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The Washington Wizards tried to gas their burgeoning rivalry with the Cleveland Cavaliers a bit extra Friday.
In advance of their conflict at Capital One Arena on Friday night time, John Wall advised The Jump‘s Rachel Nichols and Paul Pierce he believes the reigning Eastern Conference champions purposefully performed for the No. 2 seed so they may keep away from a second-round matchup with the No. Four Wizards.
“I think they understand what we can bring to the table. If you look at last year, people might say they did or didn’t, but I think they didn’t want the No. 1 seed for a reason because we would have played them in the second round,” Wall stated.
Wall’s full remarks might be heard starting on the 2:40 mark beneath:
Rachel Nichols @Rachel__Nichols
John Wall & Brad Beal be a part of #TheJump, say the Cavs tanked the highest seed final 12 months to keep away from Wiz early within the playoffs
Bradley Beal, who joined Wall for the sitdown, espoused the identical opinion in May after the Boston Celtics bounced the Wizards from the playoffs in an exhilarating seven-game Eastern Conference semifinal collection.
“Cleveland didn’t want to see us. I always said that,” Beal advised NBC Sports Washington’s Chris Miller. “I felt like that’s the reason they didn’t play us in the second round. They didn’t want to see us in the second round. If they were going to go down, they were going to go down in the conference finals. They didn’t want to go down in the second round.”
The Cavaliers in the end certified for his or her third straight NBA Finals, however they fell in need of their second straight title after working right into a traditionally environment friendly Warriors workforce.
Now 5 months faraway from that failure, the Cavaliers are nonetheless looking for an identification following a sluggish Three-5 begin to the season.
The identical cannot be stated of the Wizards, who’ve began the 12 months Four-Three and can solely get stronger with Markieff Morris set to return following sports activities hernia surgical procedure.