National Basketball Association
Washington at Atlanta
When: 7:30 PM ET, Friday, April 28, 2017
Where: Philips Arena, Atlanta, Georgia
The Washington Wizards were the better team in the last two minutes of Game 5, earning themselves a chance to close out the series when they visit the Atlanta Hawks for Game 6 on Friday. The Wizards admitted to a lack of focus in Games 3 and 4 at Atlanta, and the Hawks are hoping to take advantage again and extend the series.
Washington, which would host a potential Game 7, used solid defense and questionable decision-making by the other team to keep the Hawks from scoring over the final 68 seconds to earn a 103-99 win on Wednesday in Game 5. "We made a few winning basketball plays," Wizards coach Scott Brooks told reporters. "I thought defensively we did a really good job of staying with our game plan. The game plan always starts with effort, and it gets into our techniques and schemes, and I thought we did that throughout the game. You’re not always going to make them miss, but your effort and your schemes help them miss shots." Atlanta had its sense of urgency questioned after not fouling and letting time run off the clock in the final minute on Wednesday, and the team intends to fix those issues at home. "We have to go back and play better in Game 6," Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer told reporters. "That will be the focus. That will be where our mind is. For more of the 48 minutes, we have to be more focused. We have to be the aggressor. We have to take care of the ball. We have to have good possessions."TV:
7:30 p.m. ET, NBATV, ESPNU, CSN Mid-Atlantic (Washington), FSN Southeast (Atlanta)ABOUT THE WIZARDS:
Washington guard Bradley Beal struggled with consistency in his shooting stroke over the first five games of the series but found ways to score despite a 1-of-9 effort from 3-point range in Game 5 and scored a team-high 27 points in the win. "It's playoff time," Beal told reporters. "It's winning time, and we’re going to do whatever it takes to get a win. We know that we can’t do it unless we get a stop. Whatever it takes, whether it’s rebounding, getting steals, blocking shots. Everybody plays a role. Everybody plays a part." Beal dug in on the defensive end in Game 5 and recorded three steals and three blocks.
ABOUT THE HAWKS:
Atlanta had a chance to win Game 5 in the end because of the play of point guard Dennis Schroder, who scored a game-high 29 points on 10-of-18 shooting to go along with 11 assists. "I think we were right there," Schroder told reporters of the closing minute of Game 5. "We had a chance to win. We missed a couple of rebounds. We missed a couple layups, shots. It’s tough. In crunch time we have to make those plays." Schroder is averaging 24.4 points in the series - up from a season mark of 17.9 - and went 5-of-6 from 3-point range in Game 5.BUZZER BEATERS
1. Wizards PG John Wall is averaging 27 points and 10.8 assists in the series while shooting 53.3 percent from 3-point range.
2. Atlanta C Dwight Howard scored 16 points in Game 4 but managed seven or fewer in each of the other four contests.
3. Washington SG Bojan Bogdanovic is 4-of-7 from 3-point range in the last two games after going 1-of-10 in the first three.PREDICTION:
Wizards 113, Hawks 108
Stats and Records