The Washington Wizards start a 5 game home stand tonight at 7 PM ET against the 41-10 Phoenix Suns! These 2 faced off in mid-December and the Suns won by 20. This time, it’s even worse for Washington. Devin Booker was injured that game, he is back tonight and Bradley Beal, a player that put up 26 points in this game, is out with a sprained wrist. The Wizards are very lucky they are gaining Rui Hachimura since this matchup. But, it’s a 41-10 team against a 24-27 team without their best player. However, the Wizards are coming off a win against a very good 76ers team without Beal. Also, Spencer Dinwiddie has been playing great ball with Beal sidelined. Dinwiddie has averaged around 21, 8 and 5 without Beal this season including his 1st career triple double on Wednesday against Philadelphia. If he has another great game, the Wizards have a chance. Here is what I think is going to happen Saturday night!
My Prediction: Suns win by a close 3 possessions
The Wizards went on a 6 game losing streak when Daniel Gafford played a combined 53 minutes in all 6 of those losing games. That’s a little over 8.5 minutes per game. Gafford is much more valuable player than that. The reason why the Wizards were doing it, at least to me, was because of a possibility of trading Thomas Bryant. But after his injury, I’m not sure what value they’ll get for him. Daniel Gafford playing will make a big impact. It’s not a coincidence that his first game back to getting quality minutes the Wizards won. Expect a big game from him. I think he will play a better overall game than DeAndre Ayton and that could make a big impact in this game. Because of that, this game will be close!
Superman Sleeper: I think Jae Crowder will have a good game. We saw that Embiid didn’t make a huge impact for the 76ers against the Wizards defense so I don’t expect Chris Paul and Devin Booker to both have amazing games. They’ll still be probably the best players on the floor but I think they will have to go to their secondary scorers around the 3rd quarter. As I said, DeAndre Ayton will not be an option since he will be locked up by Gafford. Jae Crowder would be a great option. Kuzma isn’t great at guarding two-way players that can drive and shoot. Expect Crowder to have a good game since the Wizards will have to worry about the duo and the Big 3!
Wizards: Beal (Out)
Suns: Nader (Out), Payne (Out), Kaminsky (Out), Saric (Out), Shamet (Out)
To learn more about this game and more of why the Suns will win, check out #138 Wiz Talk with Chase that will post around 15 minutes before tip-off tonight!
Wiz Talk with Chase
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