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Update on Blatche

In today's paper and in last night's blog I wrote about the Cleveland Cavaliers and New Jersey Nets planning on making runs at signing Wiz free agent forward Andray Blatche. That's correct but there is one thing I have to clarify from my reporting. Because Blatche is an "early bird" free agent, the Wizards can sign him outright or match any offer made to him without dipping into their mid-level exception (a first-year salary starting at around $5 million). Oddly enough, the rule is known as the "Arenas rule" because Golden State was unable to match Washington's offer to him in the summer of 2003 because they could not go above and beyond the ML.

So, the Wiz could sign Blatche or match an offer made to him AND still have their ML free to sign other players (DeShawn Stevenson for instance). My bad on that.

Heading down to Verizon Center here in a little while to check out today's workout guys: J.R. Reynolds (UVA), Jarrius Jackson (Texas Tech), Bobby Brown (Cal State Fullerton) and Aaron Brooks (Oregon). I'll check back later with an update.

By Ivan Carter  |  June 21, 2007; 10:23 AM ET
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Ivan - Does that "Arenas Rule" only apply to 2nd round draft picks. Arenas was a 2nd round draft pick and so is Blatche. If I remember correctly, because of a loophole; the Warriors could not match the Wizards offer because they would have went over the cap.

So the league implemented a new rule for all 2nd round draft picks who happen to "blow up" while with their original teams (i.e. Arenas, Redd and Blatche). Not sure if I have it all right, but I am sure some of the knowledgeable bloggers on here can help me out.

Posted by: mikie | June 21, 2007 10:42 AM | Report abuse

That's good to hear. Although Deshawn really tanked in the playoffs, he played solid throughout the year and is really worth keeping. We need to keep both him and Andray. They both are good compliments to the Big 3.

Posted by: eric | June 21, 2007 11:08 AM | Report abuse

Thanks for the knowledge Ivan!

DeShawn did not tank in the playoffs, he was exposed by being forced to do stuff that he can't, and would never have been asked to do if Arenas hadn't gone down. DeShawn is what a lot of players are in this system -- more valuable to the Zards than they are to anyone else (e.g. Larry Hughes, Jared Jeffries).

Posted by: Zonker | June 21, 2007 11:19 AM | Report abuse

A clarification on the "Arenas" rule:

It applies to all Restricted Free Agents with one or two years in the league. Also, it really only affects other teams that would make an offer to Blatche. In other words, it limits the amount they can offer him. The gist is, any team can ONLY offer Blatche the average salary in the 1st year, with standard raise in the 2nd. However....and this is still a loophole....the 3rd year can be much, much larger than the standard raise. But only a team under the salary cap could offer that as the yearly salaries would be averaged across the length of the contract, making it impossible to use a MLE AND have the balloon salary in the 3rd year. So what does that mean for the Wizards? They only have to worry about teams under the cap offering Blatche a contract. Why? Using the Early-Bird exception, they could offer only as much as the average salary, for 5 years, at standard increases. So, they would not be able to match a 3rd year balloon payment. Of course, any team offering a full MLE is essentially exactly the same contract as the Early Bird exception. Thus, the Wizards can match ANY offer from any team over the salary cap.


Posted by: Michael T | June 21, 2007 11:24 AM | Report abuse


Posted by: Anonymous | June 21, 2007 11:45 AM | Report abuse

Read on the paper Wizards is considering trading Etan and AD. Does this mean they are going to keep Haywood? Or maybe they just want to play PF/C type of guys (i.e., Pecherov and Jason Smith)?

Also they would need to get a backup PG if AD is traded.

Posted by: sagaliba | June 21, 2007 11:56 AM | Report abuse

If the Wizards are looking to add another assistance coaching, preferably one to bolster the defense, how about Michael Cooper, one of the best defenders in his era? I believe EJ played with him in LA, so it wouldn't be the stick in the eye that another pick might be.

Posted by: Sean | June 21, 2007 12:21 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, "assistant coach." It would help if I thought while typing these things.

Posted by: Sean | June 21, 2007 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Mikie, the Arenas rule only applies to second rounders and rookie FA's as I understand it. 1st round guys get a slotted 3 year deal with a club option for the 4th. 2nd round and rookie FA's are limited to two year deals.
Like Micheal T said the only real worry would be a team like Charlotte with alot of room under the cap coming in and offering a deal with a big 3rd 4th and 5th years. But that's where I'm not totally sure about our ability to match since when you get out to years three, four and five because of expiring contracts we'd be under the cap then.
Ivan pose that question to Ernie, I'd love to hear his explaination of that convolted rule! I'm not sure, but I thought that I'd read somewhere that a team could match those ballon years if they had enough expiring contracts to get them under the cap in those years. I think that had something to do with the Bucks ability to retain Redd when it was assumed that they couldn't match a backloaded offer.
Mikie, hope that's clear as mud, actually I think they make up some of this stuff as they go along. But bottem line most teams are reluctant to exceed the Luxury Tax level and there are only a few that are very far under it.
As much potential as Blatch has it would be a real gamble for a team to commit alot of money in years 3,4 & 5 of a deal when they could just wait and see how he and other potential FA's develop. He could do a Darius Miles and then they'd be wondering how to get rid of him.
My guess is that Blatche will be looking for a 5 yr deal that will allow him to opt out early to test the FA waters after the third year. I'd be really surprised if someone came around offering a big backloaded deal for Blatche so I'd agree with Ivan's post that he's not going anywhere.

Posted by: GM | June 21, 2007 12:24 PM | Report abuse

We need to get rid of Haywood. He is a lazy crybaby. The only reason he is still around is because of potential. Sound familiar?

Posted by: BT | June 21, 2007 1:10 PM | Report abuse

Trading Haywood would be mutually beneficial to both him and the team. He has a lot of talent but is not happy in his current environment, so he would be better suited somewhere else.

We should definitely keep Blatche - he's young and has a lot of potential.

Also, Deshawn needs to stay because he gels well with the current Wizard starting lineup and was very productive during the regular season. He does need to step his game up next year when the Wizards make the playoffs again though.........

Posted by: ? | June 21, 2007 1:23 PM | Report abuse

Ivan good news. I thought that was the case. You should always run it by us 1st before putting it in print bro!

Interested to hear how Reynolds and Brooks did. See Reynolds dropping out of the draft on some mocks. I think his game is well suited to our style of play. He could be that Dixon type of scoring combo off the bench.

Posted by: Darnell | June 21, 2007 1:34 PM | Report abuse

Interesting stuff Michael T.

So a team w/ cap room like Milwaukee, Orlando or Charlotte could potentially offer Blatche a MLE salary with a balloon payment in the 3rd year that would prevent the Wizards from being able to match?

That's one heckuva loophole.

Posted by: Dat2U | June 21, 2007 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Interesting stuff Michael T.

So a team w/ cap room like Milwaukee, Orlando or Charlotte could potentially offer Blatche a MLE salary with a balloon payment in the 3rd year that would prevent the Wizards from being able to match?

That's one heckuva loophole.

Posted by: Dat2U | June 21, 2007 1:47 PM | Report abuse

With all the news that Ivan posted today, I'm going to try to tie a few things together:

- Susan O'Malley's departure is a bit mysterious. Recall that Wes Unseld left the organization with no advance warning right before the draft and right before MJ was kicked to the curb a few years ago. With O'Malley, it makes sense that after graduating from law school, she might want to get into the practice of law. But she didn't mention that. She said she planned to take the summer off and figure out what she wanted to do. Most people, even rich people, don't quit jobs for no reason with nothing lined up. I'm guessing she was pushed out (unlikely) or decided to get out now for one reason or another (more likely). It doesn't have to be anything controversial regarding the franchise (maybe she has a minor medical issue, maybe she's in love, maybe she is aware of another opportunity and didn't want to pursue it until after she left the Wizards, who knows), but it could be. Maybe like Wes, she's parachuting out before it hits the fan. It is interesting that in her interviews she talked about how everything was in good shape and in good hands right now, so it made sense to leave. Reading between the lines skeptically, could that mean that she likes the way things are now, and isn't as positive about the way some decisions are about to be made?

The fact that Ernie hasn't resigned Ernie's assistants yet is very interesting. Keep in mind those negotiations in and of themselves can be very telling. For example, maybe Ernie has already offered them extensions, but only for one year. What would that tell you? If you are the coaches' agent(s), you try to call Ernie's bluff and push for a longer-term deal, with a length to at least match EJ's deal. Maybe Ernie and EJ have been doing the negotiations, with Ernie refusing to extend any of EJ's guys until EJ makes some adjustments and agrees to an addition to the staff picked by Ernie. But whatever is happening, we know this -- if Ernie was really happy with EJ and the coaching staff, the staff would have been resigned long ago.

Indications of Blatche's market value make the news that Ernie would be open to moving Etan and/or Antonio comes as no surprise. If you are going to sign another sizable contract, it makes sense that you'd like to get rid of one, and the ones you'd like to move are Etan's and Antonio's. If Garnett stays in Minnesota, that would seem to be a perfect destination for Antonio, from the Wolves' perspective, at least. Maybe Ricky Davis (one year left on contract) in return?

Posted by: Henry | June 21, 2007 1:50 PM | Report abuse

Fesenko is in ATL today, and Philly on Monday. Is he gonna stop here on the way and workout for us tomorrow?

Posted by: Darnell | June 21, 2007 1:57 PM | Report abuse

If Ricky Davis came to DC, I wouldn't know whether to laugh or cry. It would sure as heck make for some good blog material, though.

Posted by: Mike in SD | June 21, 2007 2:28 PM | Report abuse

"But whatever is happening, we know this -- if Ernie was really happy with EJ and the coaching staff, the staff would have been resigned long ago."

Hey Henry. :)

This is exactly what I'm saying and it makes me wonder about Jordan's status as well. You don't re-sign the assistants and force the coach's hand.

I wonder if it means they are talking to someone else *cough*Van Gundy*cough*

The thing with Blatche is interesting as well, especially with Pesh coming on board this season. I would love to see Blatche start next year, but you can't pay that guy 4-5 mil to sit the bench. Then you have Haywood and Etan to try and dump.

Personally I'm not taking either of those bums unless you throw a kid like Blatche in.

Stevenson is NOT going to be re-signed. They already have Hayes penciled in at the 2, I guarantee it.

The next few weeks should be interesting...

