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

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

John Wall, Bradley Beal, Otto Porter and the Washington Wizards battle the Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram, Kyle Kuzma and the Los Angeles Lakers 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 VS. LOS ANGELES LAKERS

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

Three things to watch...

Defense needed

The Wizards enter Thursday night aiming to correct some issues on the defensive end. They have lost three straight home games and five of their last seven games overall. That included a disappointing defeat to the Dallas Mavericks on Tuesday night. Dallas came into the matchup with the NBA's worst record, yet jumped out to a scorching start on offense with 36 points in the first quarter and 64 in the first half.

The Mavs were the third bad team in three weeks to sneak up on the Wizards. The Lakers were the first, they beat Washington in overtime last month. Thursday night offers the Wizards a chance to make some corrections and get back on track against a team they want revenge against.

[RELATED: WAIT...WHAT'S 'WOLF SEASON?']

More Jason Smith?

Twice the last 36 hours head coach Scott Brooks has said that he has "to find more minutes" for Jason Smith. The big man didn't play in two straight games before coming off the bench late in their loss to the Mavericks. Smith provided a spark with a dunk and two blocks.

The Wizards have had major issues protecting the rim and right now Smith is someone who could help that cause. Plus, Brooks has said he feels more comfortable playing Smith at the center position despite him traditionally being a power forward. With the league going smaller at the big man spot, Smith has the size to play center and can stretch the floor with his three-point shot.

[RELATED: HOW MAHINMI LOST WEIGHT, WHY HE LOVES D.C.]

Lakers play fast

With Lonzo Ball running point guard, the Lakers have managed to become one of the fastest teams in basketball. They rank second in pace factor. Fast teams are generally associated with offense, yet the Lakers are 28th in offensive rating. They have been much better on defense with the fifth-best defensive rating in the game. In the first meeting between these teams, the Wizards were held to 99 points including one overtime period.

L.A. is very young and very athletic. Ball isn't scoring much (8.8 ppg) but is averaging 6.8 assists and 6.3 rebounds per game. Fellow rookie Kyle Kuzma has been a standout so far with 14.9 points and 6.3 rebounds per game. And Brandon Ingram is starting to reach his potential with 15.5 points per game on 47.1 percent shooting. The Lakers have trotted out to a 5-6 record and are not an easy out anymore.

[RELATED: KELLY OUBRE CAN SEE WHY DURANT MADE A FAKE TWITTER ACCOUNT]

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

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

John Wall, Bradley Beal, Otto Porter and the Washington Wizards battle Giannis Antetokounmpo, Eric Bledsoe, Khris Middleton and the Milwaukee Bucks on Monday 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 MILWAUKEE BUCKS

Where: BMO Harris Bradley Center
Tip-off: 8 p.m.
TV: NBC Sports Washington (coverage begins at 7 p.m.)
Live stream: NBCSportsWashington.com
Online with no cable TV: fuboTV (try for free)
Radio: 1500 AM

Three things to watch...

Can Wall play?

The Wizards were without star point guard on Sunday night, as John Wall sat out due to a swollen left knee. The Wizards lost and it was in large part due to their lack of offense. They scored only 91 points, their second-lowest output of the season so far. With a healthy Wall, maybe that doesn't happen.

Head coach Scott Brooks told reporters in Toronto that Wall could miss Monday's game as well. But by tipoff Wall will have had two full days off following his last game, on Friday against the Heat. The Bucks, though, present a unique challenge with a deep backcourt featuring Eric Bledsoe, Malcolm Brogdon, Khris Middleton and others. This is also the second game of a back-to-back for the Wizards. They were 7-9 in games with zero days rest last year.

[RELATED: WAIT...WHAT'S 'WOLF SEASON?']

Recent history

The Wizards won three of their four matchups against the Bucks last season and have taken 14 of their last 19 meetings going back to 2012. Washington has absolutely owned the Bucks and that hasn't changed even in recent years with the emergence of Giannis Antetokounmpo as a superstar. The Bucks, though, are a different team with Bledsoe so there is no guarantee the recent success continues.

One thing to keep in mind is that these teams had a bit of bad blood last year. The Bucks' lone win against the Wizards was on Dec. 23 in Milwaukee. The Bucks won in a blowout and Antetokounmpo remained in late in the game to chase a career-high in points. The Wizards didn't like that and after beating them in a rematch on Dec. 26 several players including Wall said publicly they thought it was disrespectful.

