Washington Wizards vs Los Angeles Clippers Preview
Wizards (15-13) vs Clippers (11-15)
When: Friday, December 15th at 7 p.m. Where: Capital One Arena in Washington D.C. TV: NBC Sports Washington / Radio: 1500 AM
Wizards: Sheldon Mac (Out, Achilles), Markieff Morris (Probable, Hip), Ian Mahinmi (Questionable, Knee)
Clippers : Milos Teodosic (Out, Rest), Blake Griffin (Out, Knee), Patrick Beverley (Out, Knee), Austin Rivers (Out, Concussion), Danilo Gallinari (Out, Hip)
Wizards guard Brad Beal is averaging 31.2 points per game over Washington's last five games, placing him third in the league behind Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (32.2) and Rockets guard James Harden (32.0).
Washington is looking for back to back wins in DC for the first time since 2009.
105.6 - points per game
103.4 - points against
45.7 - Field goal %
105 - points per game
106.7 - points against
45 - field goal %
Keep an eye on:
Slow down Lou Williams: Williams was unstoppable in Washington's lost to the Clippers nearly a week ago after posting 35 points including the go ahead three pointer with 1.2 seconds left. A number of Wizards tried their hand at slowing down Williams to no avail. The 13 year veteran guard is averaging 20 points, 4.8 assist and 2.7 rebounds on 45 percent shooting from the field, 40 percent from deep and 88 percent from the line for the season and is averaging 27.6 points over the Clippers three game winning streak. Four of the Clippers top five leading scorers (Griffin, Rivers, Gallinari, Beverley) are out due to injury, so Washington should expect a heavy dose of Williams offensively throughout the night.
Free throw shooting: In their recent loss to the Clippers, Washington shot 65 percent from the line (15-23), LA shot 87 percent (21-24). That right there cost the Wizards despite not containing Williams in the second half. In a close win over the Grizzlies Wednesday, Washington shot 50 percent (12-24) from the line. Shaky free throw shooting has hurt the Wizards in their attempts to close games. Washington is shooting 77 percent from the line so far this season which is 12th in the NBA. For the Wizards to put together a win streak to move up in the east standings, they will have to find a way to improve their free throw shooting late in games, a steams won't hesitate to put guys on the line in order to walk out the arena victorious. If Washington plays the defense they displayed against the Grizzlies and improve at the line, it should be two in a row tonight for Washington.