- Ray

Posted by: Ray | June 21, 2007 2:49 PM | Report abuse

Dat: The Wizards would still be able to match if another team offered Blatche the 3rd year balloon. According to Ivan's report, teams couldn't do that, however. That's because to add in that 3rd year balloon, the team would have to offer Blatche the maximum allowable salary in the first 2 years -- in other words, the MLE. Ivan's report says the teams are prepared to offer Blatche a starting salary of $4 million, which means they'd be prohibited from offering the 3rd year balloon.

Regardless, the Wizards will be able to match any offer -- even the maximum possible offer. The team making the offer has to average the salaries over the length of the deal and have it fit under their salary cap. To match, the Wizards would have the actual salary in each year count against the cap. In other words, if the Nets offer Blatche the maximum possible amount (let's say it's $55 million with that balloon for year 3), the Nets have to fit $11 million into the FIRST year of the contract. But, the Wizards have to match only the amount he'd actually be earning that season -- the MLE. And, the Wiz don't have to use the MLE to do it because they'd be permitted to use the Early Bird Exception.

Posted by: TSW | June 21, 2007 2:56 PM | Report abuse

thanks for the explanation of the "Arenas Rule" GM.

Posted by: mikie | June 21, 2007 2:58 PM | Report abuse

See this link:

This will explain the Arenas provision. There's a great example there that shows the balloon year in 3, 4, 5 with the average salary and 8% range years 1 to 2. You'll also see that the actual cap amount for the first year would be more like $11 million than the average NBA salary. That's how a team under the cap could "steal" Blatche from the Wizards.

-Michael T.

Posted by: Michael T | June 21, 2007 3:16 PM | Report abuse

Hayes is a free agaent also so I don't know how everyone is planning on him being the starter.

I am praying they let him walk---he is one of the worst players in the league, I would rather Donnell Taylor or Roger Mason start than him

Posted by: Brian | June 21, 2007 3:24 PM | Report abuse

Ivan, just some hopeful wishing on my part... but is it possible the rumors about the Suns and Wiz discussing a Jamison for Marion deal surfaced because the two teams were in fact talking to each other, but not about that. Perhaps discussing a swap of draft picks?

I am totally stuck on that move. It would be a good deal for us, and for both teams. But the way those things happen, they're not announced until after the fact so other teams can't counteract. If it went down, both teams would draft whoever the other team wants, and then the swap would be announced later in the draft.

For example, at 16 the Wizards would take the player the Suns want projected to go there, such as Jason Smith, McRoberts, or Splitter. Then at 24 the Suns would take who the Wizards want, such as Belinelli. Then at 29 again take the player the Wizards want there, such as Fesenko or Gray. Then after the picks are made they'd announce the Wizards dealt Smith or whoever they took at 16 to the Suns for Belinelli and whoever.

So we have to wait and see. But if the Wizards take McRoberts at 16 or someone else that doesn't make sense, you can be sure a deal is in the works.

Posted by: Darnell | June 21, 2007 3:26 PM | Report abuse

I'm assuming now that we can re-sign both Blatche and Stevenson that clearing Etan and or Daniels is merely a means to get under the luxury tax. I still think we need to draft a wing player. After Arenas we have no backcourt scoring and we need to cover our bases in case Deshawn leaves via free agency.

Posted by: Oz | June 21, 2007 4:00 PM | Report abuse

Ivan and the rest of the readers,

A friend of mine actually played Golf with Ed Tapscott at a Celebrity Golf Tournament when the Wizards were in the first round of the playoffs. He started asking Ed about the Wizards and specifically about Eddie Jordan. Tapscott ripped Eddie for his terrible coaching moves in the second half of the season, and his coaching in the playoffs. He explained that he had no idea why Eddie was tooling with the line up so much and having guys like Roger Mason in at the end of the game on one night, and then not play Mason at all the next night.

The moral of the story is that Tapscott doesn't like Eddie Jordan. It will be interesting to see what happens if he does get hired.

Posted by: 12 Bud Lights | June 21, 2007 4:07 PM | Report abuse

while i'm not a huge fan of eddie jordan as a head coach (i do like his offense though) i would be a very depressed man if van gundy or larry brown ended up here. for starters, arenas would be out of here as quick as possible. both of those coaches have a reputation of getting on their pgs, and in the case of van gundy, they try to change their scoring pg into passing pg (see francis back when he was still real good).

plus van gundy has had two teams stacked with talent, and still not been able to fully deliver with them. he did his best with new york, but seriously, that was after another coach built them up.

brown trades away all prospects and young players for average vets, then runs out on the team when he realizes he's created a huge hole.

there might be other candidates out there better suited for the job over eddie jordan, but keep those two far away, please.

Posted by: JC | June 21, 2007 5:11 PM | Report abuse

Sorry Brian and others bloggers - As far as I'm concerned Mason is part of that sorry a-- bench that needs to gooooooo.

I'm with Gilbert on this. If you want to win a championship - you gotta select championship calibre players.

After 40 games - you still can't prove your worth. Goodbye.

That bench, Mason included looked barely D-League.

Watchin the playoffs where all these rookies stepped up - let me see what a truly sub par - D League level bench we have.

And to be clear in response to the comments by Tapscot - it didn't matter whether they were put in at the end, middle or beginning of the games. They performed like it was the Finals. Thats what I'm talkin about!! They handle the rock!! Not our sorry bench.

Re Mr. Tapscotts comments:

Quite frankly, Tapscott didn't do anything with Charlotte - whose to say he can contribute anything here. Its always easy to critique somebody else. He's been around a LONG time. Funny, I can't recall one team he's managed successfully. That says a lot right there. Charlotte's got good players on a team with screwed up managment. If we're not careful - it could be the same here.

Those who can - DO
Those who can't criticise

As you can tell - I'm not impressed with Mr. Tapscott who appears to have a personal issue with Jordan. As I watched the games - It was hard to tell he was rooting for the Wizards. Constantly laughing at the Wiz & as I recall - he coined the phrase "MATADOR DEFENSE"

Lets just say, I wouldn't want him in my foxhole.

Posted by: Mr B | June 21, 2007 5:12 PM | Report abuse

Micheal T, thanks for the link. The articale I read didn't explain it that way, but I understand now how the year three provision works. In effect a team would really have to target a guy and have cap room to burn since they'd have to commit alot of dead money the first two years of the contract toward the cap. Enough money in the illustration that they could use MLE and go out and have another player and not cost any more money in cap dollars.
Looking at the Cap rules and the Luxury cap rules brings up another question. If in the example illustrated where the average amount of salary that counts against the cap turns out to be 11m, is that the amount that counts against the Luxury Tax the first two years?
If it is, that would be a double poison pill to prevent a team from making that kind of offer unless they are way under the luxury tax. Only team I see even coming close to being able to make an offer like that would be Charlotte, and I think Jordan is planning to use his cap space to chase a proven scorer and a name to put fans in the seats.
A team would have to really beleive that a guy would be a hugh star to make an offer like that to a guy like Blatche. They'd be gambling that he'd become a franchise player before the end of the deal.
Like Darnell I think the Wizards and the Suns could be talking. If Daniels would get traded in another deal I wouldn't be surprised if a deal involving Marcus Banks and a 1st round draft pick coming to Washinton. The Suns are apparently willing to package their two picks to try and entice teams to help them clear Salary. Or they could be talking about a trade down like Darnell brought up.
Jordan is said to be shopping his second first rounder, has cap space and is looking for young vets in return with a reasonable contracts, a home for Haywood?
Philly is rumored to be trying to move up for Yi. No one ahead of them is said to be interested in taking all three of their first rounders but if they traded with us could they find a taker for the 12th and 16th pick to get into the top 10 and get one of the top power forwards?
I'm sure Ernie is working the phones overtime and is looking at alot of possibilities, it may all be smoke and mirrors but he just seems to be spending alot of time working out guys that the draft boards don't project as high as our 16th pick. With the number of FA's on our bench and Daniels, Etan, and Haywood's names all getting thrown around along with Hayes being a restricted FA Robin might get her wish and have an all new bench next year.

Posted by: GM | June 21, 2007 5:34 PM | Report abuse

TSW, thanks for the input. So basically with a 3rd year "balloon payment", a team under the cap would be able to structure a deal in such a way that could make it undesirable for the other team to match the offer.

So a team like Charlotte could make a crazy offer to Blatche to deter the Wizards from matching, but the Wizards would still have the option to match, balloon payment or not?

Posted by: Dat2U | June 21, 2007 5:42 PM | Report abuse

"plus van gundy has had two teams stacked with talent, and still not been able to fully deliver with them. he did his best with new york, but seriously, that was after another coach built them up."

What two teams were those? Aside from Yao and McGrady (who spent much of their tenure under Van Gundy on the injured list) the Rockets roster was awful. Aside from Battier (maybe) there wasn't a player in their top seven rotation that would get major minutes on most playoff caliber teams. And the Knicks team he inherited was slow, nonathletic, and towards the end, old and injury-riddled. It wasn't pretty by a long shot, but he squeezed as much out of those teams as anyone could have.

As for him not being able to deliver ... you do realize that he got the Knicks to the NBA Finals with Patrick Ewing, their best player, out of the lineup with injuries?

Posted by: kalorama | June 21, 2007 6:34 PM | Report abuse


The Wizards would have to have the cap room to match....remember the cap value for the first year isn't based on the actual first year's the average over the length of the contract. So, since the Wizards have no cap room, if that average is over the max amount the Wizards can give with the Early Bird (which is the MLE equivalent), then the Wizards would not be able to match.

Posted by: Michael T | June 21, 2007 6:38 PM | Report abuse

Was just reading that Garnett rejected a trade to Boston with his agent saying he wanted to go to a warm weather site where he could compete for a title.
Is it too late to start a new promotional effort for DC? Washington... Not quite as hot as Pheonix, but it's a moist sticky kind of heat...

Posted by: GM | June 21, 2007 7:21 PM | Report abuse

I'm still trying to figure out why somebody on here keeps stating that Hayes will be playing the 2. He is absolutley terrible. the worst player on the team. Anyone with any b-ball experience can see that hayes can't play.

Posted by: ty-rod | June 21, 2007 8:57 PM | Report abuse

Love the blogs and updates Ivan. Keep up the good work, really good insight. Thanks

Posted by: Richmond | June 21, 2007 9:56 PM | Report abuse

I hope Abe has to break the piggy bank to resign AB. I really think the Cavs will give AB a ridiculous contract. Reason is, if they try and don't get AB, LeBron will be plenty angry. Even though Les BouleS can match any offer without dipping into their mid level exception, that doesn't mean they will match any offer. AB would definitely sign with the Cavs b/c Lebron is a star that likes to pass. If he stays with Les BouleS, he will continue to sit on the bench, and even if he's not sitting, won't get any touches because of the resident ballhog. You know who you are!

