In a game that was supposed to honor Philadelphia 76er great Allen Iverson, most fans walked away from the Wachovia Center talking about the Washington Wizards’ Trevor Ariza. Ariza finished with a career-high 40 points in Saturday’s 122-106 victory. On the night, Ariza nailed eight 3-pointers in a game where Iverson’s jersey was retired prior to the contest. Washington shot over 50% from the field as 6 Wizards players finished in double figures, and it was Ariza who led all scorers.
John Wall and Marcin Gortat both contributed double- doubles as Wall recorded 16 assists and Gortat 14 rebounds to go along with 17 and 13 points respectively. Washington used these big nights to open up a 14 point first quarter lead, and never looked back. Defensively, the Wizards forced 22 turnovers on the night and held the 76er scorers in check.
Saturday was the team’s sixth straight win, as they’ve been hot since the all-star game. Washington will look to continue the push for the playoffs tonight against the Memphis Grizzlies in Washington. The Wizards now hold a two game edge over the Brooklyn Nets for fifth place and have created a bit of breathing room with just 23 games to be played.
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