Wizards’ Brooks: ‘We’re a selfish team right now’

Scott Brooks and the Wizards have struggled to defend in the early season.

Although the Washington Wizards have already clinched a playoff berth, they are playing some poor basketball at the worst possible time of the season.

The playoffs start next week and the Wizards are currently on a four-game losing streak. Friday night at home, they lost to the lowly Atlanta Hawks and coach Scott Brooks wasn’t pleased with the team’s effort — at all.

“We’re a selfish basketball team right now,” Brooks told reporters. “Selfish basketball is no fun to coach, it’s no fun to play with and it’s no fun to watch. It’s embarrassing that we don’t play with the passion we need to play (with).”

The Wizards allowed the Hawks to make 11 3-pointers and Brooks cited the Wizards’ lack of effort on closeouts and rotations as a big reason why Atlanta flourished from beyond the arc.

The former Knicks point guard also said the ball movement needs to improve.

“We got to start guarding somebody and we got to start moving the basketball the way we’re capable of doing it,” Brooks said. “If we’re not going to do that, I’ll find five guys to do that. I don’t care how small we are or how big we are. You just got to do what you do and that’s passing the ball. We haven’t passed in the past couple of weeks.

“It’s not a divided team. It’s a together team, but if we’re going to talk about doing things, we’ve got to do it with our actions. We got to guard somebody. Our perimeter defense is porous. It’s embarrassing we get beat backdoors after backdoors. But I got to do a better job, and I have to figure out going into the playoffs who’s going to be able to not make mistakes as many times that we do.”

No one has ever questioned the talent had by the Wizards. Led by All-Stars John Wall and Bradley Beal, they can score with the best of them. The Wizards have a bad habit, however, of playing to the level of their competition and it’s plagued them for the past few years. The question is, will it continue in the playoffs?