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Finally a win

The word of the day was passion. The Wizards played with plenty. The Atlanta Hawks and their fans (Philips Arena was maybe half full and mostly quiet all afternoon) had none. The combination led to Washington's first win of the season and perhaps showed Eddie Jordan's team what it can do when they A) Play with energy from start to finish, B) Take care of and share the basketball, C) Rebound - and that means guards, forwards and centers. And finally D) Get stops in key situations.

After averaging 18.8 turnovers in the first five games (and coughing it up 26 times in the loss to Denver the other night) the Wiz had a season-low 12 tonight. They also racked up a season-high 26 assists and many of them came on critical possessions when it appeared that the Hawks were getting ready to make a run. Eddie Jordan also shortened his rotation. The starters played big minutes and the bench rotation consisted of Blatche, Daniels and Songaila. Mason played 18 seconds at the end of the first half and the rookies did not get off the bench. All five starters scored in double figures for the first time this season.

"It wasn't a game for the rookies tonight," Eddie Jordan said when I asked him about the rotation. "I put Roger in at the end of the first half and I could have used him more but DeShawn was into it, especially at the defensive end. He was really locked in and he anchored the defense. He played his role."

As you could imagine, Eddie really wanted this win. The man looks like he hasn't slept an hour a night since the preseason and he was really into it today. When Gilbert Arenas drove and made a tough reverse layup late to put the Wiz up by nine with just under three minutes to go, Eddie slammed his right fist on the scorer's table and yelled "Yeah!"

"You know how bad we needed it. We needed it in the worst way but we also needed to play well. Winning takes care of itself as they like to say but we needed a win tonight, no question about it."

Gilbert played a pretty smart game. His outside shot is still eluding him and his handle is off (the product of not practicing all week) but he allowed the offense to run through Antawn Jamison (23 points, 15 rebounds) and Caron Butler (24 points, eight assists, six boards). Stevenson, who has been in a shooting slump since Gilbert and Caron got hurt last April, made a couple of threes and was four of six overall and Brendan Haywood got them rolling early with energy on the boards and in the paint (13 points, 12 rebounds and nice defense on Al Horford who is going to be a heck of a player).

Butler said that he and Jamison gathered the team together for a player's only meeting before Saturday's shootaround and he felt it made a difference. "We came together as a group and knew what was on the line. We had to get a win by any means necessary and that's what we did."

Gilbert on what his role may be until his knee is fully healed: "I have to distribute the ball somewhere else. Brendan had a double-double. So did Antawn. Caron hit shots. So did DeShawn. It's good to know that I don't need to go out there and load up the guns. Hopefully, I can pull back a little until I catch a rythm."

Next up: Indiana at Verizon Center on Wednesday. After that we're in my hometown, Minneapolis, and then Portland is in town Saturday night. If this team plays like it did today, wins will come. The key, in my view, will be getting to .500 by the all star break. Assuming that Gilbert is going to steadily gain confidence on that knee and assuming that Blatche is going to grow into his role, that would put this team in position to make a run in the second half. We'll see.

By Ivan Carter  |  November 11, 2007; 9:21 PM ET
 
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Next: Back in the mix

Comments

Great win, I hope the team keeps that chip on it's shoulder after the 0-5 start and will stay angry and hungry for wins the rest of the first half.

Go Wizards!

Posted by: juandixonformvp | November 11, 2007 9:50 PM | Report abuse

I am glad Blatche is finally getting some run. He didnt have a great game today but still good to see him get some minutes. We need him off the bench.

Posted by: LooseCannon | November 11, 2007 10:04 PM | Report abuse

Gil still needs to be a threat offensively. Even though he may have to defer a little while his knee heals, his 20 points or so a game are critical to open up the defenses.

Posted by: mark | November 11, 2007 10:07 PM | Report abuse

Gils shot will come when he distributes the ball. In fact,he may find that a truly open shot stands a better chance of going down.

Posted by: skeef | November 11, 2007 10:12 PM | Report abuse

Now on Wednesday night, they need some getback vs. the Pacers to build momentum.

There was a much better effort today, and maybe this team has learned a valuable lesson after the embarrassments and tongue-lashings they suffered on national TV the past two Fridays.

If they keep this formula together and do the little things (take care of the ball, get some stops, move on offense and PENETRATE) the big things will fall into place.

The benefit now is that the national folks won't be paying attention, having written the Wizards off already (or feeling vindicated they never gave the team a chance in the first place).

Let 'em keep sleeping on the team now, and I hope the team gets a sequoia-size chip on their shoulders to motivate them -- they seem to play better when they feel surrounded by haters.

Posted by: iceberg | November 11, 2007 10:14 PM | Report abuse

I like how almost no one in the area knew there was a Wizards game going on with the Redskins game against the Eagles at the same time.

Posted by: Will from Rockville | November 11, 2007 11:14 PM | Report abuse

The Big 3 averaged 40 minutes each today. There is less than a 1% chance that they can do this for an entire 82 game season. In fact, the harder they are pressed, the less likely they will play 82.

The approach for the past few years is a heavy reliance on the Big 3 and not much credence given to the other players. The effect is that we are the Big 3, and not much else. Said in another way, there is no development of the other players and therefore there is no confidence in them and therefore they have no confidence and therefore they don't play well.

This isn't a winning approach for this season or for future seasons.

Great, we won one. The pressure is off. Let's play 10 guys with decent minutes next game, particularly the 3 young guys.

Posted by: Izman | November 11, 2007 11:30 PM | Report abuse

Or maybe the other players don't play well because they aren't that good.

Posted by: kalorama | November 11, 2007 11:58 PM | Report abuse

Also, this isn't like other games. There are two full games between this one and the next one, which is plenty of time to rest your starters.

There are some games where it pays to play more guys. Today wasn't one of those.

Posted by: Pradmaster | November 12, 2007 1:30 AM | Report abuse

Pradamaster is right about that point, we needed the win yesterday more than a deep rotation. Jordan fouled up coming out of preseason not having developed trust in a rotation, now he's got to start over.

Kind of reminds me of his new team statement last spring after Gil and Butler went down. He seems to have no clue as to what these guys strengths and weaknesses are and how to weave them together into a team.

At this point he'll have to shorten the bench, re-establish a team identity, and start to plug these guys into what we're doing once the team really sorts out what that is. I think the players are going to have to establish that because Eddie seems just about lost right now.

When this coach says that we are going to hang our hat on defense, I wonder is he watching the same team I'm seeing? Yes, defensive improvement is important and we can't stop stressing it. But we were blowing games by not moving the ball and getting good shots.

The final shot against NJ was classic, 4 guys and their coach standing around waiting for Gil to win it for them. When the Nets came and doubled, why didn't someone set a back screen for a guy to break to the hoop? They spread the floor and nobody moved.

Five guys that just played together for the first time at the park could have come up with an iso with a back screen away from the ball in case they come and double. It's seems like to me guys have been standing around waiting for Gil to take over on offense and he's not able right now.

Daniels continues to be cold as ice, this is the third year in a row he's started out completely out of sorts. Just hope he can get his game back together and sink some shots. We really need his penetration game, because I don't think Stevenson could dribble around an empty chair to go to the hoop.

Stevenson was playing good D yesterday and sank some shots which is what we need from him. With better ball movement on offense like they showed last night this team should be sitting at about .500 instead of where they are now.

At least they've got a few days til the next game, they've got to take a look at what they did right yesterday and build on it til the can get in a groove and Eddie can hopefully find a clue...

Posted by: GM | November 12, 2007 8:42 AM | Report abuse

Blaming EJ for what has gone wrong so far is wrong. There's enough blame to go around. Production is a result of a two step process.

1. Coach tells the players what to do, and
2. The players do it.

Problem lies in between step 1 and 2. Either the player won't listen to the coach, or the player is incapable of doing what the coach tells him to do. The likely result of less than adequate production is the coach leaving.

This is the 3rd season that this core has been together. They still don't play well together, and the scheme doesn't fit the player's talents. So, either you change the scheme, or you get rid of the players that don't fit. EG hasn't done that in the offseason.

Posted by: DC Man88 | November 12, 2007 8:49 AM | Report abuse

I believe that the Princeton offense and the players don't jive well. It work well with the Nets since ther PG has a pass first mentality and one of the best passer in the game while ours in a shoot first pg (and one of the best scorer in the game). I agree with DC, EG didn't load up the team during the offseason. We have one of the worst bench last season and they were better compared to this year. I'll pick Jarvis anytime over Mason.

Posted by: Dave | November 12, 2007 9:17 AM | Report abuse

Yesterday the guys and EJ did what a lot of us have been saying: they moved the ball around effectively; they went tall instead of small; they got the ball inside to BH (at least at the beginning); they got their assists and cut down the turnovers; and they played adequate defense.

They still need to work on: consistently working the ball inside instead of just at the beginning of the game; maintaining better concentration and cutting down on the careless errors, particularly Gilbert; getting more production out of the bench, in this instance AD and AB; and being much smarter managing a lead, ie. avoiding quick shots and overly risky passes.

Glad to see they had the team meeting, prompted by C-But in his new -and very deserved- role as co-captain. This team needs Caron to continue being a guy who leads with words as well as his exemplary play. I love the fact that instead of getting into finger-pointing Caron got the guys together and had a positive influence.

After their first win I'll skip the analysis of the ultimate shortcomings and limitations of the team, the coach and the scheme, which we're all pretty familiar with by this time anyway.

Posted by: Mitch | November 12, 2007 9:46 AM | Report abuse

Seems like a good formula for victory: play decent defense, good ball movement, let the offense go thru AJ and Caron and others, then let Arenas ice the game at the end.

Gilbert does not have to score 30 points every night for the Wiz to win.

I think this team does play well together or they would not have been third or fourth in scoring efficiency last year.

Besides continuing the good ball movement they should also continue the focus on better defense. Let Gil look to set others up (along with doing some scoring) and then come on offensively at the end to ice games.

Posted by: Tim | November 12, 2007 9:48 AM | Report abuse

I should have said above this team is "capable" of playing well together - until yesterday they haven't this season.

Posted by: Tim | November 12, 2007 9:53 AM | Report abuse

Talking about minutes played for our big 3, has anyone taken a look at how many minutes the Celtics big 3 are playing? Ray Allen played 48 the other night. Their 3 are older than our 3 and their bench is not very deep. They just might get off to strong enough start to then cruise into the playoffs and rest their big guys, but the Wiz look like they will be battling for every victory.

If our bench finally starts to produce, EJ will reduce the starters's minutes....but if they remain inconsistent it will be tough on AJ, Caron and Arenas. For all you folks complaining about EJ not playing the rookies enough, stop yourself. None of the 3 rookies we have will make major contributions this year. They'll all have their moments but they will be just moments. Very few NBA rookies come in and contribute to a playoff team in their first year. If the Wiz are going deep this year, Daniels, Songaila, Mason and Andre will have to step up big night after night. Believe me, we'll miss Etan more and more as the season unfolds and injuries and fatigue set it.

Posted by: arnie | November 12, 2007 10:14 AM | Report abuse

Arnie - that is why I think that 3 rookies in a team is not good especially if you have a coach who don't play them as much. I believe we could have gotten at least one more veteran in the bench.

Posted by: Dave | November 12, 2007 10:26 AM | Report abuse

It's a recipe for disaster if you're entire bench is based on a bunch of unproven players and rookies, namely AB, DMac, NYoung, Opech, Mason, etc. Talk about being undermanned.

Even with DSong, he's not an offensive juggernaught, so don't expect more than a grind it out type of player. AD has resorted back to the player when people were openly asking why he was signed. AD at best is a 3rd stringer PG. I would venture to say AD is washed up.

"I'll pick Jarvis anytime over Mason.

Posted by: Dave | November 12, 2007 09:17 AM "

I'll take Jarvis over DS also.

Posted by: DC Man88 | November 12, 2007 10:29 AM | Report abuse

Arvis was a disaster. He didn't play well in Washington, and he was a waste off the bench. AD is still a capable player and a good back up. He can't shoot, that's for sure, but he's a great distributor, and he runs the offense well when he comes in. He played admirably in the playoffs last year as the starting PG.

Posted by: Colin | November 12, 2007 11:14 AM | Report abuse

All of our "first string" bench players have had their moments in the past year. They have proven they CAN be important bench players. Now they have to prove it every night. None of the guys we lost from last year's bench, or from this season's summer team or pre-season team would have made a significant difference, with one exception. Jarvis did not earn or deserve a contract here after the multiple opportunities he got last season. But if what some people are saying about his knee really needing a full 2 years recovery is true, then we'll regret letting him go for pennies to Detroit. With his serious injuries over 2 years, maybe past performance is not the best predictor of future performance. time will tell.

Posted by: arnie | November 12, 2007 11:28 AM | Report abuse

"Arvis was a disaster. He didn't play well in Washington, and he was a waste off the bench. AD is still a capable player and a good back up. He can't shoot, that's for sure, but he's a great distributor, and he runs the offense well when he comes in. He played admirably in the playoffs last year as the starting PG.

Posted by: Colin | November 12, 2007 11:14 AM "

I think the problem with most fans here watching the games on Les BouleS channel (aka Comcast) is that everyone gets a steady dosage of Les BouleS spin every time.

I saw the previous game against Denver that was also shown on ESPN and my gosh, the quality and standard of broadcasting, analysis, and production made comcast look like a pre K Christmas pageant.

Well, during the analysis by Van Gundy, he pointed out flaws in the team that neither Bucky nor Chenier could ever come up with. In his explanation, you could follow along and see clearly how bad the PG play was and how it resulted in people not producing and people not getting the ball when they should.

AD is clearly a hustle guy, but not a very capable guy. That's why he can't produce night in and night out nor can he run a team. He did some things last season during the playoffs, but that was because the well was dry. Someone eventually had to score during the blowouts/sweep.

I hope people who are anti Jarvis are proven wrong. During his first season here, he showed us what he could do. Hitting long bombs and elevating for dunks. Being a good soldier. Then he broke his kneecap twice and hurt his back from a bad fall, and people are quick to write his eulogy. How quickly has Gilby come back from his knee surgery?

It's funny how people are so down on him when Jarvis is an all around good guy who's never been a diva in the limelight, never had any trouble, not arrested, not overpaid, etc. It's sad actually.

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

Speaking of Jarvis..... 14pts, 3 rebounds, 2 assists in 18mins off the bench, off of 5/11 shooting against the Sonics last night. He may have been a "waste" in DC, but is doing well in Detroit. I am happy for him. It seems as if he has had a full "mental" recovery regarding his knee. I think he needed a change and am glad he got it. The Pistons Coach and GM really seem to like him as both a person and player.

I've always liked and admired Jarvis as a person. Unlike many of the other players on the team you never heard his name in the news. He wasnt running from police over legal issues with his child, or he wasn't involved in a shooting at his house after a night out, or he wasn't soliciting prostitution or initiating drug deals. He's a good kid and team player and I hope and pray it works out for him for that reason.

Now everyone is saying GIl needs to step up, but Gil is just coming off of a surgury and needs to make sure he is physically and mentally ready. I think the mental hurdle is harder to overcome than the physical hurdle. I hope it works out for Gil and he doesnt re-injure his knee for the second time like Hayes did due to an incorrect diagnosis from the team Doctor.

Posted by: carl | November 12, 2007 12:26 PM | Report abuse

Congratulations on the win--let's hope there are many more to come.

Now for the bad news: it took a team meeting and a sky-high effort to beat a bad team who played like a bunch of zombies. The Wizards who won today still will have no chance against the league's elite even if they make the playoffs. And, as pointed out above, with their 'Big 3' playing 40 plus minutes a night, that ain't gonna happen.

Proof that Eddie has been reading the boards might be found in his (finally) keeping Haywood in the game in the 4th quarter (even briefly teaming him with Blatche on defensive possessions) and even sliding Butler into the 2 spot, replacing Stevenson for an extra big. Revolutionary stuff, after a year of nagging from fans.

Those who talk about 'blowing up the team' or blaming Grunfeld for bad signings in defense of Jordan are mistaken, IMHO. All coaches in the league except for Riley work with the hand they're dealt, playerwise. The talent on the Atlanta team is no better than the Wizards--and they've been blown up over and over. The first layer of responsibility for our sorry start lies with the coaching staff--and the buck stops with Abe Pollin. This team badly needs a new coach before the fans give up on it. 1-5 is a better start than 0 - 6, but that still doesn't foreshadow a title run--and the team's problems were still pretty glaring, in spite of a nice win yesterday.

Posted by: KTV | November 12, 2007 12:32 PM | Report abuse

"Now everyone is saying GIl needs to step up, but Gil is just coming off of a surgury and needs to make sure he is physically and mentally ready. I think the mental hurdle is harder to overcome than the physical hurdle. I hope it works out for Gil and he doesnt re-injure his knee for the second time like Hayes did due to an incorrect diagnosis from the team Doctor.

Posted by: carl | November 12, 2007 12:26 PM "

It's funny how Gilby put undue pressure on himself during preseason by saying this is "coming out party 2" and how he figured he's the mvp if they get 50 wins, how he's better than isiah, how he was lighting it up at Barry Farms, how he worked out nonstop, the bikerides, the parachutes, etc......Then, when things start to unravel and Gilby's knee starts hurting, you have people jumping over fences and doing back flips with excuses and hope that he will get better. So funny.

Gilby is a big boy. He doesn't need the army of solider boy apologists. He should be able to back up what he says, or shut up.

Posted by: DC Man88 | November 12, 2007 12:34 PM | Report abuse

Didn't see the game (live in Richmond so it wasn't on) and my question for the board is this. Is what they did against Atlanta repeatable, can this win kickstart them on a good run. And will Eddie continue to do some of the good things that have been talked about on this board?

Posted by: George Templeton | November 12, 2007 12:35 PM | Report abuse

"Gilby is a big boy. He doesn't need the army of solider boy apologists. He should be able to back up what he says, or shut up.

Posted by: DC Man88 | November 12, 2007 12:34 PM"

And this statement comes from the childish DCIdIOT who NEVER shuts up!

Posted by: Anonymous | November 12, 2007 12:37 PM | Report abuse

""Gilby is a big boy. He doesn't need the army of solider boy apologists. He should be able to back up what he says, or shut up.

Posted by: DC Man88 | November 12, 2007 12:34 PM"

And this statement comes from the childish DCIdIOT who NEVER shuts up!

Posted by: | November 12, 2007 12:37 PM "


BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!

Focus on your hero, not me. Don't be angry at me just b/c your boy hero Gilby has fallen on his face since his bold proclamations during preseason. Go buy him some icey hot for his knee.

Posted by: DC Man88 | November 12, 2007 12:40 PM | Report abuse

DC Man88--

I kind of see how people ride you on this board, but I agree that Gil needs to back up what he says. You are right! Look at it this way... you don't see Kevin Garnett, Ray Allen, LeBron James, Dwayne Wade or even Caron Bulter or Antawn Jamison running off the mouth or writing all this and that in blogs. Gil needs to humble himself and QUICK!

Do you guys remember the articel when Gil was saying Kobe, Dwayne and LeBron couldnt do what he did with Antwan, Caron and Larry Hughes? Well NEWS FLASH.... LeBron took his team to the finals, Kobe and Dwayne have a TITLE! And what is sad is that Gil has Caron and A Jamison and cant make it past the 2nd round and had Larry Hughes and couldnt make it past the second round. Humble yourself Gil. His is a good player, but it will be a while before he reaches great because he isnt a leader.

Posted by: Carl | November 12, 2007 12:45 PM | Report abuse

"Didn't see the game (live in Richmond so it wasn't on) and my question for the board is this. Is what they did against Atlanta repeatable, can this win kickstart them on a good run. And will Eddie continue to do some of the good things that have been talked about on this board?

Posted by: George Templeton | November 12, 2007 12:35 PM "

I doubt it.

One win doesn't change the fact that Gilby still has a gimpy knee, the princeton offense is not working, this team is undermanned, and the bench is inexperienced.

There is absolutely no way that Gilby can play himself back to 100% without being out for a few weeks, and there's absolutely no way this team can beat better themselves without a major trade to beef up the front.

I say now is the time to possibly revisit the talks about getting AK-47 traded here. He'll provide scoring, and especially defense at the 4. He's not working out at Utah with Boozer firmly entrenched at the 4.

