The Washington Wizards (12-25) are back at home for their first meeting with the Atlanta Hawks (8-30), who have Trae Young that’s currently fourth in scoring in the league averaging 29.2 points per game.
Both teams are coming off previous losses. Wizards lost to the Orlando Magic 123-89, while the Hawks lost at home to the Houston Rockets 122-115 after their comeback was halted by James Harden’s 41 points.
Wizards and Hawks will be looking to bounce back on Friday.
When: Friday January 10 at 7 p.m. ET
Where: Capital One Arena in Washington, D.C.
How to watch: NBC Sports Washington
Wizards: Bradley Beal (Leg, Day-to-Day); Thomas Bryant (Foot, Out); Garrison Matthews (Ankle, Out); C.J. Miles (Wrist, Out); Moe Wagner (Ankle, Out); Rui Hachimura (Groin, Out); John Wall (Achilles, Out)
Hawks: Jabari Parker (Shoulder, Out); Bruno Fernando (Personal, Day-to-Day)
We need more from the starters!
One of two of the biggest reasons Washington lost on Wednesday was the lack of push and consistency from the starting five. The other reason had more to do with early foul trouble and amount of minutes given to certain starters who weren’t giving enough spark on the floor.
As mentioned before, being a starter you need to get the ball rolling and set the tone. There’s no reason why the reserves are the end all be all for the Wizards to win basketball games. Understandably, Washington has only nine maybe 10 fully healthy players with the return of Davis Bertans from a quad injury on Friday, but that leaves no space for errors.
Looking back at their recent loss to the Magic, Washington’s starting five combined for 28 points and not one starter scored in double figures. They shot 12-33 from the floor while committing 14 turnovers.
For games such as the Hawks that should be an easy win, Wizards could easily lose if everyone isn’t on the same page.
Davis Bertans is returning!
After missing nine games due to a quad injury sustained on December 21 against the Philadelphia 76ers, Davis Bertans will return on Friday vs. the Hawks. Bertans gave the Wizards huge depth in three-point percentage as he was averaging a little over 43 percent on 8.6 attempts.
This will bring the Wizards back to 10 healthy players. Still not much, but it’s a start to get back in the swing of things. And let’s be clear on something, as well as Bertans has been this season for Washington, there’s no need for him to go anywhere.