Brad Beal scored a team-high 27 points as the Washington Wizards edged past the Atlanta Hawks, 103-99, in Game Five of their first round Eastern Conference playoffs series on April 26 in Washington, D.C.

Washington Wizards guard Bradley Beal (3) goes to the basket against Atlanta Hawks forward Ehsan Ilyasova (7) during the first half in Game 5 of a first-round NBA basketball playoff series, Wednesday, April 26, 2017, in Washington. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)

With the win, the Wizards took a 3-2 lead in the best-of-seven series. 

Washington finally got its defense going, holding the Hawks to less than 100 points for the first time in the series.  The Wizards had allowed the Hawk’s offense to score at will during Game Three and Game Four, but they were locked in defensively during Game Five. The Wizards recorded 10 blocks and eight steals as a team, and made key stops down the final stretch.

Wizards star point guard John Wall nailed a clutch 21-foot jump shot that gave Washington a 103-99 lead with 47 seconds left in the game. From there, quality team defense held the Hawks scoreless over the final seconds of the game to seal the Wizards victory. 

Wall finished with a double-double of 20 points with 14 assists. Beal led Washington with 27 points and three steals on defense.  

Forward Otto Porter had his best game of the series so far, scoring 17 points with five rebounds and two steals for the Wizards. Reserve forward Bojan Bogdanovic added 14 points off the bench for Washington. 

Hawks guard Dennis Schroder scored a game-high 29 points with 11 assists, while forward Paul Milsap added 21 points and 11 rebounds. 

Next: Game Six of the series is set for Friday, April 28 in Atlanta. 


Perry Green

AFRO Sports Editor