If EG is going to make a move, and he wants to keep Gilby, he needs to make it ASAP to prove to Gilby that the trade works and convince him to stay. Anything happening during the offseason will increase the risk that Gilby will leave. Personally, I don't care if he does though.

Posted by: DC Man88 | November 12, 2007 12:47 PM | Report abuse

Carl, that's b/c the soldier boy Gilby apologists on this blog can't deal with the fact that their hero's braggadocio is his undoing, and is his most fatal flaw. It's funny for those of us who attempt to at least be in touch with some semblance of reality.

Posted by: DC Man88 | November 12, 2007 12:51 PM | Report abuse

What is funny is that Arvis and Gil shot around the SAME FG% last season, but Jarvis is a waste of time and sucks???? Jarvis even shot a higher 3pt% than Gil, but Gil took like 1000 more shots than Jarvis a game. I got off of what is on PAPER and the PAPER says...

Gil- 39.9mins per game, .418% FG, .35.1% 3pt, and 28.4 ppg

Jarvis- 20.1mins per game, .410%FG, .361% 3pt, and 7.1ppg

HMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM not much difference exepct in the ppg. But as a BBall fan I know that someone averaging almost 40mins per game shouldn't be shooting 41% from the field!

Posted by: Mike H | November 12, 2007 1:00 PM | Report abuse

DC Man, are you even a Wizards fan? If not, then why do you live on this website. Kinda lame if you ask me. Is that all you do each day, wait for a new post so you can get into arguments with poeple online?

Posted by: Anonymous | November 12, 2007 1:07 PM | Report abuse

Wait, are people really on here defending the play of Jarvis Hayes LAST SEASON!?!? Am I in the twilight zone?

Posted by: The Owl Wizard | November 12, 2007 1:16 PM | Report abuse

"DC Man, are you even a Wizards fan? If not, then why do you live on this website. Kinda lame if you ask me. Is that all you do each day, wait for a new post so you can get into arguments with poeple online?

Posted by: | November 12, 2007 01:07 PM "

Is this a commie blog? Can people with different opinions post? Duh. Of course they can.

If you want a Gilby soldier boy lovefest, just keep reading his blog or subscribe to the Les BouleS blog. This is a Washington Post blog, not sponsored by Les BouleS.

Posted by: DC Man88 | November 12, 2007 1:29 PM | Report abuse

"Wait, are people really on here defending the play of Jarvis Hayes LAST SEASON!?!? Am I in the twilight zone?

Posted by: The Owl Wizard | November 12, 2007 01:16 PM "

Funny, people are blasting Jarvis because he was coming off a very bad injury (broken kneecap twice on the same knee) and was trying to work up his confidence, but when the subject of Gilby comes up, people are quick to defend his poor play because they say he's coming off an injury and is trying to work up his confidence.

I guess the hypocrisy of Gilby flows down to his soldier boy apologists.

Posted by: DC Man88 | November 12, 2007 1:32 PM | Report abuse

The Owl Wizard--

It looks like you are in the twilight zone. Nobody is defending the play from Hayes... I simply posted the facts. That is just like everyone saying Roger Mason sucks. Well how are we to know Roger's true potential if he might take 4 shots per game? There are so many times when Jamison may start shooting 1 for 6, well as the game progresses he might end up 7 for 15 or 16. Jamison has time and more shots to shoot better over the course of a game. If Roger goes 1 for 4 his has NO other opportunity to get his FG% up because unlike Jamison he doenst have the opportunity to get more shots. At the end of the night 1 for 4 looks bad just like the 0 for 4 DS shot in the other game. But had RMason and DS taken MORE shots we might not be saying they SUCK! And if EJordan doesnt start getting the rookies involved they are going to end up just like the second unit last year when Bulter and Gil got hurt....inexperienced and like DEER IN HEADLIGHTS. They and Hayes, Mason, DS dont play 30-40 minutes a night to get a chance to get in CONSTANT rhythm. Well on the flip side that is the downfall to being a bench player; you dont' get the same opportunities as starters. That is a reality man.

Oh one more thing....how do you DEFEND Gil for shooting the same % as a player (Hayes) we all ripped? And lower % from the 3pt line.

Posted by: Mike H | November 12, 2007 1:36 PM | Report abuse

Yes people with other opinions can post. But its just kind of odd that you are so obessed with this site, and you arent even a fan. Usually, if poeple are not a fan, they dont stalk a blog 24/7. But I guess you got nothin better to do. Makes you feel worthwhile.

Most of us come on here for decent basketball talk, not to bash pro athletes because we're jealous or something. You'll argue you any point just because you can. What a great contributor to this blog. I wonder if somehow this blog ended...what would you with your life? Some one's really got an issue with Gilbert. What did he do to piss you off? Make the NBA? Get a life.

Posted by: Anonymous | November 12, 2007 1:36 PM | Report abuse

"Yes people with other opinions can post. But its just kind of odd that you are so obessed with this site, and you arent even a fan. Usually, if poeple are not a fan, they dont stalk a blog 24/7. But I guess you got nothin better to do. Makes you feel worthwhile.

Most of us come on here for decent basketball talk, not to bash pro athletes because we're jealous or something. You'll argue you any point just because you can. What a great contributor to this blog. I wonder if somehow this blog ended...what would you with your life? Some one's really got an issue with Gilbert. What did he do to piss you off? Make the NBA? Get a life.

Posted by: | November 12, 2007 01:36 PM "

Does it make YOU feel worthwhile to judge another poster and not be able to stick to the topic of this blog, which is Les BouleS and Les BouleS' players?

Did I say I wasn't a fan? Can one be a fan and still disagree with the team and player's approach? I guess you haven't thought that far yet, but your argument makes you feel worthwhile nonetheless.

If you don't like what I post, you can do yourself a favor and get a life too. Otherwise, grin and bear it.

Posted by: DC Man88 | November 12, 2007 1:41 PM | Report abuse

You know that I've frequented this site multiple times without posting and this time I had to post something today. Please go back multiple Blogs by Ivan and you will see that we were all taking jabbs at Gilbert for not performing like he did last year. it was "Gil better get his act together" or "Is it too late to trade Gil." Now that the Wizards have won 1 game the blogs have turned pro-Gil. This is so two faced of us as fans! So I think that many of us as fans have had issues with Gilbert until last night. That is the nature of the game. And please lets stop focusing on Hayes. He is gone and we need to blog about our new team minus Hayes

Posted by: Anonymous | November 12, 2007 1:43 PM | Report abuse

And before anyone says anything about my above post I AM a HUGE wizards fan!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! And I was in the arena when we were ALL booing our team.

Posted by: Anonymous | November 12, 2007 1:45 PM | Report abuse

I think you've provided enough for everyone on this site to judge you. Its sad that you purposely argue things just to piss people off, not because you actually believe it. Usually if you are a 'fan', you support your team. Thats what being a fan is. Not bashing every player at the earliest convenience. But yea, you didnt say you werent a fan, so you must be one. A fan who hates the team he roots for...or something?

Posted by: Anonymous | November 12, 2007 1:46 PM | Report abuse

Very glad to see the team with Gilbert as the facilitator. Proving that he is a point gaurd (even if its for a little while). Still a little upset with him going another 40 minutes on that knee (but he needed to come back in the 4th because AD couldn't hit a jumper to save his life). I think that's why our 2nd unit is struggling because teams know they don't have to gaurd AD (unless its on the pick n roll with Songaila). But it seems AD always finds his shot later (much later)

Posted by: C.Bell | November 12, 2007 1:48 PM | Report abuse

I can't wait until the Wizards start winning. Once that occurs I will be reading things about how great EJ is and how he is a great coach. But right now we are all, including myself, chanting fire EJ. Just wait and see how the tables turn.

Posted by: Wizfan4u | November 12, 2007 1:48 PM | Report abuse

I would say we are 'all' chaning fire EJ. People dont understand the NBA season is 82 games. You dont fire the coach that got you to the playoffs 3 straight years after 5 games. These are the same people who boo the team off the court. Obviously, as a Wiz fan I've been dissapointed with the start of the season, but I dont encourage rash decisions like fire EJ two weeks into the season. Have a little faith in our team.

Posted by: Anonymous | November 12, 2007 1:51 PM | Report abuse

"I think you've provided enough for everyone on this site to judge you. Its sad that you purposely argue things just to piss people off, not because you actually believe it. Usually if you are a 'fan', you support your team. Thats what being a fan is. Not bashing every player at the earliest convenience. But yea, you didnt say you werent a fan, so you must be one. A fan who hates the team he roots for...or something?

Posted by: | November 12, 2007 01:46 PM "

Sorry, not everyone wants to be a soldier boy like you. I encourage you to continue to live in your dream world though, if that makes you happy. If what I write makes your dream world come crashing down though, then don't read it.

Posted by: DC Man88 | November 12, 2007 1:51 PM | Report abuse

"Have a little faith in our team.

Posted by: | November 12, 2007 01:51 PM "

Faith at going 0-5 to start the season? Most Les BouleS fans are tired of smack talk and false promises. We want to see results on the court, not gums yapping on TV.

Posted by: DC Man88 | November 12, 2007 1:53 PM | Report abuse

I think you give yourself a little too much credit DCman if you think that what you write makes my 'dream world come crashing down'. If you are a fan of a team, you root for them, not against them. Thats not a dream world. You dont hate on a team repeatedly and then say you are a 'fan'. Thats the opposite of what a fan is actually. Kinda funny how rooting for my team makes me a 'soldier boy'.

Posted by: Anonymous | November 12, 2007 1:54 PM | Report abuse

"

I think you give yourself a little too much credit DCman if you think that what you write makes my 'dream world come crashing down'. If you are a fan of a team, you root for them, not against them. Thats not a dream world. You dont hate on a team repeatedly and then say you are a 'fan'. Thats the opposite of what a fan is actually. Kinda funny how rooting for my team makes me a 'soldier boy'.

Posted by: | November 12, 2007 01:54 PM "

So what's your point? Who are you where have you actually posted an opinion and stand by it with your blog name? You are a nobody, which is why you don't post with a name.

I'm not giving myself any credit in your case. You are giving me all the credit by personally asking me questions instead of sticking to, and discussing about Les BouleS topics.

