Once again the Wizards preseason schedule has an international flavor. There will be no trip to Brazil like last year when the Wizards played the Bulls, but they will instead play Israel’s Maccabi Haifa October 15th at Verizon Center.
Maccabi Haifa is the team that once employed my broadcast partner Glenn Consor. After a successful run in college playing point guard for Rick Pitino at Boston University, basketball took Consor overseas where he played in a backcourt with current Cleveland Cavaliers head coach Dave Blatt.
The Wizards will be the seventh team Maccabi Haifa has played in the NBA preseason over the last four years. Maccabi Haifa lost to Maccabi Tel Aviv in the Israeli league finals in June. The team is owned by American Jeff Rosen and produces a television show in the United States called Inside Israeli Basketball.
Bulls, but this time in Chicago
The Wizards begin their eight-game preseason schedule against the Bulls in Chicago and it offers up a rare treat—a matchup between Derrick Rose and John Wall. Both former number one overall draft picks have dealt with injuries in their careers and in four seasons in the NBA together they have only played against each other four times.
The last head-to-head meeting between Wall and Rose was in January of 2012 at the end of the first month of the lockout shortened season. Wall had 20 points and 6 assists, but the statistical edge and victory went to Rose who had 35 points and 8 assists.
A lot has changed for Wall and the Wizards in two years and it should make for a great curtain raiser to the preseason.
Pelicans on the road in Baltimore
The Wizards will play the New Orleans Pelicans in Jacksonville, Florida on October 8 and then on October 20 in Baltimore. The games will be a challenge for the Wizards frontline with Anthony Davis becoming more of a force for the Pelicans and joined by fellow rim protector Omer Asik.
They are Hornets and not Bobcats
The moniker is not the only change for Charlotte’s NBA team. The Bobcats went out with a bang and finished as the seventh seed last season in the Eastern Conference. Now the team has been rebranded as the Hornets, the name of Charlotte’s original NBA team, and is eager to prove last season was no fluke.
The Wizards will get two looks at their division rival. On October 10 the teams will play in Greenville, South Carolina and then October 17th at Verizon Center. I am looking forward to watching the Wizards backcourt go against Kemba Walker and Lance Stephenson.
Pistons and Knicks also part of Wizards October
On October 12th the Wizards play Stan Van Gundy's Detroit Pistons at home. The preseason closes October 22 at Madison Square Garden against the Knicks.We are counting the days until the return of the Radio Party!