Wizards aim to bounce back in matchup vs. Grizzlies
The Washington Wizards look to bounce back from a Friday night loss when they host the Memphis Grizzlies on Saturday night.
The Charlotte Hornets defeated the Wizards 116-110 in a matchup of teams chasing the Miami Heat for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
Washington (29-40) trailed by as many as 21 points before closing late and falling short.
Bradley Beal, who had 15 points in a loss at Charlotte last Friday, had 23 by halftime and finished with 40 points on 15-of-29 shooting.
Jabari Parker had 17 points and 11 rebounds for Washington. Jeff Green scored 20 points.
The Hornets scored 27 points off 17 Washington turnovers.
The Wizards trail eighth-place Miami by 3 1/2 games and have 13 remaining.
"We had a chance to save this, maybe not our night," Wizards coach Scott Brooks said. "We fought back and made it interesting. We came up a couple of stops short."
Charlotte led by 21 early in the third quarter and was ahead 95-78 to start the fourth, but Jabari Parker's floater cut the Hornets' lead to 107-97 with 5:26 remaining.
Washington got within six before Nicolas Batum and Jeremy Lamb hit 3-pointers.
The Wizards rallied again, and Green's two free throws made it 113-108 with 1:56 to play, but Lamb answered with a three-point play.
The Hornets led 25-20 when they went on a 15-6 run to end the first quarter. Tony Parker scored the first five points of the second quarter and the Hornets led by as many as 21.
"They made shots," Wizards forward Green said. "We weren't on the same page. We let them get too comfortable."
The Wizards, who had won two straight to start a five-game homestand, fell to 2-11 in the opener of back-to-backs.
"I don't really know why. I never really noticed it," Wizards center Thomas Bryant said. "(We've) just got to be totally locked in from start to finish, especially during this time, trying to win so we get to the playoffs. We're in the same situation, so we got to be locked in."
On the other hand, the Wizards are 8-4 on the second half of back-to-backs as they welcome the Grizzlies (28-41).
John Collins had 27 points and 12 rebounds as the Atlanta Hawks snapped the Grizzlies' three-game winning streak with 132-111 victory on Wednesday night.
It was the most points that Memphis, the NBA defensive scoring leader, has allowed this season.
"This group hasn't had a night like this before," Memphis coach J.B. Bickerstaff told reporters. "Some nights you have these nights. We just can't repeat it. Tonight, we laid an egg, plain and simple. You could feel it. We were loose on both ends of the floor."
C.J. Miles came off the bench to score a season-high 33 points while making 8 of 12 (.667) three-pointers. Mike Conley added 20 points and seven assists. The reigning Western Conference Player of the Week is averaging 28.5 points and 7.5 assists over his last four games.
Joakim Noah finished with 12 points, eight boards and five assists off the bench.
The Grizzlies won the first meeting against the Wizards, 107-95, in Memphis. Most of the leading scorers in that game, including Garrett Temple (traded) and Marc Gasol (traded) of the Grizzlies, and John Wall (injured) and Kelly Oubre Jr. (traded) of Washington, won't be playing Saturday night.
The Wizards are 21-13 at home while Memphis is 10-24 on the road.
--Field Level Media
Updated March 16, 2019