When a player with a lot of hype around is drafted into the NBA, people expect him to automatically become a superstar player leading his team to championships and making all-star teams. Unfortunately for all of you dreamers out there, that is rarely the case. This applies to Wizards guard John Wall. Coming out of Kentucky as the #1 pick in the 2010 draft by Washington, Wall was viewed to be the next great point guard in the NBA. He had the speed, quickness, and finishing ability around the basket to do so. But as the flow usually goes, he had holes in his game he had to deal with. He had no jump shot and was also turnover prone. He was not the best at operating in a half-court set and struggled to control the pace of his game.
Wall has dealt with these problems even now in his 6th season, but in the past few weeks, they have not been as prominent in his game. With these problems no longer showing themselves as much, Wall has put in some fantastic performances. He has expanded his range, therefore opening up driving lanes for his lightning quickness. He is controlling his pace and choosing when to go slow or fast, which has made both him and his teammates better. This acquisition of self-control has made Wall extremely dangerous and one of the top point guards in the league.
I think the building of the Wizards roster has also played a role. Bradley Beal, the team’s best shooter, is a great outlet for Wall in transition and for when he drives and attracts the defense. Center Marcin Gortat, who has run the pick and roll with Steve Nash in the past, is making that same game very easy for Wall as he has been the beneficiary of a majority of Wall’s assists.
The video below shows Wall’s career-high 19 assists versus the Sacramento Kings. Watch how patient he is as he creates from what the flow of the game presents rather than trying to create from nothing. It is beautiful to watch.