Before Monday’s game, Rice played a total of just 38 minutes in the Wizards first 19 games. Against the Nuggets, he played 29 minutes and made everyone of them count scoring a career-high seven points, three rebounds and three steals. It is worth noting that Rice’s third steal setup the Wizards’ game winning attempt, albeit unsuccessful.
With Al Harrington down and Bradley Beal still working his way back, Rice is a player that deserves an enhanced role with the Wizards off the bench. While he may not be good enough to crack the starting lineup, he’s a valuable asset off the bench that can bring you valuable minutes.
Defensively, Rice is someone that the Wizards could use. He did a solid job guarding the two-guard of the Nuggets and, as stated above, got his hands in on the action and forced some steals. He played a simple role on Monday night, but he played his role well. He played solid defense, was fairly mistake free on offense and was only a benefit to the Wizards.
When the Wizards traded with the Philadelphia 76ers on draft night to acquire Rice, the move was heralded by those around Washington because of the potential that Rice brings to the team. His recent performance shows that he is worthy and ready of a more impactful role on this team.