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Do the newest Wizards make the team better or worse on Twitter?

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Do the newest Wizards make the team better or worse on Twitter?

BY PETER HAILEY

Much has been made about how the Wizards offseason additions will help the team on the floor. But while all that talk about whether the new faces will improve the Wizards on the court is fine and dandy, we're overlooking a crucial aspect of how Kelly Oubre Jr., Gary Neal, Alan Anderson and Jared Dudley will affect Washington: in the arena of social media.

Do these guys help or hurt the team on Twitter? It's time to find out.

To come up with a conclusion of whether the Wizards have gotten better or worse on social media, we'll first look at who they lost. Then, we'll evaluate what the new additions bring to the table. Finally, we'll deliver our verdict.

First up, recapping the players who departed from D.C., and how much they'll be missed on social media's favorite platform.

(Note: Free agency is still going on, so the team's roster can still change. But this post is based on who's projected to be on the team's 2015 roster as of now).

  • 1) Paul Pierce

This one hurts. Oh man, this one really hurts.

Paul Pierce will definitely be missed in the Wizards starting lineup, but he may be missed more in the world of Twitter; he didn't use it often, but when he did, it was truly magical.

He would do ridiculous things like create Throwback Thursdays out of Google Image searches:

Or make hilarious references to Drake after his team swept the Raptors in the playoffs:

And even inform the world of his spectacular Halloween costumes:

Since leaving the Wizards for the Clippers, Pierce has already dropped a couple of classic tweets, quickly reminding Wiz fans what they'll miss: during the great Emoji War of 2015, he chose to use ClipArt, and then, he taunted the Mavericks once DeAndre Jordan decided to stay in L.A.

The Truth is a Hall-of-Famer on the court, but on Twitter, he's one of the best to ever do it. Replacing his talents is going to be nearly impossible.

  • 2) Rasual Butler

Rasual Butler's social media game is a lot like his real game: On the court, he was mostly used in one way (as a three-point specialist), and on Twitter, he mostly used the site in one way (to send out positive, happy tweets like this one):

Butler's followers were treated to inspirational messages like that one quite often, but the 36-year-old only has about one percent of the followers that Pierce has (75,000 compared to 3.1 million), meaning he won't be missed much. 

  • 3) Kevin Seraphin

Randy Wittman and Wizards fans alike are probably frustrated that Kevin Seraphin didn't pan out more during his time with Washington, but as a Twitter user, he was incredibly underrated.

He was arguably the team's most versatile tweeter: he would tweet in English and in French, retweet absurd Vines, ask his followers to play him in various PlayStation 4 games, and provide humorous commentary about everyday struggles. Here are two particularly memorable Seraphin tweets:

It's a shame that more people weren't aware of the 25-year-old's talents on Twitter (he only has 92,000 followers) because he was a really entertaining guy. His new fan base would be wise to hit the 'Follow' button as soon as he arrives in town.

  • 4) Will Bynum

The energetic point guard who had a brief stint with the Wizards during the end of last year is a lot like Butler but with way less followers (3,671 as of this post): It's all positive messages and #MakeADifference hashtags. His absence won't be felt much.

MORE WIZARDS: Who makes 'Franchise Four' for the Wizards?

Next, it's time to break down what the newest Wizards are like on Twitter.

  • 1) Kelly Oubre Jr.

Many people are curious to see how Oubre Jr. will fit in with his new NBA team; his game is still very much a question mark. So too, is his Twitter game.

The former Kansas forward is a bit all over the place when it comes to his 140 character messages. The only thing that's clear after doing a brief review of his page is that he has a particular affinity for a certain hashtag:

It remains to be seen why Oubre Jr. wants everyone to be so quiet. Right now, he's a wild card both on and off the court.

  • 2) Jared Dudley

The NBA veteran who is now with his sixth different organization seems like a pretty cool tweeter. He's very generous with his retweets, and likes to get his followers involved by asking questions about all sorts of things:

This is a good way for him to endear himself to his new fans, and he's off to a strong start. 

  • 3) Gary Neal

It appears that Neal doesn't have a Twitter account, which will damage the team's overall social media rating. There is an account named "Did Gary Neal Pass?" however, which is a bit funny. 

  • 4) Alan Anderson

Anderson is better than Neal because he at least has an account, but it's not the most interesting. If you're a Michigan State fan, you'll find it enjoyable...

…But for people who went to any other college in the entire world that's not Michigan State, Anderson's addition isn't going to get you very excited.

Now, it's time to deliver the final ruling.