Your definition of "fan" means nothing to me. It's your definition, so don't impose your definition on anyone here.

You are probably the typical Gilby apologist soldier boy. I'm not surprised that it is the reason why you are directing your comments at me. Obviously you don't know anything, as you accuse me of not eing fain, because then you would have read the credit I have given CBut, BTH, and AB so far this preseason and season.

Posted by: DC Man88 | November 12, 2007 2:20 PM | Report abuse

FYI,

Being a soldier boy is a good thing because there's a song about it out now that all the little kids dance too!!!

Posted by: Anonymous | November 12, 2007 2:33 PM | Report abuse

I know what we need...Juan Carlos Navarro. That guy is tearing up the league!

Posted by: MD Baller1 | November 12, 2007 2:57 PM | Report abuse

Guys, back to Baskeball!

I like to get your opinion on this topic. Since Gilbert wants to win NOW. Do you think it's a wise decision if we trade Andre for 1 or 2 SOLID players? Maybe we can salvage this season and maybe go to the 2nd round or do you prefer to wait for a couple more years until Blatche reaches his potential?

Posted by: Dave | November 12, 2007 3:20 PM | Report abuse

"FYI,

Being a soldier boy is a good thing because there's a song about it out now that all the little kids dance too!!!

Posted by: | November 12, 2007 02:33 PM "

Yeah, and you and the rest of the Gilby soldier boys can dance to the good ole' EU go go song, "Doin' da butt." I'm sure you'll enjoy it.

Posted by: DC Man88 | November 12, 2007 3:22 PM | Report abuse

"I think you've provided enough for everyone on this site to judge you. Its sad that you purposely argue things just to piss people off, not because you actually believe it. Usually if you are a 'fan', you support your team. Thats what being a fan is. Not bashing every player at the earliest convenience. But yea, you didnt say you werent a fan, so you must be one. A fan who hates the team he roots for...or something?

Posted by: | November 12, 2007 01:46 PM "

BTW, anon, please decipher the instructions for this blog that say:

"We encourage users to analyze, comment on and even challenge washingtonpost.com's articles, blogs, reviews and multimedia features."

Let me know where and what the "fan" is required to do on this blog:

"DC Man, are you even a Wizards fan? If not, then why do you live on this website. Kinda lame if you ask me. Is that all you do each day, wait for a new post so you can get into arguments with poeple online?

....you support your team. Thats what being a fan is. Not bashing every player at the earliest convenience. But yea, you didnt say you werent a fan, so you must be one. A fan who hates the team he roots for...or something?"

I know, you might have to hire a cryptologist to see the letter pattern in breaking the code on what a fan is and isn't, and whether it's a precursor in order to post on this blog.

Posted by: DC Man88 | November 12, 2007 3:28 PM | Report abuse

I really don't see what the rub is with EJ. His system along with the Wiz's first team talent have prouduced one on the best scoring teams in the league the last three years. Last year they had the best record in the East until injuries hit.

We have an exciting team that plays an up-tempo game and not a boring half court set type of team. Of course, I am assuming that the funk they have been in so far this season will soon be over as evidenced by the game yesterday.

I think there may be two reasons for the slow start this season. One is the obvious that Gil's knee is not 100% and the other is that they really have focused this year on defense (as opposed to just promising to and then not) and that has made their offense slow to come around.

Looking at the schedule the rest of this month, the Wiz have some very winnable games going by won/loss record so far even though many of them are on the road.

Hopefully by the end of the month we can put this slow start in the rear view mirror and get on with an exciting season.

Posted by: Tim | November 12, 2007 3:56 PM | Report abuse

I'm not one that advocates firing Jordan. God knows we could do worse, he's a young coach who's gotten us into the playoffs.

But the guy's coaching like he's on his last legs, is he beleiving things like Mike Wise's peice on the first day of the season?

When you got a player coming off surgery that only played about 19 min. a game in preseason you'd think the approach would be to slowly ramp him up and maybe sit him out the first few back to backs.

Eddie played Arenas 20+ minutes in the SECOND half of the Boston game, for what? The results showed up big in the home opener the next night.

I think playing better defense has to be worked on day after day. But this team forgot how to run an offense. In Atlanta they started to look like the were on the same page offensively for a change.

The really good news so far is the rebounding that the Wiz have been getting up front. If we can keep pounding the boards they should be able to get out and get some open floor looks.

Jarvis Hayes confidence was shot here, and the fans had no confidence in him. A change of teams was badly needed in his case. No matter what some people think recovering from knee surgery is a slow process that can be as much mental as physical.

Using Jarvis at power forward extensively last year made the whole situation worse. Being used exclusively at the two and three near the end of the year he turned in some decent games as a reserve. Which is pretty much what he's doing now in Detroit.

At this point of his career he's good at what he's being asked to do in Detroit. In a similar role he could be productive here, but he still isn't a starter. And I really don't see that he'll be one real soon.

But like alot of other things, I don't have a clue why we're discussing Jarvis has other then the sake of being disagreeing over something.

Posted by: GM | November 12, 2007 4:05 PM | Report abuse

It is hard for me to judge the dynamics of EJ's use of Arenas so far. Is he feeling pressure from Arenas and others and not doing what is in the long term interests of the team and Gilbert?

If this is so, I might reasses my opinion of EJ. Does EG really support him? Maybe this is what you are alluding to, GM.

As far as EJ not developing his young players or bench the way some have mentioned, last year the bench was awful and I don't think it would have made much difference if he would have played them more.

However, EJ eventually this year has to find a way to give PT to his young players and give them a chance to grow. However, I am not going to judge this after just 5 games.

Posted by: Tim | November 12, 2007 4:29 PM | Report abuse

"I'll pick Jarvis anytime over Mason."

I was wondering how long it would take to see comments like this. Ridiculous.

Posted by: wisc. ave | November 12, 2007 4:48 PM | Report abuse

Well we finally broke through! I missed the game but looks like there must have been offensive improvement. Still concerned that the long term solution is not to shorten the bench. Needs to sneak some PT for Young and McGuire. Great to hear that he used Haywood and Blatche together and Caron at the 2. My 2 concerns are the 40 minutes by the big 3 and the fact that Caron may not be able to play the 2 against some match-ups but EJ may just think "it worked so let's keep it up." But a win is a win and we should all be thrilled.

BTW- the idea of dangling Andre for a quick fix vet is ridiculous to me. We need to stop getting impatient with young players around here and learn to develop them: (ex. R Wallace, B Wallace, R Hamilton and others) AB is a shot changer on defense and has quick moves for a 7 footer. needs to continue developing his post moves and consistency on his jumper. His handle and his court vision and passing ability are special for a big man. He could be a foundational piece for the next 10-12 years. Let's not panic again.

Posted by: Bmore Rev | November 12, 2007 4:50 PM | Report abuse

Or maybe the other players don't play well because they aren't that good.

The problem is that we don't know that, because EJ, at least so far, hasn't given them time to develop. But it's important to develop a bench. We've seen what happens when injuries hit; without strong backups, you're dead.

But his lack of ability as a coach can be shown with one example: Brendan Haywood (this point not related to the bench). All last year I pounded the drum for the guy to get more run.

But Eddie hated him and wouldn't play him, even to the point of blowing the first playoff game against the Cavs by keeping him on the bench when he had proved over the years he was 10 times more effective against Ilgauskas than Thomas.

This year, he has had to rely on Brendan, and he's come through. It was the same thing last year: whenever Haywood got real minutes, he produced. But he rarely got them because of EJ's 1) personal animosity toward BTH, 2) his absolute adoration of smallball. It didn't seem to matter that it never worked; next game, we'd see it again at a crucial time, and it would cost us yet another game.

Eddie doesn't fire this team up; he can't get them to play hard; he doesn't inspire them; he won't force them to even try on defense (like, for instance, sitting players, even your best players, if they're indifferent on D); he doesn't understand game strategy or substitution patterns. Those are the reasons he should've been gone after last year, and he'll probably be gone before '08 gets here or around the all-star break.

This observation isn't based on six games, before folks start hollering. This is something most of us have seen for four years now.

Posted by: Keithinator | November 12, 2007 5:16 PM | Report abuse

"The problem is that we don't know that, because EJ, at least so far, hasn't given them time to develop."

Which players are you talking about? Because Blatche has, in fact, shown signs of development over his time here. He's clearly a much better player now than he was when he got here, and since Jordan's the only coach he's ever had, if you're going to hold him responsible for player development, he has to get credit for that.

Young and Maguire are rookies and, 6 games into the season, it's nowhere near the point where it can be determined how well or poorly they've been developed.

"But it's important to develop a bench. We've seen what happens when injuries hit; without strong backups, you're dead."

It's important to have a bench. How you get one is another issue. Benches full of talented but young, unproven, developing players are usually best served on young, developing teams. Playoff teams with a veteran core and aspirations toward contention (like the Wiz) are usually best served by a bench dominated by experienced vets. Sure, it's good to have some young, up-and-comers in the wings, but teams in the position that the Wizards are striving for don't generally rely on those kind of players as their first support option. That's part of the dilemma the Wiz find themselves in, and that's a result of the job Grunfeld's done, not Jordan.

"But his lack of ability as a coach can be shown with one example: Brendan Haywood (this point not related to the bench). All last year I pounded the drum for the guy to get more run."

This is well trod ground, and at this point no one's likely to change their already established positions. nonetheless ... giving Haywood more minutes wasn't going to solve the fundamental problem he had last season, namely his attitude. That was something he had to decide to fix himself.

Posted by: kalorama | November 12, 2007 5:49 PM | Report abuse

Haywood's attitude was due to his coach's loathing of him, and desire to sit his butt on the bench no matter how effective he was. That's on EJ, not Brendan. I'd have been complaining too, if I proved my value and was still ignored by my coach.

Re: Blatche's development -- it's been hindered, not helped, by Eddie. He could have -- would have, I will strenuously argue -- if Eddie had played him more last year, and let him play through mistakes.

Eddie will tolerate mistakes 'til the cows come home from his vets; but his rookies and young players know that one or two mistakes get you sat down. That affects their confidence and ability to develop, IMO.

Look at McGuire, for example. He showed a great deal in preseason. Yes, it's a lot different when the bullets are really flying, but how else are you going to develop? He got a DNP Sunday, likely the first of many.

