Whenever the Cleveland Cavaliers would be in need of a bucket vs. the Wizards, they'd run pick-and-rolls with Kyrie Irving and LeBron James to force switches that would get them both in favorable positions and in space for high-percentage looks.
It would result in one of those two having Jared Dudley in front of them to beat.
But that was so 2015-16 season.
The Wizards (30-20) already have a 6-10, more athletic Markieff Morris there as the starter to give them a better chance. They also will have the 7-2 wingspan of Kelly Oubre, who has emerged in his second year, to give them a unique look when the two teams face off on Monday night at Verizon Center.
Oubre usually takes the floor late in the first quarter as the small forward while starter Otto Porter shifts to the "stretch" forwards. He'll also find hmself cross-matched against point guards by the fourth quarter.
The latter is a strategy that Washington used in a 15-point win over the Boston Celtics when the NBA's leading scorer in the fourth, Isaiah Thomas, was held to one field goal. At 6-7, Oubre has the length and athleticism to bother guards and force them to finish tougher shots. And if he ends up switched onto the stronger James, he won't cede ground in the post.
"Sometimes on defense, when they don't have their other main guys in. I'll not take a break but just get a little more rest," said John Wall, who'll assume an easier assignment while Oubre focuses on defending the point guard. "We use it at times. But in the game I want to be on those guys. I'm one of those point guards that likes to go against the point guards to make it a matchup.
"Not to say it's a one-on-one but at times we usually switch it up. A lot of good teams do that. That's why you've got defensive stoppers."
Irving scored a game-high 29 in a 104-95 win on Nov. 11 at Verizon Center. It's just one of six home losses.
They won't be able to shut down everyone, but the Wizards can't allow Irving and James to be effective simultaneously. If they can take away one of the Big Two, chances are Oubre will have something to do with it.