- The Washington Times - Wednesday, February 24, 2021

When the Washington Wizards were put on a nearly three-week pause because of a coronavirus outbreak, one of the most prominent questions was how the postponed games would affect the team’s schedule for the rest of the year. 

On Wednesday, the Wizards found out. 

The NBA released its second-half schedule — including the contests postponed because of coronavirus. For the Wizards, that means a jammed-packed slate that includes 12 games in March, 17 in April and nine in May. 

The Wizards’ second half also includes an eye-popping eight back-to-backs. Five of those will be at home, though still figure to be grueling. 

The second half of the league’s schedule resumes following the NBA’s All-Star Break in mid-March. The Wizards resume play March 10 in Memphis against the Grizzlies. Then the Wizards return home for a five-game homestand, starting with facing Joel Embiid and the Philadelphia 76ers. 

The homestand also includes two games against the Milwaukee Bucks, a showdown with the Sacramento Kings and a matchup with the Utah Jazz. 

The Wizards originally had six games postponed due to the virus. Though they made up one of those contents in the first half — a rescheduled game with the Charlotte Hornets — the rest have been rescheduled. Those games include meetings with the Detroit Pistons, Cleveland Cavaliers, Jazz and Bucks. 

Washington’s second-half schedule is also daunting due to two extended road trips, one in early April (six games in 10 nights) and the other in early May (five games in eight nights). 

The league’s regular season is scheduled to end on May 16. A play-in tournament will take place May 18 through May 21 before the playoffs begin May 22. The play-in tournament features teams seeded seven through 10 in each conference, with the winners of the format advancing to the postseason. 

After a nightmare start to the season, the Wizards have played better in February — using a five-game winning streak to climb out of the bottom of the Eastern Conference. Though the streak was snapped Tuesday with a loss to the Los Angeles Clippers, the Wizards sit at 11-18 — just two games back of qualifying for the play-in tournament and 2 1/2 back of the eighth seed. 

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