When: Tuesday, December 29 at 7 p.m. ET
Where: Capital One Arena in Washington, D.C.
How to watch: NBC Sports Washington
Wizards: Rui Hachimura (Eye, Out)
Bulls: Lauri Markkanen (Calf, Game-Time Decision); Thaddeus Young (Lower Leg, Game-Time Decision)
Starting this with a Fire Scott Brooks rant wouldn’t be wise, so instead it’ll begin with a WIZARDS NEED A WIN, preferably before the new year.
The Washington Wizards are 0-3 after having multiple disappointing fourth quarters in all three of their losses. Some want to celebrate the the fact Russell Westbrook had back-to-back triple doubles or the fact Raul Neto had a career-high night, but none of the outcomes were wins. Nothing to celebrate.
Granted, most teams find a way to figure out the flaws they possess and fix them once the season gets really going, while the Wizards seem to have stayed set in their ways. Coach Scott Brooks is determined the three-guard lineup works, whereas it hasn’t because in each game it’s allowed the opponent to get back in the game after the Wizards had a decent lead.
Brooks also needs to actually notice who deserves minutes off the bench and who doesn’t. Raul Neto needs remain the backup point guard behind Westbrook and have more minutes. It’s proven he can handle the pressure and facilitate the team as needed.
As mentioned in postgame interviews, Washington hasn’t lost their confidence despite not starting off on a high note. They just have to play better and keep the pressure on in all four quarters. Just because Chicago is winless as well doesn’t mean this game will be easy. Every game matters at this point because there’s no telling how the rest of the season may go for certain players and even for Coach Brooks as well.
This is the first of two games between the two teams this season. They also play each other on New Year’s Eve this Thursday. A familiar face in Tomas Satoransky will be noticeable as he played for Washington from 2016-2019 before being traded in a sign and trade deal.