James Wiseman, who missed all of last season while rehabilitating after a knee injury, scored 20 points Friday as the defending champion Golden State Warriors defeated the Washington Wizards 96-87 to open the NBA preseason.
Wiseman played 24 minutes, connecting on eight of 11 shots, while adding nine rebounds and one block in his return following a right meniscal tear.
Rui Hachimura, a native of Japan who received a robust ovation from the crowd when he was introduced with the Washington starters, led the Wizards with 13 points and nine rebounds. Wiseman and Hachimura were the only players to finish in double figures as both teams substituted freely, particularly in the second half.
Warriors guard Stephen Curry played 13 minutes, going 1 of 7 from the field — a 3-pointer – and finishing with six points. Wizards guard Bradley Beal played 18 minutes and scored nine points.
The exhibition is part of a two-game series in Tokyo between the Warriors and Wizards, the first played in Japan since the Houston Rockets and Toronto Raptors played a preseason game in 2019.
The sellout crowd got glimpses of stars Curry, Draymond Green and Hachimura, as well as Beal. None of the Golden State starters played more than 20 minutes. By the third quarter, the teams were deep into their benches and gave reserves extended time in the game.
Both teams showed some early turnovers and errant passes and shot under 33% in the first half. Both ended the game shooting under 37%.
Warriors starting guard Klay Thompson didn’t play, with Jordan Poole starting in his place. Golden State coach Steve Kerr announced before the game that the Warriors were being cautious with Thompson. He returned in January after missing 2 1/2 seasons after suffering a torn ACL in the 2019 NBA Finals, followed by a ruptured Achilles. Thompson is not expected to play in Tokyo.
For the Wizards, Will Barton, who was obtained from Denver in an offseason trade, missed the game with back tightness.
Among the draft picks, Patrick Baldwin, the 28th overall pick for the Warriors, played 8 minutes and had seven points. For the Wizards, Johnny Davis from Wisconsin, picked 10th overall, played 22 minutes. He missed all five shots and finished with four points.
CLIPPERS 121, MACCABU RA’ANANA 81
In Seattle, Luke Kennard scored 16 points, Moses Brown added 14 point and 13 rebounds and the Los Angeles Clippers dominated Maccabi Ra’anana 121-81.
Michael Devoe also had 14 points, while Robert Covington added 13 points for Los Angeles. Anthony Morse led Maccabi Ra’anana with 20 points, while Jason Siggers had 15.
The game was a return to Seattle for the NBA, which left the Pacific Northwest city in 2008, with the SuperSonics relocating to Oklahoma City as the Thunder. And some SuperSonics royalty returned for the game, such as former players Shawn Kemp and Detlef Schrempf, along with Lenny Wilkens, who both played and coached in Seattle.
While former SuperSonics attended the game, several of the Clippers stars sat out the contest with Paul George, Kawhi Leonard, newcomer John Wall, center Ivica Zubac and Reggie Jackson taking off the opening night of the preseason.
Maccabi Ra’anana, was really never in the contest, trailing 65-30 at the half as the Clippers shot 51% before the break, including 9 of 13 from 3-point range. The lead would be 94-59 at the end of three quarters.
Maccabi Ra’anana will play two more games on their tour of the United States, on Thursday against the Portland Trail Blazers and Sunday against Oklahoma City.
Moussa Diabate from Michigan, the Clippers only pick in the June draft at No. 43 overall, finished with 14 points, hitting all five of his shots and grabbing seven rebounds.