The latest

From the sources I spoke with today, I can provide the following information: The Wizards are optimistic that Caron Butler will have a chance to return to basketball activity after an unspecified period of rest (it could be anything from one to three weeks depending on how he feels.) No timetable has been set.

At no point did anyone I spoke with bring up the word "surgery" and Caron in the same sentence. And in talking to people who deal with hip issues, there is a real difference of opinion as to whether surgery is an effective way to repair a labral tear anyway.

-Caron did undergo an MRI after he originally injured the hip in Milwaukee on Jan. 27. That MRI led to the diagnosis of him have a strained hip flexor. You'll remember that he sat out three games, played heavy minutes in the Lakers game on Feb. 3 and then aggravated the hip two days later in Philly. It's possible that he suffered the slight tear that night.

-He underwent another MRI within the last week and that was when it was determined that he had a tear. I have not spoken with Caron but hope to do so soon and Wiz team policy prevents reporters from quoting team medical personnel. Ernie Grunfeld has a policy of not discussing injuries.

According to Dr. Francis O'Connor of the American Medical Society for Sports Medicine, diagnosing and treating hip injuries are among the most challenging tasks for athletic trainers and doctors who treat athletes.

"Labral tears in the hip are a relatively new diagnosis in the world of sports medicine," Dr. O'Connor said. "The imaging we now have available with an MRI arthrogram has allowed doctors to view detail in the hip area better than ever before. Still, hip pathology can be very complex because of the relatively small amount of blood flow to the area and the many muscles and other structures near the hip joint. The key question when it comes to a labral tear is: is the tear related to the athlete's pain or was it always there? It is one thing to identify it as a labral tear but it is another to determine whether that tear is the source of pain."

More from Dr.O'Connor: "It's not like a torn ACL where you take an MRI and it's just: 'Well, it's torn let's do surgery.' Hips are very different. With a labral tear, surgery is really a crap shoot. Some doctors believe that it is a good option if pain persists but there is a school of thought that rest and physical therapy is the best way for it heal."

I spoke with an athletic trainer from another professional sports team for background purposes and he said that labral tears are poping up more and more frequently (that vibes with what Dr. Connor said about the ability to spot them with improved technology).

The athletic trainer estimated that it's possible that up to half of the players in the NBA and NFL may have some kind of hip issue and not even know it because the problem hasn't been detected. Some athletes are able to play through even a labral tear before ultimately shutting it down.

Today for example, the NHL's Tampa Bay Lightning announced that Chris Gratton will undergo surgery to repair a left labral tear. He suffered the tear in November and played on it until now but can't go anymore.

That's the information I can provide right now. I know that folks have a lot of questions but it sounds like we are going to have to wait and see how Caron's hip responds to the period for rest and await the results when he is examined again next week.

-FYI: DeShawn Stevenson did not practice today because he had to get a wisdom tooth removed. He's expected to start tomorrow night against the Bulls. Gilbert Arenas is on the trip and was doing some shooting drills with teammates when I walked into the gym this afternoon. He's happy to see Larry Hughes in Chicago and thinks Larry and Ben Gordon have the potential to really click. They did last night.

-Oh and I never had the chance to thank all of the folks who gave me great suggestions for eating out in New Orleans. (no shortage). Problem was, after getting out some Sunday night, I got hit with some kind of nasty bug and have been down for the last few days. Just feeling better tonight and plan on seeing at least some of Chicago which is my one of my top towns.

Take care.

By Ivan Carter |  February 28, 2008; 7:13 PM ET
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THANKS FOR THE NEWS I NO HE IS going TO MISS SOmETIME BUT GOD IM GLAD ITS NOT SURGERY. BUT LIKE I SAID IVAN WE HAVE SOME gUYS OUT RIGHT NOW AND THE TEAMS we play without our stars better win because wants we get everybody back and healthy we are a team to deal with.

Posted by: brandon | February 28, 2008 7:59 PM

That was a high octane blog post, Ivan. Nicely done! The next time I hear the words, "labral tear" at a cocktail party I will be sure to excuse myself from a conversation on mortgage refi strategies and enlighten the hip injury neophytes to the wisdom of Dr. O'Connor.

Anyway, thanks for going the extra mile on this, even if it wasn't in haiku form.

Now back to the regularly scheduled "DCMan 88 vs. the world" show.


Posted by: Pauly B. | February 28, 2008 8:12 PM

Ok, so now that the news is out and Caron's injury is water under the bridge, the question is what the heck is Abe/EG going to do about personnel for this team? Are they going to run the rest of the guys ragged, being undermanned as they are?

If I was Caron, I'd just call it a season. They are in 6th place and fading fast. What do they have to look forward to in the playoffs? An early date with Boston, Detriot, Cleveland, or Toronto.

Why bother?

BTW Pauly, almost everybody's been blasting the medical staff, EG, and especially Abe..not just me.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 28, 2008 8:27 PM

What would be GREAT is if 88 idiot would decide to "shut it down" for the season....in fact FOREVER.

Posted by: Spanky | February 28, 2008 8:34 PM

hey dcmann i have asked you questions in the past and stuff but i mean if he is injured just let him take his time off and come back this season. think about we have not had gil probley the whole season and when caron was in the lineup people were saying are the wizards better without areans. so i mean i would not just throw the season away i mean then we have guys coming back but i agree with you when you said eg has not bought any players in to help us.

Posted by: brandon | February 28, 2008 8:35 PM

Thanks for the blog Ivan.

From MayoClinic.com:
"many cases, a hip labral tear causes no signs or symptoms and doesn't require treatment. Occasionally, however, a hip labral tear may cause pain or a "catching" sensation in the hip joint.
When treatment for a hip labral tear is necessary, it may consist of physical therapy, medications or a combination. Less frequently, surgery is necessary to treat a hip labral tear."

Posted by: Darnell | February 28, 2008 9:09 PM

Can a cartilage tear "heal" with just rest w/o surgery?

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 9:11 PM

DCMan88, I meant that last line as much as a compliment as a friendly dig. I love blog post infighting and you, sir, are the best infighter this blog has. Versatile and knowledgeable. Equal parts deadly with ctrl+V or haiku. You share my hatred for "the man" and look good doing it.

I'm with you on frustration with Abe not varying his approach, (read an SI article on Cuban's Kidd trade today; so much more driven to win than Abe. In fairness, Abe is super competitive for about 15 minutes before dozing off to Wheel. It's cool, though. Vanna White has the same effect on me, A.P.)

I'm not with you on the medical staff of ill-repute, piñata m.d. stuff. Its just something we'll never know for sure unless Ivan does a career-killing expose'. Wouldn't really want that. Let's just hope Caron gets healthy soon and leave it at that. Caron's a good dude.

I totally don't get your hatred of Gilbert, but I'm chalking that up to a childhood trauma involving parachutes.

Posted by: Pauly B. | February 28, 2008 9:17 PM

Last post was Darnell, sorry forgot to put the name.

Terps are winning!

Anyway, Caron should probably rest as much as he can, maybe til like a week before the playoffs. Come back then if he can and give us a boost.

We can use the opportunity to get some time to Blatche, McGuire and Pesh. Don't wear down Jamison trying to overcome Caron's absence.

If we hang on to the 6 spot, with a healthy big 3 we can get by Orlando to the 2nd round, and from there you never know what will happen.

Posted by: Darnell | February 28, 2008 9:27 PM

The Wiz are in the 6 spot in the East, but they're also only three games out of #9. They haven't given much indication of being able to keep their heads above water with both Arenas and Butler out so far. Holding onto the their current position if Butler's out for an extended period is a real longshot. Granted, the teams behind them stink but, let's be honest, without 2 of the Big 3, so do the Wizards.

Posted by: kalorama | February 28, 2008 9:34 PM

88 idiot is not a man, Pauly....he is maybe 19 or 20 and has NO LIFE. Blogs all day and night - jealous to the core.

Posted by: ? | February 28, 2008 9:41 PM

"What would be GREAT is if 88 idiot would decide to "shut it down" for the season....in fact FOREVER.

Posted by: Spanky | February 28, 2008 08:34 PM "

"88 idiot is not a man, Pauly....he is maybe 19 or 20 and has NO LIFE. Blogs all day and night - jealous to the core.

Posted by: ? | February 28, 2008 09:41 PM "

LOL! Keep DREAMING!