Posted by: DC Man88 | June 21, 2007 10:04 PM | Report abuse

"Yes, I know, I know.....this franchise is on a tight budget...." said Eddie Jordan.

Posted by: DC Man88 | June 21, 2007 10:16 PM | Report abuse

"Hayes is a free agaent also so I don't know how everyone is planning on him being the starter."

He's a restricted FA.

Honestly, I think Stevenson's disappearance in the latter part of the season hurt him. Plus the Wiz has yet to give up on Hayes. They played him MORE instead of less as the season progressed.

Can't keep Hayes and Stevenson, re-sign Blatche, sign draft picks, bring the kids over from overseas, ect., ect., and NOT trade Etan or Haywood.

Pollin has said NUMEROUS times he will NOT go over the luxury tax. Stevenson is the odd man out, he will not be a Wizard next year.

"Perhaps discussing a swap of draft picks?"

I was thinking the same thing Darnell, mostly due to cap space more then anything else. Otherwise expect the Wiz to draft yet another overseas kid and let him develope over there until they can clear a spot for him.

EG has his work cut out for him this summer.

Getting Marion here would be an amazing move for the Wiz, I would be hard pressed to think the Suns would give him up however. Now especially with this whole KG thing surfacing.....

- Ray

Posted by: Ray | June 21, 2007 10:20 PM | Report abuse

Oh, and someone please tell Mr. Pollin to do to the Wiz's jerseys what the Caps did in regards to thier jerseys(red, white, blue).

You can thank good ole Susan O'Malley for the ugly colors they currently have.

Bad, bad, move. :(

- Ray

Posted by: Ray | June 21, 2007 10:28 PM | Report abuse

It would be interesting if Jeff Van Gundy came here with his mentor Riley and his brother Stan both in our division.

Posted by: Darnell | June 21, 2007 10:46 PM | Report abuse

Marion won't be coming here after all, especially if Les BouleS give Gilby a max contract, which he doesn't deserve:

"Perhaps the biggest hitch when it comes to dealing Marion is his contract. Marion can opt out after next season, when he is scheduled to make $16.4 million. According to a league source, Marion will likely insist on a max or near max extension from any team that trades for him. That means his new team would likely have to pay Marion in excess of $17 million per season for five more years. Now, Marion is a quality player, but there are some around the league who believe Marion has benefited from the "Steve Nash Effect," which is to say Marion's stock (and statistics) will fall once he leaves Phoenix."

Posted by: DC Man88 | June 21, 2007 10:54 PM | Report abuse

That is not "new" was reported by the local newspaper days ago that there was nothing to the Marion/Jamison trade rumor.

Posted by: Santana | June 21, 2007 10:57 PM | Report abuse

How much room could the Cavs have? They have a lot of $$$ tied up in Z, LeBron and Larry Hughes.

Posted by: George Templeton | June 22, 2007 1:10 AM | Report abuse

I wonder if any of the teams with picks in the late 1st round would deal their pick to us for our 1st round pick in '08 ?

Here's my dream offseason:

At #16 we take SF Julian Wright

We deal our 1st rounder in '08 for a late 1st rounder in this draft. Perhaps a team with multiple pick this year like the Suns, 76ers, or Pistons, and get Belinelli.

At #47 we get Center Kyrylo Fesenko

Summer league we bring in undrafted players JR Reynolds and Mustafa Shakur

We deal Etan Thomas for Hedo Tukoglu

Re-sign Blatche and Stevenson

Posted by: Darnell | June 22, 2007 1:23 AM | Report abuse

Haywood / Blatche / Fesenko
Jamison / Pecherov / Songaila
Butler / Wright / Turkoglu
Stevenson / Belinelli / Reynolds
Arenas / Daniels / Shakur

Posted by: Darnell | June 22, 2007 1:27 AM | Report abuse

Actually, call me a softy, but I'd keep Hayes if we can. Adjust the guard positions on that roster...

Stevenson / Belinelli / Hayes
Arenas / Daniels / Reynolds

Posted by: Darnell | June 22, 2007 1:32 AM | Report abuse

Man look at that!

Haywood, Jamison, Butler, Stevenson, Arenas

Same starting 5

Then we come in with...

Blatche, Pecherov, Wright, Belinelli, Daniels

And the end of the bench?

Fesenko, Songaila, Turkoglu, Hayes, Reynolds

That is nice.

Posted by: Darnell | June 22, 2007 1:36 AM | Report abuse

As for him not being able to deliver ... you do realize that he got the Knicks to the NBA Finals with Patrick Ewing, their best player, out of the lineup with injuries?

dude, that team had latrell sprewell, marcus camby, larry johnson, allan houston...even a young kurt thomas and they didn't lose ewing until the middle of the ecf...

Posted by: JC | June 22, 2007 7:57 AM | Report abuse

Draftexpress is reporting that the Wizards are said to like Nick Young, and that both Phila. (21 and 30) and Phoenix (24 and 29) are looking to move those picks to get into the upper teens. The workout schedule now makes a little more sense -- if Ernie doesn't see someone he really likes at 16, he trades down (the Philly option is better). Teams with the 17th through 20th picks seem to need bigs more than smalls, so Ernie could get the same guy at 21 that he might want at 16, plus get the 30th pick.
Draftexpress is also reporting that Rudy Fernandez will likely stay in Europe next year due to buyout issues, and he is and will be paid so much in Europe, he'll lose money by being slotted in a mid or late first round pick.

Posted by: Henry | June 22, 2007 8:00 AM | Report abuse

I'd have to agree with Ray and Darnell's speculation that EG may trade down in the draft and there may be cap management issues involved.
If we do trade down I wouldn't be surprised to see one of the picks be Splitter. He has one more year on his Euro deal and then can come over and Ernie has alot of other roster moves to make this offseason. Waiting one more year for Splitter and Vereemenko seems to fit into his plan to rebuild the frontline.
If Ernie has his way both Haywood and Thomas will be gone by the start of 2008. Ruffin is already history and Booth may be useful for one more season. To me that means he needs another big to plug into the roster along with Vereemenko next summer. If Grunfeld can manuver an extra pick I still think he'll try and get Splitter somewhere in the 20's.
If we can pick up another draft pick and get a 2 or three with decent three ball range in the process Ernie will come out smelling like a rose. And I agree with Darnell if we could pick up Fesenko with an early second(Haywood to Portland for two of their seconds?)he could be another nice pc to the puzzle.
I think EG would like to end up with a group of long rangy bigs that are quick and tough on the boards and play some D. Pecherov and Vereemenko are the first wave, I'd look for him to add a couple of more guys in this draft and push the last of the holdovers out the door this summer and next.
We have alot of open roster spots and not a ton of money to spend on the end of the bench, I wouldn't be surprised to see one or two non drafted guys make the team this year as the 14th and 15th guys. Question is will Jordan let Grunfeld send them to D league for playing time and experience?
Blatche is not going anywhere unless Micheal Jordan and the Bobcats would decide to make a monster offer just to drive the price up on Pollin. They're the only team that has the cap space to make a offer with a hugh increase in the third year. It's possible that they could make an offer that would be crippling to the Wizards to match. If they do Ernie won't match a contract that hamstrings him and they get Blatche.
But in the end the Bobcats would be in the same shape as the Cavaliers are now from their Hughes deal. The Cavaliers aren't going to make any hugh run at Blatche, they're over the Luxury Tax now and still have to spend money to retain guys that are part of their core. There's no way they can offer a deal to Blatche that we can't match.
And there never was a Marion/Jamison deal, it made no sense from the Suns end at all. Their management laughed it off to the Pheonix papers, it was never happening from their end, and the trade not happening had nothing to do Arenas saying he's going to opt out next year at all.
The Suns are trying to figure out how to put together a Garnett deal without giving up Amare, the only way I think we could factor into that at all would be in a trade of draft picks to give them the number 16 to offer in a package to the T-Wolves

Posted by: GM | June 22, 2007 8:18 AM | Report abuse

I suck coock all day long and yearn for Gilby's but he won't let me! wahwahwah

Posted by: DC Man88 | June 22, 2007 8:25 AM | Report abuse

lol now the truth comes out about DCWoman. You know you should have just said so from the beginning then everyone would understand your posts more...

Posted by: Anonymous | June 22, 2007 8:42 AM | Report abuse

I hope Abe has to break the piggy bank to resign AB. I really think the Cavs will give AB a ridiculous contract. I yearn to suck Gilby's coock. Reason is, if they try and don't get AB, LeBron will be plenty angry. Even though Les BouleS can match any offer without dipping into their mid level exception, that doesn't mean they will match any offer. I yearn to suck Gilby's coock. AB would definitely sign with the Cavs b/c Lebron is a star that likes to pass. If he stays with Les BouleS, he will continue to sit on the bench, and even if he's not sitting, won't get any touches because of the resident ballhog. I yearn to suck Gilby's coock. You know who you are!

Posted by: DC Man88 | June 22, 2007 9:19 AM | Report abuse

I knew that DCman88 was a woman based on some of the words useds and the messages themself. I have never know a man to speak in that manner.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 22, 2007 9:33 AM | Report abuse

/sigh another good bball convo interuppted by nonsense. I'm not one to defend anyone but stop posting slander under DC Man88 we know that's not him writing it. Everytime that is posted an anon comment comes behind it. looks suspicious. Bball folks.. keep up the good topics on this thread.. I love it and imma baseball guy who doesn't follow basketball. but i'm here for the bball insight and you guys are knowledgeable.

Posted by: Toneto2722 | June 22, 2007 9:54 AM | Report abuse


Posted by: Anonymous | June 22, 2007 9:57 AM | Report abuse

looks like DCWoman is Toneto2722 in disguise. sure looks suspicious.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 22, 2007 10:00 AM | Report abuse

nah i'm just a man at work enjoyin this forum and find it ridicolous n childish how back and forth this is. but think what u want. If you look at my previous post I've gotten on DC Man for it also. It's meaningless crap people shouldn't have to read. amirite anon?

Posted by: Toneto2722 | June 22, 2007 10:06 AM | Report abuse

I'm not going back n forth. Nice post to Ray, Lisa, Robin, Kal, GM, George and everyone else who discusses basketball ^.^

Posted by: Toneto2722 | June 22, 2007 10:08 AM | Report abuse

The reason for Jarvis getting extended minutes later in the season had to do with one thing.

Butler getting hurt twice.

