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James To Play on Wednesday

LeBron James will play in Game 2 against the Washington Wizards on Wednesday. If he needed to, he would play today - at least that's what James said after he dragged around the most talked about left ankle in Cleveland around Quicken Loans Arena to address the media this afternoon.
James sprained his left ankle while stepping on the foot of Wizards center Etan Thomas with 8 minutes, 3 seconds left in the third quarter of his team's 97-82 win on Sunday but continued to play through the pain, finishing with 23 points, 9 rebounds and 7 assists. He was worried that the ankle would swell like a baloon overnight was but said he was relieved when he woke up. James still had a noticeable limp. "It's a little swelling, but it's more stiffness and soreness," James said. "If we had a game today, I definitely would be able to play. So I'm definitely headed in the rigth direction."
The Cavaliers did not practice on Monday, so James didn't test the ankle, which team trainer Max Benton said was a Grade 2 sprain - with Grade 3 being the worst. "It was definitely a time I thought, 'Why now?' I'm finally 100 percent healthwise and now I turn my ankle," said James, who has battled with tendinitis in his right knee the second half of the season. "I got to go back down to 80 again."

By Michael Lee  |  April 23, 2007; 4:38 PM ET
 
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Comments

Do you have an address for LeBron so I can send a get-well card and a Hallmark Pick-Me-Up bouquet of flowers?

Posted by: Sean | April 23, 2007 4:46 PM | Report abuse

They referee in Sunday's game will do that for him.

Posted by: George Templeton | April 23, 2007 5:16 PM | Report abuse

And the Message could read, "If we were really trying to foul you, that foot would have been up your ..." I agree with the many posters that was one of the worst calls ever seen. Late in the game last night when the Maverick player thought we was fouled on the block at the rim and him and the defender went down in a heap. Did play stop? LeBron comes down on Etan's foot and a foul is called and play stopped? Wow!
I have really got to agree with Henry's Post at 4:08 pm if you missed it go back and look it up. That's what a coach should do ask each and every player to contribute what he can to give you a victory. Sometimes all you can ask a guy to do is push your starters in practice or give them a good look when asked to play on the scout team. Coaching isn't about asking players to do things they're not capable off.
One of my biggest beefs this year has been hearing, "well we got no rebounds in the 4th quarter" when we had Jarvis Hayes playing power forward. I said this morning, Don Nelson is an absolute genius at getting and exploiting mismatches. I've been watching this game for 41 years and that is one thing that never changes, you win by creating mismatches and figuring out how to put your player in position to exploit his advantage.
We do have a chance in this series if EJ would realize that and put it into play.

Posted by: GM | April 23, 2007 5:39 PM | Report abuse

So what is worse? The Wiz without their All Stars (and 40+) points losing by 15 to a team with "his majesty" on the roster on "his majesty's" home court or the Mav's (the expected Title winner) losing by 12 points on their home court?

Of course the Wiz losing hurts me more but everyone predicted (and expected)our loss. Cuban must be fuming in Dallas.

Posted by: Lisa | April 23, 2007 6:00 PM | Report abuse

Hey everyone. :)

The Wiz just don't have enough in the tank. I'll be happy if they win just one game.

On a side note, can someone please tell me why Haywood was sitting the bench most of the game? Seriously, he has his best games against Cleveland.

Foul trouble?

"Cuban must be fuming in Dallas."

Lol, Don Nelson. God bless him. :)

- Ray

Posted by: Ray | April 23, 2007 6:04 PM | Report abuse

"...but if Jordan is taking coaching tips from random posters on blogs, we are REALLY screwed."

It couldn't hurt either Henry, lol!

It kinda seems like he does at times though which is scary. Jordan plays favorties too much, it's just like at the beginning of the season when he refused to play Haywood until Thomas got hurt. Haywood came in was a factor in the Wiz's holiday run.

Like him or not, the guy has his best games against Cleveland. Can't help thinking about when he bonked Lebron on his head last year. If nothing else they should do that again this year just for spite.

- Ray

Posted by: Ray | April 23, 2007 6:09 PM | Report abuse

A grade II sprain is pretty bad--that means a partially torn ligament. Most normal humans would be incapacitated for weeks.

http://orthopedics.about.com/cs/sprainsstrains/a/anklesprain.htm

Posted by: Patrick | April 23, 2007 6:16 PM | Report abuse

Nellie just gave,"Smoke a Cuban" a whole new meaning! Did you see the Billionaire Brat in the 4th quarter and after game! I thought he was going to cost himself about a 1/2 mil on that block on the breakaway!
They were speculating on TNT after the game that he was steamed that his team was too chummy with Nellie before the game. Sly ole Nellie! "Great to see you guys! Avery, let me rub your head, great of you guys to host us here in these playoffs". And then after the game, "We were really lucky tonight. they were just a little off". I Bet Cuban Went Through The Roof When He Got That Team Off The Court!
Sly old fox could have them down 3 to 1 before they know what hit them!