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 28, 2008 9:59 PM

"ey dcmann i have asked you questions in the past and stuff but i mean if he is injured just let him take his time off and come back this season. think about we have not had gil probley the whole season and when caron was in the lineup people were saying are the wizards better without areans. so i mean i would not just throw the season away i mean then we have guys coming back but i agree with you when you said eg has not bought any players in to help us.

Posted by: brandon | February 28, 2008 08:35 PM "

You're right.

Caron should come back if he can, but if I were Caron, I wouldn't feel compelled to come back, unless there's help.

The team is severely undermanned, so unless management/ownership shows that they are serious about doing some damage in the playoffs, then why should he?

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 28, 2008 10:02 PM

"I totally don't get your hatred of Gilbert, but I'm chalking that up to a childhood trauma involving parachutes.

Posted by: Pauly B. | February 28, 2008 09:17 PM "

There's nothing to hate about Gilby. I'm not his mom whom he doesn't talk to. I'm not Laura Govan who got kicked to the curb. I'm not his kids whose mom got knocked up and then kicked out and then embarrassed in the Post and his blog. I'm not AI, KG, Ben Gordon, Luol Deng, or Jose Calderon who he trashed.

The only thing I'm doing is proving time and time again what an opportunistic fraud Gilby is. I haven't drank the Kool-Aid, among other things, that Lisa has. I'm the voice of reason here. The .1% who's not ga ga over Zero.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 28, 2008 10:07 PM

dcmann i think he should come back because he is tough juice lol i mean when we had everybody last year we were number one in the east. i think we can win a playoff series but in order for us to go deep in the playoffs we need all of our guns and number 1 try to keep agent zero happy.

Posted by: brandon | February 28, 2008 10:08 PM

?,

Everyone knows DCMan88 is Ed Cirecki, Steve Buckhantz's ace-in-the-hole at Select Auto Imports. Get with the program, son!

Posted by: Pauly B. | February 28, 2008 10:09 PM

DCMan88, I get where you're coming from now on GA. Not really for us to judge that stuff, tho', IMO.

P.S. - I'm pretty sure you're not E.C.

Posted by: Pauly B. | February 28, 2008 10:15 PM

I'm Teddy L.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 28, 2008 10:18 PM

This just in: Dr.Vinny "Boom Bottz" is in town to consult with the Wizards medical staff about the "rash" of mishaps concerning the team there will be no press conference per the GM!!!!!!.

Posted by: DARGREGMAG@AOL.COM | February 28, 2008 10:18 PM

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parachute running fraud

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laura pick up that sock

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gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby

don't drink the kool-aide, be the kool-aide

gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby
gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby
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gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby
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define fixated

gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby
gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby
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gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby

Another day another

gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby
gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby
gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby
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gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby gilby

and repeat

Posted by: Anonymous | February 29, 2008 1:03 AM

Gilby's parachute
often has been ballyhooed
by Village Idiot

Posted by: Haiku | February 29, 2008 7:43 AM

The odds of us hanging on to that 6th spot or even 8th spot are remote. We're gonna have to coast and then try to turn it on and take the playoff spot from someone during the season stretch run. The key to this season now is keeping AJ healthy til we can get CB and/or GA back. I know I sound like a broken record here but this experience may prove to be invaluable for the young guys come playoff time if we can get healthy and get in.

Posted by: mark | February 29, 2008 7:44 AM

BTW, I never really believed that Larry Hughes was done. he was playing on a team that didn't suit his skills. The old Larry oughtta show up in Chicago. They are another team that is scary enough to be able to make some noise with Tyrus and Noah defending inside and Larry, Gordon, Deng and Hinrich doing their thing. A matchup with them with all healthy players would be classic.

Posted by: mark | February 29, 2008 7:48 AM

Mark love BTH
Brendan hates Etan Thomas
ET loves Resee's

Posted by: Haiku | February 29, 2008 7:50 AM

Fire EJ and his Mercedes Benz dealer!

Posted by: Anonymous | February 29, 2008 8:45 AM

Mark,
I am normally on the same page as you with an ability to look at the big picture and see hope. I do hope you are right that we can stay close and then make a run when Gil and Caron return. But even I am not confident now that we will see the big 3 together anymore this year.

I am amazed that someone in Abe Pollin's spot can continue to be patient and not add a veteran from somewhere. Did he allow Ernie to make a play for Cassell, for instance? I can't see how he can be content to just wait till next year. It is baffling.

I really hope that now EJ even moreso monitors Stevenson's, Daniels' and Jamison's minutes and uses Pech, Young and DMac more. Those starters are older and wearing down quickly. It is not just the amount of minutes...it is the kind of minutes. How many blow outs have we had where the starters could joyfully coast till they are replaced? 99% of the time we are in a nip and tuck, pressure-filled game or trying to make a run to get even. Those kinds of minutes are more mentally and emotionally draining than being up by 18 with 2 minutes to go in the 3rd quarter.

We expected a very interesting entertaining season and we sure got one. But I didn't think it would be so disappointing. I expected to be jockeying for home court in round one, or trying to get the right match-up. I have a feeling that we are gonna see a March and April just like last year...

Posted by: BmoreRev | February 29, 2008 8:55 AM

It will be interesting to see the attitude of the team tonight. Are they down and in shock? will they be determined to try to salvage their current seeding? Will they get back to the kind of defense they were playing in November which kept them in games though undermanned?

My confidence in EJ to manage the emotions of the team is very high. I think it is his main strength as a coach. He doesn't panic and he gives the guys confidence and a formula for success. He doesn't let them have a pity party.

But even with all that...Jamison needs to find his long range shot and have monster game from the low block if we are to have a chance.

Posted by: BmoreRev | February 29, 2008 9:01 AM

i'm guessing this won't be a popular idea, but does anyone else think it'd be just fine if we decided to phone in the rest of the season? like, give gilbert max money for his new contract but only if he agrees to not play again all year. rest, work out, heal, from now until next october. don't bring caron back. let jamison play just 20 minutes per game. give guys like dominic, pech, NY, andray even more playing experience.

i love this team, and antawn is a great, GREAT player, but without caron and gilbert, and with antonio and deshawn playing hurt as it is, the wizards are just not going to win the NBA finals. it's not going to happen. they'd be lucky to lose a playoff series (meaning they would have made it there).

at least we could get a lottery pick if we phoned it in...

disagree?

Posted by: caveman | February 29, 2008 9:04 AM

Caron and Gilbert
are out, vote for parachute
as Wiz M V P

Posted by: Anonymous | February 29, 2008 9:05 AM

At the rate the Wiz are going, they may not even make the playoffs because I really think that Caron will NOT be back this season. EJ and EG refuses to discuss Caron and his injury according to the papers. And, with the number of minutes that both AJ and Stevenson are playing, I am hoping that neither of them get hurt. I still think it is a shame to put the players at risk like the Wiz organization has done just so they can stay under the salary cap. Also, don't be surprised if they loose tonight. Chicago is looking good with the addition of Hughes and Gooden. As a matter of fact, Hughes is playing very well in this system and is burning up the basket. Looks like he may have found another system he thrives in besides the Wizards because Cleveland just wasn't a match for him. So look for him to light up the Wiz tonight if we can't stop him.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 29, 2008 9:35 AM

"Caron and Gilbert
are out, vote for parachute
as Wiz M V P

Posted by: | February 29, 2008 09:05 AM "

Parachute is not the MVP.

MVP is Dishonest Abe. Most Valuable Putz.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 29, 2008 9:45 AM

My confidence in EJ to manage the emotions of the team is very high. I think it is his main strength as a coach. He doesn't panic and he gives the guys confidence and a formula for success. He doesn't let them have a pity party. - BmoreRev

Interesting that you feel that way about EJ, I hope you are right but watching the handling of the various players over the last few years, it is the area where I have questions.
Certainly I tend to slide over the successes like CB in evaluating EJ's capabilities in this sphere, CB was a less known quantity when he arrived but has developed into a great talent, the same could even be said of Jamison and Arenas. However the other side of the coin turns up when I look at the Kwame Brown fiasco and the ongoing Haywood-Thomas disruption and what I feel is the reluctant integration of the young players, (at least until injury makes it necessary) Blatche, Young, DMac, Pech.

Posted by: myshkin | February 29, 2008 9:56 AM

LOL
Haiku, I'm thinking the word "love" is a little strong in regard to my feelings toward BTH. Seriously, I think my anger about not using him as I see fit all stems from our inability to use Rasheed or Ben Wallace properly though they both showed promise here. We haven't had much luck with big men in DC. I'm tired of seeing the same cycle repeat itself. Granted, on this team the C isn't gonna ever get much love but we should at least acknowledge that he is the answer for us at the position.

Posted by: mark | February 29, 2008 10:04 AM

"Interesting that you feel that way about EJ, I hope you are right but watching the handling of the various players over the last few years, it is the area where I have questions.
Certainly I tend to slide over the successes like CB in evaluating EJ's capabilities in this sphere, CB was a less known quantity when he arrived but has developed into a great talent, the same could even be said of Jamison and Arenas. However the other side of the coin turns up when I look at the Kwame Brown fiasco and the ongoing Haywood-Thomas disruption and what I feel is the reluctant integration of the young players, (at least until injury makes it necessary) Blatche, Young, DMac, Pech.

Posted by: myshkin | February 29, 2008 09:56 AM"

I have to agree that EJ is really bad in this area. All your examples are great backup.

Recently, it was a bad idea for EJ to heap so much praise on DS. Sure, he carried the team in the game, but then bombed the next game. I seriously doubt if someone like Phil Jackson would ever come out and say anything as preposterous as that.


----------------------------------------


"He's had some ailments but he just comes out every day," Jordan said of Stevenson, who has been playing on a sore knee but has started 223 consecutive games. "He's a warrior, man, a true warrior. His confidence is growing -- he's making threes -- he's just a true pro. This is a man's league and he is man. In the dictionary next to that word there is a picture of DeShawn Stevenson."

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/02/25/AR2008022503221.htm

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 29, 2008 10:11 AM

My question is! how can Gilbert ask for the max on his contract if he's only contributed 8 games last year. For any team to take him and sign him for the max amount for 6 years would be a gamble. Arenas only showed he could be hot the last part of 06 and the early part of 07.
He went down in apr 07, couldn't play in the playoffs, and now it's going to be the same thing this year as well. He's building that great big pool in his backyard though!!

Posted by: Anonymous | February 29, 2008 10:16 AM

Caveman,
I, for one, am not good with mailing it in. If I were Pat Riley, maybe. This Wiz team still has enough raw talent and veterans to win some games in the is poor Eastern Conference. Any way you slice it, AJ is an all star, BTH is a top 5 Eastern conf center, AD is a top backup PG, RM is a very good shooter, AB is a very talented 6'11 player, etc.
We may not win a heck of a lot of the remaining games but it's not like last year when the cupboard was completely bare and we knew we were getting our arses kicked once both GA and CB went down.
IMHO, this is the time when real coaches earn their money. If we have to change our style of play or focus because our 2 best scorers are out, let's do that. It's not like CB and GA were our best defenders. They make steals but steals do not = great defense always. Are we asking too much to ask the coach to get the team to play D like they did during our winning stretch earlier ths year? Ayers should be doing most of the talking during practices. Remember how active BTH was in Nov/DEC? What happened to that? Is it him or did our focus wane? I'd venture so far as to say that AB is an overall better defender than CB. (Of course CB's offense IS defense at times and that's a factor). Why isn't our overall defense better now that AB is starting? McGuire is as good a help defender as there is on this team. Why haven't his increased minutes resulted in better team D? All of these questions point to the coaches. The players may be nicked up but every team is nicked up. My bottom line is that we should be a better defensive team than we are with the guys that we have playing and should be able to win like the Rockets are winning.
Everyone here on this blog knows I've always stressed offense offense offense with this team with our big 3 healthy. Without them, I'll be the first to say that we should be D'ing people up instead. We have the talent. If we are not doing it, it should be on the coaches.

Posted by: mark | February 29, 2008 10:17 AM

caveman, I agree with you somewhat. I would rather have healthy Jamison, Butler, Arenas, Stevenson & Daniels next year. However, the emphasis should be on "integrating the bench" and "avoiding further injury" rather than on phoning in. No one on the team whether coach, players, management, will admit a change of strategy. Publicly, they will still be going for that playoff slot. Also, if/once the public gets a whiff of the team giving up, guess what, no one will show up at the phone booth anymore. Result - even less cash for moves in the summer.

Posted by: rgz | February 29, 2008 10:18 AM

"I totally don't get your hatred of Gilbert, but I'm chalking that up to a childhood trauma involving parachutes.

Posted by: Pauly B. | February 28, 2008 09:17 PM "

There's nothing to hate about Gilby. I'm not his mom whom he doesn't talk to. I'm not Laura Govan who got kicked to the curb. I'm not his kids whose mom got knocked up and then kicked out and then embarrassed in the Post and his blog. I'm not AI, KG, Ben Gordon, Luol Deng, or Jose Calderon who he trashed.

The only thing I'm doing is proving time and time again what an opportunistic fraud Gilby is. I haven't drank the Kool-Aid, among other things, that Lisa has. I'm the voice of reason here. The .1% who's not ga ga over Zero.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 28, 2008 10:07 PM

Money makes alot of people happy! Laura went out and spent $15,000 on a Hermes Birkin handbag. So she's still living it up off his millions with that child-support check.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 29, 2008 10:20 AM

Excuse the long "GM-style" post. Where you at, GM? ;)

Posted by: mark | February 29, 2008 10:22 AM

This is slightly off topic but I was reading yesterday that the market for free agents is not that great and both Gordon and Deng may wish that they'd accepted those 50 million dollar offers. Maybe Gil shouldn't have spoken out but it turns out that he may have been correct.

Posted by: mark | February 29, 2008 10:25 AM

My question is! how can Gilbert ask for the max on his contract if he's only contributed 8 games last year. For any team to take him and sign him for the max amount for 6 years would be a gamble. Arenas only showed he could be hot the last part of 06 and the early part of 07.
He went down in apr 07, couldn't play in the playoffs, and now it's going to be the same thing this year as well. He's building that great big pool in his backyard though!!

Posted by: | February 29, 2008 10:16 AM
-------------------------------------------
Your point about Gilbert not being a max player if he opts out is a fair one. But what does his pool have to do with anything? Athletes get paid a lot of money. I'm sure Jim McIlvaine has a big pool too.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 29, 2008 10:31 AM

rgz: "However, the emphasis should be on "integrating the bench" and "avoiding further injury" rather than on phoning in. No one on the team whether coach, players, management, will admit a change of strategy. Publicly, they will still be going for that playoff slot."

i agree completely. i'm not saying EJ should hold a presser and say "ok we give up". perhaps i should have phrased it better.

mark: caron was / is one of our best defenders. he may not be technically as good as deshawn but his size and strength make up for it. he can guard lebron, he can guard kobe (well as much as anyone can). i agree that, with caron and gil out, the other guys should be able to win some games. but you're forgetting that deshawn has a bad knee, antonio has a bad everything (that guy is a warrior), and most of the other guys on the team are solid role players, but not guys who are going to carry NBA teams.

i say approach the rest of the season with extreme caution, with an eye towards next year and the goal of keeping gilbert and antawn, and having both (along with caron) completely at 110% on opening day. and next year, LET THEM REST MORE THAN 2 MINUTES PER GAME!!!! Shiz. thanks.

Posted by: caveman | February 29, 2008 10:33 AM

Hughes gives Bulls the big guard that they always lack (when they pair Hinrich and Gordon). He can play point to compensate under-sized SG Gordon. He is also a better penetrator than either Hinrich or Gordon who are basically shooters. I think it is a perfect fit for them

Posted by: Sagaliba | February 29, 2008 10:47 AM

I'm glad Gilbert is excited about how great Chicago is now going to be with Larry Hughes. Oh wait - no I'm not.

Posted by: Ross | February 29, 2008 10:49 AM

Why would someone give Gilbert a long-term max contract if his game is to create shots with his agility and drive to the basket drawing contact when he's clearly got a bum knee.

Posted by: hmm | February 29, 2008 10:59 AM

next year, LET THEM REST MORE THAN 2 MINUTES PER GAME!!!! Shiz. thanks.

Posted by: caveman | February 29, 2008 10:33 AM

Hear, hear!

As to Gilbert Arenas's personal life, we all have our opinions on the player's personal lives and characteristics, but mostly we concentrate on their playing ability and "entertainment value". It's what makes us fans of and loyal to any player on the team. Sometimes players get into situations that don't sit well with the fans, and their popularity is affected. The lockerroom also is important, and from all appearances the players genuinely like and get along with each other.

IMO Abe is concerned with having good guys on his team. If he ever judges that Arenas or any other player is NOT a nice guy, that will help determine his future on the team.

