NBA: Wizards 95, Bobcats 93

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Associated Press
WASHINGTON ó In a close race for a playoff spot, the Charlotte Bobcats needed a victory, and what could be better than facing the woebegone Washington Wizards?
Not so fast. Charlotte wasted a 20-point lead, fell behind by eight midway through the fourth quarter, Gerald Wallace missed a free throw that would have tied the game with 6.5 seconds left, and the eight-man Wizards beat the Bobcats 95-93 Wednesday night.
Wallace led Charlotte with 21 points and 11 rebounds, and his layup while getting fouled cut Charlotte’s deficit to 94-93. But he failed to complete a three-point play, and Emeka Okafor and Boris Diaw grabbed offensive rebounds but missed the putback tries.
Washington’s Antawn Jamison finally grabbed the ball, controlled it and was fouled. He made 1-of-2 at the line and finished with 27 points. Nick Young, one of only three Wizards reserves, added 23 points.
Washington came in with an NBA-high 56 losses, having dropped five consecutive games and 12 of its past 14. Here’s what’s at stake for the Wizards: Every defeat improves their odds of landing the top pick in June’s draft.
The Bobcats are eyeing much more meaningful goals: The most wins and first postseason appearance in franchise history. Charlotte entered the day two games behind Chicago for the eighth and final postseason spot in the Eastern Conference, and a half-game ahead of Milwaukee.