By Ben Golliver
What better way to celebrate winning Rookie of the Month than by hanging out on the rim after an explosive dunk?
Wizards rookie guard Bradley Beal, named Eastern Conference Rookie of the Month for December earlier this week, rose way up to throw down over Nets guard MarShon Brooks during the fourth quarter of a 115-113 loss at the Verizon Center on Friday night.
The liftoff was set up by a quick swing pass to Beal in the left corner. Jerry Stackhouse tried to close out on the perimeter, but wound up conceding a wide-open baseline path to the basket for Beal, who had no intention of shooting. The No. 3 pick in the 2012 draft didn't hesitate, driving quickly and rising with two hands to flush over a late challenge from Brooks. Beal then dangled from the basket for emphasis, as the home crowd loudly cheered his vertical burst.
Unfortunately for Washington, Brooklyn pulled out the road win in double overtime thanks to a game-winner from Joe Johnson. Brooklyn improved to 18-15 on the season and 4-1 under interim coach P.J. Carlesimo; Washington fell to a league-worst 4-27.
Beal finished with a team-high 24 points, six rebounds, four assists and three steals. He shot 10-for-19 from the field in 48 minutes. Brook Lopez led the Nets with 27 points and 13 rebounds in 44 minutes. Deron Williams added 24 points, 10 assists and seven rebounds. Beal, 19, who spent one year at Florida, is averaging 12.9 points, 3.6 rebounds and 2.6 assists per game this season.