Wizards Hope to Clinch Playoff Spot Against Hornets

Troy Haliburton

Saturday, March 31, 2018 7:49 PM UTC

Saturday, Mar. 31, 2018 7:49 PM UTC

Washington will hope to clinch a playoff berth against a struggling Charlotte Hornets team in D.C. as John Wall makes his return from knee surgery.

Charlotte Hornets (32-40-4 ATS) vs Washington Wizards (30-40-1 ATS)

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Free Pick: Wizards -5Best Line Offered: at 5Dimes

Washington is one game away from clinching a playoff berth for the fourth time in five seasons, and the only thing standing in their way is a Charlotte Hornets team on life support for the season. The Wizards will get a little moral boost of their own, as All-Star John Wall is slated to make his return after missing the last two months of the season with a knee surgery.

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Barring something unforeseen, John Wall is expected to return to action Saturday vs. @hornets #DCFamily #WizHornets #NBA pic.twitter.com/FK8sqPbhsF

— Chris Miller 🎥🎙🏀 (@cmillsnbcs) March 30, 2018
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Washington has been somewhat successful in his absence and a lot of that can be attributed to the play of Tomas Satoransky. The second year pro from the Czech Republic is making headlines because of his passing skills, but more importantly, he has been a godsend for the Wizards on the defensive end. Satoransky is only giving up a mind-boggling 32% of field goal attempts to opposing point guards, and only 0.189 points per possession. The Wizards will need Satoransky to slow down All-Star Kemba Walker if they want to continue their winning ways.

Kemba went into the Hornets history books the other night against Cleveland as he became the All-Time leading scorer in Hornets franchise history when he passed Dell Curry for most points scored as a Hornet.

Washington has developed a knack for beating the best teams in the league and join the Golden State Warriors as the only teams in the league to have beaten the Rockets, Cavaliers, Celtics, and Raptors. While the Wizards are taking care of the best teams in the NBA, they are still struggling against the under .500 teams, including two losses to the Charlotte Hornets.

A part of the reason why the Hornets have dominated the Wizards this season is the play from Dwight Howard against Marcin Gortat. The two former teammates in Orlando are friends off the court, but when Dwight plays Gortat, it is anything but friendly. Howard has outscored Gortat 52-8 and outrebounded him 28-19 in the two matchups this season. Dwight grabbed a season high 30 rebounds last week in the Hornets win against the Memphis Grizzlies and the Wizards will need to adjust some of their rotations if they are to win. Luckily for the Wizards, they have been getting much more production recently out of backup center Ian Mahinmi, who is more than capable of using his bigger frame to slow down Howard and keep him off the boards. Charlotte has one of the worst ATS road record in the entire NBA at 14-19-4 and that trend should continue in Washington.

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