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John Wall makes like Darrell Green

By Dan Steinberg

Here's Michael Wilbon, describing the above play, which might have been the most memorable part of Tuesday night's Wizards home opener.

[John Wall's] quickness is the kind that embarrasses defenders and that allows him to cover ground like few players in the league. [Andre] Iguodala is sure enough one of the game's highest flyers and took off for a dunk in overtime that would have given the Sixers a two-point lead. But Wall ran him down and contested Iguodala's dunk. Okay, the kid committed a foul while blocking the dunk. But it saved the Wizards one critical point, in a one-point game, because Iguodala missed the first of two free throws.

So let's see, a lightning quick D.C. rookie chasing down an established national star from behind during his regular-season home debut. Ring any bells?

"On the night of Sept. 5, a tiny Washington Redskin rookie named Darrell Green caught the attention of the National Football League and a national television audience by catching Tony Dorsett from behind," George Vecsey later wrote in the New York Times. "The Dallas Cowboys' star runner was racing toward what was apparently an 83-yard touchdown when Green turned on his certified 10.08-second 100- meter speed and spurted past two of his teammates to tackle Dorsett on the 6-yard line. The Cowboys eventually had to settle for a field goal instead of a touchdown, and one can only guess how many psychic points that electrifying pursuit cost the Cowboys and Dorsett in the weeks to come."

"Darrell's the only defensive back in the league who could have caught Tony," Redskins safety Mark Murphy said the week after that game. "To me, it was like Dorsett was standing still. I had a very good view of it (while also in pursuit), although both of them kept getting smaller."

That play remains an enduring part of Green's legacy, despite the fact that the Redskins lost that game by a point. Even watching it now, it's just an incredible display of speed. I guess check back with me in 28 years to see if we're still talking about Wall's game-saving play from Tuesday night.

(Video via SB Nation DC. Idea for this post via Reader Tom.)

By Dan Steinberg  | November 3, 2010; 11:34 AM ET
Categories:  Redskins, Wizards  
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I'm sorry, but in NO WAY can you compare John Wall's play to Darrell Green's. Wall had about a 2 step head start when Iguodala gets the ball. He also has the angle. Plus, it's not a clean block. It's a foul. When Dorsett is racing down the sidelines, Green is not in the picture. He actually starts the play, line up agains the receiver on the OPPOSITE side from where the play goes to. Nope. John Wall is NO Darrell Green.

Posted by: amontgomery1 | November 3, 2010 1:11 PM | Report abuse

damn dan, why you gotta make me tear up from joy seeing that Darrell Green vid... ;-)

Posted by: 3tripleiii | November 3, 2010 1:35 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, but I dont share the John Wall to Darrell Green match up. Wall has a sorry ignorant dance to go with his many turnovers, and a non-call foul to end the game, Green had a lot of respect for his self and was well respected in DC and entire country, the jury still out on this dude Wall.

Posted by: zimife1999 | November 3, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Sorry dude but the jury is not still out on John Wall. The kid is the truth. His dance is not ignorant either, but you're probably too old to understand it. It is a very popular and crowd pleasing dance that he did to energize the home crowd before his first home game appearance. It worked. He is a phenom and will change the atmosphere for Washington basketball for many years to come, but that probably speaks to your problem, not his. He is looking to re-energize the franchise, and that starts with the a youth movement, getting future generations interested. He is also only 19. I will give you that his attempt at a block shot was in no way equivalent to Darrell Green running down Dorsett, but it was an impressive display of athleticism/a sign of things to come. He set the record for assists by a rookie in there first two games. That's better than a lot of great point guards who have come through the league. The jury has voted and by unanimous decision we find John Wall to be guilty as charged, He is the truth!

Posted by: chubache85 | November 3, 2010 3:21 PM | Report abuse

Excuse me, first three games

Posted by: chubache85 | November 3, 2010 3:23 PM | Report abuse

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