Whether or not the bench is young, at this point, is irrelevant. It is what it is. Eddie has to develop it, whether he wants to or not. The alternative is to see a replay of what happened last year when injuries started hitting, and guys wearing down when the intense jockeying for playoff positioning starts.

Posted by: Keithinator | November 12, 2007 6:05 PM | Report abuse

The graph should read:

"He could have -- would have, I will strenuously argue -- developed much more by now if Eddie had played him more last year, and let him play through mistakes."

Posted by: Keithinator | November 12, 2007 6:07 PM | Report abuse

"Haywood's attitude was due to his coach's loathing of him, and desire to sit his butt on the bench no matter how effective he was."

Well, that's conjecture and speculation, as we have no way of knowing what goes on inside his head or Jordan's. All we do know, for a fact, is that he had some well-demonstrated attitude issues last season. Issues that tend to get in the way of a player's effectiveness. Regardless of the root of his attitude problem, it is up to the player to overcome it. He can either realize that things are what they are and give his all in whatever time he gets (which (A) is the best way to get more PT and (B) Haywood was quite clearly not doing last season) or he can pout and whine and dog it if things aren't to his liking (which is just what Haywood did).

"Re: Blatche's development -- it's been hindered, not helped, by Eddie. He could have -- would have, I will strenuously argue -- if Eddie had played him more last year, and let him play through mistakes."

Conjecture based on something that didn't happen and thus can never be proven. All we do know is that, based on what we see on the floor now versus what we've seen on the floor in previous seasons, he's made some very obvious and significant improvements as a player. This happened on Jordan's watch. If people aren't willing to give him any of the credit when things go well, then they probably shouldn't be so quick to heap all of the blame on him when they don't.

"Eddie will tolerate mistakes 'til the cows come home from his vets; but his rookies and young players know that one or two mistakes get you sat down."

Which makes him no different than the vast majority of coaches (good and bad) in sports at all levels.

"Look at McGuire, for example. He showed a great deal in preseason. Yes, it's a lot different when the bullets are really flying, but how else are you going to develop?"

By working hard in practice, putting in extra time after practice, soaking up what he can by listening to the coaches and vets, and by playing with as much focus and energy and as few mistakes as he can in what few minutes he does get.

"Whether or not the bench is young, at this point, is irrelevant."

On the contrary, it's very relevant to a team in the Wiz's position. A young bench (esp. a young bench made up of lower profile players) can take years to develop into a reliable core of players. The Wiz aren't necessarily in a position where they can afford to wait years. If they don't make it to the next level this season there's a good chance that some pretty sweeping changes will be made, a fact that I can assure you is on the mind of the coaches and the veteran players.

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

Wait, am I being an apologist because I can see that Jarvis was done here? I didn't know that was up for debate. The dude had no confidence in his jumper, and his defense was equally bad, partly because he was being asked to be a defensive stopper, partly because of his lack of confidence on the other side of the court. It was a straight miracle whenever this guy's shot went down. Also Jarvis was a lottery pick on this team, and you know that is unforgiving to a fan base if you don't produce lottery pick results. Again I feel like I'm in the twilight zone with people co-signing Jarvis Hayes on the Wizards. Best of luck to him in Detroit though.

Posted by: The Owl Wizard | November 12, 2007 6:33 PM | Report abuse

ADDENDUM

When I say they "can't afford to wait years" for the bench to develop, I mean that they're in a "win now" scenario. They're not in a situation like the Pistons or Spurs where getting to the playoffs is all but a given and they can afford to conserve minutes from their big guns down the stretch, even if it costs them a game or two during the season. The Wiz have a slim margin for error and so does Jordan. I would expect that the bench will become more integrated as the season goes on and Jordan (and the vets) become more comfortable with them and have a better idea of what they can accomplish. But in the first couple of weeks of the season, after an 0-and-5 start, resting your stars for the playoff run and leaving the game in the hands of unproven kids isn't a script that most coaches would follow.

Posted by: kalorama | November 12, 2007 6:35 PM | Report abuse

Ivan stated on WaPO Live today that the rookies were getting torched in the games they played in. If we had not started out so horrendously maybe they would be getting playing time to work through their mistakes....with a 0-5 start, the rookies will have to wait.

Posted by: Lisa | November 12, 2007 6:38 PM | Report abuse

Ivan also stated that with the poor start EJ has to play his vets more and shorten his bench to be more sure of getting wins.

Until they start winning consistently, I don't think you will see too much of the rooks. What would any of you do differently if you started out 0-5 in a high pressure job?

Posted by: Tim | November 12, 2007 6:56 PM | Report abuse

It's readily apparent to me that there is enormous value to getting BTH the ball early in the game. Even when he misses shots, he's more of a presence on both ends of the floor.

With so many possessions in a game, GA/Wiz should really make more of an attempt to get him going early. Everyone benefits in the end. The floor opens up and the defense has to account for him. Good things happen when you go Inside.

Posted by: The Janitor | November 12, 2007 7:49 PM | Report abuse

"It's readily apparent to me that there is enormous value to getting BTH the ball early in the game. Even when he misses shots, he's more of a presence on both ends of the floor.

With so many possessions in a game, GA/Wiz should really make more of an attempt to get him going early. Everyone benefits in the end. The floor opens up and the defense has to account for him. Good things happen when you go Inside.

Posted by: The Janitor | November 12, 2007 07:49 PM "

He's been saying that since Larry left, and no one believed him.

Posted by: DC Man88 | November 12, 2007 8:49 PM | Report abuse

EJ keep that same rotation going like the Atl. game and I will put my other foot back in your bandwagon.

Remember, trust AB and Haywood. You can not teach "length" baby...... No more small ball, no more small ball........

Posted by: Bullets Fever #1 | November 12, 2007 9:22 PM | Report abuse

Can't have it both ways, Kal. You state Well, that's conjecture and speculation, as we have no way of knowing what goes on inside his head or Jordan's.

But you do that throughout your post. Examples:

All we do know, for a fact, is that he had some well-demonstrated attitude issues last season -- You don't know that the problem was his and not Eddie's.

he can pout and whine and dog it if things aren't to his liking (which is just what Haywood did) -- unless you were in his head, and can read his mind, that's conjecture.

Another point:
"Eddie will tolerate mistakes 'til the cows come home from his vets; but his rookies and young players know that one or two mistakes get you sat down."

Which makes him no different than the vast majority of coaches (good and bad) in sports at all levels.

-- that still doesn't excuse it. Because other coaches make bad decisions, Eddie's supposed to be off the hook? Again, it's part of his pattern over the years.

Posted by: Keithinator | November 12, 2007 9:50 PM | Report abuse

I agree with you 100%, Keithinator. Both Blatche and BTH's development has been stunted by EJ's tactics. I think he's just old school and that's the way things worked in the 80's when he was playing. Back then, guys wanted to start so they could earn big contracts. Now even 15th men are financially set from the minute they enter the league and you have to motivate them in different ways. Negativity has not worked and just sours their attitudes. Try having faith in them and treating them like men. Like you said, EJ's pattern is clear. Pech and Nick Young will get some playing time next year but McGuire won't see the floor til his 3rd year if EJ remains the coach. In EJ's defense, it's a catch-22 situation. EJ is on a one year deal and has a short leash. Subsequently, he has to win now and knows that he has to max out the starters minutes to do that. He can't afford to develop the young guys because it could potentially cost him a win or two. If we were in his shoes, we'd probably all play the starters heavy minutes, too. Maybe a public vote of confidence by EG would loosen him up and allow him to coach as if he'll be here next year.

Posted by: mark | November 12, 2007 10:40 PM | Report abuse

Mark/Keith,

Spoken like true immature individuals from a new era where folks want to be rewarded not for accomplishment, but for being. I think EJ should play the young guys more, but him not playing AB last year has more to do with Blatche not EJ. As far as I can see Blatche is getting run this year, maybe not as much as you will like. I would bet that NY and DM will get significant minutes within the next month or so, they do not seem like the knucklehead that AB is/was.

Posted by: Anonymous | November 12, 2007 10:55 PM | Report abuse

he can pout and whine and dog it if things aren't to his liking (which is just what Haywood did) -- unless you were in his head, and can read his mind, that's conjecture.

-----
Uh, Buddy, that is not conjecture, but fact. Not only did the whole team SEE and HEAR it, but all ofthe Wizards fans...are you kidding when you say that Haywood did not pout and whine. By the way, none other than the star of team confirmed his dogging it... Reasonable people are entitled to their opinions, not their facts.

Posted by: Anonymous | November 12, 2007 11:01 PM | Report abuse

Haywood's attitude was due to his coach's loathing of him, and desire to sit his butt on the bench no matter how effective he was. That's on EJ, not Brendan. I'd have been complaining too, if I proved my value and was still ignored by my coach.

------
Do you really believe that if BH was pulling down rebounds with enthusiasm and at the rate he has been for 6 games that EJ would bench him? So let me see, EJ and everyother coach, teammate, writer, etc. has been wrong about him since college. WE all know BH has talent and is long, question has always been whether he was mature and hungry enough to bring it on the regular.

Posted by: Anonymous | November 12, 2007 11:07 PM | Report abuse

I've peeped at this site a few times. And today I see people arguing back and forth, questioning one another's "fanhood".

Opinions are like azz-holes, everybody got one.

So here's mine...The Wizards suck, and the main reason is Arenas...his me, me, me, running his mouth, look at me attitude. His comical non-serious approach, talking a bunch of smack, Oh this is what I'm gonna do this year, oh this my coming out party, the take over 2, oh Boston fan's you should just cheer for me...Arenas shut yo punk azz mouth. Your own player's and fan's don't respond well to braggart's. That's not what true leaders, true hard nose superstar player's do. Look at Kobe, Lebron, Nash, and the like. Opponents fear those player's because they let their game speak a whole lot louder than their mouth. But nobody fear's Arenas cause he have watered down his game trying to be funny running his agent zero whole of a mouth. He ain't hard enough, he's good, but not HARD and other player's know it. That's why Lebron punked him a couple year's ago at the foul line. And all Arenas did was give a comical smirk, and miss the free throws. You just been punked, was Lebron's expression, don't nobody fear you.

Trade Arenas, and the team move's in a better direction.

