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Thursday update

The Wizards will practice here in Chicago in about an hour and I plan on offering an update later on with as much detailed information as possible on Caron Butler's hip issue. As I posted last night, the team said a recent evaluation revealed that he has a small tear of the labrum in his left hip. Naturally, that has led to a lot of speculation from folks on this blog that he might need surgery, that he might be done for the season etc. We don't know any of that yet. For an example, google the name Mats Sundin.

He's a hockey player with the Maple Leafs. After last season, team exit exams revealed a torn labrum in his hip and not long after that, a report out of Toronto paper jumped the gun and said the injury would require surgery and could be career ending. As it turned out, Sundin, who played with the injury all of last season, never required surgery and has played all 65 games this season.

Now, I'm not saying the injuries are the same. Maybe Caron's situation is better, or worse. The point is that we don't know. Like I said, I'll talk to the folks I need to talk to, do the right kind of research and get as much info as I can for you. Stay tuned....

By Ivan Carter  |  February 28, 2008; 11:36 AM ET
 
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Next: Cassell Is Free, Set to Join Boston Three?

Comments

Thanks, dude. I guess either way we need to prepare for season ending surgery. Whether his career is affected is a different story.

Posted by: mark | February 28, 2008 11:58 AM | Report abuse

Sadly, Arenas and Butler as starting to feel a lot like the Cubs' Prior and Woods.

Once we get both of these guys healthy... next week... next month... after the all-star break... in time for the playoffs... by training camp...

Posted by: Flip | February 28, 2008 12:02 PM | Report abuse

I imagine that the kind of stress on the hips of a skater (pushing, a litle twisting) and basketball player (pushing, twisting as well as impact force from jumping and landing) would be a lot different.

It appears that we already have the answer as to whether CB can play through it or not since he shut it down a couple weeks ago.

Ivan, can you confirm that GA's knee is in fact healed and he's just working on his conditioning at this point? Is there any hope that we can salvage this season?

Posted by: mark | February 28, 2008 12:03 PM | Report abuse

I think we can expect "An Open Letter to Ivan Carter" from Caron Butler complaining about Ivan comparing his injury to another person's injury any day now.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 12:09 PM | Report abuse

B-ball requires much more lateral movement, stop and start, and jumping compared to hockey. I seriously doubt if hockey players practice suicides.

I think any adviser to Caron would tell him to call it a season. Injuries don't get better during the season.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 28, 2008 12:21 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for the accurate reporting Ivan....

It's disappointing to hear this about Butler - he's such an asset to the team. Hopefully, he will have a speedy recovery.
I do think the Wiz's medical team needs to be looked at. They don't seem like they are spotting serious injuries quick enough.

Posted by: sp | February 28, 2008 12:27 PM | Report abuse

Damn,Damn,Damn!!!

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 12:44 PM | Report abuse

Now idiot man is a doctor.....

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 12:57 PM | Report abuse

Hockey is way harder on the hip. It's all about sprinting and stopping on a dime. Not to mention all the punishment from hip checking. There is a reason they change lines every couple of minutes.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 1:30 PM | Report abuse

Fire EJ
Fire EG
Fire the Training Staff
Fire Abe
Fire the ball boys
Fire GWiz
Fire DCMan88
Then the Wiz will make it to the Eastern Conference Finals!

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 2:01 PM | Report abuse

While injuries will be the sort of thing that can strike any player at any time, the Wizards will consistently have these problems every season until they learn to start managing minutes better. Last season Gilbert led the league in point guard min per game. This season Antawn is first among PFs and Caron is 2nd among SFs only to Lebron.

Posted by: Frustrated | February 28, 2008 2:08 PM | Report abuse

Combine the minutes with the fact that The Wizards still don't play particularly good defense (better than last year but still not very good) and every game turn into a shootout that comes down to the wire. How many games this season have The Wizards won by pretty much relying on Caron to take over the game with 3-4 minutes left in the 4th. Same way that Gilbert had to do things last year. While Gilbert's injury was certainly acute, the fact that the pressure is all on him and he was expected to step in and be "the guy" this season is what led him to speed his recovery up too much and now the consequence is that we probly wont see him till next season, not the real him at least. And yeah, they definitely have the most incompetent medical staff i have heard about.