Posted by: GM | April 23, 2007 6:26 PM | Report abuse

And LeBron could be less than 100% for much longer than that. I've seen guys play through those things but loose their ability to cut off that leg. Might really effect him as long as they're still in it this year.

Posted by: GM | April 23, 2007 6:29 PM | Report abuse

Michael and Ivan:
Any thoughts on David Halberstam, who wrote about sports as well as anyone? Was he an influece in any way?

Posted by: Henry | April 23, 2007 6:57 PM | Report abuse

Forget the Princeton offense. Just let the guys play some Paul Westhead b-ball and let the chips fall where they may. Anybody coming down the lane should get some John Chaney inspired defense (aka. an elbow to the head). Where's Nehemiah Ingram when you need him? What have Les BouleS got to lose?

Posted by: DC Man88 | April 23, 2007 7:42 PM | Report abuse

Shockingly enough...for once I agree with you DC Dude. Just let them play ball!

Posted by: Lisa | April 23, 2007 7:51 PM | Report abuse

Was disappointed Sunday because we played a very good game but we ran out of gas and lost. What bothers me is that the Cavs played down to us. They seemed dead. They hardly ran which made no sense. Yet they never lost control of the game. What happens when we see their A game?

Barkley's comment about Brown vs. Jordan was right on. Yet all our normal coaching concerns remained: Smallball strategy against Z.I. is unconscionable. But no surprise unfortunately. As all the posters have said, for all of Haywood's liabilities he has proven that he can bother the Cavs in the middle. EJ needs to use the bench in such a way that they can get some rhythm. Mason has a shot and should play more. Taylor doesn't have a shot but can play tough D and spell AD a few minutes more. AD just gets worn down. How many layups that he used to finish now fall short? and Blatche...why doesn't EJ use him more? We ought to use all our fouls up and get tougher: Etan, Brenda, Songalia, Ruffin, Booth should all be told to play tough and give up no layups. That is our best chance of winning. Not dirty play, but tough play. But that's just not the way EJ does things. Are we playing hard? yes. But we are not playing smart.

I unfortunately still think we may win only one at home at the most. I think we are in for several big blowouts and a five game series. And I wouldn't be surprised to see more internal frustration surface as the series and season wind down. Imagine the scenario: Zards down 3-1 in the series and losing by 25 in the 3rd quarter... But I don't think you'll want to turn the tv off just yet. You could miss the first ever ejection of 2 teammates for fighting one another!! It would certainly be a fitting ending to this chapter of the soap opera.

Posted by: BmoreRev | April 24, 2007 12:33 AM | Report abuse

EJ needs to play BH against Clevland and stop acting like a little kid. I can't beleve he said that the shorter guys were playing well against the big guy. As usual EJ was watching a different game. Come on EJ coach to win and not let your personal fellings towards BH make you look like you arn,t in the game.

Posted by: Ron | April 24, 2007 12:35 AM | Report abuse

Personally I'd be going with Haywood, Blatche, Jamison, DeShawn and AD to start. Off the bench with Etan(c), Darius(pf) and Hayes(sf/sg). This would be my main 8-man rotation.

I'd also use Ruffin to come in for some hard fouls, and stick a body on LeBron to harass him the way Lue stuck to AI in Lakers-76ers finals, and Taylor to do the same to Hughes.

Posted by: Darnell | April 24, 2007 3:32 AM | Report abuse

Les BouleS only chance at winning this series is to send someone expendable, like Michael Ruffin, at LeBron's other ankle. Stern of course, would ban Ruffin for life, if he sees his cash cow crumple in pain again.

Posted by: DC Man88 | April 24, 2007 7:23 AM | Report abuse

There is no need to play Labron dirty, but it is a good time to get up in his face and make him cut off of it and drive and leap. Don't allow him to become a face the basket passer and spot up shooter.
In the long run for the series it might be better to force the ball into his hands and make him put the ball on the floor. And make him work on defense, run his man off of some screens and make him run and cut.
If EJ is going to continue to refuse to use BH, and he shouldn't, we should try and get their bigs to defend Songaila on the pick and roll more. We did a better job of working the offense but need to work harder at getting the ball to our players that have mismatches when they do.
We might want to consider varying the tempo with the young guys off the bench. It can sometimes work when you're playing a more deliberate style to have your reseves push the tempo in spurts. Taylor and Blatche are more suited to that style anyway.

Posted by: GM | April 24, 2007 8:19 AM | Report abuse

GM, I think you're wasting your time coming up with a serious strategy for Les BouleS. EJ will continue to do what he does and it will continue to frustrate Les BouleS fans and bloggers will continue to offer up the same suggestions that will continue to go on deaf ears. That's why I try to keep it light.

EJ seems like the kind of coach who will keep pounding on that square peg until it goes into the round hole (ie. small ball).

Posted by: DC Man88 | April 24, 2007 8:25 AM | Report abuse

This game has to start with AD and Jarvis taking it multiple times to the hoop. Test Lebron. Wear him down. Jamison has gotta be on his game again but he can't fade in the second half. EJ has got to be willing to sub. He killed his players in the last game. More Blatche. As much as I hate her, more Brenda. Her big body, even though she plays six inches shorter than she is, will bother Z. Deshawn and Songaila need 10-12 points each. We need to keep Cleveland under 90 points. More traps, more gimmicks. Mike Brown may be the only guy in the league that EJ is capable of outcoaching.

