offensive rebounds-per-game (T-27th), opponents’ rebounds-per-game (last).
According to The Truth, the team has the talent to be better on defense, but they need their leaders to step up. He spoke on NBA Countdown about what the team needs to do to improve.
“When I look at that defensively and offensively, you’re at the bottom, that’s a lack of leadership right there,” Pierce said. “I think between the players, I think John Wall and Bradley Beal need to take responsibility for this.”