When: Monday, January 15 at 2 p.m.
Where: Capital One Arena in Washington D.C.
TV: NBC Sports Washington
Win probability: Washington has a 61 percent chance of winning according to Kevin Broom's Win Predictor and a 74 percent chance of winning, according to FiveThirtyEight.
Wizards: Sheldon Mac (Out, Achilles)
Bucks: Jabari Parker (Out, Knee), Mirza Teletovic (Out, Lungs)
What to Watch for
Can Washington win the fast break battle?
When the Bucks beat the Wizards in Washington earlier this month, most of the talk was about how Washington faltered in the fourth quarter after controlling most of the first three quarters. But one of the main reasons why the Bucks were able to stay within striking distance is because of how they controlled the transition game.
Milwaukee outscored Washington 18-5 in fast break points, but it wasn’t because the Wizards were sloppy with the ball. They had fewer turnovers than the Bucks. The difference was the Bucks’ transition defense was on point, and Washington’s wasn’t.
The Bucks have the best transition defense in the league this season. They’re holding opponents to just 8.3 fast break points per 100 possessions, a half-point better than the second-best team. Part of their success is because they don’t turn the ball over much — only six teams turn the ball over less than Milwaukee — but it also helps that they have so many quick, long players who can get back quickly to snuff out easy layups and get back on shooters before they get a chance to fire away from deep.
Ideally, the Wizards will finish better this time around if it’s close, but they can stack the decks more in their favor if they can either score more in transition or do a better stop of slowing Milwaukee down on the other end.
A random moment in Wizards - Bucks history: The time Larry Sanders got ejected
Note to Matthew Dellavedova: If you’re going to get ejected from a game, this is how to do it.