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NBA Preview from The Sports Network



Tuesday, April 29th (All times Eastern)

(5) Washington Wizards (3-1) at (4) Chicago Bulls (1-3), 8 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Washington Wizards will try to win a playoff series for the first time in almost 10 years Tuesday night when they visit the Chicago Bulls for Game 5 of their Eastern Conference first-round matchup.

The Wizards last won a postseason round in 2005 when they dispatched the Bulls, 4-2. A win on Tuesday in Chicago, where they took Games 1 and 2, will end the series and give them their second successful playoff series since 1982.

"We've reached the point where we need one more and that's going to be the hardest one," Washington coach Randy Wittman said after practice Monday. "I think they get that. It's all going to be ramped up."

The Wizards inched within a game of advancing thanks to a 98-89 home win on Sunday afternoon.

Trevor Ariza poured in a playoff career-high 30 points and hit six of Washington's eight 3-pointers in the triumph.

John Wall tallied 15 points with 10 assists, while Bradley Beal and Marcin Gortat scored 18 and 17 points, respectively.

"I think we just did a great job putting pressure on them defensively," said Wall. "Trevor did a great job of getting himself going, making shots early on."

The Wizards led by as many as 23 points and never trailed.

If Washington didn't have enough confidence, it gets veteran big man Nene back from suspension. He was banned from Game 4 after an altercation with Chicago's Jimmy Butler in Game 3.

Taj Gibson's 32 points on 13-of-16 shooting weren't enough for Chicago in Game 4. Joakim Noah scored 10 points and grabbed 15 rebounds in the setback, while Butler scored 16.

The Bulls are in serious trouble, although their coach still believes.

"I've been around our team," coach Tom Thibodeau said after practice on Monday afternoon. "This team has been up against it for two years. All we're thinking about is tomorrow. Win the game. Take it step by step. Don't get wrapped up in doomsday or any of that stuff. Just think about what we have to do to win."

One positive for the Bulls is that starting small forward Mike Dunleavy has been declared ready to go by Thibodeau. Dunleavy suffered a bruised left thumb in Sunday's loss.

Offense has been a major problem for the Bulls, not just in this series, but all season long, especially when former MVP Derrick Rose went down for the season again with a knee injury.

Through four games of this quarterfinal matchup, the Bulls have scored 100 points once and averaged 95.25 ppg, which is actually slightly up for Chicago.

Defense has been the real thorn in the Bulls' paw. They led the NBA in opponents' scoring during the regular season at 91.8 ppg, but during their series with the Wizards, Washington is averaging 99.5 ppg.

Game 6, if necessary, will be Thursday night in Washington.

04/29 10:27:53 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
2nd
PHI 37
CHA 50
 
2nd
PHI 37
CHA 50
 
2nd
ORL 33
UTA 38
 
1st
CLE 7
BRK 16
 
1st
BOS 12
MIN 13
 
1st
DET 13
TOR 8
 
1st
MIA 12
WAS 11
 
8:00pm Tonight
MEM
CHI
8:00pm Tonight
SAN
POR
9:00pm Tonight
DEN
LAC
10:30pm Tonight
LAL
OKC
Final
YOUNG 92
WILB 71
 
Final
TULA 56
JST 49
 
2nd
RAD 63
SIENA 52
 
Half
BUCK 38
CASEWEST 36
 
1st
LIB 51
CPNC 35
 
Half
SCAR 28
CLEM 30
 
Half
CMICH 51
CONC 28
 
1st
MIAMI 25
EKENT 25
 
Half
GWEBB 52
HIWASSEE 34
 
Half
ODU 31
MDES 26
 
1st
BUF 30
NIAG 26
 
1st
KSU 31
NCAT 25
 
Half
FAM 21
UNF 38
 
Half
NORST 38
NARZ 20
 
Half
DART 33
NILL 19
 
1st
MORE 27
NKENTUCKY 49
 
Half
UCSB 34
SDCHR 18
 
1st
STJ 13
GAELS 24
 
1st
ALA 30
STILL 16
 
1st
HAMP 26
TENST 24
 
Half
TENN 26
TENT 32
 
Half
WMARY 46
WSHMD 16
 
1st
MERC 14
COOK 2
 
1st
FLGC 12
FUR 12
 
1st
CALST 13
SDKST 15
 
8:00pm Tonight
MTST
CHAT
8:00pm Tonight
NDAK
DICKINSON
 
8:00pm Tonight
LAMON
LSUALEX
 
8:00pm Tonight
PRIN
LIP
 
8:00pm Tonight
LAM
MLGN
 
8:00pm Tonight
MINN
SEAT
 
8:00pm Tonight
LOYC
SUTAH
 
8:00pm Tonight
SELA
WINT
 
8:05pm Tonight
SILL
NO
 
9:00pm Tonight
MARQ
ALAAM
 
9:00pm Tonight
TTU
ARKPB
 
9:00pm Tonight
DEN
COLST
9:00pm Tonight
CREI
TXPA
 
10:00pm Tonight
CAL
EWASH
10:05pm Tonight
UTST
IDST
 
11:00pm Tonight
UTEP
ARZ
11:59pm Tonight
CHAM
HAW
 
1st Intermission
NJD 2
TAM 0
 
1st
OTT 1
ANA 0
 
1st
DET 0
NYI 0
 
8:00pm Tonight
WIN
BOS
9:00pm Tonight
CAL
DAL