Wizards

Quick Links

Wizards vs. Mavericks: TV, live stream and radio info, things to watch

Wizards vs. Mavericks: TV, live stream and radio info, things to watch

John Wall, Bradley Beal and the Washington Wizards battle Dirk Nowitzki, Harrison Barnes and the Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday night as they aim to continue rising the ranks of the NBA's Eastern Conference.

Here is all you need to know: TV, live stream and radio info, tip-off time, plus three things to watch…

WASHINGTON WIZARDS vs. DALLAS MAVERICKS

Where: Verizon Center
Tip-off: 7 p.m.
TV: CSN (coverage begins at 6:30 p.m.)
Live stream: CSNmidatlantic.com
Radio: 1500 AM

Three things to watch...

Returning home

The Wizards just wrapped up a lengthy Western Conference road trip with a loss to the Timberwolves in Minnesota on Monday. The trip ended with a defeat, but was successful overall as the Wizards went 4-1 and won four games on a five-game road swing for just the third time in franchise history.

Now the Wizards come back to D.C. for two of their few remaining home games. They host the Mavs on Wednesday night and the Bulls on Friday. After that only four of their final 14 games are at home. With that tough schedule awaiting, taking care of business against a bad team like Dallas at home is extra important.

[RELATED: Wall hits circus shot from the ground vs. Wolves]

Mavericks a bit different this time

The Mavericks beat the Wizards in the first matchup between these teams on Jan. 3. After that win, Dallas sat 11-24 on the season and in last place. Since, they have gone 17-14 and have won six of their last nine games leading into Wednesday. 

Dallas traded for Nerlens Noel at the deadline and he has helped. But central to their recent turnaround has been the play of Seth Curry. Since the All-Star break, he's averaging 18.4 points on 52.7 percent from the field and 50 percent from three. Dirk Nowitzki is also still getting it done with 15.1 points and nine rebounds per game since the break. And Harrison Barnes continues to play well with 19.9 points per game since the break.

[RELATED: NBA Power Rankings: Movement in the East]

Looking at the standings

The last 48 hours have demonstrated well just how nerve-racking this race in the Eastern Conference could ultimately become. The Wizards absolutely want to finish with a top-3 seed in the East to ensure they will not have to face the Cavaliers until the Eastern Conference Finals, if they are fortunate enough to make it that far. Even John Wall has admitted as much. But they also want that second spot if possible because that would mean home court advantage if they were to meet the Celtics in the second round.

The Wizards woke up Monday in second place in the East, but a loss for them later and they are now third once again. The Wizards and Celtics meet for a final time on March 20 in Boston, but these two teams will likley be jockeying for position against other teams throughout the rest of the regular season.

[RELATED: VIDEO: Shoving match breaks out between Suns and Wizards]

Quick Links

Raptors GM Masai Ujiri on staying in Toronto: 'In my mind, I'm here'

Raptors GM Masai Ujiri on staying in Toronto: 'In my mind, I'm here'

Just a few weeks ago, the Masai Ujiri-to-D.C. movement was gaining steam quickly. Just moments after Ujiri and the Toronto Raptors began celebrating their NBA Championship, reports began to swirl that the Wizards were prepared to aggressively pursue the GM.

Sources told NBC Sports Washington that there could be the possibility of a sort of mega-deal that went beyond just giving him control of the Wizards. But Wizards owner Ted  Leonsis denied earlier this month that the team had reached out, saying that "we have never planned in any way to ask for permission to speak to him during our process."

And on Tuesday, Uriji seemed to make it official that he will stay in Toronto.

"I love it here, my family loves it here. My wife loves it here, which is very important. My kids are Canadians. You want to win more, for me," Ujiri said on Tuesday during his end-of-season press conference.

"Yeah, I can continue to address teams wanting me and all those things. That's a blessing in life," Ujiri said. "For me the blessing is being wanted here and finding a place that makes you happy, and finding challenges that really make you grow as a person. This place has made me grow as a person."

"I identify with this place and I love it. So in my mind, I'm here."

On paper, Ujiri and the Wizards looked to be a good match. Washington could offer him money and control, while also allowing him to work with his "Basketball without Borders" program in D.C.

As NBC Sports' Tom Haberstroh explained recently, the Raptors late-season championship run could have messed up the timing and situation that could have lured Ujiri to a new team.

The Wizards made it through the NBA Draft without a new GM, but as July and free agency approach, the search may continue to ramp up.

The answer is still out there, it just may not be Masai Ujiri anymore.

MORE WIZARDS NEWS:

Quick Links

Bradley Beal on Wizards draftee Rui Hachimura: 'He's a monster'

Bradley Beal on Wizards draftee Rui Hachimura: 'He's a monster'

The Wizards added two pieces during the 2019 NBA Draft that franchise expects to be vital pieces of their future in Gonzaga's Rui Hachimura at No. 9 and Tennessee's Admiral Schofield at No. 42

Before Monday night's 2018-19 NBA Awards ceremony, NBC Sports Washington's Chris Miller caught up with the two faces of the franchise, Bradley Beal and John Wall, to see what they thought of the new additions to the squad.

Beal had high praise for Hachimura.

"I didn't know much," Beal said on what he knew about the Gonzaga product prior to the draft. "But from what I've seen watching the draft and things I've seen pre-draft and things like that, he's a monster."

The praise did not stop there. 

"He plays hard, extremely hard," Beal said. "Hopefully, he can have an impact right away." 

While an immediate impact would be beneficial for a Wizards team that could use Hachimura's scoring (he averaged 19.7 points per game at Gonzaga), Beal understands that Hachimura is still a very raw player. After all, he's only been playing basketball for eight years.

"But at the same time, we want him to grow," Beal said on Hachimura. "We know he hasn't been playing too long. But that's something we can build off of and mold him into the player we need him to be. He has tremendous upside, and I'm excited to get going. Hopefully, come September, October he's ready to go."

While Beal may not have known too much about Hachimura, he had followed the other Wizards draft pick, Admiral Schofield, for quite some time. 

"I love his game; I loved him in college," Beal said on Schofield. 

Beal joked about Schofield's body type, wondering whether basketball is the sport the Wizards second-round pick should be playing.

"He's got a football body. He's built like a tight end, wide receiver," Beal said. "I'm definitely happy that we have him, a fellow SEC guy. Him and [Jordan] McRae are going to hit it off. He can shoot, he's athletic, so I'm definitely excited to have him as well."

While Wall did not go into as much detail as Beal about the Wizards draft class, he was just as excited about the two new additions.

"I think it's good," Wall said. "We added some pieces [in the draft], [we'll] see what we do in free agency to add some guys to bring back or we're going to go after somebody new. I think we'll be fine."

According to head coach Scott Brooks, both Beal and Wall can identify talent very well

"The thing I love about John and Brad: they love the game," Brooks said last week. "You can call them up, there could be high school players, WNBA players, it could be college players, it could be European players, they know them."

"It's like, 'don't you guys have a life?'" Brooks joked.

Wall spent most of his time with NBC Sports Washington's Chris Miller discussing his Achilles rehab, where he revealed he is going to begin jogging soon. That's a good sign for the Wizards, even though Wall s expected to miss the majority of the 2019-2020 season.

In Hachimura and Schofield, the Wizards got two pieces that are not expected to contribute right away, but also potentially have the ability to do so. Earning high praise from the two most important players on the Wizards' roster is a good start for both of the Wizards 2019 NBA Draft selections. 

MORE WIZARDS NEWS: