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Wizards pull away from Hornets: Five takeaways

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Wizards pull away from Hornets: Five takeaways

It's fitting that the Wizards finally found a way to get past the Charlotte Hornets, who came from behind twice in fourth quarters to beat them this season, when it doesn't really count and without John Wall as he sat out his third game in a row.

Led by Marcin Gortat (21 points, 13 rebounds), the Wizards (39-41) kept alive their hope to at least avoid a losing record in Sunday's 113-98 victory at Verizon Center in front of 19,187. Marcus Thornton (16 points), Ramon Sessions (15 points, 11 assists) and Nene (12 points, five rebounds) were followed by Jared Dudley (11 points), Markieff Morris (11 points) and Otto Porter (10 points).

The Hornets (46-34) were led by Frank Kaminsky (18 points), Kemba Walker (16 points, seven assists) and Marvin Williams (14 points, six rebounds).

  • Rookie Kelly Oubre (two points) didn't enter until 5:20 of the second quarter and played just 18 minutes. Given the Wizards' playoff aspirations died in Friday's loss at the Detroit Pistons, it was a bit surprising that he didn't log more time. Jarell Eddie also was overlooked as he didn't even play until 51 seconds were left in the fourth as he entered with J.J. Hickson. In fact, the starting lineup stayed the same with Sessions starting for the third game in a row minus Wall (sore right knee).
  • Bradley Beal (three points) didn't start the second half because of a sore pelvis, the last of a spate of injuries this season that came from a hard fall March 5. He didn't have a spill in this one. He just didn't come out to start the second half and Marcus Thornton took his place. It doesn't appear to be any matter of concern. Beal didn't look much into this one, understandably, and played just eight minutes.
  • Alan Anderson (four points) played for the second game in a row since returning from a groin strain and logged 13 minutes. He's a free agent and has to show that he's healthy if he wants to get a deal in the open market. 
  • Nic Batum (10 points), who will be an in-demand free agent this summer, is the kind of stretch player the Wizards needed from the beginning to make the pace-and-space style more efficient. He can shoot off the dribble and is a solid catch-and-shoot player from three-point range. Plus, he can defend not only his position but all spots on the perimeter. Ideally for Washington, Oubre will develop into that type of player long-term like Batum who spent his first seven years in Portland.
  •  The victory guarantees the Wizards will have a winning record at home after hovering below .500 for much of the season. They're 21-19 with one game left, the season finale vs. the Atlanta Hawks on Wednesday. 

MORE WIZARDS: John Wall will not play vs. Hornets

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Wizards vs Blazers featured Moe Harkless' impressive Chappelle Show themed Halloween costume

Wizards vs Blazers featured Moe Harkless' impressive Chappelle Show themed Halloween costume

The Portland Trail Blazers are setting the bar high for NBA Halloween. 

Maurice Harkless made his arrival in style turning a corner dressed as Tyrone Biggums from the American sketch comedy television series "Chapelle's Show." 

But it got better. Bosnia native and seven-footer Jusuf Nurkic turned the corner as Beast from Walt Disney's classic romance film Beauty and the Beast. 

The bar has been set. 

Washington looks for its first win tonight after falling to 0-2 right out of the gate, while Portland aims for a 3-0 start after defeating the Spurs 121-108 Saturday night. 

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Hey Wizards - don't fall for this CJ McCollum crossover

Hey Wizards - don't fall for this CJ McCollum crossover

Here's an important thing for the Wizards to avoid when facing off against Portland on Monday night: This CJ McCollum crossover.

As seen in this video by our friends at NBC Sports Northwest, the Trail Blazers' player sent a Spurs defender flying - much to the delight of the Portland bench - with the move.

 

"It wasn't even one of my better crossovers," he said after his team's win. "Honestly, he just reacted."

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