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After a critical weekend, where are the Wizards in the East, the NBA Draft Lottery?

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USA TODAY Sports

After a critical weekend, where are the Wizards in the East, the NBA Draft Lottery?

The Washington Wizards just finished a critical duo of games for their playoff hopes and NBA Draft Lottery position.

They lost to the Charlotte Hornets on Friday then turned around and beat the Memphis Grizzlies on Saturday. These are the teams directly ahead of Washington in the Eastern Conference standings and the draft lottery order, respectively.

Despite dropping Friday’s contest, the Wizards have scraped together a respectable 6-4 record in their last 10 games.

Where does all this leave them in the East, and, conversely, in the lottery order?

Eastern Conference Standings

With a 30-40 record, Washington hasn’t budged from the 11th spot in the East, trailing Brooklyn (36-35) in seventh, Miami (32-36) in eight, Orlando (32-38) in ninth and Charlotte (31-37) in 10th.

As of Saturday evening, Washington is three games out of the eighth and final playoff spot.

There are 12 games left on the schedule, so while the Wizards are inching closer to the eight seed, their window to get it done may be closing faster.

They’re not mathematically eliminated from the playoffs. If a couple other teams decide to take a major tumble, Washington could be poised to step over them.

NBA Draft Lottery

Look, while Bradley Beal has been dragging his team upward in 0.5-game increments, those 40-point, 40-minute efforts are hurting their lottery odds.

The Wizards had been seventh in the lottery order for several weeks, but the Grizzlies overtook them, bumping them to eight heading into the weekend.

Washington’s victory over Memphis on Saturday happened to coincide with a Pelicans loss, pushing the Wiz kids down to ninth position.

The ninth spot translates to 20.3 percent odds of drawing a top-four pick—hello, Duke freshmen!—and 4.5 percent odds of landing number one.

Slipping two spots is a rather large deal in terms of lottery odds. Simulating the drawing, the ninth-place team gets a top-four pick once in every five simulations. The seventh-place team gets a top-four pick once in every three simulations.

Look Ahead

At the risk of sounding alarmist, the Wizards can’t play at their current level if they want to make the playoffs. They’re going to need to shift into a higher gear.

The coming week brings four games, including a road-and-home back-to-back. Three of their next four opponents are playoff teams. The week after next is a West Coast road trip.

On the flip side, that tough schedule benefits Washington in terms of climbing the lottery ladder.

Games to Watch

Hornets at Heat, Sunday 1 PM

Pelicans at Magic, Wednesday 7 PM

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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. 

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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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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