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Game Preview: San Antonio Spurs vs. Washington Wizards

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The Spurs will not overlook this matchup against a sub-.500 Wizards squad, as they attempt to exact a little revenge at the AT&T Center tonight.

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

San Antonio Spurs vs. Washington Wizards

AT&T Center, San Antonio, TX
December 16, 2015, 7:30 p.m. Spurs Time
TV: FSSW Radio: 1200 AM WOAI

The San Antonio Spurs are looking for a bit of revenge on Wednesday night, as the Washington Wizards come into the AT&T Center looking to prove that their 102-99 victory against the Spurs earlier this season was no fluke. A Bradley Beal three-pointer at the buzzer was all that separated the two teams in the first meeting, but the Wizards will have to find a new hero this time around if they hope to replicate that result. Beal has been ruled out for the next two weeks with a leg injury, and the Wizards are left scrambling to replace him (albeit with Spurs legends Gary Neal and Garrett Temple) amid a disappointing start to the season.

The Spurs, meanwhile, continue to do super-Spursy things, demolishing their last three opponents by a margin of 28.0 points per game while only giving up an average of 82.0 points in those games, and they are coming off an absolute annihilation of the Utah Jazz on Monday that gave Pop an opportunity to rest his starters... again. The Big Three are all on pace to average the fewest minutes per game of their careers, and this is a positive development as the team continues to try and ward off the effects of an 82 game season on the old guard.

The Wizards received a rude awakening in their first game without Beal, a 17-point loss in Memphis on Monday that was not even as close as the final score indicated. The Wizards allow almost 10.5 threes a game, the worst in the league, and the Grizzlies did their best to match that, going 10 for 15 from beyond the arc... yes, the Grizzlies, who haven't made 10 threes in a game since the Eisenhower administration (that is purely an estimation). The Spurs are not hesitant to bomb away from deep, and though they are currently 28th in the NBA in three-point attempts, they are fourth in the league in three-point percentage. This could be a long night for Washington.

Matchup to Watch: Kawhi Leonard vs. Otto Porter, Jr.

Kawhi says he doesn't like to watch tape of an individual opponent and instead prefers to see that player face-to-face on the court, making notes of their tendencies and various basketball idiosyncrasies. Hopefully he was able to index all of Otto Porter, Jr.'s court habits after his 8-10, 19 point night against Kawhi and the Spurs in November. With Beal's injury, Porter may have just become the Wizards' most important player outside of John Wall, as they attempt to stay in the playoff conversation in the surprisingly frisky Eastern Conference. I don't think Kawhi will take this one lightly.

History Watch:

- Tim Duncan will once again try to pass John Havlicek for 11th on the NBA's all-time Minutes Played list. He needs just 3 minutes in this game to pass Hondo, and barring a last-minute "DND-Old" from Popovich, should get that record out of the way early.

- A victory tonight would give the Spurs 23 consecutive victories at home, setting a new franchise record (we won't mention who the last loss was to). Another evening of Spurs basketball, another couple records biting the dust. No big deal.

San Antonio Spurs (21-5)

Washington Wizards (10-13)

December 16, 2015

AT&T Center, San Antonio, TX

7:30 PM CST

TV: FSSW

Starters

Tony Parker

PG

John Wall

Danny Green

SG

Garrett Temple

Kawhi Leonard

SF

Otto Porter, Jr.

LaMarcus Aldridge

PF

Jared Dudley

Tim Duncan

C

Marcin Gortat


Game prediction: Spurs by 17.

For the Wizards fans' perspective, visit our friends over at Bullets Forever.

As always, Tony must dominate Fisher.