The Washington Wizards (27-32) play the Cleveland Cavaliers (35-24) on Saturday night. Here’s the preview:
When: Saturday, Feb. 26, 8 p.m. ET at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse, Cleveland, Ohio
How to watch: NBC Sports Washington
How to listen: The Team 980 AM, 106.7-2 FM.
Wizards: Bradley Beal (Wrist, Out); Kristaps Porzingis (Knee, Day-to-day)
Cavs: Rajon Rondo (Toe, Out); Darius Garland (Back, Out); Caris LeVert (Foot, Out); Collin Sexton (Knee, Out)
What to watch for
The Wizards will face the Cavaliers on the road in the second game of a back-to-back. They will look to bounce back after their double-overtime loss to the San Antonio Spurs on Friday. In the 153-157 loss, Kyle Kuzma finished the game with 36 points, 7 assists and 8 rebounds in his 46 minutes on the floor. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Raul Neto scored 24 and 22 points respectively.
Washington is 2-1 against Cleveland this season. The Wizards and Cavaliers last matched up on Dec. 30, which resulted in a 110-93 win for Washington. They’ll look to hand the Cavaliers, who are without several players due to injuries, their 4th consecutive loss. Not having Darius Garland to lead the offense is a big loss because he’s the team’s leading scorer with 20.3 points per game. He also leads the Cavaliers in assists (8) and steals (1.2). They still have Evan Mobley, Lauri Markkanen, Jarrett Allen and even Brandon Goodwin, who put up 15 points last game, coming off the bench.
If the Wizards play as they did on Friday night despite losing, they could certainly pull off a win. All five of their starters and Ish Smith and Deni Avdija, who both came off the bench, scored in double figures. Expect the Wizards to rely on Kyle Kuzma the rest of the season to lead in every way.