[RELATED: HOW MAHINMI LOST WEIGHT, WHY HE LOVES D.C.]

Bucks are on the rise

Speaking of Antetokounmpo, the guy just keeps getting better. This year he's averaging a ridiculous line of 30.1 points, 10.5 rebounds, 4.4 assists, 1.8 blocks and 1.7 steals. He is shooting a cool 56.3 percent and so far looks like a legitimate MVP candidate.

Antetokounmpo has some help, too. Middleton is averaging 18.9 points, 5.5 rebounds, 4.8 assists and 1.2 steals. Brogdon, the reigning rookie of the year, is averaging 14.1 points and 3.8 assists. There is also Bledsoe, who hasn't quite broken out yet since joining the Bucks in a trade.

[RELATED: KELLY OUBRE CAN SEE WHY DURANT MADE A FAKE TWITTER ACCOUNT]

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Wizards' offense stumbles without John Wall in loss to Raptors

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Wizards' offense stumbles without John Wall in loss to Raptors

The Washington Wizards lost to the Toronto Raptors 100-91 on Sunday afternoon at the Air Canada Centre. Here's analysis of what went down...

Not enough: The Wizards pulled off the upset earlier this month in Toronto when they were without star guard John Wall. On Sunday, there weren't as fortunate.

This time Kyle Lowry didn't get ejected in the first half and this time DeMar DeRozan (33 points, 15-for-26 FG) had a good shooting night. Bradley Beal (27 points) stepped up, but had five turnovers and didn't get much help from his teammates.

Otto Porter was held to 15 points and six rebounds. Those are decent numbers, but they needed more with Wall out. Markieff Morris had only three points on 1-for-10 shooting. Marcin Gortat (12 points, 12 rebounds, seven assists) played well, to be fair.

The Wizards have now lost two straight games and sit 9-7 on the season. Without Wall, the Wizards were the underdogs but they were only down three to begin the fourth quarter. They were outscored 21-15 in the final frame.

The Raptors snapped the Wizards' streak of holding opponents to under 100 points at five games on a DeRozan dunk with just 54.7 seconds left.

Wall out, may miss Monday: The Wizards held Wall out due his swollen left knee and it could keep him out against the Bucks on Monday. That's what head coach Scott Brooks told reporters in Toronto before the game. The Wizards proved on Sunday they can still compete against good teams without Wall, but the road won't get any easier. 

The Bucks have a very good backcourt with Eric Bledsoe, Malcolm Brogdon and Khris Middleton. After dealing with Kyle Lowry in this one, Tim Frazier will have to keep up with Bledsoe if Wall isn't available.

Frazier and Tomas Satoransky filled the void on Sunday with Wall out and produced mixed results. Frazier put up some solid numbers with six rebounds and eight assists, but had four turnovers, including a badly timed one with 2:10 left when he dribbled off his knee and out of bounds. Satoransky also had three turnovers, but managed four points, three rebounds and two steals in 12 minutes. His best moments were on defense.

The Wizards' offense overall just couldn't get going without Wall running the show. They shot 42 percent despite going 11-for-19 (57.9%) from three. Their 11-for-19 (57.3%) mark from the free throw line didn't help.

[RELATED: TIMING IS RIGHT FOR NBA TO END ONE-AND-DONE RULE]

Perimeter defense: Here's a positive for the Wizards. The Raptors entered this game tied for 10th in the NBA in three-pointers made per game (10.9) and they chucked up a lot of attempts from long range. The Raptors hit 10 threes, but the Wizards deserve credit for holding them to 26.3 percent at 10-for-38 overall.

Three-point defense has been a big point of emphasis for the Wizards since Brooks took over. Last year they were 20th in opponents three-point percentage. They were eighth in the NBA coming into Sunday's game, a major improvement. 

The personnel is there for them to defend the perimeter well, even without Wall. Beal, Porter and Kelly Oubre, Jr. are all young, quick and long. So far this season they have been putting those skills to good use.

Injury scare for Keef: Markieff Morris took a hard shot to his nose in the first quarter on a loose ball play. Morris dove to the ground trying to get possession and his face slammed straight into the leg of Jonas Valanciunas. Morris would return in the second quarter and quickly hit a three.

Here's the replay of Morris' collision:

Ouch.

Up next: The Wizards head to Milwaukee to face the Bucks on Monday night. It will be their first back-to-back set of the season. They are the last team to have one. Tipoff is a 8 p.m. on NBC Sports Washington.

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