Game On: Wizards-Rockets preview

Game On: Wizards-Rockets preview
February 12, 2014, 12:00 pm
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The Wizards don't have an easy assignment for their last game going into the All-Star break. The Rockets have won six in a row and nine of their last 11 games. A win, however, puts Washington back at .500 which is significant when looking at what's ahead to finish the season. 

TV: Wizards Central pregame show begins 7:30 ET on CSN. Tipoff from Toyota Center is at 8 and Wizards Postgame Live comes immediately after the game ends. Radio: 106.7 FM.

Last game: Wizards (25-26) lost at the Memphis Grizzlies 92-89 on Tuesday; Rockets (35-17) won at the Minnesota Timberwolves 107-89 on Monday. 

[RELATED: Beal's 37 not enough in Wizards loss]

Last meeting: The Wizards lost 114-107 at Verizon Center on Jan. 11, in a game that was delayed by 57 minutes because of leaks in the roof. The Wizards wiped out a 25-point third-quarter deficit, took the lead 102-97 at 5:26 but ran out of gas down the stretch. 

Projected starting lineups: Wizards –- PG John Wall, SG Bradley Beal, SF Trevor Ariza, PF Nene, C Marcin Gortat. Rockets –- PG Patrick Beverley, SG James Harden, SF Chandler Parsons, PF Terrence Jones, C Dwight Howard.

Entry passes: 1). What's wrong with Wall? In his last two games he's shooting 7-for-23, including a season-low five points in the loss to Memphis. 2). Ever since he began practicing for the three-point shootout for All-Star Weekend, Beal has bee on fire. He's 21 of 34 overall in his last two games, including 9-for-12 from three. 3). Only 10 points from the reserves won't get it done when starters like Wall struggle. 4). If Martell Webster's shot isn't going, he has to impact the game in other ways to make up for it. 5). 

He said it: "It's terrible that you waste a game like that from him as well as Nene playing Zach (Randolph) in the post. Can't play him any better than he did. It's too bad you waste efforts like that." -- Wizards coach Randy Wittman after loss to Memphis, when Beal scored a career-high 37

Around the bend: It's the All-Star break as many players will spend time at home, visiting family, except for Beal, Wall and Garrett Temple, who are part the festivities Friday-Sunday in New Orleans. Beal is in the Rising Stars Challenge and three-point shootout and Wall will compete in the dunk contest and All-Star Game itself. Temple is the Wizards' player representative for the union and will attend meetings. The Wizards have to report to D.C. on Monday for practice to prepare for Tuesday's game vs. the Toronto Raptors at Verizon Center (CSN, 7).