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NBA Preview from The Sports Network



Monday, March 31st (All times Eastern)

Washington Wizards (38-35) at Charlotte Bobcats (35-38), 7 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Washington Wizards and Charlotte Bobcats both appear playoff-bound and the two will meet Monday night at Time Warner Cable Arena.

The Wizards currently occupy the sixth seed in the Eastern Conference, 1 1/2 games behind the Brooklyn Nets and three in front of the Bobcats, who, as the seventh seed, are 3 1/2 in front of the Atlanta Hawks.

The Wizards have won two in a row after a loss in the opener of a three-game homestand to the Phoenix Suns. Washington bested the Indiana Pacers and Hawks during this streak.

On Saturday, John Wall poured in 25 points, grabbed seven rebounds and dished out six assists to lead the Wizards to a 101-97 victory over the Hawks.

Drew Gooden scored 16 points, with the biggest two coming in the final 10 seconds as he nailed a pair from the line to stake the Wizards to a four-point lead which they rode to the finish.

Bradley Beal tallied 14 points, six boards and five assists for the Wizards, who won the season series against the Hawks for the first time since the 2006-07 season.

Trevor Ariza and Marcin Gortat scored 13 and 12 points, respectively, with Gortat adding 11 rebounds. Andre Miller chipped in 10 points off the bench.

"It's all about playing in playoffs," said Gortat. "That's a dream of a lot of players (and) hopefully we can achieve that."

The Bobcats have dropped four of their last six, but have taken two of their last three at home.

On Friday, they fell to the Magic in Orlando, 110-105 in overtime.

Orlando's Arron Afflalo tied the game in regulation with a 3-pointer.

"All you've got to do is do what we're supposed to do right there and the game ends. That was it," Charlotte coach Steve Clifford said of his team allowing Afflalo to get free. "We have to make one play that you make time after time and we didn't make the play."

In overtime, Kemba Walker hit a hook shot with 2:41 left for a 101-99 lead, but Nelson drilled a trey at the other end to give Orlando the lead for good, as the Magic held the Bobcats to just one field goal the rest of the way.

Walker and Josh McRoberts led the way for Charlotte with 24 points apiece. Al Jefferson netted 20 points, followed by 14 from Gerald Henderson and 10 out of Michael Kidd-Gilchrist.

The Wizards and Bobcats have split two meetings this season with the visitor prevailing each time. Washington has won four of the last six trips to Charlotte.

03/31 10:20:53 ET

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