NBA preview: Wizards seem to be turning things around against the Thunder

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When: Friday, November 26 at 20:00 ET

Where: Paycom Center, Oklahoma City

How to see: NBC Sports Washington

How to listen: Team 980 AM, 106.7-2 FM

Wizards: Rui Hachimura (Non-Injury Related, Outside); Thomas Bryant (knees, out)

Thunder: Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (ankle, day-to-day)

On Friday night, the Washington Wizards (11-7) continue their 4-game road trip and take on the Oklahoma City Thunder (6-12) for the first time this season. Wizards, who come after a back-to-back loss, fight from the three-point line, do not take care of the ball and do not consistently show up at the defensive end. In their most recent defeat against the Pelicans, Washington went 7-to-31 (22.6 percent) beyond the arc, which is below their season average of 32.1 percent. They also did not shoot well from the free-throw line, making 23 out of 36 shots (63.9 percent). Their season average now is 78 percent. The Wizards turned the ball 19 times in regulation compared to New Orleans’ 10 times. 13 of those turnovers came in the first half alone.

In the 127-102 loss, Bradley Beal led his team by 23 points, despite going 0% from center. To be fair, Kyle Kuzma and Raul Neto did not make a 3-pointer either. In addition, Davis Bertans went 1-9 (11%) from beyond the arc. Beal shoots his career best from the penalty throw line and has made 93.5 percent in the last 15 games. That was not the case yesterday as he only made 1-of-3 shots. Montrezl Harrell shot worse and made just 2 of 8 free throws. Raul Neto and Spencer Dinwiddie followed with 13 and 11 points respectively. The only other player to score in double figures was Montrezl Harrell with 10.

Oklahoma City have lost their last 4 games and it is unclear whether their top scorer Shai Gilgeous-Alexander will look up due to a right ankle sprain. Without Gilgeous-Alexander, their chances of beating the Wizards are not high, but based on the way the Wizards have played their last few games, they should have some confidence when they enter Friday’s game. Luguentz Dort is the Thunder’s second leading scorer with 17.1 points per game and comes after a 27-point game against the Jazz. The little forward has an impressive offensive month and it does not look like he is slowing down. Josh Giddey, who put up 19 points in his final game, leads Oklahoma City in rebounds (7.3) and assists (5.8).

The Wizards need to regroup and they should be able to do that against this Oklahoma City team.

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