Posted by: dc | June 22, 2007 10:23 AM | Report abuse

As I see it, the Wiz need one basic thing right now -- a defensive-minded, tough, rebounding center. With the other players they have, that's the missing piece. Someone like Camby. I don't see anyone like that in the draft. That's the need, though it's about the hardest thing to acquire through a trade. We don't have a lot to offer without dangling Blatche or another crucial player. Of course everyone knows that Haywood, Etan, Daniels, the #16 pick, etc. are avaiable, but who'd be willing to take it?

Is there a chance Blatche or Petch could man the middle, I wonder? Certainly they'd struggle against top centers, but there just aren't many out there, especially in the East. I liked Blatche's defense last year, and Petch seems to be filling out physically. If that could work, we could basically stand pat, take the best wing player available at 16 (or Splitter and wait another year), and have very little roster turnover, which would be a good thing. Remember that before injuries hit last January, the Wiz were leading the conference. I'm not sure lots of tinkering, or major retooling via blockbuster trade, is needed here.

Posted by: Keithinator | June 22, 2007 10:31 AM | Report abuse

Good Morning All,

Thanks Michael T, for making the salary, MLE issue basic & understandable. Darnell did had a good lineup at least on paper.

Thinking back in my head to the end of the year. Ivan, Wise, Doc Walker, Thompson and Wilbon declared verbally & "in print": Stevenson, Hayes and the bench all gone. Keep Songalia, AB, Hall, AD(as backup) Ruffin, Gilbert, Butler, Jamison, Thomas(becuz of contract - not talent)and discussions were ongoing on what to do with Haywood.(Most said get rid of him but no concrete decision made becuz of his size)

Stevenson's performance in playoffs & prior games caused Ivan via radio during playoffs, to declare him & the bench gone with reasons why. Not heard Ivan quite so frank. keeping that in mind - it will be interesting to see the direction the team goes. I felt Euros but I'll wait & see.

To the earlier poster stating Jordan would be selecting? At this juncture, I don't think Jordan will have a heck of a lot of say so..sounds to me Mr. Grunfeld is the captain of this ship. Jordan has had issues with his players - AB, BH & Gil included whom EG is supportive. We may be looking at Ernies' Assocs - a "defensive minded staff coming in." Polin's getting sickly & older - prob wants to see some major improvement before selling to Ted.
With strict instructions: "Always beat the Bobcats - no matter what."

Posted by: Robin | June 22, 2007 11:12 AM | Report abuse

As I see it, the Wiz need one basic thing right now -- a defensive-minded, tough, rebounding center. With the other players they have, that's the missing piece. Someone like Camby. I don't see anyone like that in the draft.

sean williams
more of a pf than center, but still a legit 6'10". great shot blocker, good rebounder, very physical. he should still be available at the 16th spot...he'd be a great compliment to blatche & petch

Posted by: JC | June 22, 2007 11:29 AM | Report abuse

I agree, Keith -- the defensive minded center is what this team needs. Pecherov, Blatche and Songalia are nice options to have to fill some minutes at center, but in the end, you've got to have that defensive cornerstone. And Jamison, Blatche, Songalia, and Pecherov are not terrific defenders.
You look in the East, and there are not a lot of centers you need to worry about defending. So the purpose of having such a center is to block shots and discourage players from driving to the basket.
Who in the NBA is able to fill that role? The first tier would likely be Tim Duncan, Greg Oden, Camby, Ben Wallace, Okafor, Alonzo, Shaq, and Yao. The second tier would likely be Dalembert, Dwight Howard, Tyson Chandler, Jermaine O'Neal, Przybilla, Diop, Haywood, Kwame, Dikembe (maybe still first tier?).
So if you dump Haywood, you need to get one of those other guys. Since they are so hard to get, if Splitter is that kind of player (I don't know if he is -- he is good defensively, but not a noted shot blocker), pick him at 16 and wait a year. It's easier to find a swinger player elsewhere.

Posted by: Sean | June 22, 2007 11:37 AM | Report abuse

I'd agree that if Pecherov can play center for at least part time it could solve many of the Wizards needs this summer. Songalia is also a guy that can be plugged into the center spot part time and is excellent at pick and roll game.
I've never really seen Vereemenko play myself, but some of the scouting reports I read last year said he'd have been a first rounder if he didn't have two more years to play in Moscow. Another guy with a rep. as a rugged rebounder, tough defender but has a nice face the basket game with decent range. Not really noted for a post up game, but then not many Euro big guys really are.
The goal is to build a team to compete for the title, Haywood and Thomas are both very limited in the Princeton Offense because both have hands of stone. How many times have you seen both flash to the basket off the high screen and have the ball bounce off their hands for a turnover? Neither is any threat from the top of the key as a passer, shooter, or driver.
Some have said that we don't need a center with any offensive skills, but that not true, just think about Motumbo on the Nets. The Princeton just doesn't work with out a center with some ball skills, and he really needs to be a triple threat from the top of the key for the thing to really hum.
Our offense in the few games that Songalia was able to get out there with the big three really flowed. Big problem was by the time Darius got back the other guys were hurt all the time.
With Pecherov here and an expanded role for Blatch, our picks(maybe more than two) and hopefully yeilding something for Haywood or Thomas I don't think we need a blockbuster deal involving the big three to come back much stronger next season. And as it stands now Vereemenko and Navarro should be joining us in 08' which should give Arenas, Jamison and Butler the supporting cast to make a nice run at things.

Posted by: GM | June 22, 2007 11:56 AM | Report abuse

JC, you're right in that Williams could be that kind of guy, but I think Ernie would shy away from someone with the kind of mammoth baggage he'd bring with him. He'd be worth a second-round risk, but not at #16.

Posted by: Keithinator | June 22, 2007 12:20 PM | Report abuse

GM, I like the analogy "hands of stone." LOL, LOL. But I do agree about Songalia. He simply didn't have much of an opportunity last yr but what he had he took great advantage of. Hopefully they play him more this yr. Waiting to see what happens with Brendan, Jarvis & Daniels. Sounds like a package to somewhere..

But they were sketchy about Brendan because ot the issues w/Jordan...I don't know. Ernie just may decide to keep that guy or try to go after O'Neal since LA doesn't want him.

Posted by: Robin | June 22, 2007 12:27 PM | Report abuse

Bring back Hayes? So he'd except the veteran's minimum, non-guaranteed? Sweet cuz he's not even worth that. I don't think his knee could handle the burden of anymore guaranteed money. No one needs a change of scenery like Jarvis, and on this team thats saying something.

As for criticizing Jordan, how could you not? His distribution of minutes from night to night was at best just a tad more logical than Doc Rivers'. We have one player who does a 'decent' job on Ilgauskas. He barely left the bench while "Z" led the NBA playoffs in FG% after the Wizards series. Thats just the last example we saw, there were TONS more.

I'd prefer to bring DeShawn back. He is the right complimentary piece to play with Arenas et al. He'd eventually be better of the bench as the sorely needed scoring punch. But its important he remembers the discipline that lead to those career highs in shooting percentages.

I really can't fault him for not being able to go from complimentary piece to #2 option in the playoffs. Well, I can't ostracize him for it. Especially when you consider that Cleveland got all the way to the Finals on the defense. (which is also why the whole 'We could be in the Finals too' argument falls apart. Zero D.)

Your 2 All Stars go down, not slumping but off the court entirely, and the entire game changes. Fault the guy, sure. Trash him? nah. Would you trash Felipe Lopez because he's not Soriano? Makes no sense. Ernie knows what he's worth and where to draw the line. Hopefully DeShawn also understands the opportunity here versus other coaches/systems.

Posted by: JJ | June 22, 2007 12:29 PM | Report abuse

on a side note..

got my arenas jersey package finally from his online auction today!

question though: was the shoe supposed to be signed also? if so, oh well. i'll just a size 13 Gil Zero unsigned shoe chilling in the house. the jersey is good enough for me ;-)

back to the regularly scheduled bullets discussion -

ivan, any word on why blatche doesn't want to play summer league?

Posted by: hmmmmm | June 22, 2007 12:45 PM | Report abuse

I have been reading about Blatche for 2 years now and I still don't know much about the guy. You all seem pretty positive on him. So, I want to know, what's the scouting report? Offense, defense, and potential? Is this guy a future compliment, future leader, or a complete shot in the dark?

Posted by: Curious | June 22, 2007 12:57 PM | Report abuse

Whats with the : "SAVE DESAHWN STEVENSON" Campaign? I understand - he's Gil's friend that fact or suggestion alone ain't gonna make him a better player!! he can't produce unless Gil is always on the floor!! What good is that?
You have to ask yourself -
How long has this guy been in or around the league? Long enough to have gotten his game together. Right? He's only going to get worse not better. Think championships basketball not playoffs. Change your mindset. You wouldn't waste any time of DS.

Wiz need a defensive stopper - thats not him- Perimiter shooter - thats not him. Low Post Player - not him-complimentary bench man - and friend to Arenas - thats him. Are you willing to pay him 3 million dollars to stay and entertain Gil? I'm not. At 11 Mil, Gil can pay his own friends.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 22, 2007 1:02 PM | Report abuse

When MJ was here "his guys" had did the scouting for the draft that we picked Jarvis. MJ drove out of town before that draft, but Grunfeld was stuck with scouting reports that Jordan's staff had put together.
Jordan is bringing his same guys back to the front office in Charlotte, earlier this year Jordan told Hayes that he was still "his guy", that he still beleives he was the guy to pick in that draft. Could we see the Bobcats interested in Jarvis? They also need a center and Jordan traded for Haywood before, could the two be paired in a deal?
If the Grizzlies don't go for a point in the first round that could be a home for Daniels, he could be a solid vet to run that team for a few years as their young point they have now matures.
If the Wizards are signaling that Daniels is available, is that an indication that Navarro maybe coming this year rather than next? Or, could we be thinking point in the first?
I'd agree with JJ, Stevenson is a nice third or fourth option on the floor, just because he couldn't step up to being a first or second option doesn't diminish his worth. The end of the year really plays in our favor, can't see him getting a hugh offer somewhere else.

Posted by: GM | June 22, 2007 1:04 PM | Report abuse

If the Wizards are going to take a chance on someone like Williams they need a locker room devoid of any poisonous negativity. If they take Williams, Haywood better not be here.

Posted by: George Templeton | June 22, 2007 1:10 PM | Report abuse

Well, GM at least we agree thus far on Jarvis and Haywood. They appear to be the package. To where as I said, I'm not sure. Charlotte isn't bad...

Thus far, I'm not hot on DS but always willing to wait & see. Just don't think he's a very intelligent player. Big on show boatin no great substance.

But, I'll take a wait & see open for discussion.