Posted by: ct fan | April 24, 2007 8:46 AM | Report abuse

Memo from Stern to Refs: please take care of my boy Wednesday night. He has a sore ankle and needs some extra TLC. Phantom calls are okay but please don't be too obvious. Keep an eye on the Wizards especially concentrating on traveling, palming the ball, and delay of game violations. In fact, go ahead and call a delay of game on the Wiz before the game begins (make sure their jersey's are tucked all the way in) just to get the message across. If Etan, Ruffin, Haywood, or Booth even come close to touching my boy, go ahead and call a flagrant 1. Bonus checks are in the mail...

Posted by: CJ Baltimore | April 24, 2007 8:48 AM | Report abuse

I agree with everyone. Wanted to add this comment& question, tho.

Last nite Sports center showed how Denver handled Spurs Duncan - Warriors, Dirk. Which could be same for LeBron. Everytime the ball came their way their were 3 men in their faces no matter the direction.

Same happend to Kobe in 4th against Suns.

It totally befuddled Dirk. He had to kick it out to somebody else or throw it away. Same for Duncan. It shut down Kobe, who was running out of gas also in 4th.

GM, Henry, George, Sean & others..is that doable with James or is he just that strong or good that he can shoot from anywhere over several defenders?

In my minds eye - I can conceive of it being doable but what do you think?

Posted by: Robin | April 24, 2007 9:32 AM | Report abuse

"EJ seems like the kind of coach who will keep pounding on that square peg until it goes into the round hole (ie. small ball)". DC Mann88

DC Mann88 I have to agree with you on that statement. EJ seems like the type that could be out in the ocean drowning and you throw him a life raft, but he would still refuse it and say "my" way is the better way. Sometimes you have to learn how to humble yourself in order to go to that next level.

As I have been saying in all my other posts, Eddie has to play a smarter game at his substitutions this game. He has to give AD a blow at the 2 minute mark of the 1st quarter and 3rd quarter. In in his place give the youngster DT some run.

Yea, Yea to all the folks who don't like DT running the show, he is however a "spark" off of the bench, he is lighting quick, plays "chest to chest" man to man defense vs. playing lanes, can breakdown the defense and go to the rack hard and also play full court pressure defense. DT can speed the tempo of the game up with his energy.

Eddie has to take that "short leash" off of Haywood, DT and Blanche and allow the young dudes to play through their mistakes.

He needs to give Jamison & Jarvis a "blow" in the 1st quarter also. I noticed he is now taking Steveson out at about the 3 minute mark and sliding Jarvis back to the "2". Thus Jarvis ends up playing the whole first half and then running out of gas in the 4th just like AD.

As much as I have been on Jarvis, I have to give him his props for the way he is playing "D" on LeBron. When LaBron sits that is when Jarvis should sit. Eddie has to give Mason some "run" in the first half vs. "holding him" all the way into the later part of the 3rd quarter. Mason came in with some serious energy and he is the only one on that team I feel when the ball leaves his hand, it is GOOD.

As I have been saying even before Mike Wise made the statement about letting the personal stuff go between Eddie and Brendon, he has to let Haywood go against Ike for some kind of minutes. Also try Booth there too a little bit.

Lastly, I have not mentioned my boy AB because as much as that boy should be in there playing, EJ is not going to do it. I have come to that conclusion, so I am going to leave it alone. I think he might be on even more of a shorter leash then Haywood. (Go Figure???)

The only reason he might play Haywood Wednesday is because he now realizes people are "really noticing" what is going on with him and Wood now. All Eddie had to do was give Haywood a little run in the 3rd quarter, and "most people" would not even said anything.

But again, because of his pride he had to make another one of his "points" by not playing him at all in the 2nd, 3rd and 4th quarters, knowing dang gone well Ike was starting to kill us on the offensive end.

I knew it was bad when he said I can have someone 5 foot 2 in there and that height did not matter. He said that with a "tude", so that is when I said "oh boy" we are in trouble............

Posted by: mikie | April 24, 2007 9:32 AM | Report abuse

Eddie should not only play Brendan longer...he should start him. The Wiz won more games with Brendan as a starter (of course Caron and Gil were playing then as well) and starting him will probably light a fire under Brendan to prove himself. At this point, what could it hurt? If Eddie cannot put personal differences aside for the team then he does not need to be here.

Posted by: Lisa | April 24, 2007 9:46 AM | Report abuse

As the Small Ball Association of America, we officially take umbrage at attempts to cast aspersions upon Mr. E. Jordan's Small Ball Strategy. Small minded individuals are criticizing this strategy while ignoring its important social benefits:

Do you realize that, without coaches utilizing Smallball, many well-paid NBA swingmen, undersized forwards, and "combo" guys would be playing in Macedonia right now?