Posted by: Also Frustrated | February 28, 2008 2:15 PM | Report abuse

"While injuries will be the sort of thing that can strike any player at any time, the Wizards will consistently have these problems every season until they learn to start managing minutes better. Last season Gilbert led the league in point guard min per game. This season Antawn is first among PFs and Caron is 2nd among SFs only to Lebron.

Posted by: Frustrated | February 28, 2008 02:08 PM "

Can't do much when the team is undermanned.

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

"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 28, 2008 2:18 PM | Report abuse

Josh Shipp, the UCLA swingman, actually suffered this same injury TWICE (once on each hip) in the past three years.
http://www.pe.com/sports/college/ucla/stories/PE_Sports_Local_D_ucla_hoops_21.40085c8.html
He's back playing this season and his stats are comparable to before the injuries.

Posted by: John Brisker | February 28, 2008 2:29 PM | Report abuse

hey dcfag...y dont u stop posting the same links and qoutes over and over again

Posted by: jjmat84 | February 28, 2008 2:30 PM | Report abuse

oh, don't be so hard on DC. He's got a torn labrum in his brain.

Posted by: Gilby | February 28, 2008 2:32 PM | Report abuse

I don't really get all the over-played hype.

These guys want to go out and win games. They don't want to come off the court. Was MJ overplayed? Magic? Bird?

I just think that we rely on a guy like caron or gil is the nature of the game.

Posted by: unhype | February 28, 2008 2:44 PM | Report abuse

These diagnostic skills from the Wizards medical staff are quite impressive. Are there other systems like the luxury tax in place? Does Abe Pollin get some kind of rebate paid for by other teams that have MRI machines if he chooses not to have one?

Posted by: Ross | February 28, 2008 2:47 PM | Report abuse

From the Mayo Clinic website...

"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." OK. good news for the rest of us, but what about athletes in season.
---

Apparently, this is a very common ballet injury. The Rudolf Nureyev Foundation (no I'm not a member...yet) posted a medical report about the difficulty of diagnosing this injury. Usually treated as some kind of inflammation at first (hip flexor tweak, anyone?). When the anti-inflammatories don't work, you are supposed to do a very specific physical test, then if that seems to give the labral tear indicators you have a non-contrast MRI. The MRI usually verifies the labral tear.

So that's the process and it would seem that close observation would lead you to the labral tear sooner rather than later, if, in fact, that was his original injury, and not a result of the hip flexor pull stressing the joint. This Nureyev Foundation posted report seems to indicate surgery is the fastest way to recover, with 4 weeks of therapy to follow the arthroscopy.

Again, the article is about a common misdiagnosis, so I'm wondering what the specifics are with Caron. I'm not suggesting this layman's guide should add fuel to the fire. Just thought some posters might enjoy the synopsis while we eagerly await Ivan's update...


Posted by: Pauly B. | February 28, 2008 2:47 PM | Report abuse

Don't think it is career ending, don't necessarily require surgery, but a partial tear usually takes a long time to heal.

Posted by: Sagaliba | February 28, 2008 2:47 PM | Report abuse

Ivan, with everything going on with the players,ie;injuries, inordinately amount of minutes played, why is it that EJ,Pollin or whomever in charge, won't bring the current players some relief in the form of signing someone. I don't see how they can just stand around and let their players fall apart but at the same time expect them to compete. Arenas mentioned in his blog that EG was upset with the Knicks loss. Did EG ever consider that these players are tired. Both physically and mentally. Especially the vets. What is the deal here? Why can't and why won't they sign additional players for the remainder of the year or something. This getting to be ridiculous. Deshawn,AD,AJ and the rest shouldn't have to play hurt or kill themselves because there isn't any other players to spell them. You would think when a team can't practice because of a shortage of players that that would be the litmus test to let someone know they need help! I mean come on. And they wonder why this team isn't respected around the league. SH@@t This is getting ridiculous!

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 2:56 PM | Report abuse

Kwame for Butler isn't looking so bad now is it?

