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Wizards wilt in 119-94 loss to Heat: Five takeaways

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Wizards wilt in 119-94 loss to Heat: Five takeaways

The only team in the NBA to have to play three games in three days this season, the Wizards didn't have it Saturday. They were flat all around as John Wall shot 5 of 17 en route to a 114-94 loss at the Miami Heat at American Airlines Arena.

The season series ends tied 2-2, preventing the Wizards from locking up a key tiebreaker in what could be a tight finish in the East.

Bradley Beal (19 points) came off the bench again to play 29 minutes, followed by Jared Dudley (16 points), Wall (12 points) and Marcin Gortat (14 points, 13 rebounds). 

Miami (31-24) was playing without Chris Bosh (blot clot) and Dwyane Wade (knee) but relied on Hassan Whiteside (25 points, 23 rebounds), Luol Deng (27 points, 10 rebounds) and Goran Dragic (24 points, eight assists, seven rebounds).

The Wizards (25-29) will be off Sunday and practice Monday before playing a back-to-back set vs. the New Orleans Pelicans and at the Chicago Bulls.

  • Unlike the previous two games when the Wizards locked down their opponents from the get-go, the Heat shot 47 of 96, or 49% %which resulted in double-digit leads most of the way. The Wizards only committed six turnovers but forced just eight, preventing them from getting the transition baskets they need to be at their best. Shooting 3 of 22 on three-pointers and just 11 of 21 from the foul line didn't help, either. 
  • When Wall isn't effective, the Wizards still have trouble finding offense. He only had four assists, his fewest since Jan. 8 in a 97-88 loss to the Toronto Raptors.
  • Garrett Temple isn't expected to be instant offense, but when he's starting he has to provide more on that end even if it's just 10 points. He went scoreless in 17 minutes (0-for-4). Since Jan. 25, he's 29 of 92 (31.5%). Otto Porter remain an inconsistent third scoring option (seven points). 
  • Deng is proving talk of his demise as an elite player could be greatly exaggerated. He scored a season-high 30 in an upset of the Atlanta Hawks on Friday and follows up with a game like this. With Wade and Bosh unavailable, he has picked up that slack. Can he keep this up? 
  • Markieff Morris, in his second game since being traded to Washington, was 2 of 7 off the bench in 21 minutes (five points). Monday will be the first chance he gets to actually practice. 

MORE WIZARDS: Morris already feeling at 'home' with Wizards

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Swaggy Picasso's Sole Talk had the Wizards taking notice opening night

Swaggy Picasso's Sole Talk had the Wizards taking notice opening night

The connection between athletes and their fans is a powerful thing in sports. The NBA is one of the trendiest, fashion-forward leagues in the world. From shoe design to overall wardrobe to eccentric personalities...the Association has it all on display for fans across the globe to consume. 

Lloyd Ferguson, a fan himself and native of Silver Spring, Md., is bursting onto the customized sneakers scene as an up-and-coming artist. 

His Instagram (@SwaggyPicasso) serves as his personal laboratory and a platform to share his creations. 

Prior to the start of Thursday night's Wizards-Heat game, NBC Sports Washington invited Ferguson to Capital One Arena for what would become a memorable night for the 23-year-old. 

Chris Miller and Drew Gooden featured Swaggy Picasso on the pregame show for an interview and sneaker showcase.

"The inside of my body was jiggling and moving. I was like 'I gotta keep composed and stay cool. You're on national televison, Lloyd.'" 

You would have never known it. 

Ferguson, who was a basketball player himself locally, grew up a Wizards and D.C. sports fan all around. 

Little did he know several Wizards would take notice of his artwork. 

Kelly Oubre, Devin Robinson and John Wall - each known for their wardrobes and respective styles - stopped by to take a peek at Ferguson's kicks. 

"Their reactions to my art was all I needed, honestly. They see the potential and growth. It's very overwhelming." 

It was a groundbreaking night for a young talent with lofty dreams and aspirations. 

Swaggy Picasso has no plans of stopping anytime soon. 

"I've been busting out these shoes day and night. I don't sleep. My desire to paint shoes is ridiculous." 

 

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Wizards vs. Raptors: Time, TV Channel, Live Stream, How to Watch

Wizards vs. Raptors: Time, TV Channel, Live Stream, How to Watch

The Wizards take to the court Saturday night looking for their first win of the season against the Toronto Raptors. 

In their first game of the season the Wizards laid an egg after the Miami Heat were missing three rotation players on the second end of a back-to-back. Similar problems emerged even with new offseason additions Jeff Green and Austin Rivers having stellar debuts. Dwight Howard did not play in the contest, still dealing with a butt injury. 

Now, the Wizards will go up against one of the favorites to win the Eastern Conference, the Raptors. They also acquired a former All-Star in Kwahi Leonard this offseason, trading away DeMar DeRozan. Besides the switch, this is pretty much the same squad that knocked the Wizards out of the First Round of the playoffs last season.

On Saturday the Raptors will be coming off a back-to-back after hosting the Boston Celtics on Friday night. Once again, another big opportunity for the Wizards against an Eastern Conference foe early in the season.

The Wizards-Raptors will take place on Saturday, Oct. 20 at 7:00 p.m. at Capital One Arena and will be broadcast on NBC Sports Washington.

WIZARDS vs. RAPTORS HOW TO WATCH

What: Washington Wizards vs. Toronto Raptors, 2018 NBA regular season Game 2
Where: Capital One Arena, Washington, D.C.
When: 7:00 p.m. ET
TV Channel: The Wizards vs. Raptors will be broadcast on NBC Sports Washington (Channel Finder)
Live Stream: You can live stream Wizards vs. Raptors on NBC Sports Washington's live stream page and on the new MyTeams App.
Radio: Wizards Radio Network, 1500 AM

WIZARDS vs. RAPTORS TV SCHEDULE
6:00 PM: Wizards Outsiders (LIVE)
6:30 PM: Wizards Pregame Live (LIVE)
7:00 PM: Toronto Raptors @ Wizards (LIVE)
9:30 PM: Wizards Postgame Live (LIVE)
10:00 PM: Wizards Outsiders (LIVE)
10:30 PM: Redskins GameDay: D.C. Sports Live (LIVE)

WIZARDS vs. RAPTORS INJURY REPORT:

Wizards: Dwight Howard (questionable)
Raptors: Delon Wright (day-to-day), OG Anunoby (probable)

WIZARDS vs. RAPTORS PLAYERS TO WATCH

John Wall, Wizards: After speculation on if Wall would return to his peak form, he showed out on Thursday night. With 26 points, nine assists, and four blocks, the point guard was all around the court for the Wizards. 

Otto Porter Jr./ Jeff Green, Wizards: Covering Leonard is going to be a tall task. It is anticipated that the taller Otto Porter Jr. and Jeff Green to be the duo that will be covering the lengthy guard.  Neither guy are going to light-up the stat sheet on the offensive end, but after a nice showing by Green on Thursday look for them to split time defensively. 

Khawi Leonard: Leonard had 24 points and 12 rebounds in his debut with the Raptors, picking up right where he left off before his injury. Will a back-to-back affect the star that hasn't played consistently since 2016? 

WIZARDS vs. RAPTORS SERIES HISTORY 

Number of all-time Meetings: 95 games
Regular Season Record: Raptors lead 48-37
Postseason Record: Wizards lead 6-4
Last Meeting: Raptors won 102-92
Last 10: Raptors lead 6-4

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