Posted by: Robin | June 22, 2007 2:00 PM | Report abuse

"He's only going to get worse not better."

Actually he's 25, gonna be 26 and just had the best year of his career. He's also getting married and showing about 300% more maturity than he did when he came into the NBA out of highschool (and into Utah of all places). It snot like this team is full of players with his defensive skill either.

Look around at the going rate for players putting up his numbers and stop thinking in terms of NBA salaries from the 90's.

As for trading a 08 pick for a late 07 pick, thats a terrible idea. Its more likely we purchase a pick for $3 mil than trade a 08 pick for one.

As it stands it looks like Ernie is setting it up for a auction at 16. Maybe he can leverage the auction into a landing spot for Etan or Brendan too. Would Philly take #16 and Brendan or Etan for 21, 30, Stephen Hunter and Carney (since they are looking at wings to essentially take Carney's minutes at #12)?

Wiz might have to take back Kevin Ollie but he's going into the last year of his deal anyway. They'd get a MUCH cheaper reserve center, basically the same production for 1/3 of the cost. Hunter also thrived for Phoenix and could be more valuable here the way he runs. Plus two later picks for Ernie to find another 2 guard.

Posted by: JJ | June 22, 2007 2:20 PM | Report abuse

we don't need jasrvis hayes and calvin booth and brendan haywood we needs Aaron gray

Posted by: gustave philistin | June 22, 2007 3:12 PM | Report abuse

Keithinator & George

i agree that williams is a bit of a risk. supposedly he was kicked off the team for a violation of team rule regarding the use of marijuana, at least i read that that is what he is telling teams. and he certainly has a bit of an attitude. but sometimes you need that sort of attitude on a team full of "nice guys." he is twice the talent of heywood or etan, so the risk is worth it, in my opinion.

plus at the 16 spot, no player is going to be a sure thing. in a perfect world, i'd rather have nick young, but it looks like he's going to be gone by the time we pick. of the remaining players at 16, williams is the one player we don't have another type of on our team.

so if not him, and young being gone, i would then look to trade down and get rid of some contracts in the process. but i don't think that is as important as people would think. remember, jamison's contract is up after this yeah, so that's minus 16 mil. even if we resign him, it'll be at a much lower price. plus it already sounds like we have at least two possible "replacements" for him in petch and blatche, so trading him this year is a possiblility or a sign and trade next summer is possible.

if we do trade heywood this summer, we need someone to come in and play some sort of interior defense. i think the biggest risk with williams is that he's not a consistent player in games, and just raw talent. there are a ton of players with crappy attitudes in the nba who deliver on the court. and as a rookie, and seeing as how jamison, butler, and arenas currently own this team, i don't see him stirring up much trouble.

Posted by: JC | June 22, 2007 3:23 PM | Report abuse

"Jordan told Hayes that he was still "his guy..."


EDDIE Jordan said that, not MJ.

- Ray

Posted by: Anonymous | June 22, 2007 4:01 PM | Report abuse

Eddie Jordan drafted Hayes, he's not going anywhere unless Jordan gets canned.

Stevenson is as good as gone.

- Ray

Posted by: Ray | June 22, 2007 4:04 PM | Report abuse


You may be right about Williams. But look at, for instance, Pacman Jones. He had a terrible rep coming out of college, and he's lived up to it. And getting kicked off the team was apparently the final straw for Williams. He's been in trouble continuously. Now, if the Wiz interview him carefully and truly believe he can be a responsible, professional player, he might be worth the risk for the potential he brings to the table. But I'd be very, very wary of a guy who can't seem to stay out of trouble.

Posted by: Keithinator | June 22, 2007 4:07 PM | Report abuse

JC, you are really missing the point. It is always said that a lot of people have the talent to play in the NBA, but most of them do not have the character to apply themselves, be diligent, be a good teammate, etc., etc.
Williams got kicked off his college team. The year before he went pro, costing him millions of dollars. Read that again. And it's not like a lightbulb has gone off and he now sees the light -- during the pre-draft process he has been a major jerk. Simply put, he is one of those guys with the talent, but not the character to succeed in the NBA.
You've seen the EJ-Haywood dynamic, and by all reports, Haywood is a guy who strives to improve, is competitive, etc. Williams is a loafer who couldn't even stay on his college team. How do you think the EJ-Williams relationship will be?
I agree that sometimes you need a guy with a bit of an attitude on a team, but that "attitude" isn't lazy and selfish, which is what this fool's got.
But all is this is moot -- Grunfeld won't come within miles of this clown.

Posted by: Sean | June 22, 2007 4:10 PM | Report abuse

Out during late lunch:

Saw DJ Strawberry going back into Verizon. Heard Sports Talk 980 - Al Kolken had
Mr. Tapscott on. topic Wiz & draft.

Big discussion AJ. "Wiz will be keeping unless someone offers an unbelievably big deal. Can't replace a guy that puts up 50 in a playoff situation against a team that went to the finals, easily which tells you he obviously sacrifices his game for the sake of "team," His character, demeaner
integrity, work ethic are hands down above every guy on team. Very hard to replace.

People need to stop coming up with trade discussions about him and be glad he's on this team."(Their quotes - not mine.)
Both felt Sean Williams the man that could offer everything we need.(regardless of his dust up)

Other excellent picks - Young, Varajou(sp)Splitter, smith.

The greater discussion was finding foreign players & develop them. They consider them a excellent investment. Apparently, Tapscott in some tiny towns in Mexico checking out players. For Wizards? didn't say.

Oh yes! There is interest and a couple of offers for Brendan H. Tapscot did not say who.

Posted by: Robin | June 22, 2007 4:12 PM | Report abuse

Sorry! I forgot! There was a good discussion about Blatche. Bare in mind who is making the statements but Tapscott stated they will be keeping Blatche a young fast talent. Will be giving Him time to develop. He & Kolken actually think he's going to be better than both bigs combined with right training. Really liked him - felt he needed more playing time and proper development.

Posted by: robin | June 22, 2007 4:23 PM | Report abuse

"dude, that team had latrell sprewell, marcus camby, larry johnson, allan houston...even a young kurt thomas and they didn't lose ewing until the middle of the ecf..."

By that time Larry Johnson was a shadow of himself. With a bad back and no athleticism, he was essentially a no defense playing jumpshooter with no lift. Ewing didn't sit permanently until midway through the ECF, but he'd been playing hobbled and at much much less than 100% with a bad achillles going back to before the playoffs even started.

That team was undersized and undermanned, but Van Gundy still got them to the Finals, beating an Indiana team that was the top seed in the East.

I'm not advocating having him replace Jordan, but implying that Van Gundy is somehow limited as a coach flies in the face of the evidence.

Posted by: kalorama | June 22, 2007 4:59 PM | Report abuse

Hate to break it to you Ray but Jarvis will only be around because no one is going to offer him a contract. So he'll be here because of the RFA tender, if they choose to tender him.

Stevenson is by far the best option for the Wiz in terms of 2 guards in free agency. Now is not the time to get rid of the other guy (besides Caron) that plays defense.

Eddie certainly isn't in a position to be throwing his weight around right now. He and Ernie should come together on the staff contracts (Eddie adds JVG's boy, the others gets to stay for 2 more years) and be done with it. Although, i hope people realize that lots of NBA assistants haven't finalized extensions yet. Its not just in DC.

As for Sean Williams, I can't shake that he'd be a great mix of defense for our offensively potent forwards of Jamison, Songalia, Pesh and Blatche. but I'd prefer to auction that pick and get 2 guys for This year (Belinelli and a bonus pick)

Posted by: JJ | June 22, 2007 5:14 PM | Report abuse

Ironic how we look back & see that a bunch of us salivated when EJ arrived here with so much promise.
The supposed mastermind behind those late rounds Nets.

Haven't seen a lot of creativity from the big cheese.
Easier to be an assistant than a head coach.

EG will have EJ on notice I am sure.

Posted by: Victor | June 22, 2007 5:27 PM | Report abuse

I don't understand why the Wizards would be in a rush to get rid of Antonio Daniels. All he did was average over 11 assists per game in the playoffs with an offensively-depleted squad. If the Wiz are serious about becoming a better/deeper team, guys like AD need to be kept around. Not only that, if they gave him more minutes, they would have the on-court leadership they so desperately lack.
And to those who are so sure that Gilbert will be around next year, remember that GA is from LA and would take less money to play with dominant player like Kobe. With Gilbert expect the unexpected!

Posted by: wdc713 | June 22, 2007 5:34 PM | Report abuse

Would that be the same Kobe Bryant who's been all but begging the Lakers to trade him? If you really think Gilbert is going to take less money to go anywhere, you're kidding yourself. And he can't leave as a FA until the season after next anyway, so even if he was willing to take less (and he won't) he wouldn't be able to leave next season.

Posted by: kalorama | June 22, 2007 6:12 PM | Report abuse

Draftexpress is reporting that both the Suns (24 & 29) and the 76ers (21 & 30) are looking to deal their two picks to move up to the teens in the draft.

Either of these would be ideal for us. It would also make a lot of sense out of the workouts we've been conducting.

At 21 or 24 we can get a good SG such as Belinelli, Almond, or Byars. I would love to have any of these 3. My personal favorite is Belinelli, he just has one of the sweetest jumpshots I've seen. On our team as a 4th option looking at single coverage and open shots all the time he'd be pure deadly.

At 29 or 30 we can get a big man like Fesenko or Gray. I really like Feseko here and gotta believe he's Ernie hidden gem in this draft. Like Pecherov he is from the Ukraine. This guys is 7-1 270, a true down low under the basket center, who is athletic, energetic, moves well, defends and rebounds, and loves to dunk. He is compared to Andris Biedrins and Anderson Varejao.

With our second round pick at 47 we could still add depth to our backcourt with guys such as Strawberry, Reynolds, or Brooks. Maybe take a sf like Reyshawn Terry. Or another big man like Marc Gasol, Herb Hill, or Darryl Watkins. And it's not out of the question that Gray even could fall here. I like Reynolds for his ability to fill the role of combo scoring guard off the bench like we had with Dixon. He'd be a nice guy to have as a 3rd pg, and give us some offense. If Gray is here, we gotta take him though, and Reynolds might go undrafted and be available as a free agent addition for summer league. Herb Hill intrigues me also, as does Gasol. I wouldn't mind DJ or Brooks either though.

But if it's true that these deals are available with Philly or Phoenix I say we gotta jump on that! The Philly deal is probably the better of the 2, to make sure we get the SG we really want. But I would definately do either one.

