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Wizards complete biggest turnaround from 2-8 start in NBA history

Wizards complete biggest turnaround from 2-8 start in NBA history

The Wizards clinching their division and a playoff berth after beginning the 2016-17 season 2-8 is nothing short of amazing. It is, in fact, the biggest regular season turnaround from 2-8 in NBA history.

With their win over the Pistons in Detoit on Monday night, Washington became the first team ever to reach 49 wins after starting a season 2-8. They broke a tie with the 1992-93 Boston Celtics, who won 48 games after starting 2-8.

First, some notes on those Celtics. That was the first year they played without Larry Bird, who had retired in August before the season began. The roster still featured Hall of Famers Kevin McHale and Robert Parish, though at Age 35 and 39, respectively. And Boston's first win after starting 2-8 just happened to come against the Bullets.

The Wizards' turnaround has been made possible by several things. For one, John Wall has fully recovered from his two offseason knee surgeries. In the first few weeks of the season he was on a minutes restriction and was not allowed to play both games of back-to-backs. He also was not in 100 percent game shape.

In the time since they were 2-8, the Wizards have improved their roster in a few ways. They traded for Bojan Bogdanovic at the deadline, they signed Brandon Jennings in free agency and they got Ian Mahinmi back from his own knee injuries.

Along the way Otto Porter, Markieff Morris, Bradley Beal and Marcin Gortat have played some of the best basketball of their careers. And several members of their bench have improved over the course of the season like Jason Smith and Kelly Oubre, Jr.

Head coach Scott Brooks also deserves lot of credit, of course. He saw the Wizards through some very tough times in his first year on the job.

Add it all up and the Wizards have turned a terrible start into history.

[RELATED: Tougher matchup for Wizards: Cavs or Celtics?]

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Cavaliers reportedly parting ways with coach John Beilein ahead of matchup with Wizards

Cavaliers reportedly parting ways with coach John Beilein ahead of matchup with Wizards

As the Wizards continue to enjoy the All-Star break and prepare for the stretch run toward the eighth seed in the Eastern Conference, their first opponent following the break just made a significant change to their team. 

According to The Athletic's Shams Charania and Jason Lloyd, the Cavaliers and head coach John Beilein have agreed to part ways after 54 games. It was Beilein's first year on the job after a 12-year run at Michigan. 

Cleveland is expected to promote associate head coach J.B. Bickerstaff to replace Beilein. 

According to The Athletic's report, several factors weighed on Beilein and the Cavaliers' decision to part ways, including the team's on-and-off-court struggles, and his son's resignation at Niagra University. The Cavs were 14-40 under their new head coach this season. 

For the Wizards, they're in a position to build off a two-game winning streak they built going into the All-Star break with a matchup against a bad Cavaliers team going through major structural changes. Though it's possible the Cavs could play better under new leadership. 

Entering Friday's clash with the Cavs, Washington sits three games behind the Magic for the last playoff spot in the East. 

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Monumental Sports auctioning off Wizards, Capitals gear in tribute of Kobe Bryant

Monumental Sports auctioning off Wizards, Capitals gear in tribute of Kobe Bryant

Capitals, Mystics and Wizards gear, including those worn in tribute of the late Kobe and Gianna Bryant, are being auctioned off by the Monumental Sports & Entertainment Foundation with all proceeds going to the Mamba & Mambacita Sports Foundation and the MambaOnThree Fund.

The auction began at noon Tuesday and will be open until the end of the second intermission of the Capitals’ game against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Sunday.

Some of the items available include an autographed No. 24 jersey Alex Ovechkin wore during pregame warmups Jan. 29 and signed Wizards “City Edition” jerseys that feature No. 8 or 24 with Bryant's name on them.

The Mamba & Mambacita Sports Foundation assists children and families in low-income communities by carrying out charitable initiatives through sports in memory of the Bryants who died in a helicopter crash Jan. 26.

The MambaOnThree Fund was set up to provide financial assistance to the other families who lost loved ones in the crash.

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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