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Magic vs. Wizards preview: The return of Cole Anthony

The rookie point guard is available to play

Chicago Bulls v Orlando Magic Photo by Fernando Medina/NBAE via Getty Images

The Magic return home from a long road trip with some new faces in the lineup.

That includes the return of rookie point guard Cole Anthony, who has missed the last 25 games with a rib fracture.

“It’s money time,” Anthony said on Wednesday. “I’m ready to make a run. I’m ready to have some fun. I’m 100 percent playing. I’m ready to play.”

Anthony was averaging 11 points, 4.4 rebounds and 3.8 assists when he suffered the injury on Feb. 9. Anthony was shooting just 37.5 percent on the season, but was steadily improving after taking over the starting job following Markelle Fultz’s season-ending injury, particularly from deep as he shot 45.5 percent over his final 13 games

Anthony will be worked back into the lineup slowly, with Michael Carter-Williams likely to start for the time being as he also makes his return to the lineup on Wednesday after missing the last three games with an illness. Khem Birch is also available to play, meaning the Magic are about as close to full strength as they have been in quite some time (excluding the season-long absences of Fultz and Jonathan Isaac, of course).

In addition to the return of those familiar faces, the Magic will be introducing some new faces for the first time in Orlando. Wendell Carter Jr., R.J. Hampton and possibly Otto Porter Jr. are set to make their home debuts during what will be the Magic’s first home game since the day after Nikola Vucevic, Aaron Gordon and Evan Fournier we’re traded on March 25.

Carter and Hampton in particular have made their presence felt, with Carter posting double doubles in two of his last three games and Hampton setting a new career-high with 16 points on Sunday against his former team.

Another new addition will be Devin Cannady, the G League Final MVP who the Magic signed to a 10-day contract on Tuesday.

The Magic, after going 2-5 on their West Coast road trip, take on a Wizards team that they are battling for positioning with in the Tankathon standings. The Wizards have lost four straight games and sit at 17-32, a nearly identically record to the 17-33 Magic.

Bradley Beal, Rui Hachimura and Robin Lopez are listed as questionable for a Wizards team that has the league’s sixth worst offensive rating at 108.1 and fifth worst defensive rating at 113.2.

Who: Orlando Magic (17-33) vs. Washington Wizards (17-32)

When: Wednesday at 7 p.m.

Where: Amway Center - Orlando, Florida

TV: Bally Sports Florida