Posted by: Small Ball Association of America | April 24, 2007 9:49 AM | Report abuse

I agree Mikie & others. Jordan appears to have a "my way or the highway" attitude problem. I realize we are sitting on the outside but he sure makes himself look like a fool with his team backin into the playoffs as it is; then sits the one player on his team that can actually handle an opposing player better than the rest but WILL NOT PLAY HIM. Its even worse that the player Ilgauskas asked for Brendan.

I also agree - that he very well may be "forced" to play BH because its now so obvious in the "press" or he and AB will be sitting the enire 7 games. Yeh for the media & press.

There is one factor tho that we've not submitted - Nellie mentioned it last night. "The 1st game often is your precurser you use to see what your opponent is bringing. "Don't get excited. the first game is nothing. Its nothing!Then you reorganize and replan another plan of attack." He was Mr. Humble Pie swearing he might never win another game. LOL.

For wiz, I'm a bit cautious about saying that about Ej cuz he keeps serving the same dishes every game. Doesn't seems to change up or adjust much(And I do understand he's short 2 players)

Lets hope he heard Nellie and will return with a different plan of attack.

Posted by: Robin | April 24, 2007 10:19 AM | Report abuse

Here at the National Small Ball League (NSBL) we recognize the importance of Mr. Jordan's contributions to our cause. We feel that our rival, the SBAA (Small Ball Association of America) does not fully understand that Mr. Jordan is not only helping well-paid NBA swingmen, undersized forwards, and "combo" guys; but also increasing the value of slow footed big Europeans. Thanks to Mr. Jordan, quick, athletic, long limbed forwards are no longer necessary to play NBA basketball. Oh can't you see it now? A world with 6-4 PF and your 5-11 SF leading the league with 5 RPG!!! That's the way basketball was meant to be played.

Posted by: National Small Ball League | April 24, 2007 10:37 AM | Report abuse

Normally you would consider flooding guys to a player like LaBron and force the ball out of his hands and overplay him to keep him from getting it back. Right now with that sprain I'd consider playing him straight up, let him catch the ball but overplay him and force him to cut on that ankle and drive. Make him move, he's a big guy alot of weight, every cut, jump, or drive will take it's toll.
Just don't let him stand around and be a perimeter passer and spot up shooter, and force him to play defense too. And yes I'd knock him down anytime he gets near the lane.
And 88er,I don't consider calling other posters names, saying they're stupid, or refering to having sex in the barn with their wife is "keeping it light". But that's just me.
But then again some of us old farts just come on here because we just like to talk about basketball, and we don't have an agenda that we're trying to push day.

Posted by: GM | April 24, 2007 11:26 AM | Report abuse

Robin:
I agree with what GM said about your question. Also, doubling and tripling guys like Duncan and Dirk can be effective because they are not dribblers or playmakers, so it is not as easy for them to dribble away from trouble and make a great/creative pass to an open teammate. With Kobe, he has that ability, but (1) he'd be passing to the stiffs he has on his team, which is a good result for the defense; and (2) Kobe has such an ego he oftentimes will try to beat the triple team by himself. LeBron is a creative passer, has good players around him, and maybe most importantly, I don't know if the Wizards have the defenders to make that strategy work. Maybe show it once in a while to break up the Cavs rhythm, but a steady dose of it might just lead to a lot of dunks by the Cavs. That's my opinion, at least.

Posted by: Henry | April 24, 2007 11:52 AM | Report abuse

Oh c'mon, you old grouch. That was a long time ago.

Posted by: DC Man88 | April 24, 2007 11:59 AM | Report abuse

"For wiz, I'm a bit cautious about saying that about Ej cuz he keeps serving the same dishes every game. Doesn't seems to change up or adjust much(And I do understand he's short 2 players)" Robin

Good point Robin. As I have said before I still want Eddie here as coach next year. The man has a "great" system. His system has made AJ, Gil and Butler the unit they are today, just as his system did the same for Gil, AJ and Larry Hughes when they were a unit.

As for the defensive woes, maybe some of the players aren't listening to what Eddie is trying to show them. I think part of it is Eddie not having the personnel he likes to play "D". That is a question only him and EG can answer and correct.

Eddie just has to work on the way he calls games with the personnel "he has to work with", thats all. Once he figures that out the guy will have a long and productive career here. The man is no dummy by no means, just stubborn as heck.

I am a diehard Bullets/Wiz fan who wants nothing but the best for the team. If you use all of our bullets and still lose, I have nothing to say. But if we do not use all of our bullets available and still lose, that is when I have to question some things.......

Posted by: mikie | April 24, 2007 12:15 PM | Report abuse

Thanks GM & Henry. I do agree GM. Putting pressure on that ankle - making him work for every play should produce some type of result. Hopefully, Wiz can capitalize on it.

But then, we never know what King Eddie has planned for the fellas. Lets hope for the best.

DC88, the name calling really isn't necessary. Its difficult at times but can we stik with the basketball topics?
Thanks so much

Posted by: Robin | April 24, 2007 12:23 PM | Report abuse

I know, but sir grouchiness is still whining about stuff that happened a long time ago.

