Moe Wagner was admittedly rusty in Wizards Summer League debut

Chase Hughes

LAS VEGAS -- Moe Wagner wasn't ready to deliver cliches or excuses after his Wizards debut on Monday in the Las Vegas Summer League. He was rusty. He wasn't in game shape. He has a lot of work to do.

Really, it was a familiar feeling for Wagner, who says he always struggles in his first game with a new team.

"It was a typical Wagner debut, I would say. I missed a lot of layups. Got my feet wet," he said.

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"I didn't have a great day, but that's how first days usually go for me. I'm glad I got the rust off."

Wagner had some highlights. He scored eight points in 16 minutes and blocked a shot. Two of his points came on a breakaway dunk set up by Troy Brown Jr., who stole the ball and fired up the court for the easy bucket.

But Wagner also had some teaching moments. On one play he spun in the post, only to have his hook shot blocked by Amida Brimah. And he struggled to stay in front of Brooklyn Nets big men, allowing a series of baskets to be scored on him.

Wagner, to be fair, doesn't have a full grasp of the Wizards' playbook quite yet. He practiced with the Wizards for the first time the day before. 

Late in Monday's game, Brown was seen explaining a play to Wagner after the latter was out of place on a defensive assignment.

"I don't know all the plays or the coverages. You kind of have to communicate a lot," Wagner said.

Brown and Wagner, two 2018 first round picks, saw some floor time together. They also ran with Rui Hachimura, the Wizards' 2019 first round pick.

"I like playing with him," Hachimura said. "He communicates a lot and talks a lot, so it's easier to play with him."

The respect was mutual. Wagner had many good things to say about Hachimura after playing with him for the first time.

"He's super talented, super athletic. He has a lot of potential," Wagner said. "Super nice guy, a little quieter guy. He has every intangible to be a good basketball player. He has a lot of Asian media following him around, which is super cool."

Wagner, Brown and Hachimura could end up all playing significant minutes in the Wizards' rotation next season. For now, they are just getting to know each other.


Moe Wagner was admittedly rusty in Wizards Summer League debut originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington

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