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Film study: Bad 3-point defense jeopardizes Wizards' chances

Film study: Bad 3-point defense jeopardizes Wizards' chances

When the Magic made their run on Sunday in the first half to get the lead to double-digits, and late in the fourth when the Wizards made their run, three-point shooting was the difference. The communication wasn't there as the Wizards made bad choices whether it was going under on a screen for D.J. Augustin or the frontline being late in covering a shooter on a switch.

The Wizards were falling far behind within minutes of the second quarter because of botched rotations. This is what grew the deficit to as large as 17:

The effort is there by Brandon Jennings. He hustles back to stop Mario Hezonja's drive to the rim and runs out to challenge Augustin at the three-point line.

Kelly Oubre gets caught underneath the screen by Stephen Zimmerman and Augustin, who'd drained a three in the previous clip, gets another clean look. With a 7-2 wingspan and an ability to defend point guards in space, Augustin can't get these kinds of looks. Oubre clearly was playing him more for the drive because Augustin can cause havoc there, too, but Ian Mahinmi was behind him to help with that containment if needed. (Note: Yes, that screen should be illegal but the way it's officiated for all 30 teams is as a legal screen therefore that's not a missed call. Just a questionable interpretation of the rules in regards to screening which is a completely different issue).

[RELATED: Beware of the Wizards' 'death lineup']

Markieff Morris' reaction time is off. He gets trapped under the pindown from Mario Hezonja, which is OK because the Wizards were switching these. Hezonja was now his man. Morris was slow to react and ran into Zimmerman's cross screen. The deficit was 37-27 and growing. 

In the fourth, repeated big threes from Bojan Bogdanovic were needed to keep the Magic at bay. That's because the three-point defense wasn't good enough.

This is a case of knowing your personnel. Beal made a move to get the loose ball after the deflection, but when he realized Bismack Biyombo was going to beat him to the ball he should've peeled back to Terrence Ross. Instead, he pressures Biyombo who makes an easy pass to Ross, who scored eight of his 20 points in the fourth quarter, for an open three. There were four seconds left on the shot clock. You take your chances with Biyombo shooting from that distance rather than red-hot Ross stepping into an open look.

This shot by Evan Fournier broke a 100-100 tie because Morris didn't anticipate Biyombo's screen and hesitated on closing out an elite shooter. And he didn't contest it either.

Bad three-point defense is what got the Wizards in a 2-8 hole to begin the season. The Magic made 14 (40%), the Raptors made 11 (44%) and the Jazz knocked down 11 (45.8%). The latter two were losses and the former easily could've been one, too.

[RELATED: Wizards respond after Brooks chews them out at halftime]

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How to watch Pistons at Wizards ‘Predict the Game’ broadcast

How to watch Pistons at Wizards ‘Predict the Game’ broadcast

The Washington Wizards return to Capital One Arena to host the Detroit Pistons on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day at 2 p.m. 

The Wizards are hoping to not only bounce back after suffering from a tough 140-111 loss in Toronto Friday night but also to snap their losing streak at home. Monday’s game will be the Wizards last home, before hitting the road until they return home on January 30th. 

The Wizards currently lead the series 2-1, the Wizards won both matchups against the Pistons on Nov.4 and Dec. 16. However, most recently the Wizards fell short 132-102 on Dec 26th. Will the Wizards be able to win the season series on Monday?

Take your Wizards experience to the next level and get involved in the action with NBC Sports Washington's newest Predict the Game contest.

'PREDICT THE GAME' HOW TO WATCH

What is this broadcast? Predict the Game is an easy-to-enter, free contest that allows fans to predict various game and player performance outcomes through a series of approximately 12-15 questions per quarter that will appear on-screen during the alternate telecast on NBC Sports Washington Plus. Predict the Game leaderboards will be displayed at select times, and the winner of each contest will be revealed throughout the game and during NBC Sports Washington’s postgame coverage.

Where can I find it? Contest questions and leaderboards will be displayed on NBC Sports Washington Plus (Channel Finder).

Additionally, the broadcast can be streamed on desktopiOS and Android devices. 

The NBC Sports Washington Plus presentation will, for the first time, feature special hosts, who will appear at various times to address Predict the Game participants and provide contest updates, information and results. The enhanced experience will contain the majority of the same video and audio (including announcers) as the primary live-game coverage, which will be available simultaneously on NBC Sports Washington.

How do I win? Fans will earn points for both answering questions (1 point) and correct predictions (1 or 2 points, depending on the question), with the top eligible scorer at the end of each game earning or splitting the $500 prize.

Each quarter will be its own contest, with an entirely new leaderboard starting from scratch, so even if fans miss out on the start of the game there will still be plenty of time to play and win. 

Fans must enter Predict the Game, which is open to join throughout the entire game, and submit their predictions at www.nbcsportswashington.com/predict.

WIZARDS vs. PISTONS HOW TO WATCH

What: Washington Wizards vs. Detroit Pistons

Where: Capital One Arena, Washington, D.C.

When: 2:00 p.m. ET

TV Channel: Wizards vs. Pistons will be broadcast on NBC Sports Washington (NBC Sports Channel Finder)

Live Stream: You can live stream Wizards vs. Pistons on NBC Sports Washington's live stream page and on the NBC Sports App.

Radio: Wizards Radio Network, 1500 AM

WIZARDS vs. PISTONS TV SCHEDULE

1:00 PM: Wizards Outsiders (LIVE)

1:30 PM: Wizards Pregame Live (LIVE)

2:00 PM: Wizards vs. Pistons (LIVE)

4:30 PM: Wizards Postgame Live (LIVE)

5:00 PM: D.C. Sports Live (LIVE)

5:30 PM: Wizards Talk (LIVE)

WIZARDS 2019-20 'PREDICT THE GAME' SCHEDULE

January 6: vs Boston (7 p.m.)

January 20: vs Detroit (2 p.m.)

January 26: at Atlanta (6 p.m.)

February 3: vs Golden State (7 p.m.)

February 11: vs Chicago (7 p.m.)

February 21: vs Cleveland (7 p.m.)

February 26: vs Brooklyn (7 p.m.)

March 3: at Sacramento (10 p.m.)

March 10: vs New York (7 p.m.)

March 18: at Brooklyn (7:30 p.m.)

March 15: vs Phoenix (7 p.m.)

April 1: vs New Orleans (7 p.m.)

Click here to download the MyTeams App by NBC Sports. Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream Capitals and Wizards games easily from your device.

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Warriors' Stephen Curry could return from injury on March 1 vs Wizards

Warriors' Stephen Curry could return from injury on March 1 vs Wizards

According to The Athletic's Marcus Thompson II, Steph Curry is aiming to return to play on March 1 when the Golden State Warriors host the Washington Wizards.

This game will be second of a four-game West coast swing, starting in Utah and hitting San Francisco, Sacramento and Portland before returning home.

Curry has been sidelined since Oct. 30 with a broken left hand. He had surgery on Nov. 1 and was ruled out at least three months.

If he does indeed return on March 1, he could play in 22 more regular season games this year. There were rumors that he would sit the entire season, but apparently Curry is focused on a return this spring, according to more from Thompson II. 

"I've been making progress," Curry said via NBC Sports Bay Area during the Warriors game vs Orlando on Saturday. "No setbacks which is definitely encouraging to get back to 100% as soon as possible."

The Wizards vs Warriors game will tipoff at 8:30 p.m. EST.

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