Posted by: rgz | February 29, 2008 11:05 AM

"IMO Abe is concerned with having good guys on his team. If he ever judges that Arenas or any other player is NOT a nice guy, that will help determine his future on the team.

Posted by: rgz | February 29, 2008 11:05 AM "

It was reported by George Solomon, a close friend of Abe, that AJ is his favorite player on the team, and that Abe doesn't respond well to threats, and he paralleled that with Gilby's threat to leave for less if he doesn't get max money here.

Also, I'm sure Abe doesn't appreciate quotes like this from Gilby.

------------------------------------------

"I asked Arenas last month what he thought the Wizards had to do to appease his wishes. He wouldn't campaign for the Wizards to acquire certain players, but he did say, "If you want a championship, you got to get a championship team."

He added: "I know this might not sound right, but the championship teams treat themselves like champions. You go into Miami's locker room, I'm like, 'Wow, what the hell is this?' Everything from their game-day meals for their players to every state-of-the-art thing you can imagine. As a player, why would you want to leave the locker room? I could sit there all day.

"We've been doing a better job, but it comes down to this: You treat your players like champions, they want to be champions," he added. "All the best teams in the league treat themselves first-class every day. Other players come over and think, 'They got this, they got that. Oh, I want to be here.' "

Whether Arenas was telling Abe Pollin and Ernie Grunfeld to upgrade the Wizards' facilities is up for debate. But he was clearly illustrating how the defending champions take care of their players. How the Wizards interpret Arenas's words gets to the issue of how much leverage stars have in this league."

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/04/24/AR2007042402488.html

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 29, 2008 11:10 AM

"Money makes alot of people happy! Laura went out and spent $15,000 on a Hermes Birkin handbag. So she's still living it up off his millions with that child-support check.

Posted by: | February 29, 2008 10:20 AM "

Yeah, and did she buy one for you too?

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 29, 2008 11:13 AM

Handbags cost a lot
DC Man prefers Gucci
With matching high heels

Posted by: Haiku | February 29, 2008 11:18 AM

Swimming pools, handbags,
and Laura are so boring
Let's talk parachutes!

Posted by: Anonymous | February 29, 2008 11:30 AM

Bottom line is that the Wizards will go four and out if they make the playoffs given that both GA and CB would be less than 100% and would be facing a team like Boston, Detroit, or Orlando. Why rush back either GA or CB for a late playoff push when the best seed they'll get is 6th? I feel bad for AJ who is essentially being asked to carry the team like he did at the end of last year. The reality is that EG didn't bring in any veteran depth (PJ Brown, Magliore, or Cassell come to mind) to help out. I think that comes from Abe's unwillingness to go the extra mile to field the best team possible. I'm already thinking about what we can do to resign Gilby and Antwan for next year while adding some quality depth. BTW, isn't it recurring theme of misdiagnois and treatment by the medical staff for J. Hayes, Pecherov, GA , and now Caron??? First step for next year should be hiring an entire new medical and training staff.

Posted by: wizfan89 | February 29, 2008 11:34 AM

One word for the Wiz: LOTTERY!

Shut down Gil and CB, tank the rest of the season, pick up Kevin Love in the draft, and set the table for a dynasty for the next decade a-la-San Antonio...

As far as the Bulls go; it is a good move to play Larry alongside a scoring PG. He seems to get the most out of his game when that is the case. Ben Gordon is like a poor man's Gilbert and if they can get chemistry...well, let's not forget that Larry was averaging something like 22pts/6rebs/5ast/2stls in his last season with the Wiz...

Posted by: p1funk | February 29, 2008 11:45 AM

The reality is that EG didn't bring in any veteran depth (PJ Brown, Magliore, or Cassell come to mind) to help out. I think that comes from Abe's unwillingness to go the extra mile to field the best team possible.
Posted by: wizfan89 | February 29, 2008 11:34 AM

I wonder what approx $80K or so will bring in terms of a free agent this year? I could be wrong, but I don't think the Wizards have any more salary cap exceptions.

Posted by: rgz | February 29, 2008 11:47 AM


I'm Teddy L.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 28, 2008 10:18 PM

Isaac Washington! Dude, I wondered where you landed after "Love Boat". I bet the residual checks are still pretty good.

Small world. I was the House page that got fired for asking Rep. Fred Grandy (Gopher) if I could get his floor for him on the elevator. He said "Four, please" and I said, "Next stop, promenade deck!" I was also in rehab with Lauren Crewes. She was hot. Troubled, but hot.

(Ted Lange was the bomb circa '79 for all of you junior Wiz rangers out there.)

Posted by: Pauly B. | February 29, 2008 11:49 AM

"I wonder what approx $80K or so will bring in terms of a free agent this year? I could be wrong, but I don't think the Wizards have any more salary cap exceptions.

Posted by: rgz | February 29, 2008 11:47 AM "

That's if you're a frugal owner who wants to collect 5 mil in lux tax welfare instead of doing whatever it takes to try to win.

I predict the rest of the season will spiral down and you'll see fewer and fewer people going to the games. Abe might have to throw some more singles nights or more family night combos that come with dogs and soda in order to attract more interest.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 29, 2008 11:53 AM

In case anyone has any hope for the rest of the season, don't waste your time. It's over. Get ready for more of the same. There is no cavalry coming.

Also, don't bet on Gilby returning. If he does think about returning, there will be immense pressure for him to pick the team up and show he's worth max money, and then he could get reinjured.

Now let's focus on more realistic things like who to draft in this year's lottery.

---------------------------------------------

The Wizards do not allow team medical personnel to discuss injuries with reporters, and team president Ernie Grunfeld has a policy of not commenting on injuries.

The Wizards (27-30) face the Chicago Bulls (23-34) Friday night and host the New Orleans Hornets on Sunday. The team is 4-10 without Butler, who also missed one game with ankle sprains, and is 24-25 without three-time all-star guard Gilbert Arenas, who remains out with a left knee injury.

"I don't really want to go into it," Wizards Coach Eddie Jordan said of Butler's situation. "He's in our doctor's hands and our trainers' hands. Caron is very special to us. I'm not going to talk about the injury and the timing of all that, but as a player, as a human being -- he means a lot to us. So, we just have to move ahead and go forward with the guys we've got."

"Nobody is going to feel sorry for us," forward Antawn Jamison said. "So we're just going to have to find a way to rely on the guys we have until those guys get healthy and can help us again."

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 29, 2008 11:56 AM

Posted by: Anonymous | February 29, 2008 11:57 AM

No, first order of priority for next year is to find a way to get L.Deng. Be willing to go over the cap for one year. Then you can dump ET and AD salaries. 2nd get a real point guard. 3rd get a new head coach with some real leadership skills. 4th resign AJ. 5th resign GA, but not for max $s...if necessary do a sign and trade with the Clipps.

Posted by: oddjob | February 29, 2008 11:59 AM

From today's Post (2/29/08)

Quotable:

"Our guys are pretty much used to being undermanned, and they know that they need to be prepared with who we have."

- Wizards Coach Eddie Jordan, on continuing to play without Gilbert Arenas and Caron Butler

---------------------------------------------


"On a larger scale, Jordan wants to win now. Like any coach who signed a two-year extension with a team option for the third year last summer, the continuity line gets old.

"But I understand Mr. Pollin's standpoint," Jordan said. "We want to stay within a certain budget for the Washington Wizards. We're not going to be like four or five or six other teams that can do anything it takes to win. Those are decisions we made within the organization. It doesn't bother me. There are times when you say, 'How come we can't get this guy?' But then you say, 'These are the parameters the organization has set.' "

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/02/16/AR2007021602210.htm

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 29, 2008 12:04 PM

There is a lot of talk about the team "tanking" as well as criticism of management for not signing another player. The reality is that any of the veteran guys (Brown, Cassell, Barry)recently available are only interested in going to a team with a real shot at winning a title....just check out who's signing them. The end-of-the-bench type of players typically available would not have made a difference with this team and their minutes would have come at the expense of the young kids, who are getting valuable experience.

As the schedule eases up in March, this team even without Arenas and Butler, should stay within a couple of games of .500 until they get healthy. If so, it is likely we can hold on to the 6th spot, which, with a healthy April team, should be competitive with Orlando. Let's suspend the talk about how much better it would be to miss the playoffs for a few weeks.

Posted by: arnie | February 29, 2008 12:18 PM

I agree, Arnie. Also let's bear in mind that when this team is healthy, they win. How about we put off any talk about blowing the team up or adding/subtracting any significant pieces until we consistently lose with our entire team intact. That hasn't happened yet.