There's really no debate here: The 2015 Wizards are significantly worse on Twitter than the 2014 Wizards.

Pierce is to Twitter as Denzel Washington is to acting; losing him is a blow that's going to be too much to handle. Seraphin's subtraction will also hurt Washington on Twitter, as he was very under appreciated while wearing the red, white and blue.

Yes, Oubre Jr. has a chance to become a solid Twitter user, but it's hit or miss right now. And Dudley is fine to follow, but Neal not having one at all, and Anderson choosing to use it simply to talk about his alma mater, are both big negatives.  

It's not a stretch to say that basketball wise, the Wizards are in better shape than they were a year ago. But on Twitter, they just went from playoff-caliber to future lottery team. 

MORE WIZARDS: Then and now: Comparing Wizards' shooting options

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Wizards vs. Hornets: TV, live stream and radio info, things to watch

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USA TODAY Sports

Wizards vs. Hornets: TV, live stream and radio info, things to watch

Bradley Beal, Otto Porter, Kelly Oubre, Jr. and the Washington Wizards battle Kemba Walker, Dwight Howard, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and the Charlotte Hornets on Friday night.

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

WASHINGTON WIZARDS VS. CHARLOTTE HORNETS

Where: Capital One Arena
Tip-off: 7 p.m.
TV: NBC Sports Washington (coverage begins at 6 p.m.)
Live stream: NBCSportsWashington.com
Radio: 1500 AM

On a roll

The Wizards have some serious momentum going right now. With an impressive win over the Cavs on Thursday, they have now won three straight games and eight of 10 since John Wall went down with a left knee injury. They had a week off due to the All-Star break, but didn't show any rust at all in their first game back.

The Wizards are now 34-24, 10 games above the .500 mark. They are fourth in the East and could move into third on Friday if they win and the Cavaliers lose. Even with Wall out, things continue to look up for Washington.

PODCAST: BIGGEST STORYLINES COMING OUT OF ALL-STAR BREAK

Hornets have had their number

The Wizards haven't done so well against the Hornets so far this season. Charlotte has taken both meetings and that includes a 24-point win on Jan. 17. That game featured Dwight Howard taunting the Wizards late in the fourth quarter.

Howard has killed the Wizards through two games with averages of 22.0 points and 14.0 rebounds. Jeremy Lamb (20.0 ppg vs. Wizards) has been a big factor as well as All-Star Kemba Walker (21.5 ppg vs. Wizards).

The last time these teams played about a month ago frustrations boiled over in an incident that got Tim Frazier ejected. Michael Carter-Williams picked a fight with Jason Smith and Frazier went off:

RELATED: BEAL IMPRESSED BY LEBRON AT ALL-STAR GAME

Hornets coming in hot

The Hornets are outside the playoff picture at the moment at eight games below .500, but they have won two straight games and Walker and Howard are coming off huge games. In a win over the Brooklyn Nets on Thursday, Walker dropped 31 points and Howard grabbed 24 rebounds.

Those guys will be riding a high coming into Washington on Friday. But it should be noted that Howard complained after the game how tired he is at this point in the season. That exhausion could affect him more in the second game of a back-to-back.

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5 must-see moments from Wizards' huge road win over Cavaliers, including Markieff Morris' alley-oop

5 must-see moments from Wizards' huge road win over Cavaliers, including Markieff Morris' alley-oop

Here are the five best plays or moments from the Washington Wizards' 110-103 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Thursday night...

1. The Wizards didn't start out well, as they trailed by nine points at the end of the first quarter. Kelly Oubre, Jr. stumbled early by missing four of his first six shots and it looked like a carryover of his slump before the All-Star break.

But Oubre got hot in the second quarter and helped the Wizards turn the game around. This was one of his best plays, a two-handed slam that he celebrated with an emphatic scream to the crowd:

RELATED: BEAL IMPRESSED BY LEBRON AT ALL-STAR GAME

2. Tomas Satoransky was one of the stars of the game. He had 17 points to go along with eight assists, four rebounds and two steals. 

Here's one of his dimes, a perfect alley-oop lob to Markieff Morris, who finished with nine points and eight rebounds:

3. Satoransky has reached double-figures in six of the 10 games since John Wall went out with an injury. This was a very impressive move, a stepback fadeaway that was super smooth:

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4. Ian Mahinmi made some key contributions including four offensive rebounds and a steal. This was his best basket, a powerful slam that came at a key time:

5. This play helped seal the victory. It was a smart after-timeout set drawn up by head coach Scott Brooks and it worked to perfection:

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