Posted by: Darnell | June 22, 2007 7:51 PM | Report abuse


Draftexpress also reports that if Nick Young slips out of the lottery and is available at 16, he is our guy. Other teams feel the Wizards really like him and are very high on him.

So we may wait and see if Young falls to us. If he does we may keep him, if he doesn't then we may trade down.

Posted by: Darnell | June 22, 2007 7:59 PM | Report abuse

I'd rather see us move down. I think both the Suns and 76ers are eyeing Jason Smith who is expected to go where we're picking. The Colorado State center would be a perfect fit for the Suns. And he reportedly had a great workout in Philly.

Posted by: Darnell | June 22, 2007 8:14 PM | Report abuse

And he's listed as a center, but he's really a pf, that's where he'll play in the league. I don't see us taking him simply because he is too similar to what we already have in Pesh and Blatche. If we take him on Thursday, it will probably be for another team.

Posted by: Darnell | June 22, 2007 8:17 PM | Report abuse

"Hate to break it to you Ray but Jarvis will only be around because no one is going to offer him a contract."

Oh, I completely agree JJ and if you ask anyone on here I killed the guy daily on this blog.

My thing is this: Hayes saw MORE minutes as the season went on, not less. I'm sure the Wiz figure they can match any offer on him and start him at the 2 this upcoming season. Plus Jordan loves that guy for some reason, he's going to be one of the reasons he gets fired next year.

They aren't ready to dump him yet and I would be happy if someone offered him a better deal to go elsewhere but unfortunately that isn't going to happen like you said.

I'm not sold on Stevenson, and they aren't going to pay Blatche 4 mil to sit the bench, Hayes 3-4 mil to sit the bench, Pesh a couple mil to sit the bench, AD a few mil to sit the bench, Etan OR Haywood and thier current salaries to sit the bench....

You can say bye to Stevenson, he won't be a Wizard next year.

Combine this with Mr. Pollin not willing to go over the luxury tax and EG has his work cut out for him.

It's a matter of numbers at this point.

I think they do the same thing they have done the last few years in regards to the draft....draft a kid out of Europe and let him develope a year or two.

Personally speaking I would package all of this years picks and a player or two and go get Gasol. Wish the Wiz would have drafted that guy instead of Brown, thank MJ for that one.

- Ray

Posted by: Ray | June 22, 2007 8:41 PM | Report abuse

Please Bring Kevin Garnett!!!!

Posted by: Telvis | June 22, 2007 8:43 PM | Report abuse

Bring back Charles Jones!!!!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 22, 2007 8:51 PM | Report abuse


You're probably the only bright person on this blog who's noticed that someone has gone to town today using my name and writing stupid stuff. Clearly, someone is obsessed with me, but I find it funny because they are probably so bothered by my truthful words about Gilby and Les BouleS that they have to resort to these tactics. So sad, but not surprising.

Posted by: DC Man88 | June 22, 2007 9:35 PM | Report abuse

He played more minutes at the end of February because AJ was down for 12 games and Caron missed 3. He played over 30 minutes in those 3 when both were out. Then he was back into the teens. His minutes shot back up when Caron was down for the road trip in March. Caron returns, his minutes go back in the teens. Caron breaks his hand and there is your sustained upswing in minutes. It has absolutely nothing to do with his play.

If that is what Hayes' tender comes to than I don't see why they'd bother. He wouldn't get that on the open market, so let him out there and offer him the low exception or less. There is no reason to guarantee him a spot.

Pesh will get less than 2 mil to start IIRC. Also, look around the NBA. The wage scale isn't what it used to be. Guys coming off the bench get paid now. Some get the full MLE. For a team as talent-shallow as Washington has been, now is the time to invest in their bench.

Posted by: JJ | June 22, 2007 9:44 PM | Report abuse

"There is no reason to guarantee him a spot."

Again, I agree with you. Jordan has an un-dying love for that guy which is why he will start at the two spot next season.

The guy couldn't hit the side of a barn all season, yet his minutes went up. You can say "injuries" but his minutes went up even with him coming off the bench and there he was in the 4th quarter at the end of games during Jordan's "smallball" rountines.

Unless someone is willing to give that guy 5 mil a year, he's going to be a Wizard next year. I WILL give him some credit during the playoffs, although he disappeard in the 4th of those Cleveland games.

This is just what I observed and wrote about on here during the season(like many of us) but I don't disagree with what your saying.

I would LOVE to see Navarro come to the NBA for the Wiz and move Gil to the 2, but that's wishful thinking on my part. Plug in Gasol and that's a formidable lineup the Wiz have. ;)

- Ray

Posted by: Ray | June 22, 2007 10:55 PM | Report abuse

Special notification: TO DCMAN88


This is a baskeball blog. Anything and everything you post here should be about basketball or at the very least NFL, NHL, NBA, NASCAR, Swimming, Tennis. Your vulgarity and foolishness will not be tolerated.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 22, 2007 11:24 PM | Report abuse


Special notification: TO DCMAN88


This is a baskeball blog. Anything and everything you post here should be about basketball or at the very least NFL, NHL, NBA, NASCAR, Swimming, Tennis. Your vulgarity and foolishness will not be tolerated.

Posted by: | June 22, 2007 11:24 PM "

Go f#ck yourself.

It wasn't me who posted anything this morning as I was too busy to even think about any blog, nevermind a Les BouleS blog. It's as stupid as saying anyone who posted something but didn't leave a name was probably you. Sh#thead.

If the powers that be want to crack down on people using other people's names to blog, they should set up a registration like the article's viewpoints or display people's ip addresses.

Once again, you are a sh#thead.

Posted by: DC Man88 | June 22, 2007 11:36 PM | Report abuse

sean, i'm not an expert on williams' past, but getting into trouble for smoking pot while immature, to be sure, is not as bad (in my opinion) as picking multiple fights with one of your teammates because he's possibly outplaying you. let's not forget one was 20 and in college when this happened, and the other is 27 and a pro for 5 years...

but lot's of guys with "issues" succeed and help their teams more than harm them. rasheed wallace comes to mind. he put the pistons over the top. allen iverson almost singlehandedly took the sixers to the finals. even dennis rodman helped the bulls and pistons before he went totally insane. lamar odom is known for having pot issues and still delivers for his team.

plus people go completely different in different situations. heywood was a complete angel while at unc, not he's fighting teammates and showing up his head coach?

do i think williams is a lock? no, but i don't think anyone available at 16 is a lock. i just happen to think that williams fills a major whole for us, so he's worth the risk more so than others. and he certianly can't be any worse for us than kwame brown, jared jeffries, or hayes (so far).

at 16, we're choosing outside of the top tiers, and we already have an established team (coaches, starters, and style of play). lets roll the dice on a player that could help fill our most glaring need.

all-in-all i still hope nick young falls to us. i think he'd fit in perfect for us on the wing. great outside shooting and amazing athleticism.

i also like darnell's suggestion of trading down and getting a second tier shooting guard and fesenko. he also could provide that interior we need. i especially like this idea if we can hand over one of our centers in the deal somehow.

so yeah, my order of choice (this doesn't include landing garnett or gasol, but i don't consider them in the realm of possibility) would be:
1. nick young
2. lose etan and 16th for 2 picks from sixers or phoenix and get a shooting guard and fesenko
3. sean williams

Posted by: JC | June 23, 2007 1:37 AM | Report abuse

With all the talk about Minnesota moving Garnett and Phoenix moving Marion, it seems the best trade for both might be to trade:

Marion and the #24 pick


Ricky Davis (deal expires at end of season), a bad contract (Blount, Hudson, Jaric), maybe Eddie Griffin (deal expires after the season) if needed to make the numbers work, and the #7 pick.

With that roster, Minnesota definitely steps up a level and they may improve enough to keep KG long term. Phoenix can do a buyout of the bad contract, saving luxury tax, pick Noah with the #7, and save more money at the end of next season.

Obviously if I can think of this, others can too and yet it hasn't been discussed, so what am I missing?

Posted by: Henry | June 23, 2007 8:22 AM | Report abuse

The poker player that Ernie is, I think he'll hold his cards until draft night. He's going to sit tight and see if somebody does something stupid. I'd agree if Young drops that far he'll keep the pick and go that direction.
Depending on who else is there, then I think things could get interesting, I'd agree I think Jason Smith is too similar to our other PF's to pick. If he's there at 16 we could deal down because there's other teams that want him.
The only way I see us dealing down early is if Philly needs our #16 pick to package with their 12 to try and move up a few slots. If King is sold on making that move enough to take, say Etan, along in the deal, Grunfeld will leap in a second if he can trade down and dump either Haywood or Etan in the process. Purging Haywood, Etan and Daniels salaries seems to be part of his plan to get the flexibility he needs in the next two years to retain an add to his core.
If we trade down I still got to think Splitter is the target in the 20's, I may be wrong, but I think he has the skills to play center for us. That along with a sharp shooter like Belinelli would be a very sucessful first round. Belinelli would address the lack of a long range bomber at the 2 or 3 and Splitter could arrive next year to work into a frontline rotation with Blatche, Pecherov, Songalia, Vereemnko and Jamison.
But trading down could also be step one in putting together a Gasol deal without giving up our core. I agree with Kalorama you can' just bundle together all your un wanted guys and ship them off to Memphis. But if we could manage to ship Etan or Haywood out along with our 16 and get something that Memphis would want in return(Carney?), then turning around and shipping Daniels, the two later picks plus next year's number one, Haywood or Etan(which ever is left), an asset from Philly or the Suns, and the outline of a deal starts to fall in place.
It's a stretch, but far from impossible, the Wiz would have Jamison, Gasol, Butler, Stevenson(if resigned) and Arenas to start. Blatche(he may start and use Jamison as the Bench scorer), Pecherov, Jarvis(if resigned)Songalia, Booth(1 more year). Under this scenario I'd think that if Grunfeld is signaling a willingness to trade Daniels he must be making room for Navarro to be the third gaurd. The 12th active slot could come from our 2nd rounder, Taylor, Mason or Hall or some Vet min. guys or walk on FA types.
When assembling a roster any team is going have to scrape a little to fill out 12-15 because of salary that is wrapped up in the rotation guys. A Vet I'd like to see the Wiz look at if he'd play for near the min. would be Joe Smith. I think he could do all that Ruffin did for the team plus contribute a little offense. And he's another great locker room guy. With Vereemenko arriving next year we'd gain another tough experienced Euro frontline guy for next year to replace Booth and get deeper.
The Gasol thing might never happen, but somebody's going to get him, why not us? And we'd have a team to compete with anyone in the east for the next few years.

