NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Friday, February 7th (All times Eastern)
Cleveland Cavaliers (16-33) at Washington Wizards (24-24), 7 p.m.
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Washington Wizards can't seem to stay above the .500 mark for long and will try to get over the mark Friday versus the Cleveland Cavaliers in the continuation of a five-game homestand.
The Wizards posted impressive wins over Western powers Oklahoma City and Portland, but couldn't pull off the trifecta with Wednesday's 125-118 double- overtime loss to San Antonio.
John Wall led the Wizards with 29 points and Bradley Beal netted 19 in defeat. Trevor Ariza had 15 points with 10 boards, while Nene added 12 points for the Wizards, who were outscored 10-3 in the second overtime and shot 43.6 percent for the game and scored 25 points off 20 San Antonio turnovers.
Washington was outscored 34-21 in the third quarter and had won two straight and eight of its previous 12 contests.
"We became undisciplined in the second half," Wizards coach Randy Wittman said.
The Wizards will close the homestand Sunday versus Sacramento and have a 12-12 mark at the Verizon Center. Wall is averaging 21.9 points per game at home.
Cleveland is mired in a six-game slide and has lost eight of nine games, including Wednesday's 119-108 setback to the shorthanded Los Angeles Lakers.
C.J. Miles led the Cavs with 27 points off the bench and rookie Anthony Bennett provided 14 as a reserve. The Cavs' bench posted a 59-31 advantage versus the Lakers and Cleveland outrebounded the visitors by a 57-40 count, which led to a 32-12 clip in second-chance points.
Cleveland, which registered 27 offensive boards to L.A.'s six, received 15 points and 13 rebounds from Anderson Varejao. Tristan Thompson scored 13 points and star guard Kyrie Irving had just 11 in a losing effort.
The Lakers set the tone with a 36-17 advantage after the first quarter and later had a 50-21 lead. Cleveland was able to cut it 114-108 late in the fourth quarter, but it was too late.
"I think the game got away from us in the first quarter," Cavaliers head coach Mike Brown remarked. "We came out, couldn't make a shot nor could we get a stop. It made it a tough, uphill climb the rest of the game."
Brown's squad will try to stop a three-game road losing streak and has a lowly 5-20 mark away from Quicken Loans Arena.
On Friday, the Cavs play their first game since firing general manager Chris Grant on Thursday.
The Cavaliers and Wizards have split a pair of meetings this season with each team holding serve as the guest. The Cavs have won three in a row in Washington.
Irving is averaging 31.0 ppg in his last four against the Wizards.
02/07 10:28:57 ET