Wizards at Magic: Game 79 Open Thread


It’s good to be back, but I want a win. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)

Coach Randy Wittman doesn’t want his players focused on playoff seeding or first-round matchups with just four games remaining. With the Wizards losing three of their past five games, Wittman said the game plan the rest of the regular season is simple.

“Right now, we just got to get back to playing our basketball, both offensively and defensively,” he said. “That’s the main focus I want them to be focusing on. We’re in. But we want to be playing our best basketball, obviously, coming down the stretch and leading into the playoffs.”

The return of Nene should help Wizards (40-38) play better, though his debut didn’t immediately lead to a win against Charlotte. Still, Witttman was pleased with what he saw from Nene, who contributed 10 points in just 17 minutes.

“I thought, for the first game back, after seven weeks, we saw a lot of things that he provides,” Wittman said. “So the main thing is now getting him comfortable and getting his legs back underneath him and then, look at some other different combinations.”

Nene missed the past two meetings against the Orlando Magic, both wins, and the Wizards will attempt to record their only four-game sweep of the season. The Wizards needed overtime to defeat the Magic, 105-101, when the teams met on March 14 at Amway Center. That victory was the first for John Wall in Orlando.

The Magic has the NBA’s third-worst record but defeated Brooklyn on Wednesday and has recorded home wins over Portland and Charlotte in the past few weeks.

(TV: Comcast SportsNet Plus. Radio: WJFK-106.7 MF, WFED-1500 AM).

Here’s some reading to get you prepared for tonight’s big game:

Wizards seeking consistency to close regular season

An opening to claim the sixth seed?

Trevor Booker was “flying around” then sat

Wizards look to rediscover touch from three-point line

NBA end of season awards

Randy Wittman criticizes Wall, Beal

Wizards to sign 10-year-old point guard

Michael Lee is the national basketball writer for The Washington Post.

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Brandon Parker · April 11, 2014