Posted by: mark | February 29, 2008 12:21 PM

"The end-of-the-bench type of players typically available would not have made a difference with this team and their minutes would have come at the expense of the young kids, who are getting valuable experience.

As the schedule eases up in March, this team even without Arenas and Butler, should stay within a couple of games of .500 until they get healthy. If so, it is likely we can hold on to the 6th spot, which, with a healthy April team, should be competitive with Orlando. Let's suspend the talk about how much better it would be to miss the playoffs for a few weeks.

Posted by: arnie | February 29, 2008 12:18 PM"

I don't think any of those players you mentioned are considered "end of the bench" type of players. Even if they end up as "end of the bench" on other teams, they could very well be starters on Les BouleS.

Also, Les BouleS stand to lose both Gilby and AJ for next season. What is stood to be gained by making the playoffs? What happened last season without Caron and Gilby in the playoffs?

Also, the top teams in the East got that much better, such as Cleveland, Detroit, Boston, and Toronto. It'll be a worse massacre if Les BouleS do "qualify for the playoffs."

Lottery is best for the future of this franchise, nevermind new ownership.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 29, 2008 12:24 PM

"That's if you're a frugal owner who wants to collect 5 mil in lux tax welfare instead of doing whatever it takes to try to win."

"Frugality" has nothing to do with it. Once they're over the cap (as the Wizards and almost every other team is) the only way a team can sign FAs is to use the various exceptions (MLE, LLE, veterans' minimum) that are available to all teams. Once those are spent, the owner can't just dig money out of his own pocket.

The Wiz spent almost all of their FA money on Stevenson, Blatche, and Mason over the summer. What little is left isn't enough to do much other than sign a practice body. Grunfeld can't spend money the team doesn't have.

Posted by: kalorama | February 29, 2008 12:35 PM

The Wizards shouldn't tank any games, but they should play the young guys more. If less minutes for AJ, DS, AD and more minutes for the young guys result in a lottery pick then so be it. The idea of a sign and trade with the Clippers for Gilbert is worth exploring. Either way DC Man is right on this one. No calvary is coming. Any thought of Abe going over the lux tax line is pure fantasy. The only additions for the rest of the year is maybe Gilbert and Caron, other than those guys this is the team we have. If Abe allows Ernie to pick a veteran up I will gladly admit that I am wrong.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 29, 2008 12:41 PM

Tanking games really only makes sense (if it ever makes sense) if the team is already in the lottery and trying to position itself to get as many ping-pong balls as possible for a shot at a top 2 or 3 pick.

Even if the Wizards did try to tank (which is pretty unlikely) the the end result would probably only be to move them up 2 or 3 spots in the draft order, from just outside the lottery in the late teens to maybe 14 or 13. The difference in player quality available in the draft at that point doesn't really outweigh the negative effects of losing on the team's morale/psyche, to say nothing of the lost revenue from not hosting a couple of playoff games.

Posted by: kalorama | February 29, 2008 12:54 PM

Theo Ratliff signing w/ Pistons

Posted by: Darnell | February 29, 2008 12:59 PM

To all the people who want to tank, find a new team! Quitters!

Posted by: Donk | February 29, 2008 1:04 PM

Mark, I logged in read, 88's "I'm the voice of reason on this blog" quote and I've had a hard time stopping laughing all day!

Only thing for Caron to do right now is shut it down and see if the hip heals. The surgery option probably wouldn't come into play for awhile anyway, so they'll just have to wait. My quess is he'll be back in April from seeing how long it takes alot of guys to come back from hip injuries.

I'm kind of surprised the team hasn't looked at some depth via 10 day contracts. It's my understanding that since 10 day deals are non quarenteed those guys can be brought in for two contracts and then cut with no ramifications toward the Cap or the luxury tax.

I'd be interested to hear what Grunfeld or Jordan have to say about bringing some help in on 10 day deals since it appears to me that isn't a decision that's being made to avoid the luxury tax. Unless my understanding of the tax is totally wrong.

And you don't need a cap slot for a 10 day deal either, the only way it impacts the cap or the LT is if the guy plays well and the Wiz decide to sign him for the season.
And that would be a "Cadillac" problem, finding a young guy that would play so well the team would be afraid to cut him.

I do understand the line of thinking to not bring in a guy like Cassell, PJ Brown, or Maglorie. Grunfeld's thinking seems to me to be built around building from within around the big three and the core of youngsters.

Not sure how bringing in a guy that wouldn't be in the team's longterm plan's would fit in the lockerroom or help to get the young guys experience and playing time.

But I do agree I'm afraid of AJ, Daniels, and Stevenson wearing down with the strain of playing heavy minutes. Does this season reach a point where giving the youngsters playing time, managing the vets minutes, and looking to next year become the priority, if Gil and Caron aeren't going to be available for a late run?

I thought we were looking at a 45-48 win season this year if everybody stayed healthy. I frankly thought some of the competition in the East would have turned out tougher then they've been.

These guys have played better then expected, even the 4-10 without Caron and Gil is better then the end of last season.
And I'd agree with Grunfeld, healthy this is a very good team. And Caron and Gil are still young, so as of yet it's too soon to call them over the hill and blow the team up.

The injuries have made this a frustrating season. And in the end 88 may end up with 5 or 10 extra games in which he can celebrate his supreme knowledge and even let us all in on the secrets of the game after a Wizards loss.

And on slow days he can even let those of us who don't follow such things in on all of the latest "all things Gil". But I still like the foundation of players Grunfeld is assembling here and still see that he's got a core to build around.

Posted by: GM | February 29, 2008 1:22 PM

"How about we put off any talk about blowing the team up or adding/subtracting any significant pieces until we consistently lose with our entire team intact. That hasn't happened yet."

True. But the potentially bigger concern is that this is the third year in a row in which they've gone through most of the season (so far) without ever having the entire team intact. That, more than the actual number of games lost, may be what spurs change in the offseason.

Posted by: kalorama | February 29, 2008 1:24 PM

"And on slow days he can even let those of us who don't follow such things in on all of the latest "all things Gil". But I still like the foundation of players Grunfeld is assembling here and still see that he's got a core to build around.

Posted by: GM | February 29, 2008 01:22 PM "

So much so that you gave up your Les BouleS ticket plan.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 29, 2008 2:00 PM

What they should have done was add a couple of players at the begininning of the year so we would not be short handed now and not be so cheap. They had what, a nine man roster pretty much all of the year. This sucks!

Posted by: Anonymous | February 29, 2008 2:01 PM

"What they should have done was add a couple of players at the begininning of the year so we would not be short handed now and not be so cheap. They had what, a nine man roster pretty much all of the year. This sucks!

Posted by: | February 29, 2008 02:01 PM "

Boy, I've been talking about this since the beginning of the season and finally people are coming onboard.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 29, 2008 2:10 PM

Kal, Agreed. The injuries are a major concern. Do we chalk it up to coaches playing the stars too much or injury prone players? Counting this year, CB has only played over 75 games three years out of six in his career and never at least 80 games. We can't just get rid of a guy because he gets hurt, IMO. I vote we just roll with it and hope for good luck next year. Playing them less minutes is the only reasonable alternative at this point.

Posted by: mark | February 29, 2008 2:18 PM

88, I really like the direction of this team, too and I also gave up my Wiz season tix. I've also been a diehard Skins fan but have been to 2 games in the last 20 years. The last game before this year that I went to was Mark Moseley beating the Giants 15-14 on a last second field goal in the snow. Just because we don't go doesn't mean we dont care.

Posted by: mark | February 29, 2008 2:21 PM

My bottom line is that we should be a better defensive team than we are with the guys that we have playing and should be able to win like the Rockets are winning.
Everyone here on this blog knows I've always stressed offense offense offense with this team with our big 3 healthy. Without them, I'll be the first to say that we should be D'ing people up instead. We have the talent. If we are not doing it, it should be on the coaches.

Posted by: mark | February 29, 2008 10:17 AM
---------

Mark - I'd say that they ARE doing it...

Wizards opponents last year = 105 ppg, (28th in the League)

Wizards opponents this year = 98 ppg (12th in the League)

Even if you only want to concentrate on the recent games, they are only allowing 99ppg in the last 10 games (14th in the League).

I'd say that there has already been a drastic improvement in Defense this year compared to last year.

