The Washington Wizards are off on another looooong road trip. This time, they will head off to play the Orlando Magic. Tip off is at 7 p.m. ET. Watch it on NBC Sports Washington.
Diamond has the preview here.
Here are some things to look for as we head into the last hour before the game.
If you are someone that likes to bet only on who’s winning the game, the Wizards are -5.5 point favorites tonight according to DraftKings. DK is an SB Nation/Vox Media partner.
Will Beal play or won’t he?
Bradley Beal left the Wizards’ last game due to a hamstring injury. He will not play tonight, but I don’t think it will change the outcome of the game.
Update: Bradley Beal will not play tonight in Orlando. https://t.co/fOyzI6ZNW6— Washington Wizards (@WashWizards) December 30, 2022
How will a team suspension affect the Magic’s play?
The big story around Orlando tonight is around the NBA’s decision to suspend multiple players after an altercation between Wizards alum and now Magic center Moritz Wagner and Detroit guard Killian Hayes last Wednesday when the two teams faced off.
Ultimately, 11 players, including nine from the Magic, were suspended. Moe has a two game suspension and will be out tonight. In addition, due to the number of players suspended from the Magic, these will be the specific players suspended today:
- Cole Anthony
- Mo Bamba
- Wendell Carter
- R.J. Hampton
- Gary Harris
Franz Wagner, Moe’s younger brother and one of the Magic’s key players was also suspended. But due to the number of players affected by the suspensions, he will be able to play tonight. You can read more about that here from Orlando Pinstriped Post, SB Nation’s Magic blog.
Carter and Anthony are averaging double digits in scoring, so that will hurt the Magic’s depth. We’ll see if that pushes this game in Washington’s favor.
I am on record rooting for a Wizards rebuild. And let me be perfectly blunt. I want them to tank. Every loss in the standings is a win at this point. And every win is a loss. That said, if the Wizards were to lose this game due to “overlooking” the Magic, that would basically tell me that it’s time for some new voices to coach this team.
In the end, I predict that the Wizards will win comfortably in this one though I expect the Magic to make things interesting. Without any evidence, I’ll say they beat the Magic 115-108.
*As a note, please play your bets responsibly because betting on sports games is GAMBLING! I SAID THE G-WORD! G-A-M-B-L-I-N-G! Just like a poker game or the slot machine at MGM National Harbor! If you or someone else you know has a gambling problem, please call 1-800-GAMBLER. You must be 21 or older to gamble.