After dropping three straight tough games on the road, the Washington Wizards finally get to catch their breath. They're back in Washington where they'll play the Cleveland Cavaliers, a struggling team that's playing the second game of a back to back and that is attempting to end its own three game losing streak.
Where and when? Tip off is at 7 p.m. at the Verizon Center.
Who's out? Trevor Ariza is out with a hamstring injury and Al Harrington's out with knee troubles. plus Otto Porter and Chris Singleton are still injured. Dion Waiters and Andrew Bynum are day to day for Cleveland.
Are they good? There's definitely talent there, but the Cavs are in a minor state of crisis right now. After dropping their third game in a row, the Cavs had a players-only meeting in which a few players apparently butted heads. Mike Brown is a good coach and it's going to interesting to say the least to see how he handles this.
Why should I care? Washington and Cleveland have both lost three games in a row, so someone's going to end their streak and get some positive momentum tonight.
What are they good at? Even though it's really not clicking right now, Cleveland has a lot of talent in the frontcourt. Anderson Varejao and Tristan Thompson are being backed up by number one pick Anthony Bennett and former All-Star Andrew Bynum. If they can ever get healthy and on the same page, this could be one of the best front courts in the league, especially if they can find a decent small forward.
What are they bad at? Despite their considerable talent, the Cavaliers are really struggling to score right now, fielding the NBA's second worst offense on a per-possession basis as per Basketball-Reference. This just shouldn't be happening. Kyrie Irving is an offensive dynamo, Waiters can create shots at will, Bennett should be an elite pick and pop player one day, and the bigs all excel at crashing the offensive glass. The Cavalier's offense was the 19th best in the NBA last season despite a number of injuries and the need to phase youngsters like Waiters into their system, so it's very surprising that they've regressed this much.
Who's going to win? I'm going with the Wizards tonight. Washington's playing at home and Cleveland could be imploding, so the Wizards should have an advantage in terms of the intangibles tonight. Meanwhile, Washington tends to do well against big teams and the opportunity to guard Irving should motivate John Wall to play extra hard. If Cleveland wins, it's going to be as a result of a big game from Irving.