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Wizards like to have enforcer Markieff Morris on their side: 'He's not scared of anybody'

Wizards like to have enforcer Markieff Morris on their side: 'He's not scared of anybody'

In the NHL it is common to have an enforcer, someone who can set the tone with physical play or intervene when things go down between players on opposing teams. In the NBA it's less common, but the Wizards have a pretty good one in power forward Markieff Morris.

Morris was the tone-setter in the Wizards' Game 1 win over the Hawks on Sunday and has been the talk of both teams ever since. Hawks forward Paul Millsap said after Game 1 that the Wizards "were playing MMA" and that was a reference to Morris, who guarded him for much of the game.

Morris embraces that role.

"I've always been an enforcer, my whole life. My brother has been the talker and I was his backbone. I'm a guy who leads by example and not by vocal. That's what I do," he said.

[RELATED : Morris heard Millsap's comments, is prepared for 'double MMA']

Morris, put simply, is a guy you would probably hate to play against but love to have on your side. John Wall and Bradley Beal love having him as their teammate.

"He's not scared of anybody and that's a big help for our team," Wall said. "It's great. He brings other things to the game, offensively and defensively. Just with his physicality and playing defense."

"You always want to go to battle with a guy like that, somebody that you know will always have your back no matter what," Beal said. "It's great. People kind of underestimate his abilities. They underestimate his impact on the game. For us, we feed off his energy and his mindset each and every night. He's confident. He's all about us. He's all about winning. He's a great player who is unselfish. He sacrifices and he does whatever it takes to win."

If Game 1 was any indication, this is going to be a physical series and that is right within Morris' wheelhouse.

[RELATED: Millsap sees Morris, Wizards' trash talking as a trap]

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Wizards release list of NBA draft prospects for first pre-draft workout, including Maryland star Melo Trimble

Wizards release list of NBA draft prospects for first pre-draft workout, including Maryland star Melo Trimble

The Washington Wizards will hold their first workouts for the 2017 NBA Draft on Tuesday at the Verizon Center and the list of prospects includes several local names.

Six players in total will participate as the Wizards, who own the 52nd overall pick in the second round, weigh their options. Highlighting the group is former Maryland standout Melo Trimble.

Here is the full list:

Jamel Artis, F, Pittsburgh (6-7, 215 lbs.)

James Blackmon, Jr., G, Indiana (6-4, 200 lbs.)

Daniel Dixon, G, William & Mary (6-5, 210 lbs.)

D.J. Fenner, G, Nevada (6-6, 205 lbs.)

Monte Morris, G, Iowa State (6-3, 175 lbs.)

Melo Trimble, G, Maryland (6-3, 185 lbs.)

Trimble, 22, is a local product through and through. He was born in Washington, D.C. and went to high school in Arlington, Va. at Bishop O'Connell. He is a former McDonald's All-American and Big Ten selection.

Dixon starred in the CAA for the Tribe. He grew up in Great Falls, Va. and went to Langley High School.

It's tough to read too much into the first pre-draft workout group, given the draft is still so far away. But it may be telling that five of the six prospects are guards, given their need for help behind John Wall and Bradley Beal.

The NBA Draft will take place on June 22.

[RELATED: Markelle Fultz, from D.C. native to likely No. 1 pick]

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Former Celtics star: Adam Jones incident with Red Sox could affect NBA free agents' view of Boston

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Former Celtics star: Adam Jones incident with Red Sox could affect NBA free agents' view of Boston

The ugly incident involving Red Sox fans taunting Orioles star Adam Jones with racial epithets earlier this month transcended the sport of baseball. It became a national story, sparking debate about race and how fans should behave at sporting events.

It was a huge deal, so big that former Celtics player Cedric Maxwell - the 1980-81 NBA Finals MVP - thinks it could hurt the Celtics this summer in free agency. Boston has money to spend, plus plenty of draft picks - including this year's No. 1 overall selection - and tradeable assets on their roster. They might be better positioned to made big moves this offseason than anyone and the plan to be very aggressive.

But Maxwell argued on CSNNE that signing players might not be as easy as it would seem:

"Well, I think it's more attractive now with what happened with [Al] Horford, but also it's the same thing if you think about all the things that around having Brad Stevens as a coach. What happened over there with the Red Sox, though, out in center field, right field or whatever field; don't think that does not affect decisions on the other side of the basketball ledger. Because people think and people talk and they understand. They talk about your city all the time."

[RELATED: Durant says don't blame him for lopsided NBA Playoffs]

NBA players are majority African-American, like Jones. The Celtics haven't had problems attracting free agents in the past, but Maxwell thinks that might change.

Watch his full comments here, as well as Boston Globe columnist Dan Shaugnessy's response:

[RELATED: Celtics are planning something big this offseason]