GameDay Preview: Cavs vs. Wizards

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Kyrie Irving
David Liam Kyle/NBAE/GettyImages

Game Summary

The Wine and Gold host the Washington Wizards tonight at Quicken Loans Arena. Tipoff is at 6:00 p.m. ET.

Cleveland (22-34) has won five of the last six matchups with the Wizards dating back to the start of last season.

The Cavaliers are 6-1 in their last seven games, including 3-0 at The Q. Over the last seven games, the Cavs are outscoring opponents 102.0 to 94.3 (+7.7).

Washington (27-28) enters tonight's contest having won two straight games, including last night's 94-93 victory over the New Orleans Pelicans thanks to a last second dunk by Nene with 0.3 seconds remaning.

Probable Starters/Injury Report* presented by Cleveland Clinic

Cleveland ClinicCavaliers: PG - Kyrie Irving, SG - Jarrett Jack, SF - Luol Deng
PF - Tristan Thompson, C - Tyler Zeller

Wizards: PG - John Wall, SG - Bradley Beal, SF - Trevor Ariza
PF - Nene, C - Marcin Gortat

Status Update: (Cavs) - Carrick Felix, (Left patellar Stress Fracture, Out), Anderson Varejao, (Sore Back, Out), Dion Waiters, (Left Knee Hyperextension, Out), C.J. Miles, (Left Ankle Sprain, Out)

(Wizards) - None to Repot

*Subject to change

*Subject to change

Head-to-Head Matchup

Cleveland leads the season series against Washington 2-1, which includes a 115-113 win in their latest matchup with the Wizards on Feb. 7. In that contest, the Cavs shot .519 (40-77) from the field and made .879 (29-33) of their free throw attempts, while also outrebounding the Wizards 45-34. Cleveland also finished with 20 second chance points and had a 58-26 advantage in bench scoring.

Cleveland is 94-104 all-time against Washington including a 59-39 record while playing in their own arena (34-64 Road).

Key to the Game/Key Matchup

Rebounding

Cleveland has won the rebound battle in seven of their last eight games, outrebounding opponents by an average of 7.4 (49.9-42.5). They are also averaging 15.9 offensive rebounds over the last eight contests and rank 2nd in the NBA this season at 12.8 offensive boards per night.

Since the 2014 calendar year, the Cavs are pulling down 14.1 offensive rebounds per game (2nd-most in NBA in 2014) and scoring 15.9 second chance points (3rd-best in 2014). Cleveland’s 19 straight games of at least 10 second chance points is tied with Detroit for the longest active streak in the NBA.

If the can continue to crash the boards and control the paint, it will give them a distinct advantage in tonight's contest.

Key Matchup

Backcourt Battle

Much of the Wizards success this season can be contributed to their dynamic backcourt tandem of John Wall and Bradley Beal.

Wall is averaging career-highs in points per game (19.7 ppg) and assists with 8.6 apg. Wall scored 20+ points in eight straight games (12/14-1/1) for the first time in his career. Beal is second on the team in scoring with 16.8 points per game.

In three games against the Wizards this season, Kyrie Irving is averaging 30.7 points on .528 shooting (28-53), including .538 (7-13) from the three-point line, 7.7 assists and 1.0 steal in 34.7 minutes per game. He is also shooting a perfect 29-29 (1.000) from the free throw line.

Where to Catch the Action

TV: FOX Sports Ohio, WUAB 43, Radio: WTAM 1100, NBA League Pass Audio, XM & Sirius 218

For live in-game updates, follow @cavs, @CavsJoeG, @CavsFredMcLeod, @MrCavalier34, @CavsJMike and @chones22 on Twitter.

Be sure to check cavs.com for Joe Gabriele's live in-game blog providing instant analysis and game notes. Plus, get into the discussion as die-hard Cavs fans talk about the game on CavFanatic's GameDay Thread.

Promotions

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On Deck

After tonight's game, the Cavs will face the Toronto Raptors on Tuesday at The Q, tipoff at 7:00 p.m. ET.