Posted by: fan of the game | November 12, 2007 11:08 PM | Report abuse

Wait, am I being an apologist because I can see that Jarvis was done here? I didn't know that was up for debate. The dude had no confidence in his jumper, and his defense was equally bad, partly because he was being asked to be a defensive stopper, partly because of his lack of confidence on the other side of the court. It was a straight miracle whenever this guy's shot went down. Also Jarvis was a lottery pick on this team, and you know that is unforgiving to a fan base if you don't produce lottery pick results. Again I feel like I'm in the twilight zone with people co-signing Jarvis Hayes on the Wizards. Best of luck to him in Detroit though.

-----

This is why the lack of history being thought in American schools has migrated into the idea that people can say anything and make true. Must be a Bushism. Jarvis Hayes was a really good player prior to his injuries. I think it is clear that last year he lacked confidence in his injured knee. He is by far a better option on defense and offense relative to Steveson. I know it is hard to go back on prior pronoucements by this blogs Kings and Queen, but you were wrong about Jarvis.

Posted by: Anonymous | November 12, 2007 11:12 PM | Report abuse

"You don't know that the problem was his and not Eddie's."

I do know, for a fact, that Jordan wasn't the one who was observed and reported sitting on the bench applauding and exulting in the team's losing a game. I'm certain that was Haywood. And I'm equally certain that a player who openly roots for his own team to lose has an attitude problem.

"All we do know, for a fact, is that he had some well-demonstrated attitude issues last season" -- unless you were in his head, and can read his mind, that's conjecture."

Nope. Key word in the line you quoted: demonstrated. His behavior has been observed and documented in any number of publicly available outlets. I learned about the whining/complaining/pouting from reading the newspaper stories written by reporters who are around the team on a daily basis. I learned about the dogging it by watching him on the court during the many nights when he was playing at half-speed (if that) after being reinserted following his removal from a game. It would be conjecture if I were attempting to figure out what he was thinking while he was doing these things, but I'm not. I don't care why as long as he stops.

"Because other coaches make bad decisions, Eddie's supposed to be off the hook? "

That presumes it's a bad decision. That's not necessarily true, esp. for a team and coach in the position Eddie and the Wiz are. Mistakes can cost games. A team like Seattle or Portland can afford to let their young guys play through their mistakes because they aren't burdened by expectations. The Wiz don't really have that luxury. At least not as much of it.

Posted by: kalorama | November 12, 2007 11:14 PM | Report abuse

Why do you use the word "we" when refering to the Wiz. Is someone here on their roster or otherwise getting paid by the team? Curious, never understood that?

Posted by: Anonymous | November 12, 2007 11:17 PM | Report abuse

"Try having faith in them and treating them like men."

Well, I maybe I'm just too old school, but it seems to me that when a guy's getting paid in excess of $5 mill/yr. his boss shouldn't have to take it on faith that he'll do his job.

Posted by: kalorama | November 12, 2007 11:34 PM | Report abuse

Fan of the game...you said "Look at Kobe"....bad comparison, dude. Nash yes, Kobe NO. Kobe is a good player but has whined ad nauseum.....basically forced the Lakers to cut Shaq...and please don't forget the Colorado thing.

Posted by: Anonymous | November 12, 2007 11:48 PM | Report abuse

Always good for a laugh.

Posted by: Anonymous | November 13, 2007 12:53 AM | Report abuse

I am DC woMan88 and I hate Gil because Gil missed some free throws late in a playoff game and that caused me to lose a big bet.

I have devoted the rest of my pathetic life to bashing Gil to any fool who is stupid enough to read what I post here.

Posted by: DC woMan88 | November 13, 2007 1:59 AM | Report abuse

In defense of BTH.....I guess I'm an immature individual for telling you how it is. I don't play for the Wiz. How you can call me immature is beyond me. I never said that it was right for people to not play as hard as they can. I just said that it's understandable. If your boss repeatedly showed up at your desk and threatened to get someone else to replace you, would you be motivated to work harder if you had a guaranteed contract? What if your contract was for 5 years and your boss had a contract for 3? If you're telling the truth, the answer is 'no'. If you say that you'd work harder to justify the salary that you're getting paid, you're lying to yourself and to everyone else here. The amount of money a guy makes is relative. There may be people making minimum wage who look at computer programmers and think that they should work harder because they 'make so much money'. The fact is, professional athletes deserve the money they make just as we deserve whatever someone is willing to pay US. They are under no obligation to work hard because they make a lot of dough. In a utopian society, sure. But in reality, their obligation is to themselves. They have to secure their futures and once that's done, it's up to them to decide whether to actually perform. I know it's selfish and it's not right but that's the way it is. Fortunately, most athletes compete for pride. Otherwise, we'd have dogs like Kwame more often. Did BTH whine and pout? That's what the media implied. Did anyone on this blog besides Ivan see it? Doubtful. Would most of us sulk if we were treated the same way? Probably. Remember one telling thing Ivan wrote in his response to Etan. Ivan wrote that there were things that he did not report that would have made Etan look a lot worse than he did during the Etan vs. BTH scuffles. So now you have a guy who might be initiating some of the problems (Etan) but who has the coach on his side. Who wouldn't have problems with that? My bottom line: I think it's despicable for a guy to get paid and refuse to do his job. On the other hand, there's stuff we don't see so we shouldn't abuse the guy. He's playing well now so why are we even talking about previous years. Why not just support the team and the guy and move on?

Posted by: mark | November 13, 2007 7:42 AM | Report abuse

Mark and Keith. I agree with both of your posts 110 percent. I have beating that drum about Haywood and EJ's tactics since I came onto this blog last season. You have to give it up. These guys are not going to see it.

I have used the employee/manager example before and many other examples to try to get them to understand the reasoning for Haywood's "outbursts and actions" last year. Your boss can push you but so far before you snap. The mind games EJ was playing on him took it's toll. A leader

If Haywood was such a malcontent and "slacker" as the detractors always say, why is it EG made sure this summer he did not trade him? Why is it EG made every attempt to trade Etan instead of Haywood? Answer, he knew (like many of us also) with consistent playing time Haywood could be a major factor.

Posted by: Bullets Fever #1 | November 13, 2007 8:40 AM | Report abuse

Mark and Keith. I agree with both of your posts 110 percent. I have beating that drum about Haywood and EJ's tactics since I came onto this blog last season. You have to give it up. These guys are not going to see it.

I have used the employee/manager example before and many other examples to try to get them to understand the reasoning for Haywood's "outbursts and actions" last year. Your boss can push you but so far before you snap. The mind games EJ was playing on him took it's toll.

If Haywood was such a malcontent and "slacker" as the detractors always say, why is it EG made sure this summer he did not trade him? Why is it EG made every attempt to trade Etan instead of Haywood? Answer, he knew (like many of us also) with consistent playing time Haywood could be a major factor.


Posted by: Bullets Fever #1 | November 13, 2007 8:41 AM | Report abuse

As much as i liked this win, how realistic is it for us to expect all starters to be in dbl figures each game? I'm not sure that this is the winning formula for us this year. I hope it works out but I can't see us winning consistently like this. There will be more nights where one or 2 guys are off than nights like the one we just had. I'm not trying to 'wiz' in the cornflakes but i'll keep saying it...we have to get consistent contributions from the bench in order to be successful this year. heavy minutes from the starters to get the first win was ok but let's sprinkle some youth in there, EJ. we'll find out if we learned anything when we play the pacers again. The open baseline 3 still seems to be a thorn in our sides.
Memo to EJ:
1. Granger will shoot 3's if left open.
2. Dunleavy is the perfect guy to put Blatche on or DS. Make him shoot over them.

3. Tinsley is kinda quick. Put DS on him or trap him in a zone. Make sure if you trap or dbl him, you watch out for the perimeter 3's.
4. They have no answer for BTH. Play him for 40 minutes.

Posted by: mark | November 13, 2007 9:41 AM | Report abuse

BWAHAHAHAHAHA!!!

I don't think Gilby needs any more help in convincing others that he's a clown and acts like a fool. He's doing a great job as it is, but then again, a lot of Gilby lovers here have blinders on.

Posted by: DC Man88 | November 13, 2007 9:47 AM | Report abuse

You know maybe you are right. Maybe I'm brainwashed into thinking that Jarvis was not effective here as a Wizard. So like any intelligent person I looked it up. Interesting what I found:

Jarvis Hayes

Net points per 100 possesions
2003/2004 ---------- -3.2 (played 51% of possible minutes for the season)
2004/2005 ---------- -4.0 (played 39% of possible minutes for the season
2005/2006 ---------- -1.8 (played 13% of possible minutes for the season)
2006/2007 ---------- -8.2 (played 40% of possible minutes for the season)

Ok well maybe you don't like those types of stats because it doesn't highlight the individual; it just shows his contributions to the team. Well using purely individual statistics that John Hollinger measures Hayes was still sub par at best (league avg. is 15)

2003/2004 ---------- Per 9.44
2004/2005 ---------- Per 11.11
2005/2006 ---------- Per 12.19
2006/2007 ---------- Per 10.77

Here is the book on Hayes for last season, per Hollinger:
Hayes finally got through an entire season, playing 81 games after knee injuries shortened the previous two seasons. Alas, he might have wanted to end the misery sooner. Hayes hit 41 percent from the floor and continued his career-long pattern of being a shooting specialist who can't actually shoot.

Hayes takes an inordinate number of jumpers -- over a third of his attempts were 3-pointers, and nearly the same amount were long 2-pointers. That shot mix is part of his problem -- he'd be a lot better off if more of them were 3s, because his shooting percentage isn't any different. Hayes made 36.1 percent of his 3s but only 32.9 percent of his long 2s; over the past thee years he's at 36.6 percent on those shots.

While he's shooting all those Js, Hayes isn't getting to the line (58th out of 63 small forwards in free-throw attempts per field-goal attempt), and he's not converting a huge percentage of the jumpers. So his true shooting percentage only ranked 52nd among small forwards. Mind you, this was a good shooting year by Hayes's standards -- he at least got his TS% over 50, which was a first.

He at least had a good turnover ratio, mostly because he rarely drove to the basket, but that and the 84.5 percent mark on his rare free throws were the only major areas where he beat the league average at his position.

