NBA Basketball

Final 1 2 3 4 Tot
Cleveland 30 21 21 21 93
Washington 31 27 33 19 110
4:00 PM PT5:00 PM MT6:00 PM CT7:00 PM ET0:00 GMT8:00 5:00 PM MST7:00 PM EST4:00 UAE (+1)01:0019:00 ET6:00 PM CT22:00 , December 30, 2021
Capital One Arena, Washington, District of Columbia  Attendance: 15,637

Struggling Wizards try to get back on track vs. Cavaliers

According to STATS
According to STATS

Cleveland Cavaliers at Washington Wizards

  1. Cleveland and Washington have split their first two games this season, with the road team winning each game. The Cavs have won multiple games on the road in Washington DC in just seven seasons all-time (most recently 2019-20).
  2. Cleveland lost on the road in New Orleans, 108-104, despite committing a season-low eight turnovers. The Cavaliers have a positive turnover differential in their last 11 games (plus-24) after an overwhelming negative differential in their first 23 games (minus-53).
  3. Kevin Love scored 24 points off the bench in New Orleans, his second-highest point total off the bench in his career (25 on January 31, 2010 with Minnesota). Love has scored 188 points off the bench in December (15.7 per game), most in the NBA.
  4. Washington lost a one-game road trip to Miami, 119-112. The Wizards have allowed 100 or more points in 15 straight games, tied for the longest active streak in the NBA with Houston. The Wizards held opponents under 100 points in seven of their first 19 games this season.
  5. Spencer Dinwiddie has tallied at least 20 points and 10 assists in two of his last three games. In Dinwiddie's 26 games this season before this three-game stretch, he had just five 20-point games and two games with double-digit assists.
  6. Bradley Beal has missed the last three games and is questionable for tonight. Since the beginning of the 2019-20 season, the Wizards are 65-80 (.448) when Beal plays compared to 11-22 (.333) when he is out.

The Cleveland Cavaliers likely will be without several key cogs on Thursday when they visit the Washington Wizards.

Already without Darius Garland due to health and safety protocols, the Cavaliers also will begin life without Ricky Rubio after the guard sustained a knee injury in their 108-104 setback to the New Orleans Pelicans on Tuesday.

Rubio, who started in place of Garland, nearly recorded a triple-double against the Pelicans before a non-contact stop in the lane abruptly ended his evening. Rubio will have an MRI on Wednesday to determine the severity of the injury.

"I think this team is so close, so it's like an extended family member goes down, and it just pains you," teammate Kevin Love said. "It just hurts to see anyone go down, but especially a guy like Ricky, who has been so consistent for us and brings so much to this team for so many different reasons."

Garland, who averages team-best averages in points (19.5) and assists (7.3), enjoyed success in this season's first two encounters with the Wizards. He had 19 points in Cleveland's 97-94 loss to Washington on Nov. 10 before erupting for a season-high 32 points, 10 assists and eight rebounds in a 116-101 victory on Dec. 3.

Jarrett Allen, who averages 16.8 points per game to go along with a team-leading 10.8 rebounds, sat out Tuesday's tilt due to COVID-19 protocols. Fellow center Evan Mobley returned from protocols against the Pelicans to collect 22 points and seven rebounds.

While Cleveland has dropped two of its last three following a sterling 10-2 run, Washington has lost nine of its last 12 to see its record fall to 17-17 on the season. The Wizards have yet to dip below .500 in 2021-22 after failing to go above that mark in each of the previous three seasons.

Spencer Dinwiddie collected 24 points, 11 assists and seven rebounds in Washington's 119-112 setback to the Miami Heat on Tuesday.

The Wizards were playing without eight players due to health and safety protocols, including three of their top five scorers. That group includes star Bradley Beal, who averages team-leading totals in points (23.3) and assists (5.9), Montrezl Harrell (14.5 points) and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (11.0).

"This is a tough environment to begin with, but not having practiced, just doing a ballroom walkthrough ... that's tough to do," Washington coach Wes Unseld Jr. said. "I give them credit for putting forth the effort they did."

"It's tough; it's a lot of mental reps," Kyle Kuzma said. "Right now, we can't get into the gym, can't practice ... can't get extra shots, tough to lift. That's just the name of the time we're in, in this world in society."

Beal, however, could be close to a return after recently receiving his COVID-19 shot, per the Washington Post.

The Wizards, who boast an 8-5 record at home, hope a return home will help their fortunes. The club begins a stretch of playing 12 of its next 14 contests at home, starting with the opener of a four-game homestand on Tuesday.

--Field Level Media

Updated December 29, 2021

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