Stephen A. Smith gives Wizards 'zero' chance of making noise in playoffs

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Mike DePrisco
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Stephen A. gives Wizards 'zero' chance of making noise originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington

The Wizards are closing in on securing the final spot in the Eastern Conference play-in tournament, and if they can win two games in that setting, they'll clinch a first-round matchup with the No. 1 seed in the East.

With Bradley Beal and Russell Westbrook, the Wizards should have a good chance to come out of the play-in tournament with a playoff spot. But beyond that, ESPN's Stephen A. Smith doesn't see them doing much else. 

"How much chance do they have of making some noise in the playoffs?" Smith said Wednesday on SportsCenter. "Zero, as in no chance. That's not gonna happen, they're going home in the first round because as great as Russell Westbrook and Bradley Beal are, that's not enough.

"Their squad, they've got some talent, but they're young, they're not seasoned, they're raw. In all likelihood, they're gonna end up going against the Brooklyn Nets, or the Philadelphia 76ers or the Milwaukee Bucks. All three squads are sending them home in the first round, period."

Entering Wednesday, the Nets held a 1.5-game lead over the Sixers for the top seed in the East, which would make them Washington's first-round opponent if the Wizards won the play-in tournament.

The Wizards may have taken two games off the Nets during the regular season, but Kyrie Irving, James Harden and Kevin Durant are a lot to overcome in a seven-game series. It's likely nobody beats the Nets four times during the playoffs, let alone the Wizards. 

Still, Smith likes Washington's chances to get out of the play-in tournament and take on the top team in the East, whoever it may be. 

"To get into the first round, I definitely think they have a legitimate shot, no doubt about it," Smith said. "They've got a prolific backcourt in Russell Westbrook and Bradley Beal and we know what they bring to the table even though they're a relatively young squad."