Posted by: DC Man88 | April 24, 2007 12:52 PM | Report abuse

I've got to second what Henry said. Swarming LeBron and forcing him to give up the ball is playing right into his hands. The Wiz haven't shown any ability to rotate effectively on defense and cover for one another, even when at full strength. James's supporting cast isn't great, but they're good enough that if the Wiz leave them unguarded to platoon LeBron, they'll have tons of good looks.

Posted by: kalorama | April 24, 2007 1:04 PM | Report abuse

I think GM is right on the doubling LeBron question. I think the only time you can double him is if you can trap him in one of the corners or on the baseline (yuck, I just had a flashback to last year!). As good a passer as LePutz is, you know there will be several instances of wide open shots for Donyell Marshall and Larry Hughes.
The other problem is that the Wizards never seem to come with an agressive double team. It's always that soft trap about 8 feet behind the 3-point line and then the big guy tries to get back to the paint.
I also want to thanks the SBAA and the NSBL for weighing in here. Everyone needs admirers and I imagine coach Jordan has a lot of them in those two organizations.

Posted by: George Templeton | April 24, 2007 1:22 PM | Report abuse

lebron's at 80%?! at least he can rely on his jumpshot. as long as the wiz look like they're playing D, rotating and closing on the open shooter, they'll have a chance.

Posted by: CreditZard | April 24, 2007 1:35 PM | Report abuse

Thanks. I see your point and agree.
As we all said earlier - I guess its going to a crap shoot. As Henry & a couple of others suggested(guess we all did)and come to think of it; thats exactly what Baron Davis said at end of Sundays' game.

"We got nothing to lose here. We'll just come with our best game; give it our best shot as a team! Just Go ALLL OUT!
Hope we come away with a win."

Could the Small Ball Assoc & Nation Ball Assoc..pass that along to EJ & Co. LOL?

Posted by: Robin | April 24, 2007 2:21 PM | Report abuse

Hey, if anyone is interested in 2 or 4 tickets for either game 3 or 4 I have decent seats and can't use them. Email me if interested: camlot2822@aol.com

Posted by: arnie | April 24, 2007 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Hey!!!Everybody!!! Look!!

Brendan Haywood may start at center over Etan Thomas in Game 2 on Wednesday, Coach Eddie Jordan hinted.

"There could be a change. I don't know yet," Jordan said. "I'm hoping that Etan can start off really well and that we can go with a normal rotation, and Brendan's been the first big off the bench. Now what he does with that is up to him." Zydrunas Ilgauskas, who enjoyed a big fourth quarter to help ice Game 1 for the Cavs, was suprised Haywood wasn't guarding him as he said Haywood has done well in the past against him.

Source: Washington Times
Also in USA Today. 4/24/07

Posted by: Robin | April 24, 2007 3:37 PM | Report abuse

April entries re: BH:

4/2/07Wizards coach Eddie Jordan said that he wasn't seeing enough consistent energy from Haywood, who should probably be cut in nearly all leagues.

Reporters notes:Though Sunday's reports said that he sat out due to a cold, Brendan Haywood was actually benched in favor of Etan Thomas and earned his first DNP-CD of the season.

4/3/07:Brendan Haywood returned Tuesday against Charlotte with one point and two rebounds in limited time off the bench.

Etan Thomas got another start at center and split the minutes with Calvin Booth once again. It sounds like Haywood is definitely in coach Eddie Jordan's doghouse now, so consider more reliable options down the stretch.

4/10: Brendan Haywood did not play in Tuesday's game against New Jersey.

Reporter's notes:We'll find out if Haywood is, in fact, dealing with an injury or if he's still just in coach Eddie Jordan's doghouse. Etan Thomas got another start at center and had 11 points and three rebounds

4/11/07:Brendan Haywood returned after sitting out Tuesday's game as a DNP-CD and led his team in scoring with 14 points, while adding 10 boards and a block in a loss to the Heat.

Those same 10 players saw between 17 and 28 minutes of action tonight and it's possible that every single player on the Wizards may have lost their value if playing time is going to be divided up so evenly.

Does anybody know how long BH has been in dog house?

Posted by: Anonymous | April 24, 2007 3:50 PM | Report abuse

Wait a second!! Sam Mitchell?? Why didn't EJ win coach of the year??!!

