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Pacers-Wizards Preview

The Washington Wizards have been humiliated during a three-game losing streak, and the Indiana Pacers are frustrated by their slide of six games.

One team will end its woes Wednesday night when the Wizards seek a sixth straight home victory as they face the Pacers.

Washington (40-31) capped a four-game trip Monday by finishing with its lowest point total in a 107-76 defeat to Golden State. The Wizards, who began the trek with a fifth straight win over Utah last Wednesday, have fallen by an average of 22.7 points in this slide.

"Our main focus is we're going to the playoffs, you want to be playing the right way, you want to go in with some momentum," point guard John Wall said. "Right now, we gained momentum in five games and now we lost two by 30-something points. (If) that's the momentum you're going to have, you're looking at a first-round exit."

Indiana (30-40) has dropped into 10th place in the Eastern Conference thanks to a skid that is two games shy of its longest from Nov. 29-Dec. 13. The Pacers are one game behind eighth-place Boston for the conference's final playoff spot.

"(We're) frustrated but understanding that our goals are still within reach," coach Frank Vogel said. "We just have to focus on the process and not the outcomes, not the standings, any of that, just focus on what will get us our next win."

The Pacers won in six games in last year's conference semifinals over the Wizards, who then captured two November matchups.

Those regular-season meetings may not foretell what will happen Wednesday since Indiana was without injured stars George Hill and David West. Rodney Stuckey also missed both games, and the reserve could miss a second straight contest with a sore left calf.

West averaged 16.0 points in the postseason series and Hill 11.7. Hill is averaging 20.8 points on 57.5 percent shooting over his last six games.

Solomon Hill led Indiana by totaling 42 points in the two November losses, but center Roy Hibbert went 1 for 11 for six points.

Wall is averaging 24.5 points and 7.0 assists in the season series, which the Wizards played without his backcourt mate Bradley Beal. Beal is averaging 16.3 points in this losing streak.

Wall is averaging 13.0 points on 31.8 percent shooting in the last three games. He and Beal combined for 23 on 8-of-27 shooting Monday.

"When me and Brad are not playing well from the perimeter, it kind of slows our team down," Wall said.

The Pacers are one of the league's best defensive teams at 43.5 percent. That figure ballooned to 46.9 over this losing streak after Houston shot 47.7 percent in Monday's 110-100 victory at Indiana.

"That is something that we have to get away from," forward Damjan Rudez said. "Our trademark the last two months is incredible, solid defense that kept the opponents under 40 percent shooting and that was really a key to our success of late. I think we really need to get back to that."

Washington is shooting 49.4 percent during this win streak at home, where it plays its next five.

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