Posted by: Mitch from LA | February 28, 2008 3:00 PM | Report abuse

Guys - The Wizards will be fine. Some people might say that we only have a few legitimately talented players left on the roster and they are all playing hurt anyways. To them I would say this. Are you forgetting about our 7 foot 3 pt specialist? You know the guy who plays away from the basket, is shooting 28% from 3 and apparently hails from a European league where playing defense is illegal. And how about our young rookie - as soon as someone explains to him what traveling and carrying are - he's gonna be solid. Or the other rookie who rips down rebounds from the sky and has a solid shooting range of 14 inches. Or our Lithuanian technician. As soon as he gets those 200 lb. weights removed from his legs he will be right on. And Blatche, don't ever forget Blatche - he's always good for anywhere between 0 and 20 points, 2 to 12 rebounds, and 5 to 6 fouls over 2 to 4 quarters.

Posted by: Ross? | February 28, 2008 3:08 PM | Report abuse

I agree, I wish Kwame was still here instead of Caron. A healthy Kwame produces the same 0 points and 0 rebounds as an injured Caron, but we are missing all of the hilarity that comes with having easy passes bounce of his hands and blowing 5 open dunks in a row. HAHAHAHAHA oh do I miss that!

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 3:11 PM | Report abuse

Maybe its not the Medical Staff's fault. Maybe Abe cut health insurance and the staff has to play the old strain and sprain game. Everything is treatable in 10 days by R.I.C.E. and Eddie Jordan cutting your minutes down from 30 to 25.

Posted by: rossgm | February 28, 2008 3:15 PM | Report abuse

The more it looks like GA and CB are going to be out for the season, what should the coaching staff's strategy be for the rest of the way? Who should EG emphasize for development and should Darius even have a role?

Posted by: Thickman | February 28, 2008 3:20 PM | Report abuse

Washington area pro sports baby!!! It's faaaaaaaaaaaantastic!!!

What a joke, it never ends in this town....

Posted by: Roger | February 28, 2008 3:21 PM | Report abuse

For all the complaining about the medical staff not diagnosing it sooner, if it takes 12 weeks to heal following surgery, it really doesn't matter whether they diagnosed it then or now. CB is still gonna be out for the season if surgery is required. For the record, I am also complaining. I don't understand why an MRI isn't performed for all 'nagging' injuries. The profits from a couple of hot dogs and sodas at the Phone Booth would pay for a few of them.
I agree with Frustrated and think that there IS something you can do when the team is undermanned. You can develop your bench and substitute more effectively. Our bench consists of a good enough mix of veterans so that we could spare a few minutes of bench time here and there for the starters. While I'm not saying that this injury is a direct result of overplaying the guys, there seems to be some sort of correlation. I'm not privy to the Wiz practice schedules and am unaware of whether the Big 3 rest more during practices or get additional time off. Subsequently, I'd have to agree that the extra minutes might be the cause.

Posted by: mark | February 28, 2008 3:33 PM | Report abuse

Mitch,
I just noticed that you're from LA. You mad at us for that Kwame deal? Kwame gets hurt AND he sucks ! LOL.

Posted by: mark | February 28, 2008 3:35 PM | Report abuse

" agree with Frustrated and think that there IS something you can do when the team is undermanned. You can develop your bench and substitute more effectively. Our bench consists of a good enough mix of veterans so that we could spare a few minutes of bench time here and there for the starters. While I'm not saying that this injury is a direct result of overplaying the guys, there seems to be some sort of correlation. I'm not privy to the Wiz practice schedules and am unaware of whether the Big 3 rest more during practices or get additional time off. Subsequently, I'd have to agree that the extra minutes might be the cause.

Posted by: mark | February 28, 2008 03:33 PM "

The question now is whether Abe will run the rest of the guys down to the bone and call it a season, or will he bring some people in and/or forget the lux tax welfare and try to find help for the soldiers that are soldiering on.

I predict the former.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 28, 2008 3:41 PM | Report abuse

"hey dcfag...y dont u stop posting the same links and qoutes over and over again

Posted by: jjmat84 | February 28, 2008 02:30 PM "

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

"A lot of people want to separate us from Mr. Snyder," Robiskie said. "Mr. Snyder owns the football team. I know that. I promise you there's very few things in the building I'm going to say I want to change without calling him to say I want to change it.

"If I wanted to change my desk, I'm going to call him and say I want to change my desk. If I want to change quarterbacks, I'm going to call him and say, 'What do you think of me changing quarterbacks?' It's his football team. To try to separate it, we're wasting our time."