Posted by: Sean | April 24, 2007 5:08 PM | Report abuse

Somebody asked how long has Brendan Haywood been in the Dog House? When did we hire Eddie? Some coaches and some players just never click, I think that EG has to take action to seperate the two this off season.
I would have said before it causes a distraction, but it already passed that point. We're in the first round of the playoffs and the focus is about why Brendan's not playing when there is an obvious matchup on the floor, even the other team's player is wondering why he's not out there considering his past success in the matchup. Both Brendan and Eddie had announced that they had buried the hatchet after an offseason talk. Apparently neither dug the hole too deep.
Mikie, I'm not dissing Brendan here, I just realize that the two can't co-exist another season. The Brendan vs. Thomas fued is just a sideshow to this long simmering main event. Eddie is so short sited and hardheaded in this that he's lossing site of the fact that Brendan's playing well might help his trade value and make it easier for EG to make everybody happy.
Watching the Lakers and our good friend Kwame Brown still struggling, I'm left to wander if we couldn't engage the Lakers in a three way(according to one poster here Kwame's game for that kind of thing) if we target a player where a team is looking for salary cap releif. The Lakers could sure use a veteran point gaurd and a servicable NBA center with a reasonable contract to help hold down the position while the develop their young guy. Kwame's due 9m next year which isn't far from matching Daniels and Haywood's combined salaries and he will be in the last year of his deal.
Use some of Abe's money to sign Ruffin to a say 3m one year deal and we could offer up 12m in cap releif. Packaged along with draft picks or other players we could target some of the guys that are sure to move this offseason. As Kalorama pointed out the Bulls only got 14m in cap releif for Chandler last offseason.
In what is being called possibly the deepest draft since the early 80's the 16th pick is more than a throwaway item. EG needs to target a 5 that can play in this system and gain the trust of this coach and put an end to this smallball in the 4th three ring circus.
The biggest concern to me is that if Brendan is back next year that the fallout of this fued will spill over to Blatche who is really a peice that we can build around. It really worries me to see both jerked from the lineup for ill-advised shot and sitting next to each other in obvious disgust.
If EG can't see this going on and make moves to stop it, he's maybe not as savvy as I've been giving him credit for in my posts.
And 88er yesterday isn't along time ago, and it was just yesterday or at most the day before that you called Lisa Stupid here. If you want people to forget some of your past name calling, just stop it and move on. Well, at least you acknowledged it was you instead of trying to claim it was an evil imposter this time.

Posted by: GM | April 24, 2007 6:56 PM | Report abuse

I will have to hand it to Brendan...he has been extremely classy this go round about his playing time (or lack thereof).

In my opinion, Eddie needs to start him tomorrow night to see if it will ignite a spark. It's definitely worth a shot.

Posted by: Lisa | April 24, 2007 7:07 PM | Report abuse

Somebody asked how long has Brendan Haywood been in the Dog House? When did we hire Eddie? Some coaches and some players just never click, I think that EG has to take action to seperate the two this off season.
I would have said before it causes a distraction, but it already passed that point. We're in the first round of the playoffs and the focus is about why Brendan's not playing when there is an obvious matchup on the floor, even the other team's player is wondering why he's not out there considering his past success in the matchup. Both Brendan and Eddie had announced that they had buried the hatchet after an offseason talk. Apparently neither dug the hole too deep.
Mikie, I'm not dissing Brendan here, I just realize that the two can't co-exist another season. The Brendan vs. Thomas fued is just a sideshow to this long simmering main event. Eddie is so short sited and hardheaded in this that he's lossing site of the fact that Brendan's playing well might help his trade value and make it easier for EG to make everybody happy.
Watching the Lakers and our good friend Kwame Brown still struggling, I'm left to wander if we couldn't engage the Lakers in a three way(according to one poster here Kwame's game for that kind of thing) if we target a player where a team is looking for salary cap releif. The Lakers could sure use a veteran point gaurd and a servicable NBA center with a reasonable contract to help hold down the position while the develop their young guy. Kwame's due 9m next year which isn't far from matching Daniels and Haywood's combined salaries and he will be in the last year of his deal.
Use some of Abe's money to sign Ruffin to a say 3m one year deal and we could offer up 12m in cap releif. Packaged along with draft picks or other players we could target some of the guys that are sure to move this offseason. As Kalorama pointed out the Bulls only got 14m in cap releif for Chandler last offseason.
In what is being called possibly the deepest draft since the early 80's the 16th pick is more than a throwaway item. EG needs to target a 5 that can play in this system and gain the trust of this coach and put an end to this smallball in the 4th three ring circus.
The biggest concern to me is that if Brendan is back next year that the fallout of this fued will spill over to Blatche who is really a peice that we can build around. It really worries me to see both jerked from the lineup for ill-advised shot and sitting next to each other in obvious disgust.
If EG can't see this going on and make moves to stop it, he's maybe not as savvy as I've been giving him credit for in my posts.
And 88er yesterday isn't along time ago, and it was just yesterday or at most the day before that you called Lisa Stupid here. If you want people to forget some of your past name calling, just stop it and move on. Well, at least you acknowledged it was you instead of trying to claim it was an evil imposter this time.

Posted by: GM | April 24, 2007 7:08 PM | Report abuse

C'mon, stop being a busy body.

Posted by: DC Man88 | April 24, 2007 8:04 PM | Report abuse

"As Kalorama pointed out the Bulls only got 14m in cap releif for Chandler last offseason."

The difference is that they got that relief immediately (i.e, at the end of the season in which they traded him). Daniels and Thomas both have several more years on their deals. And I'm not certain, but I think that in order to use a player with Bird rights in a S&T they have to be signed for more than 1 year. No team looking for cap relief is going to trade for players with multiyear deals.

