The Wizards wrap up their preseason slate tonight in New York when they take on the Knicks at Madison Square Garden.
Madison Square Garden | 7:30pm | NBCSW+
Wizards: G – Wall, G – Beal, F – Porter, F – Smith, C – Gortat
Knicks: G – Sessions, G – Hardaway Jr., F – Lee, F – Thomas, C – Kanter
Wizards: Markieff Morris (Sports Hernia – Out), Devin Robinson (Foot -TBD), Sheldon Mac (Achilles – Out)
Knicks: Kuzminskas (Calf – Questionable), Kornet (Hamstring – Questionable), Ntilikina (Knee – Questionable)
What to Watch For
Last Test Before it Counts
The regular season begins in five days and tonight’s game in New York will be the Wizards final chance to test any lineups, any combinations, and any plays they want before it really counts. Some teams will use the last preseason game as a dress rehearsal for opening night, while others will choose to rest many of their starters and keep them fresh and healthy for the regular season. We probably won’t know what to expect from the Wizards until about 90 minutes before the game when head coach Scott Brooks reveals tonight’s lineup, but even if the starters do play, they probably won’t play quite as many minutes as they did on Wednesday in Miami.
The PF Spot
Jason Smith got the start at the PF spot this past Wednesday, a game in which we probably got a pretty good idea about what the rotation will look like when the season starts next Wednesday. He had his best game of the preseason, scoring 20 points on 7/8 shooting (4/5 from 3p) in 22 minutes. If Wednesday’s game was the last true test to see who starts at PF while Markieff Morris is out with a sports hernia, then Smith certainly looked like he was ready to step in and take on that role. The Wizards may elect to swap different forwards in and out of that starting spot over the first month or so of the season, with Mike Scott and Kelly Oubre Jr. certainly capable of starting, but Smith could be the one we see opening night.
Fighting for Roster Spot
With Sheldon Mac going down with an injury and Daniel Ochefu getting waived, the Wizards may now elect between Donald Sloan and Carrick Felix for their final roster spot. Both were invited to camp on a non-guaranteed deal, but based on these recent developments, there’s certainly a chance one may make the team. The Wizards could also elect to keep 14 players and leave the 15th spot open to begin the season, or they could look outside the organization to fill that last spot. In any case, we’ll see if either Felix or Sloan get a chance to log minutes in tonight’s final preseason game to make a last impression on the coaching staff.