Cleveland Cavaliers

Wizards find a familiar formula for another home loss

Despite a lineup shift that added another veteran to the rotation, Washington fell to 2-6, and Beal did not want to blame the team’s youth for the defensive lapses that contributed to its latest loss.

By the time Cleveland rookie Darius Garland’s fast break layup ripped through the net — courtesy of a steal off a bad pass from Troy Brown Jr., Washington’s third turnover — Coach Scott Brooks called a timeout with his team trailing 12-2.

And in the Wizards’ only nationally televised game on ESPN, the Cavaliers had a 21-point cushion in the third quarter, taking advantage of bad possessions and poor interior defense, regularly getting to the free throw line and generally dominating the hosts.

Bonga, who turned 20 on Friday, collected his first “DNP — Coach’s decision,” and guard Jordan McRae played backup minutes behind Beal, giving the Wizards a sixth established veteran in the 10-man rotation.

With 9:39 remaining in the fourth quarter, the Wizards had cut their margin to just one, but the momentum stalled with a two-minute scoreless drought that featured a familiar combination of missed shots, bad fouls and costly turnovers.

As the Cavaliers dribbled out the closing seconds of their win at Capital One Arena, showing a bit of sportsmanship by taking a turnover instead of launching an unnecessary shot, several Wizards players stood watching, hands on their hips.

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