The Lakers have no need for Haywood. Bynum is already a better player than Brendan offensively and Kwame is better defensively. And they've got Cook (for scoring) and Turiaf (for hustle and toughness) on the bench. Haywood doesn't do anything well enough to take minutes from those guys, let alone entice the Lakers to trade one of them. And the Wizards picks (in the late teens this year, even lower in future years unless things go badly) aren't hugely desireable commodities, certainly not so much as to entice some team to give up a good player and take back bad contracts.

The simple reality is that aside form Arenas and Butler, the Wizards have very little on their roster that other teams would be willing to give up significant assets for, esp. a good C, which are in high demand and hard to find.

Posted by: kalorama | April 24, 2007 8:06 PM | Report abuse

The Lakers badly need a veteran point. And are limited cap wise what they can do. Jackson is about fed up with Kwame. For them getting Daniels and Haywood gives them a backup center and a veteran point for what they're paying Kwame now. I wasn't trying to say that the Lakers would get immediate cap releif in the deal.
And they might decide that waiting another year and using Kwame's 9m in the open market could be a better choice, but with him still being a disappointment and entering the final year of a three year deal he could be trade bait.
When you say Butler and Arenas are our only players with any trade value, I'm also not sure why you don't consider Jamison in the final year of his deal at 15m is worth anything? PJ Brown in the final year of his deal at 14m brought Chandler. Can't quite figure out why in your mind Jamison has no trade value.
Some of the NBA's cap rules are pretty arcane. But I'm not sure how Larry Bird rights apply to what I was saying. Can't see why Ruffin can't be signed to an extension and traded. Have seen that done before to match up salaries. Isn't that what is called a sign and trade? That's the first I've heard that a player has to be resigned for three years in order to trade him. Anybody know what that rule is?

Posted by: GM | April 24, 2007 9:42 PM | Report abuse

First of all, GM, I think you're premature in assuming the Lakers are done with Kwame. He's played well for them in stretches when he managed to stay healthy, esp. at the defensive end, where he's probably their best big man. In any case, the Lakers are hardly desperate for a backup C. Even without Kwame, they're at least 3 deep at the C position, and that doesn't count Odom when they go small ball. If they don't keep Kwame, Bynum becomes the starter and everyone else moves up a notch. And every one of their backup Cs is better at a definable NBA skill and cheaper than Haywood. Haywood would not beat out Bynum, Turiaf, or Cook for PT. Haywood doesn't bring them anything they can't get from someone else on the roster, at least not enough of it to swallow the 3 more years left on his contract.

As for the Lakers badly needing a PG ... If you look at Jackson coached teams over the years you'll see he's never gone in for conventional playmaking PGs like Daniels. He's always preferred guys who could shoot, score, defend, while putting the ball mostly in the hands of his star wing players, Jordan, Pippen, Kobe. One of the features of the triangle offense is that it doesn't really require a true PG. So it's unlikely a guy like Daniels would be that attractive to the Lakers, given his age and price.

Jamison's expiring contract will have trade value. But my guess is that the Wiz aren't going to look at trading him as a first option over the summer. If he does go, it's more likely be around the trade deadline, if the Wiz end up faltering again and they have to do something dramatic.

Sign and trade deals involve a player who wants to leave his current team (that has his Bird rights) to go to a team that doesn't have the cap space to sign him outright as a FA. In those cases, the player's current Bird Rights-holding team signs him to a deal (for more than the destination team has available under the cap) and trades him to the new team for other players/picks. That's the whole point of the sign and trade loophole. For the Wizards, the Bird rule comes into play with Ruffin because the Wizards are over the cap. In order to sign him to a $3 mill deal they would have to exercise his Bird rights (which I believe he has, but I'm not sure) to go over the salary cap and resign their own player. If he doesn't have Bird rights they'd have to use the MLE to sign him, which would leave them with almost nothing to spend on acquiring a FA to fill out the bench, which would be a bad move.

Posted by: kalorama | April 24, 2007 11:28 PM | Report abuse

Brenda stinks. Face it. So does EJ.

Posted by: DC woMan88 | April 25, 2007 1:21 AM | Report abuse

this offseason we will probably:

Deal Haywood, Keep Booth

Lose Blatche to free agency, keep Ruffin

Lose Stevenson to free agency, keep Arvis

Unable to get Navarro, but keep Taylor

Pass on Jeff Green in draft and pick a Euro who won't help us for another 5 yrs if ever

Posted by: Darnell | April 25, 2007 1:47 AM | Report abuse

Oh yeah, and Songaila will probably re-injure his back playing again in the World Games

Posted by: Darnell | April 25, 2007 1:48 AM | Report abuse

AB will be a restricted free agent this offseason. If he doesn't get any interest, it would be funny if he doesn't sign an extension so that he could be an unrestricted free agent the following year.

Posted by: DC Man88 | April 25, 2007 8:02 AM | Report abuse

GM and Kalorama you both make excellent points. GM I like that trade scenero you laid out. And yes, Kalorama the Lakers all ready have plenty of "5's.

