Ugly in Portland

The Wizards can't blame tired legs because Portland played and lost Monday night at Seattle yet managed to play with a level of energy the men in blue just couldn't match. All you really need to know about Washington's 102-82 loss at the Rose Garden tonight is that two of Washington's first three shots were air balls. The Wiz never held a lead and trailed by as many as 24 in one of the ugliest losses of the season.

Not a good way to open a five-game road trip.

Eddie Jordan: "It was a story of two teams. One team could shoot straight. The other team couldn't. One team could rebound, the other couldn't. I thought their small lineups, their speed and quickness hurt us."

Even after the slow start, the Wiz threatened to make a game of it when Roger Mason Jr. capped a 10-2 second period run by making a three-pointer with 7:29 to go. The run was fueled by a lineup that included Mason, Antonio Daniels, Antawn Jamison (and then Butler), Darius Songaila and Andray Blatche. However, when Jordan pulled Mason, Blatche and Songaila for starters DeShawn Stevenson, Brendan Haywood and Jamison at the four minute mark, the Blazers promptly took control.

Much of the damage was done by Ft. Washington native Jarrett Jack, who scored nine of his 17 points and dished out four of his six dimes in the second. Jack scored Portland's final seven points of the half. Another key was Jamison have the rare off night (nine points, eight rebounds.) Neither he nor Butler ever got it going. The two all-stars combined to go 9 of 33 from the field and everyone in blue was abused defensively and/or on the boards tonight.

The lead over Philly is now one half game.

By Ivan Carter |  March 26, 2008; 1:05 AM ET
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Comments

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Wow...not a good game whatsoever. Right after we play one of our best games of the year we look totally horrible against Portland without Aldridge and Roy.

You can say every team has these type of games, which is true, but IMO we've had WAY too many of these games thus far. I can even understand perhaps we had jet lagged legs, but Portland played the night before. I don't know. Just bad. These games are also why EJ should not be COY or even be mentioned for it! No way.

Posted by: Rob P | March 26, 2008 1:59 AM

3-2? It's looking like 1-4 on this trip.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 26, 2008 7:47 AM

The wizards need to stop reading Wilbon's columns. Whenever he gives them props, they out and lose a winnable game.

BTW, I have never questioned Eddie's substitution pattern but it was obvious to me that our starters last night stunk. Every time the bench closed the gap, the starters came in and messed it up.

Posted by: Bart | March 26, 2008 8:07 AM

DEFEND THE THREE!!!,DEFEND THE THREE!!!!,DEFEND THE THREE!!!! HAS IT SUNK IN YET? No Brandon Roy No Aldridge still get blown out at this rate they wiil be overtaken by Philly in the standings at this point in the season you need to have defensive intensity on every possesion, for the most part these are vets they should know better not a good start guys.Seattle will not be a pushover they have nothing to lose, no pressure!!

Posted by: DARGREGMAG@AOL.COM | March 26, 2008 8:14 AM

Looks like Les BouleS have the Pistons's number, and the Blazers have Les BouleS's number.

LaMarcus Aldridge did not play, and Brandon Roy left early due to injury, and Les BouleS still got blown out. Pryzbilla had 17 boards while BTH had 20 minutes.

The lesson may be that even though the Blazers are a 38-34 team, they play in the West, which means they are probably better than their record. In the East, you are what your record says. Maybe even worse.

I guess we won't hear any more mention of EJ as "Coach of the Year" until the next win, whenever that comes.

PS. Please don't mention how Gilby could have helped the team if he was on the court. Les BouleS lost last year with Gilby on the court and his infamous prediction about making the Blazers/McMillian pay. We know how that ended up.

Posted by: DC Man88 | March 26, 2008 8:43 AM

Hate these West Coast swings and their 10p tip-offs. Hate, even more, staying up till past midnight to watch our boys get blown out of the gym.

Posted by: Eric | March 26, 2008 8:47 AM

For the life of me, I just can't figure out why the Wiz beat a team like Detroit and then turn right around and not only lose but I mean really stink up the place. Come on now, Portland's bench basically beat the Wiz down and they could not do anything about it. And why pray tell did EJ take out the rotation of players(AD,AJ,Blatche,Mason and DSong) that at least stood a chance of winning this thing and re insert the starters? What was he thinking ?? Go with what works man! I thought it was about winning. Not making sure the starters are in at the end. That lost was partially due to coaching. I hate to say it but it appears that it was. If the rotation of players on the court are getting it done, then ride the dog gone thing until the wheels fall off EJ! For crying out loud!

