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Wizards Insider: Howard, Turkoglu Present Problems

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By Ivan Carter
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, November 27, 2008

When the Washington Wizards visited Orlando on Nov. 8, they were drilled, 106-81, by a Magic team that rode a dominating performance by center Dwight Howard, who finished with 31 points, 16 rebounds and 3 blocks. The Magic led by 19 at halftime and carried a 26-point lead into the fourth quarter in what turned out to be the worst performance of the season so far by the Wizards.

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Tonight, when the Wizards host the Magic, the focus will be on handling Howard as well as an Orlando offense that can spread the floor with shooters and playmakers such Hedo Turkoglu and Rashard Lewis.

"They give you a lot of problems," interim coach Ed Tapscott said. "Very few teams can run a pick-and-roll where you have a 6-10 guy [Turkoglu] getting a screen from a 7-foot guy [Howard], and both of them are terrific athletes and players, so it's a terrific challenge."

While the Wizards had a day to savor Tuesday's 124-100 win over Golden State, the Magic played at Philadelphia last night.

Historic Debut for Tapscott

According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the Wizards' 24-point victory in Tapscott's debut matched the third highest for any coach in his first NBA game. The Baltimore Bullets' Walt Budko won by 39 points in 1951. (That was the original Bullets franchise that played from 1947 until 1955, when they became the last NBA franchise to fold.)

It also was the first time the Wizards scored 30 points in all four quarters since a win over the Boston Celtics in December 1995.

Up Next: Thursday vs. Magic 8 p.m. TNT, WTEM-980

Saturday vs. Hawks 7 p.m. Comcast SportsNet, WTEM-980

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