Washington Wizards Center Marcin Gortat couldn't contain himself and lashed out on the team, particularly the bench, following their loss to the Chicago Bulls on Saturday night. Coach Scott Brooks, though, wasted little time and called for the team to be united.
According to the official website of the NBA, when asked what the team needs in order to improve, Gortat said in rapid successions "We need energy, we need effort, we've got to make shots." "I think there are a lot of things we can do better," Gortat adds. I think right now, as far as I know, I think we've got one of the worst benches in the league right now."
The Wizards are currently has a 2-7 win-loss record and majority of the loss can be attributed to the team's second unit. The team's starting combination of John Wall, Bradley Beal, Otto Porter, Jr., Markieff Morris and Gortat has an offensive rating of 101.2 and a defensive rating of 100.7, but the Wizards overall are just 100.1 and 104.8. The starting five are also a plus 3.0 when they are on the floor. But the Wizards, overall, are getting outscored by an average of 4.2 points.
One reason for the drop in production is that the team's bench is relatively new. Marcus Thornton, Trey Burke, Tomas Satoransky, Kelly Oubre, Jason Smith and Andrew Nicholson have only played together for six weeks, so it's expected that the team will struggle early in the season.
The Washington Post reports that Brooks wasted no time in addressing the team following Gortat's tirades about the bench. Brooks and the polish center stood in front of the team before practice on Monday with Gortat apologizing to the team and Brooks preaching unity.
"I look at things from a whole because this is how - when I played, I was a backup, and I didn't like to be divided," Brooks said. "We don't have two teams here, we have one basketball team, and right now we're not happy and content with being 2-7."
Brooks said that it's difficult to fully assess their second unit as some of the players are used to cover for some of the starters who missed games due to injury. Wall and Beal missed the game against the Bulls and rookies Sheldon McClellan and Tomas Satoransky started in their place.
Brooks want to get everybody back to have a better assessment of the team. Once everybody is back "we can really judge how we play and how we can put the units together and we can find out a good rotation," he said.