Wizards

Huskies hope to reverse slump vs. No. 8 Arizona

Huskies hope to reverse slump vs. No. 8 Arizona

SEATTLE (AP) Washington picked the wrong time to go into a slide.

Losing three straight at any point of the Pac-12 Conference season is concerning. This skid by the Huskies (12-8, 4-3 Pac-12) could be even more damaging because of the schedule that lies ahead, beginning on Thursday night when they host No. 8 Arizona.

It would be one thing if Washington's nosedive came against the elite of the Pac-12. But the first two setbacks of the Huskies' three-game losing streak came against Utah and Oregon State, neither of which had a conference victory before beating Washington.

And while the Huskies played well before falling at No. 10 Oregon last Saturday, the slide leaves them little room for error going forward if they want to stay in the conference race.

``We need a good quality win, especially at home,'' Washington guard C.J. Wilcox said. ``We need to get this done now.''

For most of Lorenzo Romar's tenure as the Huskies coach, rebounding from losses to avoiding long losing streaks has been a strength. Since starting the Pac-10 season 0-5 in 2004 - followed by a dramatic turnaround that was capped with an NCAA bid - Washington has not lost more than four straight in any season.

But they will need an upset of Arizona to avoid their first four-game losing streak in nearly five years. The last time the Huskies dropped four straight was midway through the 2007-08 season when they were on their way to finishing the year with a losing record.

It's been a dramatic turn for Washington just in the span of the past two weeks. The Huskies went from leaders of the Pac-12 to suddenly facing a daunting task which if not handled well could leave the Huskies looking at postseason options that don't include the NCAA or NIT tournaments.

After hosting Arizona, the Huskies host surging Arizona State, then hit the road for the Los Angeles schools before coming home to face Pac-12 leader Oregon on Feb. 13.

``It's a big week. We see it as must wins for ourselves,'' Washington guard Abdul Gaddy said. ``We need to come out and play with great intensity.''

The Huskies' slump came on the heels of a stunning start to conference play where Washington started 4-0 with three of the victories coming on the road. That quick start was due mostly to the Huskies defense that has become a liability in the three losses that followed.

After beating Colorado at home on Jan. 16, Washington was allowing just 56 points per game in conference play. In the last three games, they are giving up 76 and allowed the last three teams to shoot nearly 55 percent.

``I think our mentality is a lot of it,'' Wilcox said. ``We came out with energy against Oregon but the games before I don't know what it was. I don't think we took them lightly but that's kind of how we came out and we had to play from behind and we're not really good at doing that. So we have to jump on teams early.''

If nothing else, the matchup with Arizona should be entertaining. Only twice in the past 10 meetings has the game been decided by more than 10 points and three of the last four matchups have provided at least one unforgettable moment.

During the 2011 regular season in Tucson, Derrick Williams came across the lane to block Darnell Gant's game-winning shot attempt in the final seconds of Arizona's victory. Later that season in the Pac-10 tournament championship game, Isaiah Thomas hit a step-back 20-footer as time expired in overtime to give the Huskies a 77-75 win. And last season in Tucson, Washington's Tony Wroten blocked Josiah Turner's attempt at a tying layup as time expired to give the Huskies a 69-67 win.

Thursday night will be the first time a ranked opponent has stepped foot inside the Huskies' home gym since Texas A&M in December 2009.

``We need to play at our highest level,'' Romar said, ``and we need the crowd to be at its highest level. And I know what that highest level is like.''

Quick Links

Bradley Beal eliminated in first round of three-point contest, Donovan Mitchell wins dunk contest

Bradley Beal eliminated in first round of three-point contest, Donovan Mitchell wins dunk contest

It was a short night for Wizards guard Bradley Beal in the 2018 All-Star three-point contest on Saturday, as he was eliminated in the first round.

Wearing the Wizards' new 'The District' white alternate jersey, Beal shot a 15 and fell short of the top three spots to qualify for the second round. Suns guard Devin Booker won the contest with a 28 score in the final, beating out Klay Thompson of the Warriors and Tobias Harris of the Clippers.

