Gil Endorses Red White and Blue
I was going to blog about the fact that several GW coaches (Karl Hobbs and two assistants) were at today's Wizards practice (Karl is close with Caron Butler, in addition to Mike Hall); and about the fact that we were allowed to watch the team scrimmage, and what happened therein; and about the fact that Gil spoke out strongly against the League's new basketballs, but it turns out Official Wizards Beat Writer Ivan has beaten me to all these story lines in his blog. I swear, by next week The Post will have started an American Artisanal Cheese and Craft Beer Tailgating Blog.
(Two quick cheese language usage notes. This guy at Language Log notes some great cheese quotes, including a cheesemaker describing molds as " miniature flower garden, with the flowers sucking air into the cheese and pulling out the gas, and every little mold having its own little flavor profile." And a few days ago, Rasheed Wallace said this about Ben Wallace's new contract: "He got what he wanted. He got his cheese." Let's hope that usage picks up. And if you follow that Wallace link, you can see a bizarre photo of Dale Davis in a hard hat holding a saw. The Wiz didn't have nearly enough saws at media day.)
Anyhow, with Ivan having crushed me on the basketball news, I'll just tell you the rest of what I learned in traditional numerical format.
1) Gil said the Washington Capitals and the Washington Mystics are moving back to red, white and blue uniforms, and that he'd like the Wizards to follow suit.
"Red, white and blue sells," he said. "It's America's colors."
(A Caps spokesman, btw, says the team has no plans to go back to red, white and blue uniforms. Pesky facts.)
2) Gil's comments on the new ball:
There's going to be a lot of turnovers, because we're going up for layups and it's just slipping out of our hands. They're going to have to, I'd say, at least play with four balls. They're going to have to play with a ball a period, because once it hits somebody that's sweaty, that ball's dead. You're gonna have to let it dry out....
Shaq said it right, why change the ball after 35 years? What, next are they gonna move the rim up? You know, expand the floor? Move the free-throw line back? I don't see football changing that skin, [or] baseball. I just say you keep it pure, don't tamper with the game of basketball, don't tamper with any sport. That's how I look at it. [Once] football starts going to spongeballs like they sell at the store, then hey, they can complain too, but I guess we're the first ones to test it out. I don't know. What's next? Are they gonna move the rim up? If they move the rim up that's gonna hurt me, I can't dunk like that. I can't. I can't get up there, especially no 12, 11 feet.
3) I tried to get a Wizard to give me some thoughts on tomorrow's Caps opener, but everyone I talked to pled ignorance. "I don't know nothing about baseball," PJ Ramos said. Fair enough.
4) But The Stealth did have some thoughts on hockey. We were all talking about Donald Brashear's arrival in D.C.--The Stealth has seen him working out in the VC--and this led to a discussion of fighting in hockey. Gil would like to see it continue. This led him back to the new basketballs.
"See, messing with the game," he said. "Hockey, they're not letting 'em fight any more. They shouldn't mess with the game, man. That's what the game was about. One guy got hurt, right? He wasn't in a fight but he got hit with a stick? There was like one or two incidents in 50 years, one or two incidents in 50 years and then you guys change the whole sport?"
5) We also discussed Brashear's Lamborghini, a topic of particular interest to The Stealth, who has a Lamborghini MurciÃ©lago Roadster. Gil also has a Ferrari 612 Scaglietti, although he can never remember the "Scaglietti" part.
6) I asked Roger Mason who his favorite Bullet was. "It's crazy, for some reason I used to like Ledell Eackles," he seriously said. "I liked Jeff Malone. I liked those old-school guys. And then I watched Chris Webber and Rod Strickland. I loved Rod Strickland."
He loved Rod Strickland.
Incidentally, things continue to look pretty good for Mason on the court; he hit a few shots during five-on-five drills today, and when the team scrimmaged he was on the starting second five, along with Antonio Daniels, Michael Ruffin, Andray Blatche and Brendan Haywood. Take out Mason and replace him with D-Song and that's your top 10, but still, I thought that was a good sign for Mason.
7) I also failed to get any "Lost" predictions for tonight, but Calvin Booth, Etan Thomas and Mason all watch the show regularly. Mason got into it while playing in Israel, where he embraced DVDs of "Lost," Sopranos" and "Desperate Housewives" for lack of anything better to do. But he doesn't watch "Desperate Housewives" any more. Really. He promises.
October 4, 2006; 5:57 PM ET
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