Snyder was not available for comment. His spokesman, Karl Swanson, said Robiskie "makes all football decisions, just as Norv did. He doesn't need to ask anybody's permission."

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/football/nfl/news/2000/12/06/johnson_snyder_ap/

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

"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.html

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

"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 28, 2008 3:45 PM | Report abuse

Why isn't an MRI performed on ALL injuries?

For you and me, that isn't done to save money. For the Wizards, not performing an MRI ends up costing the team money if injuries aren't diagnosed early.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 3:46 PM | Report abuse

I predict the former.
Posted by: DC Man88 | February 28, 2008 03:41 PM
-------------------------------------------
Very bold. I predict you will speak ill of Gilbert Arenas at least once in the next 48 hours.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 3:48 PM | Report abuse

apparently dcfag has a comprehension problem...

Posted by: jjmat84 | February 28, 2008 3:52 PM | Report abuse

"apparently dcfag has a comprehension problem...

Posted by: jjmat84 | February 28, 2008 03:52 PM "

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

"A lot of people want to separate us from Mr. Snyder," Robiskie said. "Mr. Snyder owns the football team. I know that. I promise you there's very few things in the building I'm going to say I want to change without calling him to say I want to change it.

"If I wanted to change my desk, I'm going to call him and say I want to change my desk. If I want to change quarterbacks, I'm going to call him and say, 'What do you think of me changing quarterbacks?' It's his football team. To try to separate it, we're wasting our time."

Snyder was not available for comment. His spokesman, Karl Swanson, said Robiskie "makes all football decisions, just as Norv did. He doesn't need to ask anybody's permission."

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/football/nfl/news/2000/12/06/johnson_snyder_ap/

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

"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.html

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

"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 28, 2008 3:58 PM | Report abuse

whats all the noise about? do you not that we have nick young oh you will be a nick young fan soon are later

Posted by: frankie jude | February 28, 2008 4:00 PM | Report abuse

busting DCMan's marbles about his out of control hatred of Abe, Gilbert, parachutes, and all things Wizards = funny

homophobia = unfunny

So seriously, I am going to have to ask you nicely not to bring your bigotry to our disfunctional blog please.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 4:04 PM | Report abuse

"busting DCMan's marbles about his out of control hatred of Abe, Gilbert, parachutes, and all things Wizards = funny

Posted by: | February 28, 2008 04:04 PM "

Out of control hatred? NOT.

Absolutely accurate and proven analysis over time? YES!

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 28, 2008 4:06 PM | Report abuse

I post old columns
I am a pedophile
I am DC Man

Posted by: Haiku | February 28, 2008 4:13 PM | Report abuse

and dcfag strikes again...showing he has no life...hahahaha

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 4:15 PM | Report abuse

Here's a funny question:

Houston went out and destroyed Les BouleS after they found out Yao Ming Ming was done for the season.

Will Les BouleS go out and destroy Chicago after learning Caron is out?

doubt it.

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

"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.html

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 28, 2008 4:17 PM | Report abuse

Fire God Shammgod!

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 4:18 PM | Report abuse

I hate parachutes
and also parachute pants
I am DCMan

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 4:23 PM | Report abuse

Rest all starters and play rookies for extended minutes. Without our 2 all-stars we won't be able to do well in the playoffs. This will help them learn some basics to the P-Offense. Maybe, I hope, who knows. I miss Caron like nobodys business. watching his highlights on youtube just kills me that hes not there, hes seriuosly amazing

Posted by: Burg w/ a U | February 28, 2008 4:36 PM | Report abuse

Going over the luxury tax limit is not in the 07-08 plan/budget. If it is not in the plan, there is no money set aside for that. If there is no money set aside for it, then the cash has to come from somewhere. If you want to send a cheque to Verizon Center for at least $5M, please do so cause calling Abe cheap won't do it.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 4:53 PM | Report abuse

I don't really get all the over-played hype.

These guys want to go out and win games. They don't want to come off the court. Was MJ overplayed? Magic? Bird?

I just think that we rely on a guy like caron or gil is the nature of the game.

Posted by: unhype | February 28, 2008 02:44 PM

In a nutshell. The whole point is to win games. Sitting your best players for long periods doesn't further that goal.

