Coming off a tough loss to a bad Minnesota team, the Washington Wizards try for redemption when they face the Brooklyn Nets. Both teams have had some problems of late and whether or not Washington can rise to the occasion and get a victory will say a lot about both teams' direction.
Where and when? Tip off is at 7:30 at the Barclay's Center.
Are they good? Brooklyn is 35-26, yet they have the point differential of a 31-30 team. Despite all of the hype, they're basically good enough to make the playoffs and maybe even the second round if they get lucky, but nothing more.
Who's out? Bradley Beal is day to day for Washington, while Brooklyn is expected to have all hands on deck.
Why should I care? The Barclay's Center is gorgeous, the Nets are fun to watch, Andray Blatche will play, John Wall will get to square off against Deron Williams and watching the NBA on a Friday night is about as good a way to unwind after a busy week.
What are they good at? Scoring off the dribble.
New Jersey Brooklyn boasts the NBA's 10th best offense largely due to the high skill level of players like Williams, Blatche and Joe Johnson. Having multiple ball handlers on the floor at almost all times has likely contributed to Brook Lopez's breakout season, too, as the fifth year center is scoring at a career-high rate with a decent level of efficiency.
What are they bad at? Believe it or not, taking care of the ball. Brooklyn is 25th in the league in turnover percentage, something that can be tied back to their abundance of veteran playmakers. Too many guys try to make plays with the ball rather than catching and shooting or focusing on off ball movement. While the Nets take a lot of three pointers, they would likely be able to upgrade their offense significantly if they were able to replace someone like Reggie Evans or Gerald Wallace with a Steve Novak or Kyle Korver type.
How will Washington do? Probably pretty well. Washington has played Brooklyn well in both of their previous meetings this season, the first of which was before Wall returned to the lineup. Brooklyn has to be considered the favorite due to their record and homecourt advantage, but this is the type of game against the type of team that the Wizards have tended to overperform against this year.
Where can I read more about the Nets? Check out Nets Daily.