But I think the point GM was trying to show is Phil Jackson would not mind having a backup center who "wants to play" and is not a headcase outside of the basketball court (i.e. Kwame smacking a man's cake out of his hands in the street over something that was never clairfied).

Haywood might not have the skillset that Kwame has, but the man just wants to be used to some capacity. He is willing to learn and wants to get better. The only way you do that is getting "some" playing time and a coach that "believes" in you.

Phil Jackson probably could use Haywood like he use to use Stacey King back with the Bulls. As for the point guard issue, yes Phil Jackson prefers those types of guards you described, but how many of them are out here available? Phil took a flyer on Scottie Pippen, so that is telling you something.

The Lakers were one of the teams trying to sign AD last year. It was already mentioned in circulations Jackson and Kupchak were interested in him. However the Wizards gave him a 5 year contract for 30 million (???? not sure on that amount) and that took them out of the running.

At that time I thought EG offered him "way to much", but now I stand corrected. AD has been great. If the guy ever develops a "outside j" he would be real "nasty".

So to summarize, that deal GM came up with does not seem all that bad. The numbers work and it removes a major distraction with the Wizards.

I would prefer for Haywood to stay here and get a "fair" shot, but I know that will not happen, so it is best that he goes somewhere else where he can get "a little love"......

Posted by: mikie | April 25, 2007 8:17 AM | Report abuse

"AB will be a restricted free agent this offseason. If he doesn't get any interest, it would be funny if he doesn't sign an extension so that he could be an unrestricted free agent the following year".

Posted by: DC Man88

DC Man88 I am inclined to agree with you on that. If EJ keeps giving AB the "hook" and not playing him, he might shock the Wiz and refuse to sign an extension this offseason just so he does not have to play under Jorden. You best believe he is "watching" how they are doing Haywood.

He could then be a bonified "free agent" and leave without the Wiz getting nothing. Just like GM mentioned, I have noticed for the past month AB and Haywood sitting right next to each other every game.

Both of them always looked "pissed". Haywood has not looked like that lately for fear of Ivan "calling him out" again. So I give him credit for trying to be professional about how EJ is doing him.

However AB is not able to hide his disgust so well. Eddie J. better be real careful on how he handles AB's situation also. He use to do Juan Dixon and Steve Blake the same way and that is why they could not wait to get out of here.

It was not because they wanted to start, they just wanted to have "set" minutes every game or know where they were in the rotation. They both said in exit interviews they "never know" when they are going to play or not play at all (i.e. Blanche, Haywood, Mason and Taylor).

Look at Blanche's, Haywood's and Taylor's faces during games. The look tells it all. Mason is the only one who can deal with it. I give it to him, he is real professional. I know I couldn't do it like Mason does.

Posted by: mikie | April 25, 2007 8:29 AM | Report abuse

Les BouleS better realize that even though Gilby is a good player, Les BouleS aren't going to go anywhere unless they can get some bigs who can produce. Even if they get bigs, they need to devise some sort of system such where the ball will be distributed evently and the bigs will get their touches. Otherwise, I can't see why an up and coming big will either want to be here, or want to stay here after being drafted (unless gobs of money is thrown at them).

No up and coming big man in his right mind would want to come here if they know they won't get any touches because of Gilby. No big man would want garbage play (ie. only gets a shot as a bailout shot, or putback from rebound) as they would want to play an important role in the offensive rotation.

This team won't have any significant success relying on Gilby alone. If you need an example, go look at AI, who was a much better and explosive player than Gilby at that age. Even HE only went to the Finals once.

AB is getting jerked around by EJ, and Mikie was right about how BTH could be an influence on AB. This is clearly a very disfunctional organization from top (ownership) to bottom. Grunfeld needs to take over the reigns of this organization and dishonest abe needs to retire, sell the franchise, and move down to florida.

Posted by: DC Man88 | April 25, 2007 9:02 AM | Report abuse

Mikie,

Haywood and Blatche are friends. In fact, Brendan started saying "something" to Blatche before every game. Whatever the "something" is it changes all the time-they made it somewhat of a ritual. This was reported a few months ago.

Posted by: Lisa | April 25, 2007 9:45 AM | Report abuse

Mikie, just curious. are you a personal friend of Mason?

I'm a former VA Cav. Happy for the guy but I don't find him to be all that good. But, I notice you swear everytime he puts up a shot you say its "good." There's a reason the teams released him and he's on Wiz bench.

Truth - we need low post player, maybe a center - enough of the subpar bench players.

Posted by: Rob | April 25, 2007 10:06 AM | Report abuse

Rob - Nope, I don't even know the dude. I have shot a lot of ball over the years, and I am no coach, but the dude can flat out shoot the rock. Just look at his technique on how he squares up and has his elbow locked to his side every shot.

That is how you can tell the dude is a very good shooter. As far as getting released by other teams, he keep getting caught up in numbers games. He can be a postive asset I think.

Posted by: mikie | April 25, 2007 12:59 PM | Report abuse

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