Posted by: kalorama | February 28, 2008 4:55 PM | Report abuse

"Going over the luxury tax limit is not in the 07-08 plan/budget."

And even if they wanted to go over the tax, they don't have enough FA money to spend to get anyone who rises much above the level of "scrub." They spent almost all of the MLE over the summer. What's left, in NBA salary terms, amounts to loose change under Abe's couch cushions.

Posted by: kalorama | February 28, 2008 4:57 PM | Report abuse

In a nutshell perhaps but unravel that dictum about winning and the story lengthens out to winning also involves deepening the bench and buttressing against injury by developing talent, judiciously providing generous playing time to younger players, instilling confidence in players that need that psychological boost.

Posted by: myshkin | February 28, 2008 5:02 PM | Report abuse

"Rest all starters and play rookies for extended minutes. Without our 2 all-stars we won't be able to do well in the playoffs."

Even if that's true, I can't see them going with an a rooks-firste strategy. There's no way the starters/vets would accept it. Players want to play. If that weren't the case, Stevenson and Daniels would have already shut it down. And there's no way Jamison would swallow throwing in the towel, no matter how bleak things look. He proved that last year in the playoffs. The players have pride and believe they have a shot to win every game they play.

It's easy enough to throw it all on the coach, GM, owner, medical staff, or any other scapegoat. But big-time players want to be on the floor for as long and as much as they can.

And it's not like they're at the bottom of the standings. They're still a playoff team. As long as that's the case, Stevenson, Jamison, Daniels, Haywood are going to soldier on as long as they're physically able to get out onto the court. That's what being a competitor is all about.

Posted by: kalorama | February 28, 2008 5:06 PM | Report abuse

"In a nutshell perhaps but unravel that dictum about winning and the story lengthens out to winning also involves deepening the bench and buttressing against injury by developing talent, judiciously providing generous playing time to younger players, instilling confidence in players that need that psychological boost."

All of which takes time, time this ggroup hasn't had yet. This is the first season with the new, potentially improved young bench. Young, Pech, and Maguire were never going to be gamebreakers their first year, they aren't those kinds of ready-made NBA players. If they were, they'd get more PT because they'd have shown they deserved it. They're still being broken in and breaking in can be a lengthy process. In the meantime, the Vets have to carry the load, just like they do on any playoff caliber team.

Posted by: kalorama | February 28, 2008 5:10 PM | Report abuse

THE WIZARDS NEED BETTER DOCTORS. THE WIZ NEEDS AN OWENER WHO SINCERELY WANTS TO WIN. A FEW YEARS AGO I STOPPED WASTING MY MONEY ON THE TEAM. WHEN MJ ARRIVED I BECAME A SEASON TICKET HOLDER AGAIN. I DOUBT IF I WILL BE A SEASON TICKET HOLDER NEXT YEAR. I CAN NOT ACCEPT FRAUDULENT MANAGEMENT.

Posted by: CHARLES | February 28, 2008 5:12 PM | Report abuse

I buy most of that, the vets have to carry the load and breaking-in is a lengthy process but the longer they sit the longer the process. There are very few ready-mades, (R-Mutt excepted) but some teams seem to be develop players more successfully than the Wiz of late. Young Maguire, Pech, Blatche have shown flashes and sometimes they make rookie mistakes. Game time is where a lot of that development happens, like the block Dikembe Mutombo put on Blatche the other night, Andray picked up a bit of knowledge from that interaction.

Posted by: Myshkin | February 28, 2008 5:21 PM | Report abuse

Why cut and paste us
when you can say it with a
rad Haiku smackdown.

Posted by: Pauly Basho. | February 28, 2008 5:26 PM | Report abuse

Josh Shipp of UCLA had the same surgery on each hip, last time in spring of 2007 after the Final 4. The good news is that he's come back stronger and had even better junior and senior seasons. The bad news for Wiz fans in the short-term is that Caron is likely done for the season, surgery or no surgery. We can only hope that we'll have GA back in the next couple of weeks or the season will end up like last year. Did Michael Jordan or Scottie Pippen ask for their minutes to be reduced to minimize injury...that's a ludicrous excuse for the injuries. EJ could have played the bench more early in the year, but bottom line is that he needed CB and AJ to play big minutes to make up for Gil's absence. I still think EG could have gotten us more depth, but it wouldn't have kept down the minutes that CB and AJ were playing.