Posted by: GM | June 23, 2007 12:01 PM | Report abuse

Why don't we just package ruffin, hayes, haywood, mason and next years 2 rounder for Gasol?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 23, 2007 2:04 PM | Report abuse

"The Gasol thing might never happen, but somebody's going to get him, why not us?"

That's what I'm saying.

- Ray

Posted by: Ray | June 23, 2007 3:24 PM | Report abuse

First of all Salaries don't match. Second we couldn't get a near allstar quality guy for that package.
I'm not even sure that a package of two number ones this year, possibly Carney from Philly and Daniels and Haywood would be enough along with a number one next year.
What it would yeild Memphis is a vet center with a reasonable contract to play or roll into another deal. Three draft picks that could be tied up cheaply for the next 4 years. A young player with some promise in Carney and a vet point gaurd to play his rear off and lead the team on and off the court.
They might get a better offer, but Paxson had the chance and didn't make one and made a big point about keeping his core together. I wouldn't trade for Randolph if I was running the Wiz, but I think Paxson might be real tempted there. If he's willing to put together a Randolph deal that keeps his core intact, how many other shoppers are out there for Gasol?
With our offense and style of play he's an ideal center for us. He doesn't fit in with what every team likes to do, so I think he's worth more here than many other places. But that's just me, I have no idea what Grunfeld thinks about a Gasol deal.

Posted by: GM | June 23, 2007 3:36 PM | Report abuse

I've heard rumors about a Brendan Haywood/Antonio Daniels trade to Atlanta for Atlanta's 11th pick in the first round? Anyone else hear this? If there's any substance to it, I say do it and grab the best SG or C left on the board.

Posted by: inittowinit | June 23, 2007 7:15 PM | Report abuse

Why would atlanta do that, those two players are no good whatsoever?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 23, 2007 7:22 PM | Report abuse

Hoopsworld reports: "A general manager of note told a league source that they had Kyrylo Fesenko ranked number 12 on their board; another teams' scout confirms that they also have Fesenko in the top 15 players, but cautioned a lot has to do with need..."

Posted by: Anonymous | June 23, 2007 9:26 PM | Report abuse

i think the only way we get a player like gasol is to give up one of out top three guys. it's just the only way. i'm considering arenas untouchable right now, so that leaves butler and jamison. in the past i've been high on trading jamsion before he becomes a free agent and we lose him altogether. but now i'm not so sure...

for starters, if you conisder our lineup with gasol, you'll see that we now have a real inside bigman. he's not going to be roaming the perimeter. if we give up jamison for that, we are left with butler, an inside-to-midrange player. a small forward who shot an abismal 25% from outside last season. jamsion was a respectable 36%. jamison also has more variety to his game, and like to hang out in the perimeter a lot. that might mesh much better with gasol than butler.

and yeah butler is 4 years younger than jamison, but gasol is a few months younger than him either, so we'd still be young.

plus, i can see memphis biting more so on butler. he's got an affordable longterm contract, so even if they didn't want to keep him, he would be great trade bait, or they can ship off rudy gay.

so they get butler, haywood or etan, and our 16th. we get gasol (they don't have a second rounder to give us, but that would've been nice).

we'd have lineups like:

arenas, stevenson, blatche or hayes, jamsion, gasol.

or go large with arenas, stevenson, jamsion, gasol, haywood or etan.

offensively, we'd be pretty much unstoppable. defensively, we wouldn't be any worse off, and actually have a decent shot blocker in gasol.

the only thing left to do would be to try and package our second rounder this year and next with whoever is left between heywood and etan for phoenix's 29th and kurt thomas (makes them younger and they save 2.5 mil) if fesenko is still there.

Posted by: JC | June 23, 2007 10:46 PM | Report abuse

Whoever that anonymous post was about Fesenko, thanks! And yeah, I would not be at all surprised if we took him at 16. He's the type of guy Ernie would go for, and would seem like a total surprise. Everyone would be like what?? But then Ernie would be like, we got the guy we wanted, and it would be easy to defend the pick once he started talking about his size, skills and upside. I mean look at last years pick Pecherov, no one expected that, and Ernie has obviously scouted the Ukrainian players. And it would be like Ernie with all the talk about Gray an Jason Smith for a smoke screen to cover the guy he really is eyeing.

Posted by: Darnell | June 23, 2007 11:13 PM | Report abuse

If Les BouleS can swing a trade to get the 11th pick, I'd be very happy with that. For sure, LA Clips will get Acie Law before 16 rolls around.

Atlanta needs veteran leadership, as I said a long time ago, and AD would be perfect. If they bring on BTH though, that may make Zaza expendable.

Posted by: Dc Man88 | June 23, 2007 11:27 PM | Report abuse

Folks, let's stay realistic here. There is NO WAY Atlanta gives up the 11th pick for two backups! Ignore rumors like that; they're probably started by Wiz fans with nothing better to do. Billy Knight is a lousy GM, but he ain't Forrest Gump either. When you read things like that, sit down, put a cold compress on your forehead, and relax.

Posted by: Keithinator | June 24, 2007 10:08 AM | Report abuse

For the 11th pick and Shelden or Zaza or Marvin, I'd send then AJ and BTH. AJ would probably need to agree on a LT contract with them, so there.

Posted by: DC Man88 | June 24, 2007 10:22 AM | Report abuse

I hadn't heard the Atlanta rumor, But I'd assume that it would include swapping our #16 for the number #11. If Ernie could get the #11 for Haywood and Daniels straight up they should just go ahead and name him General Manager of the year right now.
Atlanta is 6-7m under the cap but to make the deal work we'd have to take sombody's contract in return. Lue has one more year left on his contract and if Atlanta picks up Daniels you'd have to think they'd want to ship out Lue or Claxton.
Lorenzen Wright is another guy with a year left on his deal and with all of the young bigs they'd have plus Haywood you'd also have to assume they'd want to ship him out so they could sign their two number ones. So it would be possible to make a deal work on paper that the salaries would work out. And some people say Grunfeld has always liked Childress, but I can't see Atlanta moving him unless they really have their eyes on one of the small forwards that may go in the area of #16 in the draft.
Big question would be, is Grunfeld considering trading up for Young or maybe Acie Law? Or do they think Hawes might be there at 11?

Posted by: GM | June 24, 2007 11:31 AM | Report abuse

For a team in the position of Atlanta, the relative merits of Daniels over Lue or Claxton or Haywood over empty space don't justify trading out of the lottery.

Posted by: kalorama | June 24, 2007 2:39 PM | Report abuse

It does when you also have the 3rd pick in the draft, nevermind a very young core of starters who are very young, and your core vets, who've not done anything in the league, are about to have contracts that will expire (Lue and Wright):

Zaza - 23 yo
Josh Smith - 21 yo
Joe Johnson - 25 yo
Childress - 24 yo
Shelden - 23 yo
Marvin - 21 yo

Doesn't seem logical for Atlanta to want to bring in 2 more lottery picks, teach them, and then have to eventually let some of them go in a few years because you can't afford giving everyone max contracts. Oh yeah, Atlanta definitely needs moderate priced veterans.

I've been saying it forever. Atlanta would be a great source for Les BouleS to get more athleticism. I just hope Grunfeld does not try to trade for Childress, who played college ball with his son in Stanford.

Posted by: DC Man88 | June 24, 2007 8:18 PM | Report abuse

I have noticed on some mocks center Marc Gasol from Spain has dropped down, and he could be a very nice pick in the 2nd round at 47. He 7-1 265, and a true lowpost center. I've seen video of him and he plays aggressive in the post, has very good size and strength, long arms, soft hands, gets position and rebounds, and has a skillset that would be very good in the princeton offense. In terms of his build, his skills and the way he plays, he is VERY remiscent of Darius Songaila, except he's 7-1.

Here is an excerpt from his Draftexpress scouting report from a game where he went against Tiago Splitter:
" wasn't a matter of this game alone, but Marc Gasol is a very reliable player with an excellent basketball IQ. He's one of those guys who always seems to be in the right place and rarely forces plays. He will pull the trigger if he sees a clear option; otherwise, he prefers to pass the ball, which he does really well. It was pretty obvious in this game.
Standing over seven feet, Gasol displays an excellent combination of strength and aggressiveness to operate in the lane. As we saw against Tau, he establishes and holds his position on a regular basis, becoming a serious threat both in terms of scoring and passing, which often ultimately ends up unbalancing the entire opposing defensive scheme. He's not the most skilled low post guy around, but he uses his body very well and stays physical on his match-up. He's steadily gaining accuracy with his right-handed hook, although as he showed in this game, he doesn't seem to have much ability finishing with his left and prefers to go for the turnaround jumper. Indeed, he has some range and decent accuracy with his shot, even if he didn't put it on display in this game.
Sometimes he gives up a decent scoring option and prefers to pass the ball, usually looking for an open teammate on the perimeter. Gasol is not one of these impressive post passers a la Divac or Sabonis. You will rarely see him delivering flashy assists; indeed, despite his excellent passing performance against Tau, he only added one assist to his stat-sheet. Actually, that's more or less his average. He's more of a passer within the flow of the game, showing a quick mind, a good basketball IQ and very nice court awareness. His passes might result in open baskets, but not necessarily for the man receiving the ball, but perhaps after the next pass."

I really want to see us move down in a deal with either Philly or Pheonix. Usually I'm not too big on the euros, but this year that's what I want. Based on our needs for centers with skills and a sg shooter/scorer. I would love to see us pick up two late 1sts and get Belinelli and Fesenko, and 2nd round Gasol.

Posted by: Darnell | June 24, 2007 9:01 PM | Report abuse

Question: Would anyone care about Marc Gasol if his last name was not "Gasol?"

Posted by: DC Man88 | June 24, 2007 9:14 PM | Report abuse

"It does when you also have the 3rd pick in the draft, nevermind a very young core of starters who are very young, and your core vets, who've not done anything in the league, are about to have contracts that will expire (Lue and Wright)"

I'm not disputing that Atlanta has a young team, valuable assets in expiring contracts, and could use some veterans. I'm disputing that Daniels and (especially) Haywood would in any way be attractive enough to spend those assets on.

Haywood is a middling backup quality C with a bad attitude, delusions of grandeur, and a history of disuptive locker room behavior. Not exactly the kind of veteran mentor you want on a young club. Daniels is a solid backup PG, but he's 32 years old with several more years left on his deal. He's hardly a bargain or cheap, relative to what his role would be. They'd be far down on any list of desirable acquisitions for a team like Atlanta. Also, looking at Atlanta's roster of young talent, the prospect of having to dole out any max extensions in a couple of years doesn't seem like a big concern (pending whoever they get in this draft). On the flip side, because they have so many young players, they need to be mindful of payroll in a couple years when they have to start doling out extensions. Possibly having to let go one of their youngsters because they have two marginal contributors like Haywood and Daniels on the books is a situation they'd probably rather avoid. An obvious alternative would be to let their guys with expiring contracts go and use their cap space to pick up a couple of moderate priced FAs on the open market, signed to shorter-term deals.

