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Jared Dudley practices, puts timetable on return to Wizards


Jared Dudley practices, puts timetable on return to Wizards

Jared Dudley had his first full practice with the Wizards on Wednesday, and he's optimistic that he'll be back on the court before the preseason ends and certain that he'll be ready for the start of the regular season Oct. 28.

"I've been like Lance Armstrong for the last month just doing bike work the whole time so on the court it's going to take a little bit," said Dudley, who had lower back surgery in July to repair a bulging disk. I look at this as my training camp. I got a week ... Hopefully I can get the last two preseason games. You get another week and then you have the season."

Dudley had been doing non-contact drills and last week he began to do partial contact. The key, of course, is not having setbacks. A career small forward, he's expected to play more as a "stretch" power forward for the Wizards in coach Randy Wittman's new system. Drew Gooden is the other option in the rotation. Kris Humphries still is trying to develop three-point range to become one.

"Good thing about it is playing the four, me being a natural three, it's easier for me to guard fours," Dudley said. "I don't have to be in tip top (shape). I'm not running around guarding Kevin Durant (instead) it's a backup power forward.

The Wizards can use another body. Alan Anderson had surgery on Tuesday to remove a bone fragment from his left ankle and the length of his absence has yet to be determined. Martell Webster is bothered by a right hip strain and not practicing. Kelly Oubre is a rookie who is still learning. 

"Got a little tired but overall I thought I played well," Dudley said of practice. "For now it's about getting in shape. I have no pain in my back or anything so I'm good to go."

MORE WIZARDS: Wizards' vets say 'lot of work to do' for Wall, Beal

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2018 NBA Playoffs Wizards-Raptors Game 5: TV, live stream and radio info, things to watch

2018 NBA Playoffs Wizards-Raptors Game 5: TV, live stream and radio info, things to watch

John Wall, Bradley Beal, Otto Porter and the Washington Wizards battle Kyle Lowry, DeMar DeRozan, Serge Ibaka and the Toronto Raptors on Wednesday night in Game 5 of the 2018 NBA Playoffs.

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


Series: Series tied 2-2
Where: Air Canada Centre
Tip-off: 7:02 p.m. (earlier tipoff than usual)
TV: NBC Sports Washington (pregame coverage begins at 6 p.m.)
Live stream: NBCSportsWashington.com
Radio: 1500 AM

Pivotal game

The Wizards have done their part in winning both games at home to even up this series at 2-2. Now comes Game 5, which could very well determine who takes this series.

Winners of Game 5 in a seven-game series tied at 2-2 hold a 164-34 (.828) record all-time. That means teams that lose Game 5 come back to win the final two games and the series only 17.2 percent of the time.

The Wizards need to get this one and they know all too well why. Last year they were in this same position in their second round series against the Boston Celtics. They went down 0-2, won the next two games but then lost Game 5 and ultimately the series in seven games.

Road warriors

The Wizards will also have to do something they have yet to do in a while in Game 5 and that is win on the road. Though they have won eight straight home postseason games, they have lost their last six on the road. It goes back to that Celtics series when Washington lost all four games in Boston. The last time they won on the road in the playoffs was Game 6 last year against the Hawks.

The Raptors are particularly tough in Toronto. They were 34-7 this season at home, tied with the Houston Rockets for the best record in the NBA. 

The recent historical odds are also in Toronto's favor. Since 2003, the home team has won each of the first four games in a seven-game series 35 times. In those series, the home team has held a Game 5 record of 22-13 and a series record of 26-9. If the Raptors get Game 5, history will be on their side to go on to win the series.

Can Otto get going?

Games 3 and 4 in Washington saw All-Star Bradley Beal break out to score 28 and 31 points. Will we see the same from Otto Porter before this series is over?

Game 4 seemed to suggest that is possible. After scoring only one point in the first half, Porter erupted for 10 points in the third quarter alone. Though he only scored 12 points in the game overall, it was the most aggressive we have seen him all series.

Porter is averaging just 10.3 points per game through four playoff games. He is shooting 50 percent from the field and 55.6 percent from three, and as long as the Wizards are winning he won't complain, but Porter can do much more than that on offense. If he starts scoring more, the Wizards will be tough to stop.

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For more on the Wizards-Raptors series, check out or latest Wizards Tipoff podcast:

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Wizards Tipoff podcast: How they can keep it rolling in Game 5


Wizards Tipoff podcast: How they can keep it rolling in Game 5

On the latest episode of the Wizards Tipoff podcast presented by Greenberg and Bederman, Chase Hughes, Travis Thomas and Julie Donaldson reset the series and looked ahead to Game 5.

They were joined by TSN Sports anchor Kayla Grey to find out the Toronto perspective. The Wizards have all the momentum in this series, now they just have to keep it going.

You can listen to the episode right here:

You can download the podcast on Apple Podcasts right here and on Google Play. If you like the show please tell your friends!