The Washington Wizards‘ playoff hopes took a hit Wednesday night against the Charlotte Bobcats. Washington lost in overtime to Charlotte 94-88, giving the Bobcats the tiebreaker between the two teams and pushing the Wizards down to the seventh seed in the Eastern Conference.
Led by John Wall, Washington was able to claw its way back from almost a 20 point deficit. Wall finished the game with his third career triple double. He had 14 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists, but it was not enough. The Wizards did not come prepared to play against a hungry team like the Bobcats, which hurt them in overtime. Washington was outscored 7-1 in the overtime period. The only point coming on a made free throw from Wall.
On a more positive note, Nene Hilario returned to play Wednesday night, after missing 21 games. In his return Nene took it slow and did not play as physical as Washington fans are used to seeing. He did not have a single rebound, but Nene contributed 10 points in 16 minutes, shooting 56 percent from the field. He has the ability to hit jump shots and work the block. His return is a big deal for the Wizards, it adds depth to their bench and opens up the floor offensively.
This loss hurts Washington’s playoff hopes greatly. Washington’s odds to win a first round matchup increase greatly if the team could grab a seed above the seventh spot, to avoid a matchup with either the Indiana Pacers or Miami Heat.
There are only four games left in the season. Charlotte now has the sixth seed and a huge tiebreaker over the Wizards. Losing on Wednesday night hurts Washington’s odds of winning a first round matchup. Washington cannot afford to play like this during the postseason at all. The Wizards must win out now and hope for the best.