NBA Rumors: 'Several' Wizards Players Concerned About Direction, Structure of Offense

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured Columnist IVDecember 19, 2021

SALT LAKE CITY, UT -  DECEMBER 18:  Wes Unseld Jr., head coach of the Washington Wizards calls in a play during the second half of their game against the Utah Jazz December 18, 2021 at the Vivint Smart Home Arena in Salt Lake City, Utah. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.(Photo by Chris Gardner/Getty Images)
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The days of the 16-15 Washington Wizards competing for the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference were short-lived, and there is reportedly plenty of concern within the organization.

Josh Robbins of The Athletic reported that "at least several players have concerns about the direction and structure of the team's offense, particularly whether they as individuals, and by extension the team as a whole, are being put in the best positions to succeed."

While Washington bounced back some Saturday with a 109-103 victory over the Utah Jazz, it was an ugly 1-7 in its previous eight games with the only victory coming in overtime against the Detroit Pistons.

Five of the seven losses came by double digits, and the Wizards gave up more than 100 points in every one of the eight games. There may be individual concerns about how head coach Wes Unseld Jr. is using players offensively, but the defense has been a major problem as of late.

Washington was fourth in the league in defensive efficiency during its 10-3 start on Nov. 15 but is just 26th since, per NBA.com.

"You're fighting human nature," Unseld said when talking about individual offensive concerns. "I get that. Whether you feel like you're involved or you're not getting a touch or whatever it is—maybe you're getting a touch and it's just not going in for you—there's frustration. That's a normal, probably human reaction to that. But it shouldn't affect your energy and focus on the other end."

Figuring out both ends of the floor will be key for the Wizards if they are going to overcome this recent losing stretch and be a factor in the Eastern Conference playoff picture.

Bradley Beal (19.8), Kyle Kuzma (11.3) and Spencer Dinwiddie (11.2) are the only players averaging double-digit field-goal attempts per game, and Robbins noted Montrezl Harrell recently called for more post touches in the offense.

Fortunately for Washington, it is still in playoff position with the No. 7 seed in the Eastern Conference thanks in large part to its impressive start. 

It will look to overcome some of those concerns about the offense and build on Saturday's win when it faces the Brooklyn Nets on Tuesday.