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Wizards fall to Celtics in OT

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Wizards fall to Celtics in OT

By KEN POWTAK

BOSTON (AP) -- Brandon Bass scored five straight points in overtime, helping the Boston Celtics pull out a 100-94 win over the Washington Wizards on the back end of a home-and-home Wednesday night.

Kevin Garnett led the Celtics with 20 points and 13 rebounds, Rajon Rondo had 18 points and 14 assists and reserve Jason Terry had 16 points. Bass finished with 11.

Bradley Beal, Kevin Seraphin and Martell Webster each scored 16 points for the Wizards (0-3).

Bass hit a tiebreaking free throw, making it 93-92, then scored on a twisting layup on the next possession. He added a breakaway dunk with 37.7 seconds left to help seal it.

Boston (2-2) beat the Wizards 89-86 in Washington on Saturday night.

Reserve Chris Singleton's clean drive down the lane for a dunk tied the game with 9.4 seconds left. Rondo then missed a jumper as the horn sounded, sending the game to OT.

Beal's 3-pointer from the top of the key had given the Wizards an 83-82 lead with 68 seconds left, and they made it 84-82 when Webster hit a free throw after Garnett was whistled for a technical.

But Garnett was fouled on Boston's ensuing possession and hit both free throws, tying it. Pierce then stole the ball from Seraphin at midcourt and was fouled, hitting the first of two to push Boston ahead 85-84.

After Webster turned the ball over trying to drive the lane, Rondo hit one of two free throws to make it 86-84 with 27 seconds left.

Singleton nailed two free throws tying it at 86 before Rondo hit a 20-foot jumper from the top of the key to push Boston back in front.

Boston had taken a 71-60 lead with just over 10 minutes to play on Paul Pierce's three-point play, coming on just his second basket of the game, when he was fouled on a fast-break layup. The Wizards then climbed back mostly behind the play of Singleton, who scored six of Washington's eight points as it narrowed the gap to 77-76 on Webster's 3 with 5:19 left.

After Terry nailed a 3 for Boston, the Wizards scored the next four points, tying it 80-all on Seraphin's dunk with 3 1/2 minutes to play.

The Celtics had trailed by seven in a first half that mostly featured poor shooting and sluggish play -- except when Garnett was on the floor -- but scored the initial five points after the break to tie the game at 42.

Garnett had 10 rebounds, two blocked shots and seven points in the first half and the Celtics outscored the Wizards by 11 when he was on the floor.

Washington pulled to a 49-44 lead midway into the third quarter on Beal's three-point play before Boston closed the quarter by scoring 12 of the final 14 points to grab a 66-58 lead entering the final quarter. Chris Wilcox, still working back into shape after heart surgery last season, sparked the run with six points and Terry had a pair of baskets.

Washington shot just 29 percent in the opening quarter and trailed 21-16 at the break, but used a 20-7 run midway into the second en route to a 42-37 halftime edge.

NOTES: Garnett had 10 rebounds in just his first 7:09 of play, collecting his 10th only 16 seconds into the second quarter. ... Wizards C Nene was out again with plantar fasciitis of his left foot. He hasn't played yet this season. ... Washington G Jordan Crawford, who tweaked his ankle in the loss to Boston Saturday, returned to action. ... Boston rookie F Jared Sullinger started his second straight game and coach Doc Rivers had a simple answer why. "We're playing the same team," he said. ... The Celtics host Philadelphia Friday before playing four of five on the road. ... The Celtics were given a delay of game warning because Garnett wasn't ready for the tip, going through his usual pregame ritual when he goes under one of the baskets and slightly bangs his head against a padded support to get motivated.

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Source: Wizards will have competition with teams like Lakers, Clippers for restricted free agent Bobby Portis

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USA Today

Source: Wizards will have competition with teams like Lakers, Clippers for restricted free agent Bobby Portis

This summer is shaping up to be lucrative for NBA free agents and big man Bobby Portis is well-positioned to cash in. After spending the final three months of the 2018-19 season with the Wizards, Portis is already seeing a healthy market develop ahead of the June 30 start of the league's negotiating period, NBC Sports Washington has learned.