RELATED: BEST WIZARDS/BULLETS MOMENTS ON ALL-STAR SATURDAY NIGHT

Beal's was undone by a slow start. He missed all five shots on the first rack and made just one on the second. He began to heat up at the third rack, but by then couldn't recover.

Here is Beal's full round:

This was Beal's second showing in the three-point contest. He finished second back in 2014 and this year said he was motivated to avenge that loss. He should have plenty more opportunities to participate in the future if he chooses.

The NBA's All-Star Saturday night began with Nets guard Spencer Dinwiddie winning the skills competition. He beat Bulls big man Lauri Markkanen in the final round.

Jazz rookie Donovan Mitchell won the dunk contest. He edged Larry Nance, Jr. of the Cavaliers in the finals.

RELATED: LATEST 2018 NBA MOCK DRAFT

Quick Links

Game 58: Capitals at Blackhawks Date, Time, How to Watch, Game Thread

usatsi_9678896.jpg
USA TODAY Sports

Game 58: Capitals at Blackhawks Date, Time, How to Watch, Game Thread

What: Washington Capitals vs. Chicago Blackhawks

Where: United Center, Chicago, Ill.

When: 8:30 p.m. ET

How to Watch: Capitals-Blackhawks will be broadcast on NBC Sports Washington (Channel Finder)

Live Stream: You can watch the Capitals-Blackhawks game on NBC Sports Washington's live stream page.

You can also stream the game online with no cable TV subscription on fuboTV (try for free!).

WHEN IS THE CAPITALS-BLACKHAWKS GAME?

The Capitals (33-17-7) take on the Blackhawks (24-26-8) Saturday, February 17 at 8:30 p.m. ET in Chicago.

WHAT CHANNEL IS THE CAPITALS-BLACKHAWKS GAME ON?

The Capitals-Blackhawks game will be broadcast on NBC Sports Washington. Coverage kicks off with Capitals FaceOff at 7:30 p.m. followed by Caps GameTime at 8:00 p.m. Stay with NBC Sports Washington for Caps Extra following the game, Caps Overtime at 11:30 p.m. and Caps in 30 at 12:30 a.m. for all your postgame coverage. (NBC Sports Washington channel Finder)

7:30 p.m. — Caps FaceOff
8:00 p.m. — Caps GameTime
8:30 p.m. — Capitals at Blackhawks
11:00 p.m. — Caps Extra
11:30 p.m. — Caps Overtime
12:30 a.m. — Caps in 30

WHAT ARE THE PROJECTED LINES FOR THE CAPITALS-BLACKHAWKS GAME?

Here are the projected lines for the Caps-Blackhawks game:

Forwards
Alex Ovechkin - Nicklas Backstrom - Tom Wilson
Alex Chiasson - Evgeny Kuznetsov - T.J. Oshie
Brett Connolly - Lars Eller - Andre Burakovsky
Chandler Stephenson - Jay Beagle - Devante Smith-Pelly

Defensemen
Christian Djoos - John Carlson
Dmitry Orlov - Matt Niskanen
Brooks Orpik - Madison Bowey

Braden Holtby starts with Philipp Grubauer as backup

Scratches: Jakub Vrana, Taylor Chorney

WHERE CAN I STREAM THE CAPITALS-BLACKHAWKS GAME?

The Capitals-Blackhawks game, as well as Caps GameTime and Caps Extra, is available to stream live here through NBC Sports Washington's live stream page and is available to authenticated NBC Sports Washington subscribers on desktops, tablets, mobile devices and connected TVs anywhere in the United States.

The game is also available to stream, along with all the pregame and postgame shows, on fuboTV (try for free).

CAPITALS-BLACKHAWKS OPEN THREAD

Use the comment section below to discuss the game action with other Capitals fans. 

For all the latest Caps coverage, follow Capitals Insider Tarik El-Bashir, Capitals correspondent JJ Regan and the NBC Sports Capitals account on Twitter. Be sure check out our Capitals page and NBC Sports Washington's Facebook page.