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Wizards vs Hawks preview: Division rivals clash in Sunday matchup

The Atlanta Hawks look for their eighth straight win on Sunday in an afternoon matchup against the Washington Wizards.

Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

The Atlanta Hawks will try to extend their league-best winning streak to eight-straight games on Sunday when they face the Washington Wizards in a matchup of the top two teams in the Southeast division. The Wizards were a trendy pick to win the division coming into the season but its the Hawks who have been turning heads.

Atlanta has won 21 of its last 23 games and lead the Eastern Conference by three games over the Wizards, Raptors and Bulls.

The Hawks let a big lead slip away Friday night but held on to defeat the Pistons 106-103 to snap Detroit's seven-game winning streak. Al Horford led the way with 19 points and 16 rebounds while Jeff Teague recorded a double-double with 14 points and 11 assists.

Teague has taken his game to another level this season and has been red hot during Atlanta's winning streak. He's averaging 17.5 points and 7.2 assists on the season. During the winning streak those numbers increase to 22.1 points and 8.3 assists per game. Teague also go the better of his matchup with Washington's John Wall in the first meeting between the two teams this season.

The Hawks defeated the Wizards 106-102 in Washington back in November. Teague led the way with 28 points and was 12-14 from the free throw line as he attacked the paint relentlessly. Wall finished with 21 points and 13 assists but was saddled with seven turnovers. Nene missed that game due to injury and Bradley Beal came off the bench after missing nine-games with a wrist injury.

The Wizards will be at full strength on Sunday and are coming off of a dismantling of the Bulls on Friday. Washington jumped out to a 30-13 first quarter lead and cruised to a 102-86 win over Chicago. Marcin Gortat led the way with 21 points and 13 rebounds as the Wizards' defense held the Bulls to just 39 percent shooting.

The Wizards are among the best defensive teams in the league and rank just ahead of the Hawks allowing opponents 97.0 points per game. Washington is fifth in defensive efficiency allowing 100.1 points per 100 possessions while the Hawks are sixth at 100.3.

Game Info

Game Date/Time: Sunday, January 11, 3:00 p.m. ET

Location: Philips Arena, Atlanta, Georgia

TV: SportSouth

Radio: 92.9 "The Game" FM