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Reply To: NBA • Wednesday Service Plays • 12/2/15

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Preview: L.A. Lakers At Washington

When: 7:00 PM ET, Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Where: Verizon Center, Washington, District of Columbia

Kobe Bryant makes his final visit as a Los Angeles Laker to the nation’s capital when his team continues a lengthy road trip Wednesday at Washington. The eight-game voyage began in dismal fashion as Bryant was 7-of-26 from the floor in a 103-91 loss at previously winless Philadelphia on Tuesday in his final visit as a player to his hometown.

Bryant sat out the second half of a back-to-back last month and was 4-of-20 from the field in another, part of his 30.1 percent showing for the season. The Wizards are also playing their second game in as many nights but come into the affair on a very different note after handing Cleveland its first home loss. John Wall, whose struggles have contributed to Washington’s lackluster start, broke out for a season-high 35 points to go along with 10 assists and five steals. Wall averaged 14.5 assists to lead the Wizards to a two-game sweep of the season series in 2014-15.

TV: 7 p.m. ET, TWC SportsNet (Los Angeles), CSN Mid-Atlantic (Washington)

ABOUT THE LAKERS (2-15): Bryant likely was trying to post some big numbers in his final trip to Philadelphia, as his 26 shots represented a season high and his 17 3-point tries was one shy of a career high established in 2003. He hasn’t shot 50 percent or better in a game since Jan. 15 and his 3-point woes have reached a new level; Bryant is 8-of-46 from long range during a six-game stretch. Jordan Clarkson, who had 19 points against the 76ers, remains the only reliable scorer for the Lakers, the league’s worst-shooting team at 41.1 percent.

ABOUT THE WIZARDS (7-8): Washington gave just seven players significant minutes Tuesday night as it waits on the health of a few key contributors. Reserve guard Gary Neal remains plagued by a groin injury and power forward Nene has missed two games with a calf issue. Veteran swingman Jared Dudley has gained a more significant – and productive – role, playing at least 30 minutes in three straight games (two of them starts) and shooting 54.5 percent over an eight-game span.


1. Bryant has averaged 25.6 points in 30 career games versus the Wizards.

2. Lakers PF Julius Randle has four double-doubles in his last six games.

3. Washington has won five straight meetings overall.

PREDICTION: Wizards 98, Lakers 88