In comparison Deshawn Stevenson

Net points per 100 possesions
2006/2007 ---------- -1.0 (played 60% of possible minutes for the season)
2006/2007 ---------- Per 12.92

And finally, I checked the wages of wins journal just to make sure that my eyes, two different sets of mathematical equations, statistics and Ernie Grunfeld weren't all wrong. Last season using their economic model of wins produced, Jarvis Hayes calculated to a -0.2 (wins produced/48 mins of -.0006). Again Deshawn Stevenson in comparison calculated to a 2.0 (wp/48 of 0.041).
So in summation, you would rather have a lottery pick who by every piece of statistical, non statistical and visual evidence never has been even an AVERAGE player over a guy you picked up for nothing who in 1 season had a better year than any of the previous four seasons of said lottery pick? In any world how does that make sense? So yes I stand by my statement, Jarvis was done here. I wish him the best of luck in Detroit.

Posted by: The Owl Wizard | November 13, 2007 10:06 AM | Report abuse

Mark, those are good points. EJ needs to create mismatches using the team's strengths. He can't keep trying to play small ball because the team is not speedy enough aside from Daniels, Arenas and Butler.

Posted by: rgz | November 13, 2007 10:29 AM | Report abuse

The top 8 players that EJ identified at the beginning of the season got heavy minutes, and got good result. I wonder why EJ didn't do this earlier? :) I am especially encouraged to see that Blatche on the court together with Haywood, or with Songaila. We even saw Jamison played at 3 when he and Songaila were both in. I have nothing against Songaila playing at 4. If he is on the court with Blatche, I don't even mind Songaila playing at 5 and let Blatche play 4. There, you at least have someone who can block shot to cover up Songaila's lack of height and lack of leaping ability. I just don't want to see Jamison and Songaila play at 4 and 5 together. The result has been brutal for that combination.

Near the end of the game, EJ even had Haywood and Songaila do some offense-defense type substitution while still left Blatche there. I think EJ has finally figured out there is some advantage in playing "big ball" (vs. the "small ball").

Posted by: Sagaliba | November 13, 2007 10:45 AM | Report abuse

"So in summation, you would rather have a lottery pick who by every piece of statistical, non statistical and visual evidence never has been even an AVERAGE player over a guy you picked up for nothing who in 1 season had a better year than any of the previous four seasons of said lottery pick? In any world how does that make sense? So yes I stand by my statement, Jarvis was done here. I wish him the best of luck in Detroit.

Posted by: The Owl Wizard | November 13, 2007 10:06 AM "

So, how many lottery picks actually pan out? Can all lottery picks from all years be compared? Can you really compare Kwame's draft class with Lebron's?

It's not really a science and the numbers aren't the end all be all. A lot of the player's success depends on the offense style, teammate strengths and weaknesses, quality minutes, etc. None of this can really be captured with statistical data.

Posted by: DC Man88 | November 13, 2007 10:45 AM | Report abuse

"It's not really a science and the numbers aren't the end all be all. A lot of the player's success depends on the offense style, teammate strengths and weaknesses, quality minutes, etc. None of this can really be captured with statistical data.

Posted by: DC Man88 | November 13, 2007 10:45 AM "

Oh I agree with you here. My initial point was that Jarvis was done here. I didn't say he wouldn't pan out to be a decent NBA player, maybe he will maybe he will not. My only point is, since this is a business (the business of winning games) then for what purpose would you keep him? How does he help your entity, fufill your plan of winning games? He clearly didn't, for the past four years he didn't. He was always hurt, and when he played he was ineffective in the system. Maybe the system is flawed, but right or wrong, it is the system (the 3rd most efficient one in the NBA I might add)so then you get rid of the individual problem. I actually met the dude, and he was cool, respectful and seemed humble. That's all great but again we're (the Bullets) in the business of winning games. He didn't do that here.

Posted by: Anonymous | November 13, 2007 11:00 AM | Report abuse

None of this can really be captured with statistical data.

Posted by: DC Man88 | November 13, 2007 10:45 AM

Some, but not all of it can. In any non-empirical study (which basically means anything outside of the physical sciences) statistics must always be taken with a grain of salt.

In other words, there's no way to forecast what Jarvis would have looked like in a wiz uniform this year. Neither past statistics, nor present performance in a different system can make a solid determination in either direction... However, a bettin man would have had Jarvis jackin J's that don't tend to fall all year...

Posted by: jonesy | November 13, 2007 11:02 AM | Report abuse

The top 8 players that EJ identified at the beginning of the season got heavy minutes, and got good result. I wonder why EJ didn't do this earlier? :) I am especially encouraged to see that Blatche on the court together with Haywood, or with Songaila. We even saw Jamison played at 3 when he and Songaila were both in. I have nothing against Songaila playing at 4. If he is on the court with Blatche, I don't even mind Songaila playing at 5 and let Blatche play 4. There, you at least have someone who can block shot to cover up Songaila's lack of height and lack of leaping ability. I just don't want to see Jamison and Songaila play at 4 and 5 together. The result has been brutal for that combination.

Near the end of the game, EJ even had Haywood and Songaila do some offense-defense type substitution while still left Blatche there. I think EJ has finally figured out there is some advantage in playing "big ball" (vs. the "small ball").


Posted by: Sagaliba | November 13, 2007 10:45 AM
_______________________________________

Thank you!!! That is how you coach down the stretch. Blatche made 2 or 3 key rebounds towards the end of the game on the defensive end that helped us put the game away. When you play big ball with Blatche and Haywood or Blatche and Songaila or Haywood and Songaila you have such a better presence inside for people to drive on you (say Tinsley) and a better rebounding advantage to get key boards (say Richard Jefferson.) Hopefully he understands that this is a good thing and roles with it. Hallelujah holla back.

Posted by: LooseCannon | November 13, 2007 11:14 AM | Report abuse

Thanks, Owl Wizard. Now I can point to your piece and justify it when I say that jarvis was done here and needed to go. The knock on him coming out of college was that he had no handle and could only shoot jumpers. In 4 years he had still not corrected that. His MO was to take 2 dribbles and pull up. It was like he conceded that he couldn't handle it enough to go by anyone and settled for the J. That would have been fine if he'd been making open j's but he didn't do that with any regularity. (Actually, he was pretty regular at 40% or so), He had to go. good luck in Detroit.

Posted by: mark | November 13, 2007 11:16 AM | Report abuse

So Mark, basically what you're saying is that once he gets the money he has no moral or ethical responsibility to live up to the terms of the agreement under which the money was procured? That if he doesn't feel like showing up to work that's okay because his feelings are hurt? (I'm thinking of trying that approach on my boss. I'll let you know how it goes.) And that it's perfectly reasonable for him to put his personal pique ahead of what's best for the team? And that we, as fans, should understand this?

Sorry, but I can't buy even a little of that.

Posted by: kalorama | November 13, 2007 12:13 PM | Report abuse

During the preseason we kept hearing the praises of Blatchie, McGuire, and Young and how they would strengthen the Wizard's bench. I kept thinking that once the season started that we would see little of them. That's the way EJ coaches.

Posted by: browneri | November 13, 2007 12:40 PM | Report abuse

So Mark, basically what you're saying is that once he gets the money he has no moral or ethical responsibility to live up to the terms of the agreement under which the money was procured? That if he doesn't feel like showing up to work that's okay because his feelings are hurt? (I'm thinking of trying that approach on my boss. I'll let you know how it goes.) And that it's perfectly reasonable for him to put his personal pique ahead of what's best for the team? And that we, as fans, should understand this?

Sorry, but I can't buy even a little of that.

Posted by: kalorama | November 13, 2007 12:13 PM

I don't think he was advocating any of those behaviors/attitudes. My reading of his post gave me the impression that he was expressing "what it is" not "what it should be", nor "justifications for it being what it is"

Posted by: jones-y | November 13, 2007 12:56 PM | Report abuse

Check the next 5 games...all beatable teams. Shut up

Posted by: Burg w/ a U | November 13, 2007 1:39 PM | Report abuse

This is a small sample of a story (see below) ran on the ESPN site written by John Hollinger. Looks like what amounts to a Wizards lost is a Celtics gift (sigh).........! "Can't we all just get along"......

Boston's defense

"I can believe that the Celtics are first in the league in offensive efficiency through five games. What I have a hard time fathoming is that they're also first in defensive efficiency.

Nonetheless, Boston has suffocated opposing offenses throughout its first five games, most impressively during its demolition of Denver's high-scoring outfit at the Garden on Friday. If they continue defending this way, the name "Tom Thibodeau" is going to come up an awful lot this season. Jeff Van Gundy's top assistant in Houston a year ago, Thibodeau is a highly regarded defensive coach the Celtics brought in to upgrade their effort at that end."

Boston wasn't the only team to hire him this summer -- Thibodeau originally went to Washington, but quit the Wizards after four days when he discovered coach Eddie Jordan and GM Ernie Grunfeld weren't on the same page, or even in the same book. In fact, they weren't even using the same alphabet. Literary metaphors aside, Washington's (and Houston's) loss was Boston's gain, and if he can keep this up, the Celtics' title hopes are much more realistic than many surmised.

By John Hollinger
ESPN Insider


Posted by: Bullets Fever #1 | November 13, 2007 1:43 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, Jones-y. That's exactly what I was saying. I'm no psych major but it seems to me to be human nature for some people to do the least amount necessary to 'get by'. How else can you explain guys almost always playing better in contract years ? The extraordinary atletes are the ones that have some other motivating factors besides money. Some people (like Jordan)hate to lose. That's the kind of guy you'd hope to get but I'm not sure we have enough of that type.

Posted by: mark | November 13, 2007 2:03 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, BulletsFever for the info about Thibodeau. What's interesting is that Ivan and the DC beat writers did not do hardly any reporting on why Thibodeau left town other than to quote Jordan and Grunfeld's initial comments on the matter. Mike Wise wrote a sentence or two about it probing a little deeper, but that's been it. So instead we've had to rely on the national reporters for bits and pieces here and there.

I don't understand it. Am I the only one who thinks that whatever went down that caused Thibodeau to leave town not only was very revealing about what is going on with the Wizards, and thus something that should be reported on heavily, but also a big loss to the Wizards, as Thibodeau seems to have real talent putting together a defense?