And trading the 11th pick for the 16th pick does nothing to alleviate the problem of having too many young players because they'd still be using the 16th pick to draft a young rookie, just one who wasn't as good as what they could get with the 11th pick.

Posted by: kalorama | June 24, 2007 10:59 PM | Report abuse

I agree that those players may not be enough to make them pull the trigger to drop out of the lottery, but I believe AD does have some value and they definitely need veteran leadership. Their attendance is sagging, and the fans there don't want to pay to watch 2 more lottery picks come into a team that has no veteran leadership.

Also, who else can they possibly bring in from another team that would provide that and be relatively cheap like BTH? The only way I see no trades happening between Atlanta and Les BouleS is b/c they are in the same division.

Another question comes up though. Since BTH clearly has AB's ear, and seeing how BTH has been treated, I really think AB will want to get the heck out of dodge. If he has a smart agent, he will make sure any deals that AB signs is a crippling poison pill for Les BouleS, nevermind just the dollar figure that people will say Les BouleS could easily match.

One interesting thing that nobody pointed out is that AB has said he does not want to join Les BouleS' summer league team in Vegas this year. No explanation given. Very interesting. I think AB is fed up.

Posted by: DC Man88 | June 24, 2007 11:50 PM | Report abuse

There's anarchy on Ship Wizards.. Rebellion!! Rebellion!! O'Malley Walks and probably will several assistant coaches and you may be saying goodbye to Andray Blatche. This sounds like a stinker of a year. Lets hope at least he starting 5 can hang in there and thru with another year of "D.C. Small Ball!!!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 25, 2007 12:11 AM | Report abuse

"Their attendance is sagging, and the fans there don't want to pay to watch 2 more lottery picks come into a team that has no veteran leadership."

The fans couldn't care less about veteran leadership. They're tired of paying to watch a team that doesn't win games. Adding a couple of backup caliber players isn't going to change that.

"Also, who else can they possibly bring in from another team that would provide that and be relatively cheap like BTH?"

Doesn't matter how cheap he is if (A) he doesn't have any significant impact on winning (he won't, at least not on the Hawks)and (B) his crap attitude alienates his teammates the way it did in DC. The suggestion that Haywood, a guy who openly rooted from the bench for his team to lose, would be valued as a veteran leader is laughable.

Posted by: kalorama | June 25, 2007 1:17 AM | Report abuse

Trading from 11 to 16 would make sense if the player that a team identified the man they want at 11 will still be there at 16. In that case it makes sense for two reasons. Rookie contracts are slotted, picking a player higher than other teams in the league have him slotted costs contract dollars. And players tend to stay slotted unless they are a real bust or a hugh star.
Where a guy is chosen within the first round can make millions of dollars difference in the life of his career. Don't beleive it, then why do these guys spend hugh chunks of money at fitness centers trying to improve their workout stats so they can move up just a couple of slots in the draft?
The second reason to move down would be to add players to your team that fill a specific role in the process. Daniels could provide the veteran play maker and leader on and off the court. Atlanta spent alot of money on Speedy Claxton last year looking for a guy to fill that role and he was a bust at it. In the draft AC Law is the only real veteran court leader but some say he is going to be available as late as 19 in the draft.
Atlanta could be looking at trading back to get Law and providing a Vet to Mentor him.
As far as Haywood, there are quite differing opinions of him, I tend to come in somewhat in the middle. Servicable big man, not a star, not a bust, tends to need a coach that will stay in his corner and let him know what his role is. No one has ever said he isn't a hard worker, and is a decent defender.
I'd say Etan, Eddie, and Haywood all have had a role in the ungoing problem here, so it's best to give Haywood a fresh start. I'm not sure that Atlanta is where he'll end up, but he's more than empty space. Somebody will trade for him, Ernie will get more for him than you'd think, trust me on that one.

Posted by: GM | June 25, 2007 9:08 AM | Report abuse

If we are able to get Kyrylo Fesenko AND Marc Gasol in the draft we'd be set at center. IMO we should get Fesenko in the 1st round to replace Haywood, and Gasol in the 2nd to replace Etan. Ideally trade down in the 1st so we can still get a sg (Belinelli) as well. Would they be able to step right in as rookies, maybe not. But keep in mind, these guys are already professionals and are used to going against older players and the mindset of playing as a job. As Ivan pointed out, it's different there, they practice and practice. They are solid fundamentally, and used to playing a team oriented game. They'll be able to adjust quicker IMO than a college player. And in both cases their skills and mentality are so ideal for our princeton system, they will catch on quickly. Keep Booth as a solid vet to teach them the ropes in training camp and to practice against. Between Fesenko, Gasol, and Booth we'll be fine at center immediately, and Fesenko especially is going to eventually have allstar ability. Plus we have Blatche and Pecherov to put in there as our new smallball options.

Getting these two would allow us to move Haywood and Etan, and I agree with GM, these guys have more trade value than you would think. Plus it works well for us if we do get Belinelli, because him and Gasol are both from Spain and have played together. Fesenko and Pesh are both from Ukraine, so it would help all of those guys having a teammate from their homeland IMO.

And Ray wants Pau Gasol, well adding 2 spaniards (including his brother) wouldn't hurt that scenario.

Trade down with Philly or Phoenix, they both want to move up for Jason Smith or Splitter. We get 2 later 1st for Belinelli and Fesenko, and take Gasol at 47. And I'd also really like to pickup JR Reynolds as an undrafted player, and sign him for our summerleague team and training camp invite.

Also just wondering, but do we want to use our MLE on Stevenson instead of going after someone else like Mo Pete or Pietrus? And maybe we can get someone like a Ricky Davis or Mike Miller for Haywood? Maybe someone like Turkoglu or Speedy Claxton for Etan? If we can deal Haywood for a starting sg and draft Belinelli, should we still use our MLE on Stevenson?

An unrestricted FA I'd really like to pickup is Joe Smith, 6-10 PF to replace Ruffin's role of rebounder/energy off the bench, but with some offense, he'd be a major upgrade to Ruffin for that similar role. A solid vet, who can fill in also as a smallball center.

Posted by: Darnell | June 25, 2007 10:06 AM | Report abuse


I'm well aware of how contracts are slotted coming out of the draft. But that has nothing to do with the argument that's been made up to this point, because until just now, no one has suggested that the reason for the Hawks to make such a deal was to save money on a draft pick.

Has there been any evidence that the Hawks are targeting a specific player at 16? None that I've seen and none that have been presented by anyone in this thread claiming they'd make such a deal. The primary rationale offered for the Hawks making that deal was because (A) they already had too many young players and (B) they needed veteran leadership. Trading valuable assets in the form of expiring contracts and a lottery pick for the chance to get Haywood and Daniels and a lower pick does little, if anything, to alleviate those problems. If they have any value at all, it's to a playoff team with established quality starters in place, looking to shore themselves up at those spots. The Hawks don't have established, quality starters at any position (except whichever one Joe Johnson plays in a given game), and in all likelihood, they won't be coming anywhere near the playoffs next season.

Daniels is a solid backup PG, but with 3 years remaining on a full MLE contract, he's overpaid. He also would do little to turn what is likely a another Hawks lottery team into winners. They can get veteran leadership at the PG slot by signing a cheaper option like Jacques Vaughan.

I find it hilarious that for months now people have been spinning scenarios whereby the Wizards would have no problem using Antawn Jamison's $16 mill in expiring salary to acquire the likes of Gasol, Garnett, or Marion. But now, for some reason the Hawks, with an equal amount of expiring salary (courtesy of Wright and Lue) and the #11 pick can't land anything better than two backups and a 5 spot drop in draft position, taking them out of the lottery.

Posted by: kalorama | June 25, 2007 10:07 AM | Report abuse

Isn't the draft this week? Where are the new posts?

Posted by: Glass Half Full? | June 25, 2007 10:41 AM | Report abuse

Maybe we should work a Haywood trade for a SG, also draft Belinelli, and just let the MLE go unused, save that money for next summer when we have to sign Arenas, and Jamison.

Posted by: Darnell | June 25, 2007 11:14 AM | Report abuse

Saw a report that the Wolves like Corey Brewer at No. 7. If so, Trenton Hassell, their current defensive wing player, wouldn't be needed. Maybe he could be had in a trade.

Posted by: Sean | June 25, 2007 11:15 AM | Report abuse

Some good posts on some of the European players the Wizards could draft, but does anyone know if Fesenko would definitely come over and play this year or will he be like Pecherov.
The question I have is who has to be there at 16, that could realistically be there, for the Wizards not to move down. Nick Young and who else? Law for sure, Crittenton maybe?

Posted by: George Templeton | June 25, 2007 11:57 AM | Report abuse

George, I don't see why the Wizards would move down. One or more of these guys will be available: Julian Wright, Nick Young, Rodney Stuckey, Al Thornton and Javaris Crittenton. Why pass on any of those guys, especially the first four? Now, if Grunfeld is convinced that Derrick Byers, for example, is better than all of the above who are available at 16, and Byars would be available later in the first round, then a trade-down makes sense. If Grunfeld has the opportunity to pick Julian Wright and passes, there's going to be hell to pay.

One thing that makes me scratch my head is that Stuckey hasn't worked out for the Wizards. The Wizards brought in a lot of wing players who are projected in the mid to late first round, but not Stuckey. Stuckey hasn't worked out at many places (sonics, heat, suns, and pistons, according to draftexpress), so maybe he declined an invitation. Ivan, is that something you could find out -- which players declined invitations to work out for the Wizards?

Posted by: Sean | June 25, 2007 12:18 PM | Report abuse

You really think Wright or Thornton will make it to the Wizards at 16? That would be great.

Posted by: George Templeton | June 25, 2007 4:54 PM | Report abuse

"The fans couldn't care less about veteran leadership. They're tired of paying to watch a team that doesn't win games. Adding a couple of backup caliber players isn't going to change that."

Never said fans would care about veteran leadership. It's the young team that needs veteran leadership, and with that, it could amount to some more wins and unity. I think AD can provide that for them, especially based on him knowing first hand how it was done in San Antonio.

Posted by: DC Man88 | June 25, 2007 5:29 PM | Report abuse

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