Posted by: wizfan89 | February 28, 2008 5:29 PM | Report abuse

Some development happens in game time. Some happens in practice during the season. Some happens over the summer. All are important and no single one is enough for most players. For a guy like Wade or Brandon Roy, who came out of college with polished NBA ready games, force feeding them playing time may work as the primary mode of development. I just don't think any of the Wiz's guys fall into that category. They need more than what they'd get just by playing (and, as a possible result, losing) a lot. Teams with big-time playoff aspirations rarely lean heavily on rookies, and coming into this season, the Wiz were a team with big-time playoff aspirations.

While there's no doubt the team needed to get a youth infusion, and there's no denying that, on the whole, Grunfeldd has done a fantastic job turning this team around, he erred over the summer by not getting a reliable veteran scorer to come in off the bench. Without that, Jordan was basically left with two choices: play the starters a lot and hope they can take it, or give the kids extended run and hope they're quick learners.

He made the choice that (and I feel fully confident in saying this) the vast majority of coaches in his position would have made. Sometimes it pays off. Sometimes it doesn't. You pays your money, you takes your chances.

But if he had gone in the other direction, played the rooks more, and ended up mired in the lottery, I guarantee that many of the same people ripping him now for playing the starters too much would be ripping him for not playing them enough.

Posted by: kalorama | February 28, 2008 5:32 PM | Report abuse

As this season has unfolded with Arenas and Thomas gone for most or all of it, if EJ had given the rookies (and Blatche early on) five more minutes per game on top of what they were getting, and maybe pulled the starters in the blowouts earlier, I don't think the Wiz would be in a very different place standings wise than they are now. The younger players would be further along however.
I can't fault EG, his personel moves with the resources he's had have been impressive. I can't judge EJ's handling of the team, I lack the perspective, my feeling is though that his strength may not be in player development. As for his getting ripped by the peanut gallery, I don't doubt what you say.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 5:46 PM | Report abuse

C'est moi

Posted by: myshkin | February 28, 2008 5:49 PM | Report abuse

first of all i hope caron is able to recover as quickly and fully as possible. now. a week or two ago i posted an argument for firing the team doctor. guys keep coming back before they're fully healthy and it's cost the team, and the players, dearly. true, EJ's (arguably correct) strategy of riding the big 3 for 40+ every game doesn't help, but there's no way arenas should have started on opening night. and there's no way caron should have come back a game or two after his initial hip injury. and there is NO WAY that an NBA organization should falsely diagnose an injury to one of their (all-star) players for close to a month. i mean, wouldn't you think caron was seeing this doc, or likely several docs, at least once every day? and it took them this long to realize what was going on? this is ridiculous. hire new docs. that doesn't affect the luxury tax, Mr. Pollin.

Posted by: now i'm a hater | February 28, 2008 5:50 PM | Report abuse

Labrum tears are apparently hard to diagnose, though in retrospect the scheduling of Butler's return to action may have been a bit hasty. One also hopes they don't bring him back to soon, from what we've been reading it is possible in some instances to play with this injury, though given the inexact nature of the medical sciences and the desire of the players to play and the owners to win let us hope they err on the side of caution.

Posted by: myshkin | February 28, 2008 5:58 PM | Report abuse

Of the 27 games they've won, 9 or 10 have been by 10 or fewer points. Playing rookies an extra five minutes could have made a significant difference in whether they won some of those games. Or maybe not. It's all speculation, of course.

But given the currently precarious state of the team's position (the Wiz are currently 6th in the playoff standings, but only 3 games out of the lottery) it is pretty easy to see how the coach might view that as an unacceptable risk.

