After Bradley Beal missed a three-pointer with about 22 seconds left in the Wizards’ 103-96 overtime loss to Cleveland, Cavaliers big man Anderson Varejao batted the ball to backup guard and Fort Washington native Jarrett Jack. Beal went for an initial steal, then stopped running at half court, expecting Jack to dribble out the clock. Marcin Gortat and Nene also stood around, conceding the game.
But Jack took advantage of the clear lane and made an uncontested layup to give the Cavaliers a 103-94 lead. A stunned Beal glared at Jack. Nene shouted at Jack for padding the lead in a game that was essentially over.
Then, after Wizards assistant Sam Cassell urged him to push the ball up the floor, Beal responded by taking the ball to the basket for another layup to conclude the scoring in the Wizards’ fourth straight loss. Afterward, Beal coolly took out his mouthpiece and walked up to Jack to confront him about why he made a layup when the Wizards (2-7) had stopped playing.
“The game is never over,” Beal said Jack told him.
Beal said after the game that he understood Jack’s point of view but, “I didn’t agree with him.”
As Beal and Jack discussed the play, referee Olandis Poole jumped between them, then Glen Rice Jr. and Al Harrington ran down the court to separate Beal from Jack, who was surrounded by several Cavaliers teammates. Beal extended his arm to keep Rice back then told Jack as he walked away, “We good.”
Beal said he was upset but that the whole scene was made worse when other players entered the picture to pull him away. Coach Randy Wittman eventually grabbed Beal and directed him to head to the locker room. Rice wrapped his arm around Beal’s shoulder and walked with him out of the tunnel.
“The benches sort of blew things out of proportion,” Beal said afterward. “Me and Jack are cool.”
But Beal still didn’t appreciate Jack tacking on an unnecessary layup. The Wizards will play the Cavaliers again on Wednesday in Cleveland.