Even if you throw out the stats, just watching the games you can see that the Wiz play better 'team defense'. They have better rotations than last year. They close out on shooters better than last year. BTH and AB provide superior interior defense compared to last year. There have been more 24-second violations forced than last year. More forced shots by the opposition than last year. Fewer opposition dunks and lay-ups than last year

Now, let's face it... The defense is not CONSISTENT yet, from game to game......BUT my opinion is that more time in the system, more practice in the system, continued emphasis by the Coaches, and specifically Ayer's coaching will make the Wizards a top-10 defensive team next year.

Right now, Houston is one of the best defensive teams in the League (4th overall, 1st in the last 10-games)... but the Wizards are getting better..

Posted by: Rook | February 29, 2008 2:29 PM

""Frugality" has nothing to do with it. Once they're over the cap (as the Wizards and almost every other team is) the only way a team can sign FAs is to use the various exceptions (MLE, LLE, veterans' minimum) that are available to all teams. Once those are spent, the owner can't just dig money out of his own pocket.

The Wiz spent almost all of their FA money on Stevenson, Blatche, and Mason over the summer. What little is left isn't enough to do much other than sign a practice body. Grunfeld can't spend money the team doesn't have.

Posted by: kalorama | February 29, 2008 12:35 PM "

Go talk to EJ about that.

------------------------------------------

"On a larger scale, Jordan wants to win now. Like any coach who signed a two-year extension with a team option for the third year last summer, the continuity line gets old.

"But I understand Mr. Pollin's standpoint," Jordan said. "We want to stay within a certain budget for the Washington Wizards. We're not going to be like four or five or six other teams that can do anything it takes to win. Those are decisions we made within the organization. It doesn't bother me. There are times when you say, 'How come we can't get this guy?' But then you say, 'These are the parameters the organization has set.' "

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/02/16/AR2007021602210.htm

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 29, 2008 2:33 PM

"88, I really like the direction of this team, too and I also gave up my Wiz season tix. I've also been a diehard Skins fan but have been to 2 games in the last 20 years. The last game before this year that I went to was Mark Moseley beating the Giants 15-14 on a last second field goal in the snow. Just because we don't go doesn't mean we dont care.

Posted by: mark | February 29, 2008 02:21 PM "

How is Abe going to afford more Costco sheetcake for the team, for celebrations, when guys like you are bailing out of season ticket commitments?

Oh never mind, there's nothing to celebrate anyway. It's Les BouleS...

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 29, 2008 2:36 PM

"We can't just get rid of a guy because he gets hurt, IMO.

Teams can, do, and will move players they believe to be injury prone if it's gotten to the point where the negatives that come from the team's inability to rely on him outweigh whatever positives he brings when healthy. Has it gotten to that point with Arenas or Caron? Maybe. Maybe not. But Grunfeld wouldn't be doing due diligence as the GM if he didn't at least consider that possibility.

"I vote we just roll with it and hope for good luck next year."

I'm pretty sure that's what they did coming into this season (and maybe last season). At some point (and three years may or may not be it) the organization has to start looking at it as possibly being something more than an aberration.

I'd love to see this team stay together, stay healthy, and rise to contention, but you can only say "wait until next year" so many times before the words start to sound hollow.

Posted by: kalorama | February 29, 2008 2:44 PM

I wonder what approx $80K or so will bring in terms of a free agent this year? I could be wrong, but I don't think the Wizards have any more salary cap exceptions.

Posted by: rgz | February 29, 2008 11:47 AM

They can use the Minimum Player Salary Exception.

A team can sign any number of players to Mimimum Salaries, even if they are over the Salary Cap. Minimum Salaries are based on the number of years the player has been in the League:

0-Years $427,163 (Rookie)
1-Years $687,456
2-Years $770,610
3-Years $798,328
4-Years $826,046
5-Years $895,341
6-Years $964,636
7-Years $1,033,930
8-Years $1,103,225
9-Years $1,108,718
10+ Years $1,219,590

There is no limit to the number of players that can be signed or acquired using this exception.

HOWEVER - understand that those players signed under the Minimum Salary Exception still count towards the Luxury Tax.

For instance, if Sam Cassell (15-year veteran) signs a one-year contract with the Wizards under the Minimum Salary Exception, his salary would be $1,219,590.
The Wizards would have to pay an additional $1,219,590 Tax for being over the Luxury Tax threshhold - and forefit the Luxury Tax payment (Which should be around $5Million this year)... Or, more to to the point, Cassell would cost the Wizards $7.5 Million.

Posted by: Rook | February 29, 2008 2:44 PM

I'm kind of surprised the team hasn't looked at some depth via 10 day contracts. It's my understanding that since 10 day deals are non quarenteed those guys can be brought in for two contracts and then cut with no ramifications toward the Cap or the luxury tax.
Posted by: GM | February 29, 2008 01:22 PM

GM, 10-day contract don't count for Salary Cap purposts, but they do count for the Luxury Tax.

Posted by: Rook | February 29, 2008 2:45 PM

"Hey, where's the cake ? Somebody bring out the cake"

88, seriously, the 12k I was paying for 2 decent tickets was just outrageous when I thought about it. There were nights when I didn't really want to go out drive to the station and stand on a freezing Metro platform to see the team. I'd find myself going just because of the cost of the tickets. On the bright side, I got on the KISS-ME cam 5 or 6 times in 2 years and some of the Wiz dancers have outrageously beautiful bodies when you see them up close.

Posted by: mark | February 29, 2008 2:47 PM

"88, seriously, the 12k I was paying for 2 decent tickets was just outrageous when I thought about it. There were nights when I didn't really want to go out drive to the station and stand on a freezing Metro platform to see the team. I'd find myself going just because of the cost of the tickets. On the bright side, I got on the KISS-ME cam 5 or 6 times in 2 years and some of the Wiz dancers have outrageously beautiful bodies when you see them up close.

Posted by: mark | February 29, 2008 02:47 PM "

Sounds like as a Les BouleS fan, you weren't getting your money's worth so you bailed. Understandable.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 29, 2008 2:54 PM

I can dig it, Kal but what do you suggest we do at this point? I like this team as is when healthy but we're never healthy. If we bring in new guys, there's no reason to believe they'll stay healthy, either. Gil's initial injury and CB's injury were flukes last year. If they hadn't happened it could very well have been us in the Finals instead of the Cavs considering we did well vs. Detroit last year and the Heat was on the decline. Just like I think it's a bad move to change the Suns, I think it's still premature to change our team. The only thing we can do is rest our guys and change our mascot to a rabbit's foot, horseshoe, Leprechaun or 4 leaf clover.
We're seriously due some luck. i wish someone could do a statistocal analysis of injuries. I'd bet that DC teams have had more stars injured recently than any teams in sports history. Someone needs to put Ovechkin in bubble wrap every time he leaves the ice. It's like every sports star in DC is related to Bad Luck Schleprock.
Any readers here as old as I am will remember one of the Lilliputians from the old Banana Splits Gullivers Travels cartoon. "We're dooomed. We're all gonna die. We'll never maaaake it". Sure feels that way around here sometimes.

Posted by: mark | February 29, 2008 2:55 PM

"GM, 10-day contract don't count for Salary Cap purposts, but they do count for the Luxury Tax.

Posted by: Rook | February 29, 2008 02:45 PM "

And there you have it. Lux Tax is king in these parts. Winning? Not so much.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 29, 2008 2:55 PM

88, wasn't so much not getting my money's worth on the court. I still watched the games at home. It's just that the Krispy Kreme donuts that cost $2 each at the phone booth were $3 for a dozen. Plus, no line at the urinal in my house.

Posted by: mark | February 29, 2008 2:58 PM

Thanks Rook for the explanation.
88, Seriously, would you forgo 7.5 million for a POSSIBLE couple of extra victories? As a businessman, it doesn't make sense. As much as I've called Abe out, I wouldn't do it either. Like I've written before, there's no one out there that would come to this team that would be able to help us unless you consider the rest that the starters would get 'help'.

Posted by: mark | February 29, 2008 3:01 PM

"The only thing we can do is rest our guys and change our mascot to a rabbit's foot, horseshoe, Leprechaun or 4 leaf clover."

Obviously, that's not the only thing they can do. They can do any number of other things, including trading one or more key players or letting guys leave in FA and using the cap/luxury tax space to go after other players. Is that what they should do? Not for me to say. But given their circumstances over the past few years, I believe they would be sorely remiss if they didn't seriously consider all of their options when the time comes.

The "do nothing and hope for the best" strategy has yielded less than sterling results for this franchise over the years.

