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Lakers vs. Wizards Game Preview: The back nine

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There’s not much Lakers’ basketball left. Enjoy it while you can, however you can.

NBA: Los Angeles Lakers at Washington Wizards Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers are down to a single-digit amount of games left in the season, just nine more outings left in what’s undoubtedly a failed season for the purple and gold. The Washington Wizards are at bat next, ready to take a swing at the Lakers’ horrendous defense and barely-existent offense .

The Lakers scored just 32 points in the first half against the Portland Trail Blazers on Sunday, struggling across the board. They made just five of their 21 three-point attempts, and even the Lakers’ bigs getting in on the brickfest from outside. Both Ivica Zubac and Larry Nance, Jr. attempted and missed two from beyond the arc, Tyler Ennis went one-of-six, and that’s just the start of their issues.

But those were problems from one game, with another game up with another backcourt that will give the Lakers’ fits. John Wall and Bradley Beal are the real deal, each averaging 23 points per game. Wall is averaging a double-double by dishing out an additional 10.8 assists per game, while Beal has become their consistent three-point marksmen. He’s putting up 7.3 three-point attempts per game and shooting 40.5 percent from deep.

They’ll also have the versatile Otto Porter and veteran Marcin Gortat to deal with, all while the Wizards are low-key in position to leap even higher than the third seed in the Eastern Conference if they finish the season strong. Washington is also in a tight race with the Toronto Raptors, who are nipping at their heels in fourth place.

Things are getting tight in the other race — we’re talking tanks, folk — with the Lakers only owning a half-game lead over the Phoenix Suns. Even down the final leg of the season in a year where the Lakers are down and out, fans are left to stress over every final score.

Enjoy the game!

Time: 7:30 p.m. PT

TV: Spectrum SportsNet, NBA TV