Feeling good

Caron Butler just walked out of the arena after practicing today and declared: "I feel great." So, I guess that left hip is in good shape after he played 41 minutes in last night's win over the Cavaliers and practiced today.

Antawn Jamison (back), Antonio Daniels (left hand) and Oleksiy Pecherov (left foot) all went through a crisp but short practice. Jamison said his back was feeling better last night that during the Milwaukee game.

Gilbert Arenas went through part of the practice on that left knee. He's had some soreness here and there and neither he nor the team has set a timetable. That's nothing unusual and I'll stick with my previous take that he's going to have to be able to string together several consecutive practices without soreness or pain before he's going to test it in a game.

As you may know, Caron had a big 28th birthday celebration on K Street last night. The Wiz can only hope that things go better than after Gilbert's big bash last Jan. 6. They played flat and lost at Toronto in a day game two days later and lost three of the next four overall.

Eddie Jordan was funny when asked about the team bouncing back from the party: "We've had some experience with this, as players and as coaches. It was more of a non-contact day today. A lot of 5 on 0, a lot of full court shooting and drill work. So, we just wanted to get sweat and then we'll have a great shootaround tomorrow."

It's funny how a couple of wins can change the playoff picture so drastically. A few days ago, it was all about what the 76ers were doing behind the Wizards. Now, the Wiz are suddenly sneaking up on fifth-place Toronto, which has another toughie tonight at Denver after opening the west coast trip with losses to the Lakers and Warriors.

The Wizards are only two games behind the Raptors, who may not have Chris Bosh anytime soon. Meantime, the 76ers are lurking, only 1 1/2 games behind the Wizards. Philly plays at Chicago tonight.

Eddie on the race: "We don't like to talk about that but I think we all have a feel for it. If we keep winning and they (Toronto) stay west, that's a good thing."




By Ivan Carter |  March 14, 2008; 1:28 PM ET
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Interesting post from the Cleveland Cavaliers blog. (Brian Windhorst)

http://www.ohiomm.com/blogs/cavs/

"DeShawn Stevenson did do a good job in the fourth quarter guarding LeBron. In fact, the Wizards did a nice job pressuring him on pick-and-rolls and not letting him get a head of steam to the basket in the second half. But Stevenson took personally. He missed the final shot in Cleveland when the Cavs beat Washington last month and he was trying to atone. He was carrying on with LeBron and Damon Jones all night. In the first half, Damon made a 3-pointer and waved his hand in front of his face to mock what Stevenson does when he makes 3s. Stevenson didn't like that and in the second half when he made a couple 3s he looked over at Damon and mocked his "three on a platter" and how Damon sometimes slaps his butt when he hits shots. Damon just stood up and glared at him."

I was wondering about all the new hand gestures I saw from Stevenson last night...

Posted by: Rook | March 14, 2008 1:58 PM

Great news about Caron and Twan...now we just have to say our prays at night about gilbert

Posted by: Ben | March 14, 2008 1:59 PM

Also interesting that there were 42 comments posted on the Cavaliers blog entry after last night's game.

Ivan's post garnered 222 responses/comments.

Posted by: Rook | March 14, 2008 2:02 PM

Damon Jones' NBA skills:

- shooting three pointers
- trash talking
- riding Shaq's coattails to a big contract that he never earned.

Damon Jones' NDBL skills:

- too numerous to list

Posted by: Anonymous | March 14, 2008 2:08 PM

Good pull Rook. Had no idea what that "3 in a platter" thing DS meant. It does also look a lot like Damon's Fro-Hawk too.

Great to hear Tuff Juice went through a full practice today. He looked pretty winded last night, 41 minutes was the official over/under on the blog, so I guess it was a push.

Posted by: CN | March 14, 2008 2:17 PM

The good news keeps coming. Wonderful to read this. The fifth seed is there for the taking, go get it you Wizards!

Posted by: George Templeton | March 14, 2008 2:24 PM

The good news keeps coming. Wonderful to read this. The fifth seed is there for the taking, go get it you Wizards!

Posted by: George Templeton | March 14, 2008 02:24 PM

Do we really want the 5th seed?

Posted by: Dante | March 14, 2008 2:44 PM

Would prefer the 4th seed. I, for one, would rather see Cleveland in the first round. Not that the Wizards stand a better chance, but which would be more fun -- beating Toronto in round 1, Orlando, or Cleveland?

Posted by: Anonymous | March 14, 2008 2:55 PM

I'd rather see the Wiz keep that 6th spot and face Orlando. On the other hand, making the 5th spot will force the Wiz to get that Cavaliers monkey off their back. The Wiz nearly beat this team two post-seasons ago when both teams were at full strength. This Cavs team isn't as good as that one, and this Wiz team, at full strength, is better than that Wiz team, assuming they maintain their commitment to defense once Gilbert is back. That's a big assumption, since Gilbert's idea of defense in the past has been to waive a red flag on the perimeter (Ole!).

Posted by: Prazak | March 14, 2008 3:00 PM

New Post and no Clevelanders in sight. Tough Juice is sooo tough

jam!!!

Posted by: Burg w/ a U | March 14, 2008 3:07 PM

I was marooned in Cleveland for 3 years. Does that count? I still have friends there... Man is it nice to win one every once in a while. I hate the Cavs, and can't stand lebron's whining. I will admit, though, that he is probably the 2nd best player in the league.

As far as the playoffs, I think Orlando is a tough matchup for the wiz, particularly if Etan is available to bang against howard. So, I'm all for a rematch with the Cavs. It would be a great series.

Posted by: M.E.G. | March 14, 2008 3:18 PM

Anybody hit the party last night? I heard Kim was looking good! Wonder what Butler spent 250K on? There was hardly any food and most guests didn't get open bar.

http://www.washingtonian.com/blogarticles/people/capitalcomment/6926.html

Posted by: WizFan | March 14, 2008 4:34 PM

"He's overrated," DeShawn told Mike. "And you can say I said that."

You know, I really think Stevenson has taken HUGE steps a an NBA player this year.

I'm glad he stayed, I was wrong about him in the offseason.

- Ray

Posted by: Ray | March 14, 2008 4:38 PM

Did anyone else notice that CB played 41 minutes coming off an injury that took him out of a heck of a lot of games? I had the over/under at 41 minutes and took the over. I wasn't that far off.

Posted by: mark | March 14, 2008 10:07 PM

I heard Gilbert was on the dance floor makin moves. He also brought along his baby mama too. He just can't seem to leave her alone.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 14, 2008 10:13 PM

Man, there were some seriously ugly and old women at Caron's birthday bash yesterday. No wonder Gilbert left with Kim Kardashian.

http://www.nbc4.com/slideshow/dcscene/15594703/detail.html

Check out the sperm balloon chandelier. Very classy.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 14, 2008 10:34 PM

Dante we have to slay the LeBron dragon sooner of later. I say sooner. And given our hideous record in Orlando in the last 5 years, I actually like the Wizards chances against the Cavaliers a lot more than there chances with the Magic.

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