Game Preview: Wizards vs. Blazers


November 28, 2012 | 7:00 pm | TV: CSN | Radio: 106.7 FM, 1500 AM | Gameday Blog | Game Notes | Live Chat

Preview

The Wizards look to pick up their first win of the season tonight when they host the Portland Trailblazers at Verizon Center (7pm | TV: CSN | Radio: 106.7 FM, 1500 AM).

While much of the season has seen the Wizards within a possession or two down the stretch, Monday night's game got away as the Wizards fell 118-92 to the Spurs. They will need to get back to sticking to their defensive philosophies tonight when they host the Blazers.

The rap on the Blazers is a strong starting five, but not a lot of depth off the bench, which means the Wizards could take advantage of Portland's second unit. Outside of the Blazers starting five, no player is averaging more than 5.1 ppg. The Wizards have been getting solid efforts from their bench all season, so this could be the time of the game they open up a lead.

With that said, the Blazers do have some lethal weapons in their core and the Wiz will need to first shut down their rookie point guard Damian Lillard. He is an early rookie of the year candidate, averaging over 19 points and six assists per game. On the post is where the team's leading scorer sits as LaMarcus Aldridge has become one of the better low post players in the league. Nicolas Batum, J.J. Hickson, and Wesley Mathews complete the starting five and when on can be as good as anyone in the league.

Wizards (0-12)

vs.

Blazers (6-8)

90.0
PPG
98.6
43.3
RPG
39.0
20.7
APG
19.5
.397
FG%
.443
.450
OPP FG%
.490
.298
3PT FG%
.397
.753
FT%
.741
16.1
TO
15.2
0-10
Last 10
4-6

Key Matchup

Kevin Seraphin

vs.

LaMarcus Aldridge

11.5
PPG
20.6
4.6
RPG
7.5
1.0
BPG
1.31
.476
FG %
.440

Kevin Seraphin has moved into the Wizards starting lineup and will be heavily relied upon to score in the low post tonight. Seraphin scored 18 points on Monday night, but failed to get to the free throw line. He has only shots 10 free throws on the season and tonight it may be more critical for him to get Aldridge and Hickson in foul trouble to force the Blazers to go to their bench.

For the Blazers, LaMarcus Aldridge has transformed himself into one of the better low-post scorers in the league and can do it in a variety of ways. He can score with his back to the basket or face up and shoot jumpers, so the Wizards will need to be aware of where he is at all times on the court.

It will be interesting to see what lineup the Wizards go with to try and combat Aldridge on the post. If they stick with the lineup from Monday, we could see more of Emeka Okafor on Aldridge and Seraphin on Hickson as Okafor is the longer of the two and may be a better physical matchup for the Blazers big man.

In the below clip, Jan Vesely feeds Seraphin for the dunk.

In this clip, LaMarcus Aldridge hits a game-winner to beat the Mavs.

Blazers Projected Starters


G - Damian Lillard | 6-3 | 195 lbs
PPG: 19.1 | RPG: 3.2 | APG: 6.1


G- Wesley Matthews | 6-5 | 214 lbs
PPG: 17.6 | RPG: 3.0 | APG: 2.5


F- Nicolas Batum | 6-8 | 210 lbs
PPG: 17.8 | RPG: 6.1 | APG: 3.2


F- LaMarcus Aldridge | 6-11 | 255 lbs
PPG: 20.6 | RPG: 7.5 | APG: 3.0


C- JJ Hickson | 6-9 | 239 lbs
PPG: 11.2 | RPG: 10.5 | APG: 0.9

Wizards Projected Starters


G - A.J. Price | 6-2 | 185 lbs
PPG: 9.5 | RPG: 3.2 | APG: 5.4


G- Bradley Beal | 6-5 | 207 lbs
PPG: 11.3 | RPG: 3.6 | APG: 2.0


F- Trevor Ariza | 6-8 | 220 lbs
PPG: 7.8 | RPG: 5.3 | APG: 1.9


F- Kevin Seraphin | 6-10 | 278 lbs
PPG: 11.5 | RPG: 4.6 | APG: 0.9


C- Emeka Okafor | 6-10 | 250 lbs
PPG: 7.4 | RPG: 5.9 | APG: 0.9

Wizards Injury Report

Out

  • John Wall (knee)

Questionable

  • Trevor Booker (knee)
  • Nene (foot)

Day-to-Day

  • Shaun Livingston (shoulder)

Blazers Injury
Report

Out

  • Elliot Williams (achiles)
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