Oct 23, 2013; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Washington Wizards guard Bradley Beal (3) looks to shoot against Cleveland Cavaliers guard Kyrie Irving (2) at US Bank Arena. Mandatory Credit: David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports

Preview: Washington Wizards vs. Cleveland Cavaliers (Key Match Up, Notes, and Prediction)

After going win-less on their three game road trip, the Wizards will return home tonight to meet the Kyrie Irving led Cleveland Cavaliers. The game will tip off at 7:00 PM from the Verizon Center.

Key Match Up:

Both John Wall and Kyrie Irving came into the season with large expectations, but it hasn’t been easy for them right out of the gate. The former No.1 overall picks find themselves at the bottom of the eastern conference standings and there’s nowhere to go but up. Although John Wall has been a top 3 facilitating point guard in the NBA, he has struggled getting the ball into the basket. For the Wizards to get back on the winning path, John Wall will have to regain his aggressiveness and it wouldn’t hurt if he started today.

On the flip side, the Cavaliers have been awful offensively and it all starts with their point guard, Kyrie Irving. Irving is shooting career low numbers from the field and the Cavaliers need him to pick it up if they want their playoff hopes to remain plausible. Cleveland has lost 4 of their last 5 games, in which Irving shot just 36% from the field. The former Duke alumni has always been credited with his efficiency but he just hasn’t been able to perform on the level we all know he’s capable of performing at. Regardless of both their struggles early on, Wall and Irving are two very special, yet different point guards. I have no doubt that they’ll flip the switch sooner rather than later and it could potentially happen today.

Notes:

  • Tonight will be the second game of a back-to-back for the Cavaliers. They lost to the Charlotte Bobcats last night, falling to 3-7 on the season.
  • Trevor Ariza probably won’t be available tonight. He’s dealing with an hamstring injury and Martell Webster will take his spot in the starting lineup. Forward Al Harrington is also questionable.
  • Kyrie Irving recently broke his nose and will be forced to wear a mask to protect it. Let’s hope he doesn’t look like this guy.
  • Speaking of facial injuries, John Wall got raked across the face against the Spurs but he should be able to play with a black eye.
  • According to NBA.COM, the Cavaliers have the second worst offensive rating in the league standing right above the Utah Jazz.

Prediction:

It’s time for the Wizards to turn their season around and there’s no better place to start than tonight. Returning home from a dreadful road trip, the Wizards’ schedule will look significantly weaker than it has in the past few weeks. The Cavaliers have struggled scoring the ball, but they do have weapons. Irving, Dion Waiters, and Jarrett Jack are capable of scoring 20+ points on any given night. Washington’s interior defense remains suspect, so the Cavaliers could potentially take advantage of it with their size down low.

With all that said, I think the Wizards will get back on the winning track tonight. Their three point shooting will be too much for the dreadful Cavaliers.

Tags: John Wall John Wall Kyrie Irving Kyrie Irving Nba Game Preview Washington Wizards Wizards Cavaliers

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