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Celtics cement superiority over Wizards 116-91: Five takeaways

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Celtics cement superiority over Wizards 116-91: Five takeaways

A four-game sweep of the Wizards is complete, as the Boston Celtics wrestled away the lead by halftime and put them away 116-91 to wrap up the season series in front off 11,753 at Verizon Center.

The Wizards (20-22) lost yet another chance to get back to .500 as the Celtics (25-21) used an 18-5 run between the second and third quarters to erase what had been a seven-point deficit. 

In his first game back since aggravating a right hip injury Jan. 13, Otto Porter (15 points, six rebounds) led Washington in scoring along with Jared Dudley (15 points). Marcin Gortat (10 points, 11 rebounds) and Ramon Sessions (12 points) were the only other players to reach double-figures.

Isaiah Thomas (23 points, nine assists) led Boston, followed by Evan Turner (18 points), Marcus Smart and Kelly Olynyk (13 points each) and Jae Crowder and Avery Bradley (11 points each). 

  • Nene started next to Gortat for the second game in a row. When Nene left at 6:18 of the first quarter, the Wizards were up 12-9 and Jared Sullinger had two fouls. When the Wizards made their best run of the first-half, it was with Nene as the long big in the second quarter. His ability go smother the pick-and-roll and contest forced Smart into some bad shots. With Tyler Zeller as his matchup inside, Nene gambled off of him and relied on helpside defense. Zeller isn't much of an offensive threat. As soon as Nene left the floor at 4:11 up 41-38, the Celtics went on a run. Sullinger had an open look at left Dudley look around to teammates after if to suggest where was the help on the coverage. Sullinger drained another jumper over Dudley and Thomas had jump shots off pick-and-rolls -- clean looks that Nene had been taking away -- for a five-point spurt to take a 53-49 lead into halftime. Nene was the only Wizards player with a positive plus-minus (plus-4). Gortat and Dudley each were minus-24.

  • Bradley Beal, who still is coming off the bench while on a minutes restriction, was struck in the face accidentally by Smart on a drive and had to leave with a bloody nose at 8:03 of the second quarter. His returned was listed as questionable by the team and they ruled him out midway through the third quarter.
  • The Wizards had 20 turnovers that turned into 28 points the other way. The Celtics were more careful with 11 that only translated into five points.  
  • John Wall (eight points) and Garrett Temple (two), the Wizards' starting backcourt, combined to shoot 3-for-18. Combine that with Beal's accuracy, and that's 5 of 24.
  • Thomas, who was a focal point of the Wizards, didn't even play in the fourth quarter. The Celtics still blew open a close game to lead by as many as 30 points. They opened the fourth by making 5 of 7 of threes -- all wide-open looks -- after being just 4 of 15 in the first three quarters.

MORE WIZARDS: Beal exits Celtics game after elbow to face, will not return

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Remember Ramon Sessions? Wizards set bring back familiar face, sources confirm

Remember Ramon Sessions? Wizards set bring back familiar face, sources confirm

For the Wizards, with a tough stretch coming and with John Wall still sidelined, depth and health is of the utmost importance.

With the team set to begin the second half of the 2018 NBA season on Thursday night against the Cavaliers, Scott Brooks and company decided to make a move to shore up their backcourt depth, a commodity the team cannot have enough of.

Veteran guard Ramon Sessions, who spent the 2014-15 and 2015-16 seasons in Washington, D.C., has been signed by the Wizards to a ten-day contract, NBC Sports Washington's Chris Miller confirms.

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The news was first reported by Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN . Sessions played in 110 games for the Wizards over the course of his two seasons, playing in all 82 games during the 2015-16 season.

He joins the Wizards again having been waived by the New York Knicks on Jan. 13. Sessions averaged 12.8 mpg in 13 games for the Knicks.

Sessions is rejoining a former team for the third time in his career, having played in Milwaukee and Charlotte on two separate occasions.

 

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Wizards at Cavs: TV, live stream and radio info, things to watch

Wizards at Cavs: TV, live stream and radio info, things to watch

Bradley Beal, Otto Porter, Kelly Oubre, Jr. and the Washington Wizards battle LeBron James, George Hill, Larry Nance, Jr. and the Cleveland Cavaliers on Thursday night.

Here is all you need to know: TV, live stream and radio info, tip-off time, plus three things to watch:

WASHINGTON WIZARDS AT CLEVELAND CAVALIERS

Where: Quicken Loans Arena
Tip-off: 8 p.m.
TV: TNT (pre- and postgame coverage on NBC Sports Washington Plus)
Live stream: TNTdrama.com
Radio: 1500 AM

Back in action

The Wizards return to the court after a week-long layoff due to the All-Star break. Add in the fact that they had three days off before their last game and this will be just the second game for the Wizards in the last 12 days. What is this, football?

The Wizards will try to overcome the rust to keep their momentum going. They entered the All-Star break having won seven of their last nine games. Though the time off was needed due to a wide array of injuries, the Wizards had a good thing going and will aim to recapture that against a good Cavs team.

PODCAST: BIGGEST STORYLINES COMING OUT OF ALL-STAR BREAK

Tough stretch

The Wizards come back with a game against the Cavs, a difficult first assignment after such a long layoff. But this is just the beginning of what will be a very difficult part of their schedule. In their next 17 games, the Wizards will play 15 times against teams currently holding playoff spots. That includes the Warriors, Celtics, Spurs and Raptors.

The schedule is tough beyond their opponents. Four times in the next three weeks they will play back-to-back games and they have five games in the next seven nights. Hopefully the players recharged their batteries because it won't be easy.

RELATED: BEAL IMPRESSED BY LEBRON AT ALL-STAR GAME

New-look Cavs

The Wizards and Cavs have played twice this season already and Cleveland took both of those matchups. However, that was all before the trade deadline when the Cavs overhauled their roster. They have won all three of their games since and look rejuvenated with younger players.

Now surrounding LeBron James are a host of new faces like George HIll, Rodney Hood, Jordan Clarkson and Larry Nance, Jr. It will be interesting to see how the Wizards match up with this new group.

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