Brooklyn Nets vs Washington Wizards 1/19/22: Starting Lineups, Matchup Preview, Betting Odds, Live Stream

Brooklyn Nets vs Washington Wizards Matchup Preview (1/19/22)

The Brooklyn Nets (27-16) travel to play the Washington Wizards (23-21) Wednesday night. The Nets started the season with the optimism of a defending champion. They are still a championship contender, but the road to the halfway point has been rockier than expected. The Nets are 4-6 in January, and they just lost Durant for the next 4-6 weeks due to a knee sprain. On Monday night, the Cleveland Cavaliers defeated the Nets 114-107 and exposed the Nets big man rotation. Claxton was not able to play, which only further emphasized the problem. Claxton, Aldridge, Sharpe, Millsap, and Griffin are all one-dimensional players that do not inspire confidence considering the Nets will face the likes of Giannis, Embiid, Vucevic, Adebayo, Allen, and Mobley in the Eastern Conference playoffs. Nic Claxton is the best of the bunch, but can the Nets trust him to hold up against those elite big men? Besides Turner and Sabonis, there are not many impactful centers on the trade market, and the Nets have a barren cupboard of assets. For this game, DeAndre’ Bembry is questionable to play, while Durant, Claxton and Harris are out. Without Claxton, the Nets will have trouble against the underrated trio of Gafford, Harrell, and Bryant. 

The Wizards have started to gel recently and are winners of four of their last five games. Albeit, three of those wins were against bottom-dwellers Orlando Magic (twice) and Oklahoma City Thunder. However, the Wizards secured an impressive 117-98 victory Monday night against the Philadelphia 76ers. The strength of the Wizards is rooted in their incredible depth which showed against the 76ers as seven players scored 10+ points. Four of those seven – Kispert, Hachimura, Harrell, Bryant – came off the bench to propel the team to a win. The Wizards are only a few games down from obtaining home court in the first round. It is unlikely that the Wizards would grab home court in a tough Eastern Conference, but the door is definitely open. With nobody on the injury list, the Wizards are completely healthy and can flex their depth on the ailing Nets. A win over the Nets is critical in the hunt for a higher seed. Defeating direct competition and gaining ground by one whole game is a big deal at this point in the season. Unfortunately for the Wizards, it is a home game, so they must deal with Kyrie Irving’s appearance on the court. Without Durant though, the Wizards can be glad they will not face the leader of the Nets. 

Brooklyn Nets vs Washington Wizards Betting Odds

In their only previous matchup on October 25th, the Nets won 104-90 on the back of Kevin Durant’s 25 points, 8 rebounds, and 4 assists. The Wizards had an abysmal shooting night, going 33/95 from the field (34.7%) and 9/39 from three (23.1%). In the rematch, I am going with the Wizards moneyline and would bet up to -5.5 Wizards for the spread. As a team, the Wizards are firing on all cylinders and look adaptable to any situation opponents can throw at them. In addition, I am skeptical of the Nets ability to cope without Durant. He has missed seven games this season, and in those games, the Nets are 3-4. They lost to some of the worst teams in the NBA – the Magic, Thunder, and Rockets. Without Durant, the Nets score 110.5 PPG and allow 113.4 PPG; the resulting -2.9 point differential would rank 13th in the Eastern Conference if it was their mark for the whole season. The conclusion about the Nets is that they are a good but not great team without Kevin Durant. Go with the Wizards to win this matchup. 

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TV Schedule

Date: 1/19/22
Time: 7:00 PM ET
Arena: Capital One Arena – Washington, DC
Channel: NBA League Pass

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Brooklyn Nets Starting Lineup

PG: James Harden
SG: Kyrie Irving
SF: Patty Mills
PF: Kessler Edwards
C: Day’Ron Sharpe

Brooklyn Nets Analysis

Right now, the Nets look lost and unstable. The fact that there are rumors that James Harden is not committed to his future on the team is extremely concerning. The Nets can still lean on Harden and Irving, but even that is not reliable since Irving cannot play home games. Does a roster of Harden, Patty Mills, Joe Harris, and Nic Claxton really seem like a contender at all? Even the Celtics would be favored in a matchup against that core, and the Celtics are a mess right now. The Nets would have to face teams substantially better than the Celtics in the playoffs, so Durant’s health and Irving’s presence are absolutely necessary. The world saw the results of a Harden-led team or an Irving-led team; they were not the results of a champion. Durant, meanwhile, has proven to be an alpha scorer capable of winning Finals MVP. If the Nets are going to win the Finals, Durant must be on the floor. 

In a confusing season, rookie Kessler Edwards has been promising. In 12 games, Edwards is averaging 8.3 PPG, 4.1 RPG, 1.0 APG, 0.6 SPG, 0.7 BPG on a 45.5 FG% and 42.9 3PT%. He has been an emergency starter for five games and has shown he belongs in the NBA. In his last two games, he has scored in the double digits while chipping in a few rebounds and assists. While Edwards won’t make a huge impact in the playoffs, he looks to be a reliable player in the future. His development has been a bright spot, but the Nets are looking for a championship, not a bright spot. 

Washington Wizards Starting Lineup

PG: Spencer Dinwiddie
SG: Bradley Beal
SF: Kentavious Caldwell-Pope
PF: Kyle Kuzma
C: Daniel Gafford

Washington Wizards Analysis

Although many thought the Wizards did not get enough assets in the Russell Westbrook trade, they look to be the winners of the deal. As constructed, the Wizards have an overall solid team from top to bottom, but they are a piece or two away from being a contender. Bradley Beal is a great scorer to have on the roster, but he needs a running mate of his caliber. Players like Spencer Dinwiddie, Kyle Kuzma, Montrezl Harrell, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, and Daniel Gafford can be starters or role players on a championship team. Yet none of them should be number two or three options.

 If the Wizards can swing a big trade at the deadline for someone like Fox, Sabonis, or Simmons, then they can vault into threat status. They have decent assets to offer such as Deni Avdija, Thomas Bryant, Rui Hachimura, Corey Kispert, and 1st round picks. The problem, though, is that those assets are not valuable enough to land a player as good as Fox, Sabonis, or Simmons. The Wizards are in danger of being a decent team that can never get over the hump. Bradley Beal is already 28 years old, so the Wizards do not have a large amount of time to construct their roster around him while he is in his prime. 

Brooklyn Nets vs Washington Wizards Daily Fantasy Picks

For this matchup, I like James Harden and Montrezl Harrell. With Durant out, Harden will take charge as the lead scorer and playmaker. He will not be cheap, but his production will be worth the hefty price. A cheaper option to explore is backup Wizards center Montrezl Harrell. Harrell, a former Sixth Man of the Year winner, is scoring 14.6 PPG and grabbing 7.3 RPG off the bench. The center rotation for the Nets bench features veteran LaMarcus Aldridge and Blake Griffin. Neither of them are good paint defenders, especially at this point in their long careers. Harrell’s energy and ferocity cannot be checked by the Nets duo, so look for Harrell to have a big night. His price tag will certainly be cheaper than Harden’s, so his production per cost will be a better bargain. For an even cheaper option, Nets rookie Cam Thomas has the ability to score 20+ points. He has breached the 20 point mark in three of his last five games, but this usually happens when Irving is not able to play. Thomas is a huge risk, but picking him has tremendous upside. Just do not be surprised if he scores 5 points because Harden, Irving, and Mills took all of his shots.

Braxton has been writing for Lineups since December 2021 with the majority of his articles focused on the NBA. He is currently a senior at the University of Pennsylvania where he has spent the last few years working with various UPenn athletics teams and contributing to the UPenn Sports Analytics Group.

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