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Les Wiz, Day 3

The news of the day Wednesday was Ernie Grunfeld's contract extension but the move shouldn't have come as a surprise to anyone who has spoken with owner Abe Pollin this summer. Pollin is thrilled with the job Grunfeld has done and wants to keep the momentum going. Abe is supposed to be here later for today's first practice and I'll try to catch up with him and ask him about the extension. It's funny: Abe hired Eddie Jordan in the summer of 2003 and then went and landed Ernie.

Traditionally, hiring a coach before picking the GM is a recipe for failure but things appear to have worked out pretty well. Things are in place for this team right now and it will be interesting to see how things flow this season. I get the sense from the comments and e-mails that Wizards fans like the direction of this team. Are folks starting to trust the Wizards?

Richmond is hosting a real, live NBA team right now but you wouldn't know it by going out and hitting town. I was in a couple of spots last night and nobody knew the Wizards were in town. One young lady asked: "Who are the Wizards? That's soccer right?" No, those are the Kansas City Wizards....MLS...Eddie Johnson's team not Eddie Jordan....Anyway, it's a pretty low-key scene which is fine with me.

Haven't really seen much of Richmond but I'm planning on checking some things out tomorrow. I'm kind of a Civil War buff so I want to go through the Confederate War museum (As longs the folks in the place know their side lost). I guess they have one of Robert E. Lee's uniforms on hand. That should be interesting. I'm also trying to read Bob Woodward's new book but I really haven't had time. It's pretty much all basketball all the time. I'll pop back in later this afternoon following the first practice.

By Ivan Carter  |  October 5, 2006; 10:56 AM ET
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Hey Ivan/Mike,

I've seen the version of the new 3rd Alternate Jersey in NBA Live 2007, and it looks hideous with the mismatched jersey and shorts. Have you seen the actual uni in the flesh, and if so, what do the players think about having to dress up like a rec league team?

Posted by: Robb | October 5, 2006 11:58 AM | Report abuse

I wouldn't say that people necessarily trust the Wizards franchise per se, but we DEFINITELY trust Ernie Grunfeld

Posted by: Gilbert's Arena | October 5, 2006 12:15 PM | Report abuse

Woodward's new book was kind of a letdown I thought. Still, really solid read.

Not much to do in Richmond. They have a really good comedy club down there. The Funnybone. Usually get some pretty good acts.

Agree with Robb, those 3rd jerseys made me cringe like a bad smell. Gross.

As to your blog today guys, I've been a Bullets/Wiz fan since I could walk in the early 80s. And no, I don't trust them. Part of me is excited that we are not a joke anymore. We aren't an also ran 10 seed that is mathematically still in it with 2 weeks left; fighting for the 8 spot against a milwaukee team led by Brad Lohaus and James 'Blue Edwards'. It is exciting that we are not a circus sideshow with Manute and Muggsy winning 30 games anymore. But at the same time, we haven't won anything. Ever. And for all this big talk to be coming out of camp, it seems a bit much. I like the bravado but it seems a bit missplaced.

I really think a lot of teams got better this off-season and we stood pat and spun it with this 'continuity' angle. Continuity is great for teams like Dallas, Miami, and San Antonio, but not necessarily for 6-8 seeds. Chicago, Indiana, New Jersey, Miami, Detroit, and Cleveland all got better or at least maintained their level. Are we supposed to just steam roll them? To me, we are still a 6 seed unless we get some kind of absurd blow up from our bigs which I don't see happening. Sorry for the long post.

Posted by: Bernard King | October 5, 2006 12:21 PM | Report abuse

I'd agree with Gilbert's Arena and I'd also say that part of the reason Wizards fans seem to trust Ernie Grunfeld is because he may be the first competent general manager the Wizards/Bullets have had in a long time. At least in the eyes of the younger fans, Ernie is the first GM that seems to know what he's doing. He has a proven track record and has done great things with the team so far. That's a lot more than Wes Unseld or Michael Jordan could say.

Posted by: Bullets Fever | October 5, 2006 12:29 PM | Report abuse

All of the Wizards uniforms stink except the throwbacks. Even their logo is horrendous. I mean just look at it. We have a stick figure posing as a Wizard. What a disgrace. I think the Marketing people need to do their research and come up with some new uniforms for the team. Just look at the Mavericks and the Suns. They have great uniforms.

Posted by: Bring Back the Bullets | October 5, 2006 1:24 PM | Report abuse

If you can't trust the Bullets/Wizards after they lost Larry Hughes and still made the playoffs last year, when are you going to trust them. Since our NBA team is going back to red, white and blue (hooray!) then lets go the whole hog and go back to the old name.

Posted by: George Templeton | October 5, 2006 1:24 PM | Report abuse

Just to go a bit farther back in the time machine, Unseld and Jordan were stellar GMs as compared to Bob Ferry. Exhibit A in that argument might be the drafting of Kenny Green.

And when will someone come up with a better moniker than "The Big Three"? Maybe it would have more bite if translated into Latvian or something.

Posted by: Anonymous | October 5, 2006 1:50 PM | Report abuse

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