Posted by: kalorama | February 28, 2008 6:04 PM | Report abuse

I know a few others have commented on this, but I am going to add my 2 cents. Why is it that our "crack" medical staff seems to always be behind when diagnosing these types of injuries? There have been so many examples over the past several years of mistakes, bad advice, not staying on top of players rehabbing injuries, etc.? Why is it that Gilbert Arenas is under contract to the Wizards, but he can rehab his knee in the way he wants to? If he were healthy this year, Caron would not have had to do as much and may not have had his injury. Next thing you know, Antawn is going to push it too hard, and he will injure himself, and a very promising season, with breakout years for Brendan and growth with some of their talented younger players, will go down the toilet with an injury report longer than anyone in the league. Aren't medical staffs evaluated based on their performance as well? If so, I believe we need to draft a whole new crew for next year or pick up some free agents. Hey, if it worked with Hoppla for free throws and Ayers for defense, it might help with the injuries that seem to ruin our season every year.

Comments appreciated..

Posted by: Ron in Alex | February 28, 2008 6:05 PM | Report abuse

Well, just because a player is under contract doesn't give the team complete oversight of his life (as much as the coaches and GMs might wish otherwise).

Gilbert himself owned up to the fact that he ignored the doctor's advice and pushed himself too hard, doing a bunch of stuff that wasn't in the PT's rehab plan. Short of hiring a spotter to follow him around 24/7, there's really no way the team could have prevented that. One of the downsides of free will is that people sometimes do stupid things against their own self-interest.

Posted by: kalorama | February 28, 2008 6:28 PM | Report abuse

Darth Kalorama
Breathes heavily as he types
With his light saber

Posted by: Haiku | February 28, 2008 6:41 PM | Report abuse

It's time for some changes.

This team can't stay healthy for a full season and die when it's playoff time because of that.

The Wiz should really consider thier options this upcoming offseason, whether it's the conditioning staff or the players they bring in.

This is getting rediculous, seems like every year we get our hopes up only to get them shot right back down.

Jamison two seasons ago, Gil last year, and now Caron. Hopefully Gil will make it back soon.

The Wiz are the ultimate "what if?" team.

- Ray

Posted by: Ray | February 28, 2008 7:10 PM | Report abuse

In a nutshell. The whole point is to win games. Sitting your best players for long periods doesn't further that goal.

Posted by: kalorama | February 28, 2008 04:55 PM

Well then, Eddie Jordan must have cracked the mysterious recipe for winning -- playing your stars for as long as humanly possible. Every other coach in the league must be an idiot, because the Wizards have three players in the top 7 in the league this season in minutes played per game. What slow learners those other coaches are -- they should pay more attention to Eddie's winning ways. If San Antonio only played Duncan, Ginobli and Parker 48 minutes per game, they'd be undefeated. Brilliant, Eddie!

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 7:11 PM | Report abuse

"

Well, just because a player is under contract doesn't give the team complete oversight of his life (as much as the coaches and GMs might wish otherwise).

Gilbert himself owned up to the fact that he ignored the doctor's advice and pushed himself too hard, doing a bunch of stuff that wasn't in the PT's rehab plan. Short of hiring a spotter to follow him around 24/7, there's really no way the team could have prevented that. One of the downsides of free will is that people sometimes do stupid things against their own self-interest.

Posted by: kalorama | February 28, 2008 06:28 PM "

It's one thing to be stupid like Gilby and admit it, which ended up costing the team because he's not earning his pay, but another thing to be stupid like he is, but then threaten that if he doesn't get max money, that he's going to walk, even for less money elsewhere. True dedication to a team that stuck by you. What a class act.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 28, 2008 7:12 PM | Report abuse

"Next thing you know, Antawn is going to push it too hard, and he will injure himself, and a very promising season, with breakout years for Brendan and growth with some of their talented younger players, will go down the toilet with an injury report longer than anyone in the league. Aren't medical staffs evaluated based on their performance as well? If so, I believe we need to draft a whole new crew for next year or pick up some free agents. Hey, if it worked with Hoppla for free throws and Ayers for defense, it might help with the injuries that seem to ruin our season every year.

Comments appreciated..

Posted by: Ron in Alex | February 28, 2008 06:05 PM "

I doubt if AJ will overextend himself and get hurt. The team will probably mail in the rest of the season.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 28, 2008 7:13 PM | Report abuse

"Well then, Eddie Jordan must have cracked the mysterious recipe for winning -- playing your stars for as long as humanly possible. Every other coach in the league must be an idiot, because the Wizards have three players in the top 7 in the league this season in minutes played per game. What slow learners those other coaches are -- they should pay more attention to Eddie's winning ways. If San Antonio only played Duncan, Ginobli and Parker 48 minutes per game, they'd be undefeated. Brilliant, Eddie!

