On Tuesday night, the Dallas Mavericks suffered one of their most dispiriting losses yet, losing 127-126 to the Washington Wizards to drop to 25-24 on the season, putting them just above .500 as they dangerously teeter between relevance and mediocrity. To make matters worse, the fallout of Tuesday's game featured a war of words between one of the Mavericks' key contributors and a member of his former team.
Speaking in post-game, Spencer Dinwiddie -- who played for the Wizards from August 2021 until he was traded to Dallas last February -- expressed his frustration with the loss by saying that it was disappointing to lose a shootout to a Wizards team that he called "not exactly stalwarts" compared to the more powerful teams in the NBA.
"As far as the frustration and disappointment in ourselves, we can all look in the mirror and -- with that same maturity -- recognize that we're not doing our jobs at the level that we're capable of," Dinwiddie said. "You know what I mean? If you come in here and get in a shootout with, you know, the Warriors last year, right, or the Celtics this year or something like that, it's a little bit different tone, right? Like, not exactly stalwarts over there."
Dinwiddie went on to say that the Mavericks had no business allowing 41 free-throw points to the Wizards, who were playing without Kristaps Porzingis. He also referred to the Wizards as "them," before taking shots at Washington's ambitions as a team compared to Dallas'.
"They're not playing for nothing for real. ... Because at the end of the day, for them, it's a showcase," Dinwiddie said. "They over there trying to get paid. They're not trying to play winning basketball."
Spencer Dinwiddie on Wizards: "They’re not playing for nothing for real… it’s a showcase. They're over there trying to get paid, not trying to play winning basketball. For a team that has real aspirations.. an MVP, went to the conference finals last year, we have to be better…” pic.twitter.com/VO1QwcYlN9— Landon Thomas (@sixfivelando) January 25, 2023
Dinwiddie's remarks were not well received by the Wizards, particularly not by Kyle Kuzma. In a quote tweet, Kuzma fired back at Dinwiddie by taking his words about playing winning basketball and firing them right back at him.
The funny thing is they don’t play winning basketball 🤣🤣🤣✌🏽✌🏽✌🏽👋🏽🤡 https://t.co/O4klCwulLG— kuz (@kylekuzma) January 25, 2023
Given the history between Dinwiddie and Washington, there is due cause on the Wizards' side for them to not take kindly to his remarks. When Dinwiddie was traded by the Wizards to Dallas, it had been reported that Dinwiddie was not well-liked within the team's locker room, a report Dinwiddie later claimed "hurt" him.
Kuzma has hardly been shy about taking potshots at the Mavericks himself: After a 113-105 win over Dallas earlier this year, Kuzma openly stated that the Mavs are "very limited" outside of Luka Doncic.