John Wall needs to be a leader of men in this playoff series against the Toronto Raptors. He has led the team in points (17.8 points per game) and steals (1.8 steals per game) this season. Wall has to set the tempo for the Washington Wizards in these playoffs. He has a fairly healthy team behind him as Garrett Temple is the only player ruled of game 1 against Toronto.
With Wall only fours years into his NBA career, he has given the Wizards a great push heading into this year’s playoffs. Helped out by Bradley Beal, Nene and the man they call “The Truth”; Paul Pierce, Wall is not alone out there. He has pieces behind him that will make it easier for him to play his game.
The best thing John Wall can do for his team against Toronto and moving forward to the next rounds, if it happens, is be a leader vocally. Getting his teammates fired up in good plays and the bad plays as well will be vital. It will be especially important by the bad plays, because in the playoffs, leaders must lead by example and that includes having amnesia when bad plays occur.
As a point guard, in addition to running the team, Wall can’t afford to have bad nights turning the ball over. Turnovers spell bad news for any team. Wall leads the team in turnovers with 3.8 per game. That’s not a good thing which is why ball control will be an essential part of his game.
In his one-on-one matchup, he will be facing the Toronto Raptors star Kyle Lowry, who is a great point guard in his own right. Lowry averages 17.8 points per game followed by 4.7 rebounds and 6.8 assists per game. One-on-one against Wall, Lowry is undersized but he has proven that he can make plays despite of his size.
Wall has speed and quickness when he drives to the basket on the fast break and in the lane, which helps him get going and makes him dangerous. For a point guard to be able to move the basketball in transition and in the half court is music to a team’s ear’s, because that open’s up the possibility for an inside-outside game and perimeter shot. That is what John Wall can do.
John Wall has the ability to lead this team to new heights in the NBA Playoffs. He just has to play his game.
Update: Wizards win game one. John Wall ended the game with 10 points, eight assists and six rebounds.
Game 1 Final Score in Overtime: