The Wizards will try to get their first win on the road and their first winning streak of the season going Friday Night against the Orlando Magic. This will be the second meeting between the two teams this season. John Wall sat out the first game against Orlando as a precaution, but the Wizards were still able to lead most of the game until giving up an 18-0 run in the fourth quarter that allowed the Magic to pull out the win.
The Wizards come into this game with a 4-9 record, but they’ve won two out of their last three games, including Monday’s victory against the Phoenix Suns, which featured a career-high 42 points for Bradley Beal.
On the other side, the Orlando Magic come into the game losing their last two games and overall have a 6-9 record. The Magic give up the 3rd least PPG to their opponents in the Eastern Conference, while also being the lowest scoring offense in the Eastern Conference.
When: 7:00 PM EST
Where: Amway Arena in Orlando, FL
TV: CSN Mid-Atlantic
Radio: 1500 AM and Wizards Radio App
Wizards: Otto Porter (Questionable, Hip), Markieff Morris (Questionable, Foot), Ian Mahinmi (Out, Knee)
Magic: Jodie Meeks (Out, Foot)
Keys to the Game
Overcoming lack of wing depth
With the possibility of Otto Porter being limited, or not able to play at all, Scott Brooks will have be creative with his rotations. Expect to see him use Tomas Satoransky as a small forward. His defense will be his most valuable asset in this matchup. We also may see more playing time open up for Kelly Oubre Jr., Sheldon McClellan and/or Danuel House. No matter what, the Orlando Magic have sharpshooting wings, so the team must step up in the chance that Porter is unable to play.
Scoring efficiency must improve
In the previous matchup, the Wizards shot a pedestrian 39.5 percent from the field and only put up 16 points in the 4th quarter. Orlando is not an explosive scoring team. If the Wizards shoot the ball more efficiently, they give themselves a much better chance at a victory. A low scoring game plays right into the hand of how Orlando wants to play.
The Wizards’ bench must step up
In the first matchup, the Wizards’ bench was outscored 43-27 by Orlando’s bench. With the possibility of missing at least one starter, it’s even more important that bench players step in to fill the void. The Wizards’ bench has the worst point differential in the NBA, according to hoopstats.com. When you have injuries to your starting lineup, the bench is depleted even more. In order for the Wizards to win this game, they will need better effort from their bench on both ends.
Most Likely Wizards Killer: Jeff Green
Green scored 18 off the bench in the first meeting this season, so it would not be a shock if we saw more of the same from Jeff Green. In 24 career games against the Wizards, Jeff Green is averaging 16 points per game. He has recently taken over as the starting small forward, after Aaron Gordon was removed from the starting lineup earlier this week. He figures to play a prominent role in Friday’s game.