John Wall, Bradley Beal and the Washington Wizards battle Isaiah Thomas, Al Horford and the Boston Celtics on Monday 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 at BOSTON CELTICS
Where: TD Garden
Tip-off: 7:30 p.m.
TV: CSN (coverage begins at 7 p.m.)
Live stream: CSNmidatlantic.com
Radio: 1500 AM
Three things to watch...
Tiebreaker on the line
Monday night's matchup between the Wizards and Celtics will get plenty of attention for a variety of reasons. Of course much of the talk will deal with the animosity between the two teams that already this season saw John Wall and Jae Crowder fined for a postgame altercation and the famous all-black, funeral game effort by the Wizards on Jan. 24. This is the first game since the Wizards pulled off a major attention-grabbing stunt and then followed through with a double-digit beatdown of a very good Celtics team.
This matchup, however, has way more on the line then just pride and bragging rights. It's the last game between the teams in the regular season and the Wizards have a 2-1 advantage head-to-head. If Washington can win on Monday, they will hold the tiebreaker over Boston in the standings. That would be huge considering the Wizards are currently third in East and just 1 1/2 games behind the Celtics, who are second.
Morris' and Thomas' status
The Wizards have played each of their last two games without starting power forward Markieff Morris in their lineup, as the big man has been sidelined with an illness. He was a late scratch against the Bulls on Friday night, then missed Saturday night's game in Charlotte.
The Wizards were able to get by without Morris against Chicago with help from Jason Smith and Ian Mahinmi, who each had season-highs in points. Against the Hornets, they weren't as lucky and managed just 93 points as a team, their lowest output since Feb. 26. Only four times this season have they scored less.
Boston is also dealing with a notable ailment with Isaiah Thomas' bruised right knee. Thomas didn't travel with the team over the weekend and as a result they lost to the Sixers on Sunday. Thomas is the Celtics' best player and things will be much different without him.
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Bradley in, Brown improving
Thomas may not play, but the Celtics will still have All-Defense guard Avery Bradley for a change. He did not appear in the last two meetings between the teams. Bradley did play in the first matchup on Nov. 9 at the Verizon Center.
Bradley is a tough matchup. He's averaging 16.9 points on 47.1 perecent shooting and 6.2 rebounds per game. He's also among the best defensive guards in the NBA. Even if Thomas can't go, the Wizards' backcourt will have their work cut out for them.
Also worth watching is last year's third overall pick, Jaylen Brown. The rookie is starting to realize his potential with 10 points on 52.3 percent shooting and 4.2 rebounds per game since the All-Star break. He's super athletic and lately has been making it work within Brad Stevens' system.