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Randy Wittman: Washington Wizards Too Concerned with Shots and Minutes

Dec 27, 2013; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Washington Wizards head coach Randy Wittman against the Minnesota Timberwolves at Target Center. The Timberwolves defeated the Washington Wizards 120-98. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports
Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sport
Ben LeibowitzCorrespondent IIIJanuary 5, 2014

Washington Wizards head coach Randy Wittman called out his team for having "selfish" attitudes following a 101-88 home loss against the Toronto Raptors on Friday.

According to Michael Lee of The Washington Post, Wittman was "shocked" and "disappointed" with his team's performance and labeled "selfish play" as a reason for their second straight home loss to start the new year.

The Wizards coach went on to say the following, per Lee's article:

“We’ve proven over the last couple of years you can’t play that way,” Wittman said, shaking his head. “And we’re getting concerned with, ‘Why am I coming out?  How many minutes am I getting? How many shots am I getting?’ rather than, ‘What is the team doing?’ and we didn’t do that tonight and that is disappointing because we’re not good enough to do it that way. ... We have to come back together. It is not about ‘me’ it’s about ‘us’ and it has to be focused on us and it was focused on individuals rather than the team.”

Wittman didn't call out any specific players by name, but he certainly didn't sugarcoat his thoughts with regard to how individuals are acting. The Wizards have enough talent to be a playoff team in the Eastern Conference, but their 14-16 record is far from impressive.

While Wittman clearly wasn't pleased with his team's effort, Wizards point guard John Wall credited the Raptors for playing a better game.

Jan 3, 2014; Washington, DC, USA; Toronto Raptors point guard Kyle Lowry (7) dribbles past Washington Wizards point guard John Wall (2) during the second half at Verizon Center. The Raptors defeated the Wizards 101 - 88. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA T
Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

"They just outplayed us. They played with more sense of urgency," he said.

Wall finished the game with just 11 points on 4-of-15 shooting and was thoroughly outperformed by Raptors point guard Kyle Lowry, who notched 19 points, 11 assists, five rebounds and three steals.

In addition to back-to-back home losses to start 2014, Washington has had trouble executing in close games. The Wizards have gone into overtime six times this season; they're 2-4 in such games.

If Wittman is losing the locker room in Washington—and has guys concerned with stats and playing time instead of wins—then it won't be surprising if he's put on the coaching hot seat.

In three seasons as Wizards head coach, Wittman has compiled a 61-100 record for a winning percentage of .378.

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