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With Scott Brooks hinting at changes, what are the Wizards' best lineup combinations?

With Scott Brooks hinting at changes, what are the Wizards' best lineup combinations?

It would've been unfair to expect the Wizards to win more than one game in a four-game road trip consisting of the Suns, Nuggets, Lakers and Clippers. 

Still, the way they lost, especially in Los Angeles, prompted head coach Scott Brooks to hint at lineup changes moving forward. 

As the Wizards offense continues to be outrageously efficient, their defense just hasn't been able to provide any sort of resistance against opposing offenses. 

Chase Hughes outlined a few options Brooks could consider to fix the defensive woes, so what do the stats suggest?

We're going to take a look at the three best offensive, defensive and overall five-man lineups the Wizards have this season per 100 possessions.

For reference, the Wizards' current starting five of Isaiah Thomas, Bradley Beal, Troy Brown, Rui Hachimura and Thomas Bryant have a 101 offensive rating, 117.9 defensive rating and a -16.9 net rating. Not great. 

Best defensive lineups (min. 20 minutes played)

1. Ish Smith/Bradley Beal/Jordan McRae/Davis Bertans/Thomas Bryant: 77.9 DEF rtg
2. Smith/Beal/McRae/Bertans/Moe Wagner: 95.2 
3. Thomas/Beal/Bonga/Hachimura/Bryant: 105.8

Chase may be on the money suggesting a return to the starting lineup for Ish Smith and playing Isaac Bonga more minutes.

Smith isn't exactly a defensive ace, but he's consistently been better than Thomas on that end of the floor. If Thomas is relegated to the second unit where he can be the primary ball-handler with Bertans and Wagner spacing the floor, he could see an uptick in his scoring and efficiency. 

But what if fielding a good defense is impossible for this Wizards team? What if the best defense for them is an even better offense? Here's a look at three five-man combinations that get the most buckets. 

Best offensive lineups

1. Smith/Beal/McRae/Bertans/Bryant: 130.4 OFF rtg
2. Smith/Beal/McRae/Bertans/Wagner: 127.3
3. Thomas/Beal/Bertans/Hachimura/Bryant: 127

The common theme here? Smith, Beal and Bertans. Whatever changes Brooks plans to make moving forward, more minutes for Smith and Bertans figure to be first in line. 

Everyone wants balance though. If you can find a lineup that gives you both great offense and defense, you want to try and give that group as much time as humanly possible. 

So here's a look at the three lineups that have the best net rating on the team. That calculation is done by simply subtracting your defensive rating from your offensive rating. 

Best lineups

1. Smith/Beal/McRae/Bertans/Bryant: 52.8 NET rtg
2. Smith/Beal/McRae/Bertans/Wagner: 32.1 
3. Thomas/Beal/Bonga/Bertans/Wagner: 11.1

The Smith-Beal-McRae-Bertans-Bryant combo owns the Wizards' best offense and defense, so it's only natural for them to hold the top spot here.

Brooks may not make three changes to the starting lineup at once, especially since Hachimura is starting to show more promise in his starting role. But playing Bertans and Smith more with Beal is statistically their best option. 

If Brooks makes changes and the defense is still putrid, it may be time to make some roster changes. The NBA's recently signed restriction for this past summer's free agents ends on December 15, so there's a good chance we know by then which teams are in the market to make a trade. 

If there's an offensively starved team with an abundance of defenders -- Magic, Thunder -- the Wizards would be a natural trade partner. Whether they want to make any upgrades during a rebuilding year remains to be seen, but it's an option given the imbalance offensively and defensively with this roster. 


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Troubling video of ex-NBA star Delonte West leads to suspension of Prince George's police officer

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Troubling video of ex-NBA star Delonte West leads to suspension of Prince George's police officer

A Prince George's police officer was suspended after a troubling video emerged of his interaction with former NBA player and Eleanor Roosevelt alum Delonte West handcuffed after an alleged altercation.

The disturbing video showed West handcuffed on a sidewalk after getting involved in a physical conflict with a civilian. The off-screen officer was asking West questions on what happened to the events leading to him roughed up on the side of the road. West alleges that he was approached by a man with a gun. 

Prince George's police department announced that the video was filmed by a member of their department, leading to the officer's suspension. 

"Today at 12:15 pm, we learned the video that is currently on social media depicting the male in handcuffs was recorded by a Prince George’s County Police officer. The circumstances surrounding the recording and release of that video are now the subject of an internal investigation. That officer is now suspended pending the outcome of this investigation," the department said in a release.

Another disturbing video from a bystander shows the fight between the presumed West and another unidentified man. One man was standing over the other and continuously stomping on what appears to be West.

Meanwhile, West's former teammates and coaches took to social media to express their concerns.

West played eight years in the NBA across four franchises. He played his college ball at Saint Joseph's where he was teammates with Jameer Nelson and was coached by Phil Martelli. 

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Wizards vs. Heat: TV channel, Time, Live stream, how to watch

Wizards vs. Heat: TV channel, Time, Live stream, how to watch

The Wizards snapped a three-game losing streak with a nice win over the Pistons on Martin Luther King Day. 

They won't be able to celebrate for long though as they hit the road to play an extremely good Miami Heat team just a couple of weeks after the Wizards beat them without Bradley Beal. 

Can Washington shock everyone once again and continue to play their best against great teams? Here's what you need to know to watch and find out. 


What: Washington Wizards vs. Miami, Game 43

Where: American Airlines Arena, Miami FL

When: 7:30 p.m. ET

TV Channel: Wizards vs. Heat will be broadcast on NBC Sports Washington (NBC Sports Channel Finder)

Live Stream: You can live stream Wizards vs. Heat on NBC Sports Washington's live stream page and on the NBC Sports App.

Radio: Wizards Radio Network, 1500 AM


6:30 PM: Wizards Outsiders

7:00 PM: Wizards Pregame Live 

7:30 PM: Wizards vs. Heat

10:00 PM: Wizards Postgame Live 

10:30 PM: D.C. Sports Live 

11:00 PM: Wizards Talk 


Wizards: Rui Hachimura (OUT, groin), Garrison Mathews (OUT, ankle), Moe Wagner (OUT, ankle),  John Wall (OUT, Achilles)

Heat: Jimmy Butler (Day-to-day, hip), Justise Winslow (OUT, back)


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