Game Preview: Wizards vs. Hawks

Game Preview: Wizards vs. Hawks

December 18, 2012 | 7:00 pm | TV: CSN | Radio: 106.7 FM, 1500 AM | Gameday Blog | Game Notes | Live Chat

Preview

After playing four games in five nights last week, the Wizards begin another four in five stretch tonight when they host the Atlanta Hawks at Verizon Center (7:00 pm | TV: CSN | Radio: 106.7 FM, 1500 AM).

This will already be the third time these two teams meet, but the first time they do so in D.C. The Hawks won the first two contests, winning the first game in an overtime thriller in Atlanta.

Many wondered how the Hawks would fare after losing Joe Johnson this off-season, but they have started the 2012-13 campaign in impressive fashion and are off to a 14-7 start. Jeff Teague is emerging into a very solid point guard and they are getting consistent play from their post players, Josh Smith and Al Horford.

The Wizards are coming off their worst loss of the season in Miami, but after two days of rest, they should have more energy for an athletic Hawks team tonight.

In the two games vs. the Hawks this season, Kevin Seraphin is averaging 20.0 points and 8.5 rebounds and could be a key for the Wizards in tonight's game. When the Wizards use him and Nene together on the post, it creates a tough matchup for opposing defenses because both guys can score with their back to the basket. If they can use this combo effectively tonight, the Wizards can come out on the winning end.

Tonight's Hot Player: Kevin Seraphin

Key Matchup

Jordan Crawford is averaging 16.7 points, 5.7 assists and 4.9 rebounds in seven games during the month of December. He has transformed himself from a scorer into more of a playmaker after being forced into the point guard position due to injuries at that spot. The Wizards will need a big effort tonight from Crawford against his old team if they hope to take down the Hawks.

Opposite Crawford will be Jeff Teague who is quickly emerging as one of the better young point guards in the league. He has a quick first step and does a lot of damage when he can slash and get into the paint. Teague will both setup his teammates and finish inside with an array of shots including a floater which he likes to use off the dribble.

The Hawks are an excellent defensive team, entering Tuesday seventh in the NBA in points allowed and second in the NBA in turnovers forced, which means Crawford will need to value each possession and not let the Hawks backcourt create turnovers.

In the below clip, Jordan Crawford addressed the media following Saturday night's game in Miami.

In this clip, Jordan Crawford feeds Martell Webster for the alley-oop.

Hawks Projected Starters

Wizards Projected Starters

Wizards Injury Report

Out

  • John Wall (knee)
  • Trevor Booker (knee)
  • Trevor Ariza (calf)
  • A.J. Price (hand)

Hawks Injury Report

Questionable

  • Anthony Morrow (back)