Magic-Wizards Preview

The Associated Press

Washington Wizards coach Randy Wittman knows his team just got stronger with John Wall's return, but he's not getting too excited as the team has yet to win three straight this season.

The NBA's worst team will get that chance on Monday night when the visiting Orlando Magic look to build off their first victory since Glen Davis was hurt.

Sidelined the first 33 games with a stress injury to his left kneecap, Wall came off the bench and finished with 14 points and a team-best four assists in 21 minutes of Saturday's 93-83 victory over Atlanta.

Washington (6-28), a 101-99 winner over Northwest Division-leading Oklahoma City last Monday, had not posted back-to-back victories since ending 2011-12 with six wins.

"Still the same year,'' said Wizards guard A.J. Price, who scored 16 points in his second game since missing 15 with a broken hand. "But definitely new life.''

Wall's return certainly breathes some new life back into the Wizards - and gives them an exciting backcourt duo with rookie Bradley Beal - but they still could be without leading scorer Jordan Crawford (sore left ankle) and Cartier Martin (hyperextended left knee) as they close a three-game homestand.

"They say a winning streak is three, so we've got to get this third one,'' Wittman said.

While the Wizards look to build momentum before heading west for five games, the Magic (13-23) will finish their four-game trip back east after defeating the Pacific Division-leading Los Angeles Clippers 104-101 on Saturday to end a 10-game skid.

It was Orlando's first win since Davis suffered a sprained shoulder in the final minute of a 90-83 home win over Washington on Dec. 19 when he was fouled by Emeka Okafor.

"Seven of our last 10 games have all been one possession games at one point or another in the last minute and we just haven't had the ball bounce our way,'' said J.J. Redick, who is averaging 22.3 points on 14-of-26 shooting from 3-point range in the last three games. "The law of averages worked out.''

The Magic season-worst four-game road skid is over after ending the Clippers' franchise-record 13-game home winning streak, but they're definitely not overconfident. Washington ended an eight-game skid in the Magic's last visit to the nation's capital on Dec. 28, winning 105-97 behind 27 points from Crawford and 23 and 11 rebounds from Nene.

"I was the sour grape at the end (Saturday) letting guys know this only counts as one game," said Orlando leading scorer Arron Afflalo, who finished with a season high-tying 30 points.

Afflalo missed 10 of 11 3-point attempts against the Wizards last month, but he led the Magic with 41 points in the two games. Reddick hit 9 of 18 from long range and totaled 40 points.

Crawford leads Washington with 23.0 points per game and 6.0 assists versus Orlando this season, while Nene is averaging 21.5 points with 6.5 boards.

Washington, loser of 10 of 12 in this series, goes for its first three-game home winning streak over Orlando since Nov. 5, 2005-Dec. 29, 2006.

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