But as Ivan has admitted before (in the context of Etan), sometimes he learns information but does not write about it because he is trying to protect someone or doesn't want someone to look bad because he is a "good dude." Disappointing.

Posted by: Sean | November 13, 2007 2:52 PM | Report abuse

I have much respect to EG as a GM (he drafted Michael Redd in the 2nd round) but I believe the Wiz should have been more active in the offseason in getting the bench stronger. We could have gotten something for JCN or maybe trade one of our 3 rookies who will see very little time under EJ. We are just plain undermanned right now.

Posted by: Dave, | November 13, 2007 2:57 PM | Report abuse

Sean,

I doubt Ivan or Michael are holding back on info because they're worried about being liked. You don't get anywhere in the news business by taking that route. It was reported that Thibodeau left because he didn't like the vibe between Jordan and Grunfeld and was worried that it might look like he was being hired specifically as Jordan's heir apparent in case Eddie got sacked. Beyond that (unless Jordan or Grunfeld go on the record, and we know that won't happen) what is there to say really? It's not exactly a secret that Jordan is in a make or break season (despite the extension) and if things don't go well he could be (and most likely will be) shown the door.

Without getting people to talk (and it's pretty easy to see why the involved parties wouldn't be likely to do so on this matter) there's nothing to report other than speculation and innuendo. And that's not good reporting.

Posted by: kalorama | November 13, 2007 3:08 PM | Report abuse

Dave,

I agree in principle. If the Wiz are serious about making a move this season, they needed to get reliable veteran help, particularly in the scoring department, off the bench. But the question then becomes: Who was available that (A) they could afford/acquire (B) would fit into the team. (C) wanted to play here, and (D) would actually make a difference? I'm not saying there wasn't anyone available, but there aren't a lot of names that leap to mind.

Posted by: kalorama | November 13, 2007 3:12 PM | Report abuse

Dave, there is something called a salary cap and plenty of other teams looking to do the same - upgrade roster. I love all the armchair GM's in here bc the proposal's and criticisms are usually comical. Just be glad EG is one of the best out there. We have a lot of TALENT on this roster and true most of it is young. However, I like our cupboard better now than at virtually any point since I started watching the team in the early 80's.

And all the Arvis talk in here is so hypocritical!!! Virtually everyone that posts here regularly was all over him last year and rightfully so. I'm glad he's producing now bc he did always seem to be a good dude, but to act like he should have stayed or we made a mistake is just plain stupid.

Finally, all you JCN lovers want to check out your man's stats. There about as good as Roger Mason's - lol. Real savior he would have been even if there was a chance in hell he wanted to play for us.

Posted by: Rob P | November 13, 2007 3:36 PM | Report abuse

Another quick point with Arvis - it's a long season and unfortunately he has proven to be one of those players prone to injury

Posted by: Rob P | November 13, 2007 3:39 PM | Report abuse

There are a lot of players that can fit in your B-D questions BUT your question A is the one that will give a lot to think about and thus will bring back the topic on Abe's stinginess when it comes to the salary cap. I'm afraid that when Gil sees NO progress this year he'll boot out (same with Jamison).

Posted by: Kalorama, | November 13, 2007 3:43 PM | Report abuse

Problem is if there is no progress this year - GA will be a big reason for such and I'm not just talking about gimpy knee and offense. His defense absolutely stinks!!!

Posted by: Rob P | November 13, 2007 3:49 PM | Report abuse

For all you folks who blasted and continue to blast Grunfeld for signing Stevenson over Navarro and then getting so little for him from Memphis, you'll be surprised to learn that JCN is averaging 4 ppg in about 14 mpg, shooting 24% and making no other offensive contributions. Is it possible the rest of the NBA knew how little of an impact player this guy would be and only Memphis, to pacify Gasol, would offer anything of substance? Does anyone think the Wiz, a team in dire need of defense, would have been better spending the $$ on JCN rather than Stevenson? Assuming Stevenson gets back to where he was last year before all the injuries, he is what he is...a complementary player who happened to shoot 47% last year and play decent defense. So if Ernie let him go, who would y'all have wanted to to sign for that cap slot that WAS AVAILABLE? If you think Navarro was the answer (like I did for the last 3-4 years) think again.

Posted by: arnie | November 13, 2007 4:04 PM | Report abuse

"There are a lot of players that can fit in your B-D questions "

Maybe. (Names?) But if the team isn't able to meet the requirements in A, then B through D are pretty much moot, aren't they? If anything, the problem posed by A takes us not back to Pollin's hypothetical "stinginess" so much as Grunfeld's very real misstep in bidding against himself to overpay Stevenson when there was no discernible market for his services.

Posted by: kalorama | November 13, 2007 4:04 PM | Report abuse

The last post was mine....it was intended for Kalorama.

Posted by: Dave | November 13, 2007 4:14 PM | Report abuse

JCN is a nothing but a poor mans carlos arroyo!!! move on!

Posted by: mookie | November 13, 2007 4:23 PM | Report abuse

What I don't understand is why the wiz waste all that money on the likes of EJ and even EG for that matter. Not when you all obviously know so much more than they do. Its a wonder that they have basketball jobs, and uh ... you don't!!!

But it is a good thing EJ reads this blog, how else could he possibly figure anything out. And his assistants obviously don't attribute squat.

Posted by: EJ | November 13, 2007 4:32 PM | Report abuse

So Mark, basically what you're saying is that once he gets the money he has no moral or ethical responsibility to live up to the terms of the agreement under which the money was procured? That if he doesn't feel like showing up to work that's okay because his feelings are hurt? (I'm thinking of trying that approach on my boss. I'll let you know how it goes.) And that it's perfectly reasonable for him to put his personal pique ahead of what's best for the team? And that we, as fans, should understand this?

Sorry, but I can't buy even a little of that.

Posted by: kalorama
--------------------------------------------

Last season, there were only 3 teams that did not have centers making more money than Haywood (Minnesota, San Antonio
and Atlanta). Heck, Haywood is not even the highest paid center in his own team. Even with all the problems, Haywood's stats are still better than many of the centers that were paid higher (Dampier of Dallas, Ratliff of Boston, Nesterovic of Toronto, Foyle of Golden State, Collins of New Jersey, Magloire of Portland, etc.), not even counting some of the no-shows due to injury. So in NBA grand schema, I think Haywood has "lived up to the terms of the agreement under which the money was procured." In short, you get what you paid for.

I am an employer myself. As long as my employee performs to the level that is comparable to others with similar paid and job description, it would be unfair for me to ask whether or not he has busted his butts for the company.

Posted by: Sagaliba | November 13, 2007 4:34 PM | Report abuse

So it was okay for him to slack off last season because guys who (supposedly) weren't as good as him were getting paid more money?

Man, I'd love to work for you!

Posted by: kalorama | November 13, 2007 4:41 PM | Report abuse

kalorama, it sounds like you are trying to bait someone into justifying BTH's behavior last year.

sagaliba, its hard to draw that parallel, because of the nature of the work. Allegorically speaking, just because a software engineer works harder and longer does not mean his output will be better or more plentiful. Whereas in pro sports, maximum effort does equate to maximum productivity.

Posted by: jones-y | November 13, 2007 5:02 PM | Report abuse

Well, I guess sounds can be misleading.

And there's need for bait, because sagaliba jumped onto the hook of his own free will. He said, in no uncertain terms, that Haywood's level of output was okay because there were other players making more money than him who weren't performing as well. If that's not a justification, then I've never heard one. Problem is, as you yourself touched upon, that argument doesn't have any validity.

Posted by: kalorama | November 13, 2007 5:28 PM | Report abuse

And if I really wanted to read justifications for Haywood's behavior, I could just scroll through the archives of the threads over the summer. They were filled with them.

Posted by: kalorama | November 13, 2007 5:30 PM | Report abuse

kalorama,

I've said consistently, all through last year, that if Haywood got the playing time, he'd produce. Not like Shaq, but like a competent center, and certainly better than Thomas. For the one stretch he got minutes last year (when Etan was hurt), he produced. Now that he's getting minutes this year, he's producing. Eddie was too dense to see it, apparently. I think his hatred for Haywood blinded him to BTH's value to this team.

And yes, Haywood's moody. So are lots of athletes. Yes, he's touchy and insecure. So are lots of athletes. And yes, he was misused by his incompetent coach. If he plays starter's minutes and doesn't produce consistently, then bench him. But he's never gotten starter's minutes.

It's no coincidence that out of six games this year, the Wiz have only had two bad defensive games, and are holding teams to less than 44 percent shooting. Yeah, they've had a horrible start, but it hasn't been because of defense.

Posted by: Keithinator | November 13, 2007 7:38 PM | Report abuse

BTW, it's worth mentioning that Haywood is averaging 10.2 rebounds/game and more than 2 blocks/game -- and still averages less than 30 minutes per game. Eddie, for the most part, still doesn't get it.

Posted by: Keithinator | November 13, 2007 7:41 PM | Report abuse

"Another quick point with Arvis - it's a long season and unfortunately he has proven to be one of those players prone to injury

Posted by: Rob P | November 13, 2007 03:39 PM "

What about Gilby?

Abdominal pull, dislocated clavicle/shoulder, torn meniscus, etc. And he doesn't even play tough or physical!

Posted by: DC Man88 | November 13, 2007 8:07 PM | Report abuse

If you don't get it, you don't get it.

EJ don't get it.

Posted by: mark | November 13, 2007 9:58 PM | Report abuse

What about Gilby?

Abdominal pull, dislocated clavicle/shoulder, torn meniscus, etc. And he doesn't even play tough or physical!

Posted by: DC Man88 | November 13, 2007 08:07 PM

Dog half his game is 'take it to the hole and look for some big slow body to crash into'.

Posted by: jones-y | November 13, 2007 10:15 PM | Report abuse

jones-y,

I agree with you. I was merely commenting on whether or not Haywood has "lived up to the terms of the agreement under which the money was procured." (A question that kalorama raised.)


kalorama,

You can work for me anytime as long as you can produce the same amount/quality of work as other people who draw the same pay.

If your 70% equals to someone's 100%, so be it. I will be sorry for you not to utilize your full talent and advance beyond your current level, but I would not fault you for not living up to you paycheck (because you have)!

cheers

Posted by: Sagaliba | November 14, 2007 9:49 AM | Report abuse

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