Nene scooped up the loose ball and started dribbling and dribbling, with no apparent plan in mind. As he bounced up the court, dreadlocks bouncing all the way, there was the potential for a JaValean ending.
The Wizards were clinging to a one-point lead over Portland with less than 90 seconds remaining and John Wall was trailing the play, but Nene wasn't ready to slow down and run another play after the offense had gone stagnant on the previous possession.
Martell Webster and Jordan Crawford sprinted out ahead, and when he spotted Trail Blazers rookie Damian Lillard leaving to double-team the red-hot Crawford, Nene dropped a beautiful bounce pass to Webster for a two-handed dunk.
"It was a last resort. He fed it, and I got a dunk," Webster said with a smile afterward. "We have a chemistry. He sees me."
Crawford's 13-point fourth-quarter and his buzzer-beating three-pointer stole the headlines after the Wizards' 98-95 win, but the Nene-Webster connection was critical, as the starting forwards combined for 48 points and 11 assists.
Nene had five assists against Portland and four of them were to Webster; three led to dunks, the other was a three-pointer. Webster had a team-high six assists in the win, feeding Nene for an alley-oop layup in the first quarter.
The Wizards (9-30) started the game by working the ball inside to Nene, who had easily his most productive first quarter of the season. Nene made his first six shots – and 8 of 9 overall – and scored 17 of the Wizards' first 27 points.
Nene, Martell Webster carried Wizards before Jordan Crawford closed in Portland
Washington Post | Jan 23