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Washington Wizards 2015 Season Preview
Posted By: Chris Ransom on 8/20/2015
Anybody who watches the NBA will tell you that John Wall was the first highly touted player John Calipari coached at Kentucky after working with Derrick Rose at Memphis. Wall is playing like Rose did before Rose suffered an injury. Wall plays at an elite level and brings more variety than any player at the point guard position. His 17.6 points per game and 10 assists per game were huge for the Wizards.
Washington was 5-0 during the 5 games that John Wall played. Wall suffered a wrist injury that caused him to miss the second round of the 2015 NBA Playoffs in the second quarter of game 1 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals against the Atlanta Hawks.
Bradley Beal played 63 games where he averaged 15.3 points per game. Washington was 9-10 without Beal during the 19 games he missed last season which was much better than I thought they would be without Beal.
Otto Porter is expected to replace Paul Pierce at small forward as a starter after waiting to play for two years. Porter averaged 6 points per game and 3 rebounds per game in the regular season. When the 2015 NBA Playoffs came around, Porter averaged 10 points per game and 8 rebounds per game.
Washington has Nene at power forward. Nene averaged 11 points per game. Marcin Gortat averaged 12.2 points per game at center.
The Wizards' lack the front court depth they had last year. Losing Paul Pierce also hurts in the event that Otto Porter screws up.
Washington will return to the 2015 NBA Playoffs. The Wizards will not get past the opening round though if you ask me, but they will push their opponent to a 7 game series as a 5 seed.
When healthy the Washington Wizards can play like an army of magicians that will revolutionize the basketball community. The problem is this team has too many injury prone players and a lack of depth despite some quality pickups. That's why I have them losing to the Bulls in 7.
Washington Wizards 2015-2016 Starting 5 Predictions
Our starting 5 predictions segment will feature a brief one paragraph prediction from 5 of our basketball analysts at Draft Utopia.
Chris Ransom: Washington defeated Chicago in the 2014 NBA Playoffs in 5 games when they were the 5 seed. Things are different this time because Derrick Rose is healthy.
Jesse Lucas: I agree with Chris except Washington gets a 6 seed instead of 5 seed and the Bulls get a 3 seed instead of the 4 seed. Washington will go to 6 games before my Bulls unleash karma at the Verizon Center. Washington got to end the Bulls 2014 season in the United Center without Derrick Rose. Now we get to end the Wizards 2016 season in the Nations Capital assuming both teams meet again.
Lisa Donovan: I got the Wizards being a competitive team. I got the Wizards missing the playoffs though.
Brian Bayless: I agree with both Ransom and Lucas. I agree with Chris about the Wizards as a 5 seed. I got the Bulls beating them in 6 games like Jesse.
Dax Ember: The Washington Wizards will be my 4 seed. I got them facing the 5 seed Toronto Raptors who will be the next team we preview. I'll tell you who wins this series in our Raptors preview by leaving everyone on a cliff hanger.
The Verdict: The Washington Wizards will get back to the 2016 NBA Playoffs as a 5 seed once again. We expect them to lose to the Chicago Bulls assuming everyone on the Bulls's starting lineup is healthy. Chicago should beat the Bulls in 6 or 7 games assuming everyone stays healthy.
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