Posted by: | February 28, 2008 07:11 PM "

Also, it was stupid to heap so much overpraise on DS after that clutch shot and good outing against NO. Then, DS basically farted in EJ's face the next game by shooting 2-12 for 5 pts.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 28, 2008 7:14 PM | Report abuse

"In a nutshell. The whole point is to win games. Sitting your best players for long periods doesn't further that goal.

Posted by: kalorama | February 28, 2008 04:55 PM "

Nor does putting out an undermanned team.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 28, 2008 7:17 PM | Report abuse

Excuse me -- 3 players in the top 10 in the league in minutes per game. It was 3 in the top 7 over the weekend.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 7:18 PM | Report abuse

"Very bold. I predict you will speak ill of Gilbert Arenas at least once in the next 48 hours.

Posted by: | February 28, 2008 03:48 PM "

Gilby porked your mom and splooged in her mouth.

There, you were right. I spoke ill of Gilby.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 28, 2008 7:18 PM | Report abuse

Actually that doesn't speak ill of Gilbert at all, my mom is way hot. It doesn't matter if you talk ill of Gilbert anyway, just leave those much ballyhooed parachutes alone from now on.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 7:34 PM | Report abuse

"Actually that doesn't speak ill of Gilbert at all, my mom is way hot. It doesn't matter if you talk ill of Gilbert anyway, just leave those much ballyhooed parachutes alone from now on.

Posted by: | February 28, 2008 07:34 PM "

Yeah, I guess it doesn't make your mom look bad that a random guy porked and splooged in her mouth. Probably happens often. Since you think she's hot, you probably know first hand.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 28, 2008 7:41 PM | Report abuse

I agree. The only embarassing part was that Gilbert said that she wasn't half as good as you.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 7:48 PM | Report abuse

"I agree. The only embarassing part was that Gilbert said that she wasn't half as good as you.

Posted by: | February 28, 2008 07:48 PM "

Actually, the real embarrassing part was when your mom told Gilby she was into scat.

or,

was it when Gilby said your dad was better at giving head than your mom? Your mom's got that darn gag reflex, but she can sure put down those floating snicker bars.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 28, 2008 7:51 PM | Report abuse

Actually the really embarassing part was when Gilbert showed us the pictures of you wearing nothing but a parachute. He said your Sun Ming Ming idea was retarded too.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 7:53 PM | Report abuse

"Actually the really embarassing part was when Gilbert showed us the pictures of you wearing nothing but a parachute. He said your Sun Ming Ming idea was retarded too.

Posted by: | February 28, 2008 07:53 PM "

Really? Why don't you post those pictures so that everyone can enjoy them too!

Sun Ming Ming may or may not have been a bad idea. What was a bad idea was Gilby running behind a parachute which cost him the season. Not just a bad idea, but a stupid idea. It's great that he's regretting it now.

I think if your mom actually hooked up with guys that used parachutes, then you would actually know who your dad is. Must be tough for you.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 28, 2008 7:58 PM | Report abuse

Awwww, don't get mad buddy, I'm just messing around with you. You still have Gilbert's injury and another Wizards season in the toilet to enjoy.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 8:03 PM | Report abuse

"Awwww, don't get mad buddy, I'm just messing around with you. You still have Gilbert's injury and another Wizards season in the toilet to enjoy.

Posted by: | February 28, 2008 08:03 PM "

Dude, don't f#ck with me, and I won't f#ck with you. It's that simple.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 28, 2008 8:10 PM | Report abuse

I didn't mess with you, I just said that you would hate on Gilbert within 48 hours. Sorry to upset you. Honestly.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 28, 2008 8:15 PM | Report abuse

"If San Antonio only played Duncan, Ginobli and Parker 48 minutes per game, they'd be undefeated. "

If the Wizards only had a bench filled with playoff tested veterans like the Spurs have, Jordan wouldn't have to play his starters as many minutes just to have a chance to stay in games.

Posted by: kalorama | February 28, 2008 10:32 PM | Report abuse

DC Man is a cooch.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 13, 2008 12:58 PM | Report abuse

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