Game On: Wizards-Clippers preview

Game On: Wizards-Clippers preview
December 14, 2013, 12:00 pm
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Clutch behind-the-back John Wall layup vs. ATL

The short-handed Wizards are struggling to get back on the winning track as they've dropped three games in a row by a total of seven points. The Clippers end a seven-game road swing here and need a victory to close with a winning record. 

TV: CSN, 7 p.m. ET at Verizon Center. Radio: 106.7 FM. 1500 AM.

Last game: Wizards (9-12) lost at the Atlanta Hawks 101-99 OT on Friday, their third defeat in a row; Clippers (15-8) lost at the Brooklyn Nets 102-93 Thursday.  

Projected starting lineups: Wizards –- PG John Wall, SG Trevor Ariza, SF Martell Webster, PF Trevor Booker, C Marcin Gortat. Clippers –- PG Chris Paul, SG Willie Green, SF Jared Dudley, PF Blake Griffin, C DeAndre Jordan.

Entry passes: 1). Booker had a season-high 24 points and 14 rebounds in place of Nene, and that included knocking down jumpers from the foul line. 2). Win the turnover battle. Both teams flourish in transition with PGs that want to push pace. 3). Gortat should be more effective vs. Jordan after a rough outing vs. Hawks C Al Horford. 4). Without Nene, this offense lacks continuity in half-court sets down the stretch. 5) After an 11-point first-quarter, Webster's offense dissipated. Could his sprained left ankle be the issue? 

[RELATED: Playing Wizards rookies together seems to work]

X-factors: The reserves finally stepped up with Glen Rice and Jan Vesely combining for 16 points and 10 rebounds. ... Now that Otto Porter has his jitters out of the way and hasn't had any setbacks with his right hip, he could be in line for more minutes. ... Nene (right foot) hasn't been ruled out yet.  

He said it: “I'm preparing the same way I was before. Just stay ready. Just know when you get in you got to contribute in a positive way. It doesn't matter how much you play but the production." -- Rice on going back to bench after starting one game earlier in the week

Around the bend: The Wizards will be off Sunday after playing a back-to-back, travel to New York and shoot around Monday morning before playing the Knicks at Madison Square Garden (CSN, 7:30 p.m. ET).

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