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Wizards vs. Hornets Pregame: A #SoWizards Recipe?

Regular Season Game 24

Hornets (14-11) at Wizards (9-14)

December 14, 2016 at 7:00 PM
Verizon Center, Washington, DC
TV: CSN Mid-Atlantic
Radio: 1500 AM


Last time they met was..

April 10, 2016 – Verizon Center, DC: Wizards 113, Hornets 98


What to watch:

The Wizards try a very average Hornets team.

After starting the season winning six of their first seven games, Charlotte comes into DC just a few games over .500 and very statistically mediocre. They rank dead-middle in the league in offensive efficiency at 104.1, 16th in pace, and in the bottom 10 in field goal percentage.

Individually, outside of Kemba Walker, there isn’t many guys standing out. Nicolas Batum has under-performed, shooting just 38% from the field for the season and bricking often from downtown, shooting just 33% from three.

Where Charlotte excels is defense. They’re 5th in the league defensive efficiency at 101.7 and 3rd in the league forced turnovers. Ironically, they’ve lost their last two games and allowed an average of 113 points in those losses. Ironically, they face the Wizards, who will once again share the floor with a team riding a losing streak. Is this a recipe for another #SoWizards disaster? Let’s brace ourselves.


Key Matchup:

John Wall vs. Kemba Walker

Wall is coming off a night where he was outdueled by Goran Dragic, who torched the Wizards for 34 points to John’s 30. Those kind of outings typically provoke a chip-on-the-shoulder type game for Wall, who will certainly be thinking about the fallout in Miami, and unleash his fury on another Eastern Conference, Southeast division rival point guard.


X-Factor:

Kelly Oubre Jr.

Is Machine Gun Kelly actually becoming something? Two games ago against the Bucks, Oubre played in his best game of the season, scoring 19 points in 29 minutes, hitting 3-of-6 shots from 3-point, grabbing 9 rebounds and getting 3 steals. A quieter night followed in Miami, however, if there’s anyone that’s going to help turnaround the abomination that has been this bench, I’d say it’s got to be Oubre. His dynamic presence on the floor and eagerness to make plays can be an ignition for this second unit and the team as a whole. His production, or lack thereof, can certainly be impactful tonight.

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