NBA Game Previews
Key notes from NBA game previews, on one page. Also see NBA daily recaps, NBA video highlights and daily stat leaders, as well as daily fantasy basketball notes.
NBA Game Previews for Saturday, Feb. 28
Pistons at Wizards, 7 p.m. ET -- STATS LLC reports: Coming off their worst shooting performance of the season, the scuffling Washington Wizards will have to face a team that beat them this past weekend.
Playing their fourth game in five nights, the Wizards look to avoid a second loss in six days to the Detroit Pistons in hopes of averting their longest skid in two-plus years.
Washington (33-26) was in second place in the Eastern Conference on Jan. 27, but has dropped to fifth and just one-half game ahead of Milwaukee after dropping 11 of 13... Pistons: Reggie Jackson had a team-best 22 points in a 102-93 loss to Cleveland on Tuesday but was 5 of 24 from the field and finished with 16 in a 121-115 double overtime loss to New York on Friday.
Greg Monroe had 28 points and Caldwell-Pope provided 21, but the Pistons (23-35) squandered a five-point lead in the final 32 seconds of regulation.
Hawks at Heat, 7:30 p.m. ET -- STATS LLC reports: Paul Millsap is back on track and so are the Atlanta Hawks, though Mike Budenholzer would still like to see his team commit fewer turnovers.
They seek a fifth straight victory over the Miami Heat for the first time in more than 23 years Saturday night.
The visiting Hawks (46-12) have won three in a row after their first back-to-back defeats since November. They were 36 of 96 from 3-point range in victories against Milwaukee, Dallas and Orlando after going 15 for 67 (22.4 percent) in losses to Boston and Toronto... The Heat (25-32) lost to New Orleans for a second time in seven days Friday, giving up a career-high 24 points to Alexis Ajinca, including the go-ahead layup with 26 seconds left in a 104-102 road loss.
Dwyane Wade's struggles continued as he had 11 points on 4-of-16 shooting and missed a 3-pointer as time expired, falling to 2 for his last 23 from beyond the arc. Wade has shot 35.8 percent from the field in five games since missing seven with a strained right hamstring.
Raptors at Knicks, 7:30 p.m. ET -- STATS LLC reports: The slumping Toronto Raptors still sit comfortably atop the otherwise deplorable Atlantic Division, but they haven't resembled a first-place team of late.
Toronto tries to avoid its longest skid of the season Saturday night as it goes for a third consecutive win over the NBA-worst New York Knicks.
The Raptors (37-21) have followed a four-game winning streak with four straight defeats, a stretch over which they've managed 88.5 points per game. DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry have been limited to an average of 14.0 and 12.0 points, respectively, while shooting a combined 30.0 percent during the slide... The Knicks (11-46) had been outscored by an average of 14.0 points during an eight-game losing streak before winning 121-115 in double-overtime at Detroit on Friday. Andrea Bargnani turned in a vintage performance with 25 points and 12 rebounds as New York erased an 18-point deficit in the second quarter and recorded its first win in 15 games this season without Carmelo Anthony.
Grizzlies at Timberwolves, 8 p.m. ET -- STATS LLC reports: The Memphis Grizzlies can hardly afford to get bogged down in a lengthy losing streak in a competitive Southwest Division and will try to end their brief skid in a visit to Western Conference's last-place team.
The Grizzlies, though, couldn't pull out a road win over the Minnesota Timberwolves earlier this month and will try for a better result Saturday night.
Memphis (41-16) has seen its 3 1/2-game lead over Houston in the division dip to 1 1/2 after back-to-back losses and four consecutive wins by the Rockets. It's also just 3 1/2 games ahead of third-place Dallas... Minnesota (13-44) had won five of eight before failing to take advantage of short-handed Chicago in a 96-89 road defeat Friday. The Bulls were missing stars Derrick Rose and Pau Gasol, then had Taj Gibson leave with a sprained left ankle in the first quarter.
Nets at Mavericks, 8:30 p.m. ET -- STATS LLC reports: Once a target to join the Dallas Mavericks, Deron Williams is back in the starting lineup for the Brooklyn Nets these days.
The Dallas-area native won't be the point guard in the spotlight Saturday night since Rajon Rondo is returning for the Mavericks.
Rondo will be back from a one-game suspension following his clash with coach Rick Carlisle as the Mavericks look to end some recent home woes against Williams and the Nets.
Dallas (39-21) suspended Rondo for Wednesday's 104-87 loss at Atlanta after he and Carlisle exchanged words the night before in the third quarter of a 99-92 home win over Toronto. Rondo was benched for the rest of that contest.
Spurs at Suns, 9 p.m. ET -- STATS LLC reports: The Phoenix Suns had difficulty adjusting after trading away two of their top scorers, but they appear to be back on track thanks in large part to Eric Bledsoe.
The San Antonio Spurs are also hoping to have put their recent woes behind them.
Phoenix goes for a third consecutive victory Saturday night against the Spurs, who try to make it two in a row as they close their annual rodeo road trip.
The Suns (31-28) recently dropped eight of nine, including their first three after shipping Goran Dragic to Miami and Isaiah Thomas to Boston. The duo was averaging a combined 31.4 points, leaving Phoenix without a good chunk of its offense.
Bucks at Jazz, 9 p.m. ET -- STATS LLC reports: The last time the Milwaukee Bucks won in Salt Lake City, former Utah Jazz center Greg Foster was on their roster.
Foster is now an assistant for coach Jason Kidd's Bucks, who will be looking to end their 12-game road losing streak against the Jazz on Saturday night.
Milwaukee (32-26) has dropped 22 of its last 25 games in Utah and is winless there since a 119-112 overtime victory in the 2001-02 opener for both clubs. Foster, a member of the Jazz's back-to-back Western Conference championship teams from 1997-98, was in his lone season with the Bucks at that time... The Jazz routed Denver 104-82 on the road Friday after losing at home to the Lakers 100-97 two nights earlier.