Posted by: kalorama | February 29, 2008 3:05 PM

"88, Seriously, would you forgo 7.5 million for a POSSIBLE couple of extra victories? As a businessman, it doesn't make sense. As much as I've called Abe out, I wouldn't do it either. Like I've written before, there's no one out there that would come to this team that would be able to help us unless you consider the rest that the starters would get 'help'.

Posted by: mark | February 29, 2008 03:01 PM "

mark, I'm not saying EG should be piling poo on top of poo in hopes of band-aid fix. If he wants something, he might have had to engineer a trade.

If your young guys like NY, AB, and Opech weren't getting much PT, and you are in a win now mode, EG should have considered them for trades.

I think Abe wants to win, but given the situation of the team, he's content to sit it out and collect his lux tax welfare. In the end, win or lose, it's better to be in the black rather than the red. The latter point is more important to him it seems, and "those are the parameters that the organization has set."

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 29, 2008 3:06 PM

Does anyone out there even care about the game tonight? What are the odds the Wizards will pull out a win?

Posted by: Anonymous | February 29, 2008 3:18 PM

No really even talks about this team anymore. You never here them mentioned hardly at all. I mean we are in the sixth place in the east. Have the Wizards dissolved into NBA obscurity? It seems the rest of the league have pretty much written them out for the season.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 29, 2008 3:20 PM

"If he wants something, he might have had to engineer a trade.

Which is problematic, because aside from the Big 3 (who weren't going to be traded) the only player with any real trade value was Blatche. But given his relatively small salary, they weren't likely to get a better/more impactful player in return at that price. Young and Pecherov haven't shown enough that they'd be likely to entice a team into giving up something good.

They could have tried to package some guys, but no one was going to take Thomas' or Songaila's contract in exchange for anything the Wiz could really use. And they don't have any expiring contracts or a bunch of spare draft picks.

The team doesn't have the kind of roster/cap flexibility it needs to make any kind of move that would have real impact. Grunfeld basically used all of that up when he dismantled the mess that MJ left behind and assembled the team as it is. He put this team together with the idea that, with some young guys in reserve, a couple vets in support, and core guys in their prime, they'd have a window of several years to compete. It was a good idea, and pretty well executed, but injuries have continually scuttled that plan.

Posted by: kalorama | February 29, 2008 3:23 PM

Wizards + 350 Bulls
thats just a guess. not good

Posted by: Anonymous | February 29, 2008 3:23 PM

HOWEVER - understand that those players signed under the Minimum Salary Exception still count towards the Luxury Tax.

For instance, if Sam Cassell (15-year veteran) signs a one-year contract with the Wizards under

Rook: I think only the minimum counts towards the salary cap. The league covers the rest. This is to keep veterans from being avoided by thrifty owners. I might be wrong, though.

Posted by: Wasauna | February 29, 2008 3:24 PM

The Wiz have been dwelling in NBA obscurity since the early 90's (at least). Whatever pub they've gotten during the "Gilbert era" has basically been an aberration. This team has almost no nationwide profile or recognition.

Posted by: kalorama | February 29, 2008 3:26 PM

"Which is problematic, because aside from the Big 3 (who weren't going to be traded) the only player with any real trade value was Blatche. But given his relatively small salary, they weren't likely to get a better/more impactful player in return at that price. Young and Pecherov haven't shown enough that they'd be likely to entice a team into giving up something good.

They could have tried to package some guys, but no one was going to take Thomas' or Songaila's contract in exchange for anything the Wiz could really use. And they don't have any expiring contracts or a bunch of spare draft picks.

The team doesn't have the kind of roster/cap flexibility it needs to make any kind of move that would have real impact. Grunfeld basically used all of that up when he dismantled the mess that MJ left behind and assembled the team as it is. He put this team together with the idea that, with some young guys in reserve, a couple vets in support, and core guys in their prime, they'd have a window of several years to compete. It was a good idea, and pretty well executed, but injuries have continually scuttled that plan.

Posted by: kalorama | February 29, 2008 03:23 PM "

First off, nobody on this team is untouchable b/c this team has no playoff success and hasn't had any for the longest time...injuries or no injuries.

I'm willing to bet one of the most prized possessions this recent trading deadline was BTH. Who in the West doesn't need a big, tall, and long center who can hit his FT's and is an inside threat? On top of that, he plays D!!!

I know, we have a steal in BTH based on what he's done this season relative to his salary, but based on what was going on in the west, many teams may have mortgaged their future (picks and young players) just to get BTH.

Also, how much longer are we going to sit and wait on AB? I like AB a lot, but he's been just too hot and cold.

For a guy who wants to win another championship until he sells, Abe must think he's going to live to 110 because he's really sitting on his hands right now while everyone else is getting better, and this team may get worse with Gilby and AJ possibly being gone before next season.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 29, 2008 3:30 PM

"The Wiz have been dwelling in NBA obscurity since the early 90's (at least). Whatever pub they've gotten during the "Gilbert era" has basically been an aberration. This team has almost no nationwide profile or recognition.

Posted by: kalorama | February 29, 2008 03:26 PM "

I don't value that as much as I value wins. The rest will come, with playoff success.

Meaning, we don't necessarily need someone to toot the horn of a mediocre team b/c tooting that horn ain't gonna necessarily produce victories.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 29, 2008 3:34 PM

"First off, nobody on this team is untouchable b/c this team has no playoff success and hasn't had any for the longest time"

And where, exactly, did I say anyone was "untouchable ...?" That's right, I didn't. I said Jamison, Butler, or Arenas weren't going to be traded during the season. And they weren't. As I've pointed out in my discussions with Mark, I think Grunfeld would be wrong to not at least consider the idea in the upcoming offseason, prior to doling out big money to keep this current group together. But we're not talking about the offseason her, we're talking about what Grunfeld should have done during this season.

And I'm already on record regarding my opinions on Haywood. When he's playing at peak efficiency (which is till too rare a thing) he's a good role player having a solid year, but he's not a guy teams are going to lust after, let alone "mortgage their future over." And, even if he was, his relatively small salary limits the likelihood of getting a better, more impactful player in return. And if they can't get that, there's no point in trading one of the hardest to come by commodities in the NBA, a decent C in his prime.

Posted by: kalorama | February 29, 2008 3:38 PM

"Meaning, we don't necessarily need someone to toot the horn of a mediocre team b/c tooting that horn ain't gonna necessarily produce victories."

I never said it would.

Posted by: kalorama | February 29, 2008 3:39 PM

I don't think guys could be added via 10 day contracts til Jan. As Kalorama said earlier, without available Cap slots a team can't just go out and sign players. So that's not really a function of cheap as much as it is league rules.

If the Wiz were located where I didn't have to drive a 3 to 4 hour round trip for the games I'd still be there most nights. But my injuried back does better in the comfort of my own home and a wide screen HDTV. Besides I can watch other games at halftime or breaks in action.

I still make the journey a couple of times a year cause no matter how good the camera work I still like to see some games live.

So what's your point 88, if I still have a season plan or not? Is everybody else that posts here a season ticketholder?

Posted by: GM | February 29, 2008 3:40 PM

"And where, exactly, did I say anyone was "untouchable ...?" That's right, I didn't. I said Jamison, Butler, or Arenas weren't going to be traded during the season. And they weren't. As I've pointed out in my discussions with Mark, I think Grunfeld would be wrong to not at least consider the idea in the upcoming offseason, prior to doling out big money to keep this current group together. But we're not talking about the offseason her, we're talking about what Grunfeld should have done during this season.

And I'm already on record regarding my opinions on Haywood. When he's playing at peak efficiency (which is till too rare a thing) he's a good role player having a solid year, but he's not a guy teams are going to lust after, let alone "mortgage their future over." And, even if he was, his relatively small salary limits the likelihood of getting a better, more impactful player in return. And if they can't get that, there's no point in trading one of the hardest to come by commodities in the NBA, a decent C in his prime.

Posted by: kalorama | February 29, 2008 03:38 PM "

weren't going to be traded = untouchable

Otherwise, why wouldn't you trade them? If Memphis was looking to clean house, AJ could have easily been sent there for Mike Miller + whomever.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 29, 2008 3:46 PM

"I never said it would.

Posted by: kalorama | February 29, 2008 03:39 PM "

Not you, but some fool here said Gilby has put Les BouleS on the map. And to which I responded, how has that resulted in playoff success? It hasn't.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 29, 2008 3:47 PM

"So what's your point 88, if I still have a season plan or not? Is everybody else that posts here a season ticketholder?