The Wizards are likely to first extend a qualifying offer on June 30 to make him a restricted free agent. According to Spotrac.com, it will be about $3.6 million and that will give the Wizards the right to match an offer sheet from another franchise.

But teams are already indicating they want Portis, who is just 24 and coming off a season in which he averaged a career-high 14.2 points and 8.1 rebounds in 50 games. That market includes 5-10 teams and could grow once free agency opens.

Portis is expected to draw interest from the Lakers, Clippers, Jazz, Bucks, Magic and Knicks among others, NBC Sports Washington has learned.

Despite restricted free agency, Portis has a few things working for him. For one, there are a lot of teams with cap room. Spending won't reach 2016 levels, when the new CBA spiked the salary cap, but there will a lot of money to go around.

Also, guys in Portis' tier will only be helped if the top free agent options continue to dwindle. Klay Thompson looks more likely than ever to stay in Golden State after tearing his ACL. Winning a title could increase the odds Kawhi Leonard re-signs in Toronto, according to reports. And Kevin Durant's torn Achilles has thrown a wrench into the plans of teams with the most money to spend.

There is also the possibility Kemba Walker stays in Charlotte. And Kyrie Irving signing with Brooklyn, if it happens, would leave others exploring backup plans.

Portis isn't directly competing with any of those players, but could benefit if the top options are off the market. His name will only move up the list if that is the case.

Portis also has a unique selling point going for him. He shot 39.3 percent from three this past season and held a 40.3 percent clip to close the year in his 28 games with the Wizards. Three-point shooting is more valuable than ever and he brings that to the table at 6-foot-10.

Portis, who averaged 3.8 three-point attempts per game this past season, was one of only six players 6-10 or taller to shoot at least 39 percent on 3.5 attempts or more (min. 50 G). 

The question for Portis will be whether he gets the money he wants. He turned down an extension with the Chicago Bulls last fall just hours before the deadline to sign one. According to the Chicago Tribune, the deal was worth about $50 million and he wants to be paid in the range of $16 million annually. His asking price was partly why the Bulls traded him to the Wizards in February.

Even if the Wizards clear money, and they are expected to free up some by declining Jabari Parker's $20 million team option by the June 29 deadline, Portis could price himself out of Washington. It might not even take $16 million per year for that to happen.

The Wizards are set to operate through free agency with interim team president Tommy Sheppard at the helm, as the Washington Post reported on Tuesday. Sheppard making the call increases Portis' odds of staying, but that doesn't mean the price will match for both sides.

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UNC's Coby White talks Wizards workout, North Carolina and John Wall's legendary mixtape

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UNC's Coby White talks Wizards workout, North Carolina and John Wall's legendary mixtape

In Tuesday's Wizards Talk podcast Chris Miller sat down with point guard Coby White, a projected lottery pick from the University of Carolina. 

On Monday, the Wizards worked out White and college teammate Nassir Little in the franchise's highest-profile workout this year. Despite being projected higher than No. 9, White was enthusiastic about the opportunity. 

"These mock drafts are cool, but it's not the real deal," explained White. "If I was to slip and Washington were to select me, I'd be in a great place."

White's passion combined with his impressive skill set enabled him to become the all-time leading scorer in North Carolina high school history. Growing up he followed John Wall, as did every hooper in North Carolina, and he still remembers Wall shredding apart defenses on his legendary high school mixtape. 

"His mixtape was lit," professed White. "The style he played with was uncomparable to anyone else."

What many people don't know about White was that growing up, his dream school was Duke. Once he got to Chapel Hill, however, Roy Williams, his teammates and UNC's winning tradition won him over in a heartbeat. 

"They didn't care how much you had coming in, Coach Williams never promised me playing time," said White. "He just promised me 'I'll be the hardest coach you ever had and I'll try my best to make you the best you can be.'"

At Thursday draft, White's life will be changed forever once he hears his name called and shakes Adam Silver's hand. For Wizards fans, hopefully, that won't happen before the No. 9 pick

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