Will Russell Westbrook Play Tonight? Washington Wizards vs Boston Celtics: Prediction, Injuries, & Lineups

Published 05/18/2021, 1:00 PM EDT
Feb 14, 2021; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; Boston Celtics guard Jaylen Brown (7) dribbles the ball around the screen of Celtics forward Tristan Thompson (13) as Washington Wizards guard Russell Westbrook (4) defends in the second quarter at Capital One Arena. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports


A poor beginning does not necessarily lead to a bad ending, at least not with the Washington Wizards. The franchise began their 2020-21 season on a rough note where nothing was working their way. But now, they’ve pulled in EC what the Warriors have done in WC and occupied that cushioned #8 seed.

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However, standing ahead of them are the playoff-friendly Boston Celtics who have missed just three postseason berths in the last 20 years. So what are the odds that the Wizards, who are 17-6 in the last 23 games can win this play-in?

Celtics vs Wizards: Injury updates and lineup predictions

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Bradley Beal against Robert Williams and Jaylen Brown at Capital One Arena. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

The Celtics are in trouble with their injuries because they have some permanent and irreversible damage already done. Star Jaylen Brown (wrist) is out for this season as a major shocker. Plus, they had at least four players, Marcus Smart (Calf), Tristan Thompson (Chest), Kemba Walker (neck), and Robert Williams (toe) sitting out against the Knicks. So as of now, it is uncertain who will show up 100% fit against the Wiz.

Probable lineup (much optimistic): Evan Fournier (F), Jayson Tatum (F), Robert Williams (C), Kemba Walker (G) and Romeo Langford (G)

For the Wizards, the injuries are not a problem because they already have Bradley Beal back from his hamstring injury. As of now, they have point guard Raul Neto listed as a day-to-day decision. Also, center Thomas Bryant (torn ACL) and forward Deni Avdija (right fibular hairline fracture) are indefinitely out.

Possible starting five: Rui Hachimura (F), Davis Bertans (F), Alex Len (C), Russell Westbrook (G), and Bradley Beal (G)

Read also – How Russell Westbrook Proved LeBron James and Magic Johnson Wrong

Who wins? 

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The Wizards (trailing 1-2 to C’s in 2021) have improvised like a Transformers Armada machine into a very scary squad. Russell Westbrook is coming off back-to-back triple-double nights, making it a new normal for him. Plus, Bradley Beal made his injury return with an impressive 25-point game, just marginally missing that scoring title for the season to Steph Curry. Rui Hachimura has also been in a great offensive form, as he proved it against the Hornets too. 

The Celtics have lost their direction lately. They’re coming off six losses in their last eight games and that’s a bad momentum to carry into the play-ins. Apart from Jayson Tatum and Evan Fournier, the team lacks that offensive ability they need against the Wizards. It is only if they can have a better defense during the clutch time, that they stand a chance. That can happen if Kemba Walker goes on work and uses his defensive awareness to secure crucial steals and turnovers.

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Still, with Russ’s ability to create looks and driving to easier scoring areas, coupled with the shooting prowess of David Bertens, the Wizards take advantage. As we predict Wizards taking the #7 seed, do you agree? Help us know in the comments.

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Sourabh Singh

1258 articles

Sourabh Singh is an NBA sports analyst for EssentiallySports, who has been working with the site since May 2020. Prior to this, he functioned as Managing Editor at WittyFeed, followed by a stint at Decathlon. The Sports Management graduate leads an active lifestyle, veering to the mountains for off-trail adventures.

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