Posted by: GM | February 29, 2008 03:40 PM "

Abe needs your support more than ever now, as a former ticket holder. Team interest is dwindling due to all the injuries. Call ticketmaster right now. Give them as door prizes at your hardware store if you can't go.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 29, 2008 3:49 PM

This guy will come out after this season. Les BouleS need him.

http://sports.espn.go.com/ncb/player/profile?playerId=36671

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 29, 2008 3:52 PM

Rook, About the 10 day contracts and the Luxury Tax. I thought 10 day contract guys Have to be waived at season end or after their second 10 day contract. And that the Luxury Tax is based on year end Salaries under contract.

By rule a 10 day contract guy can't be under contract at season's end. That was in effect to keep teams from signing 10 day guys the last week of the season and then controlling their rights all summer for a mere pittance.

If all money spent toward 10 day guys counts toward the luxury tax I can see why the Wizards aren't going to give up 5m + for some guy that might only get off the bench in blowouts.

It would be like me paying a stockroom boy 100k a year and then saying I'll only call you to come in IF no one else is available.


Posted by: GM | February 29, 2008 3:58 PM

"If all money spent toward 10 day guys counts toward the luxury tax I can see why the Wizards aren't going to give up 5m + for some guy that might only get off the bench in blowouts.

It would be like me paying a stockroom boy 100k a year and then saying I'll only call you to come in IF no one else is available.


Posted by: GM | February 29, 2008 03:58 PM "

That being said, it shouldn't even have to come down to getting bodies via 10 day contracts. EG should have had the foresight again to engineer a trade to get more bodies that can produce. For example, AJ for Mike Miller, Lowry, and a throw in player like Brian Cardinal.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 29, 2008 4:04 PM

For all of our complaining, if GA had not been reinjured by playing too hard too soon and CB had not been injured, we'd probably be in 2nd place in the East right now and challenging for first.
Of course if my aunt had n#ts, she'd be my uncle.
My point is that 15 players werent needed because we had quality at every position. We were really 10 deep going into this season and couldn't have predicted these injuries.

Posted by: mark | February 29, 2008 4:10 PM

"weren't going to be traded = untouchable"

Uh ... no. Again, if I thought they were untouchable, I wouldn't have written at least three posts in this very thread indicating that Grunfeld should, at the very least, seriously consider moving one or more of them this offseason. They weren't going to be traded during the season because (A) Arenas was/is hurt and threatening to opt out of his deal, thus severely reducing his in-season market value and (B) playoff teams that want to remain playoff teams rarely trade their best players during the season unless there's a reasonable possibility of getting back a player who would help them more. That possibility was remote at best for the Wizards.

"AJ could have easily been sent there for Mike Miller + whomever."

And thus you make my point for me.

Posted by: kalorama | February 29, 2008 4:10 PM

We are trying to build a foundation for this team. This takes time and patience, which most Washington Sports fans don't have. Look at Miami...got a ring now they suck something fierce. Next year, if everyone is retained, our bench will be that much better when the Big 3 are on the bench resting. Hopefully they will be completely healthy. None of them will be in the Olympics so everything should be copesetic. Seeing these 3 on the team is just so good for this city. GILBERT takes over games at the end...just like Lebron and thats why he always kills us. WE NEED GIL!!!! for 6 years. Bash me all you want because thats all most people do on this F'ing blog anyway. WAHHH WAHHH WAHHH

GO WIZARDS!!!!

Posted by: Burg w/ a U | February 29, 2008 4:57 PM

DC man88 wrote: I'm willing to bet one of the most prized possessions this recent trading deadline was BTH. Who in the West doesn't need a big, tall, and long center who can hit his FT's and is an inside threat? On top of that, he plays D!!!

I know, we have a steal in BTH based on what he's done this season relative to his salary, but based on what was going on in the west, many teams may have mortgaged their future (picks and young players) just to get BTH.
--------------------------------------

Trading a seven footer with an 18.4 PER who makes just $5 million would have been bout as intelligent as, say, giving up Caron Butler to get Kwame Brown. You couldn't have gotten equivalent value or even close to it, unless somebody else was willing to give up another overperformer who's on a rookie contract. You wouldn't even get a lottery pick out of it, a Western Conference contender isn't likely to have one.


Posted by: John Brisker | February 29, 2008 5:03 PM

I think there is actually a chance tonight. it's the back-to-backs and 4-in-5 stretch where we just don't have the horses.

Posted by: Pauly B. | February 29, 2008 5:24 PM

"Trading a seven footer with an 18.4 PER who makes just $5 million would have been bout as intelligent as, say, giving up Caron Butler to get Kwame Brown. You couldn't have gotten equivalent value or even close to it, unless somebody else was willing to give up another overperformer who's on a rookie contract. You wouldn't even get a lottery pick out of it, a Western Conference contender isn't likely to have one.


Posted by: John Brisker | February 29, 2008 05:03 PM "

Yeah, status quo is much better.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 29, 2008 5:40 PM

Gil builds a grotto
at his home in Maryland
Max money for Gil

Posted by: Haiku | February 29, 2008 5:49 PM

"Gil builds a grotto
at his home in Maryland
Max money for Gil

Posted by: Haiku | February 29, 2008 05:49 PM "

Dork.

Gilby lives in Great Falls, VA. I was reported by Mike Wise.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 29, 2008 6:05 PM

"To Rob P: I am the "fool" who has said fire EG and here is why,EJ has gotten more out of this team than any coach could have, yet he has gotten no help from his GM just yesterday the first place CELTICS went out and signed PJ BROWN while Brown may not be an offensive force he plays D and is a good rebounder(think he might help?) trading deadline? no deals whatsoever even though we have two number one picks, hell Ray Charles could have made a trade to help this shorthanded team signed Darius Songalia to a long term contract who until recently, has been injured most of last year and ineffective this season. Pecherov a seven footer who shoots three's and plays no defense, and oh yeah he was injured too,EG was in NY and Milwaukee worked out well for him there ya think? Rob P I don't how long you've been watching basketball but it appears you ain't got a clue about coaching in the NBA.I'm out!!!!!." - DARGREGMAG@AOL.COM

DAREGREGMAG, my friend, you can believe what you like. It's a free country. But, if you are pointing to EG as the team's problem while extolling EJ's coaching abilities and then question my basketbal IQ then you need to get help. It's pretty amusing though.

You cite PJ Brown as some sort of panacea for the Wiz. Are you crazy? Plus, your assuming he would sign here. Let me just enlighten you a little. PJ Brown signed with the Celtics to win a championship and Sam Cassell will do the same here soon. They want nothing to do with the Wiz. Their piggybacking hoping for a ring. OK. Is that hard to understand? PJ Brown and even moreso Cassel, when he signs, may give that team a good minute here and there, but what would they do for us. Help us limp into the playoffs and get immediately knocked off is the most they could do. Big deal!

What else? It's useless. Some people don't know a damn thing about basketball I guess. EJ has coached his BEST season here. That is the most I'll concede, while emphasizing he is a career loser and instills no toughness or a championship mentality on this team. This team is soft in the image of it's coach. Also, why are injuries cited as an excuse for EJ, but not EG??? Pecherov was not meant to see the light of day this year with a healthy team and Songalia could be banging and hitting open 15 footers like he did as the 7th or 8th best player on the team at the end of last year. I heard no complaints then bc he played really well in his intended role. New roles or more expanded roles equals more exposure to these players weaknesses. So, go ahead and fire EG and watch this team sink back to the Unseld days of futility. Also, talk to DCMan about how Abe puts a limit on what EG can do. He might have done something to shore up this team if Abe was not limiting him, but, again, there are no knights in shining armor that are going to rescue this season so I see the idea in not even wasting the money!

Finally, EG built winners and perennial playoff teams in NY and Milwaukee and I think you can see what those teams have turned into since he left. LOSERS! So, I'm now convinced. Let's fire EG everybody! He is definitely the teams problem!

Posted by: Rob P | February 29, 2008 6:24 PM

Who cares where he lives
You Gilby stalking homo
Max money for Gil

Posted by: Haiku | February 29, 2008 6:55 PM

Game time looms closer
Hughes warms in Windy City
MJ a statue now

Go Wiz

Posted by: khrabb | February 29, 2008 7:12 PM

A house in Great Falls
Grotto that makes Hef jealous
Where's the parachute?

Posted by: Anonymous | February 29, 2008 8:00 PM

"Yeah, status quo is much better."

It's certainly better than a deal that actively makes the team worse.

Posted by: kalorama | March 2, 2008 2:23 AM

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