Posted by: Anonymous | March 26, 2008 9:12 AM

I said it before and I will say it again until the Wiz get some consistency they won't get any respect from anybody. Yes, every team goes to this kind of games but how many blow out did the team have this season. COTY? Yeah right.

Posted by: Fortune Teller | March 26, 2008 9:15 AM

The thing which frustrated me SO much is how Andre Blache created like 4 turnovers in a span of 3 minutes, and EJ refuses to take him. Especially when it was a time we were cutting the 20 point defecit down to 14 or fewer. Also, how come when we were getting outmuscled on the boards, Eddie still didnt bring Brendan Haywood back in? These are times we miss Etan's physical inside presence. Not to mention, we are the worst team in the league when it comes to rotating on defense off of pick and roll's. We always wind up with BTH covering a three point shooter, and he's afraid to get driven on and left in the dust, so he backs up, gives the shooter space...You know the rest from there. The wizards need to understand that they need to force the guys who are NOT on fire, to take shots (don't let Webster shoot it!). Any ways, this game was not out of reach, but EJ was coaching it like it was a 30 point blowout. Dissapointed. If he didn't want to coach to win the game, then he should've just played the bench for the entire second half to save our starter's legs.

Posted by: rakesh | March 26, 2008 9:23 AM

The Wizards just didn't bring it last night. They won the opening tip, but the ball was stolen. Portland went on to score while 2 of Wizards' first 3 shots were air balls! Everything just went down hill from there. Portland also shot very well outside, and had 10 blocks on Wizards' shots!

Posted by: Sagaliba | March 26, 2008 9:26 AM

For the life of me, I just can't figure out why the Wiz beat a team like Detroit and then turn right around and not only lose but

Posted by: | March 26, 2008 09:12 AM

Annon. To answer your question, it is all about matchups. The Wizards do not match up well with quick athletic teams no matter what there record is. The Wiz do not matchup well with Philly, Houston, Atl, Bobcats (when G. Wallace is playing, NY, Denver, Golden State and maybe Seattle.

All these teams I mentioned are "speed" teams and even with Gilbert they will have a hard time with them. EJ is not the blame for not closing down on their jump shooters and not running the offense. The Wiz settled for way to many jumpers instead of running the offense.

Now, can EJ make some subtle changes when he is playing these "speed" teams? Yea, maybe...?? But then that means he would be letting the other team dictate his lineups instead of making them be dictated by "our" lineups. Our starting five has to do their job to make them change their lineup.

That did not happen yesterday. The only suggestion I would have for EJ to match that team speed against all of the above teams I mentioned is to give more minutes to this 2nd unit "5":

1. Mason
2. NY
3. DMac
4. DSong
5. AB

This is our most energetic unit we can offer to match all of these other teams "speed". And yes, I put DSong in because the dude is playing out of his mine and with everything he brings I will give him a pass on slow footwork......

Posted by: Bullets Fever #1 | March 26, 2008 9:33 AM

The team was just dead on Defence.

I find it funny it ok for the fans to complain about staying up late but the team should be hitting on all cylinders for the first game of West coast trip.

Posted by: pg posse | March 26, 2008 10:05 AM

The reason why Les BouleS "don't match up well with athletic teams" is because Les BouleS don't have a legitimate inside presence, nor are they especially quick or athletic.

Les BouleS is a hybrid team that doesn't excel in one area offensively, cannot defend consistently, and thus cannot force other teams to play their game. Defense is good against bad teams, and bad against good teams. Can't run with the best, and can't bang with the best.

Posted by: DC Man88 | March 26, 2008 10:38 AM

Bullter Fever #1 hit it on the head again. The Wiz do not match up well with the quicker, more athletic team like Philly, Atlanta, Charlotte, and yes Portland. I question EJ's unwillingness to change up the lineup when the matchups clearly weren't working.

Our 2nd team got us back in the game and played with some energy, chemistry, and desire which was missing minus CB in the 1st quarter. The rest of the starters looked they still hadn't gotten off the best. Going to need a much better effort against a quick, athletic, young Seattle tema tonight or we're looking at 0-5 on this road trip with or without Gilbert.

The Wizards inconsistency is maddening after beating strong Orlando and Detroit teams last week.

Posted by: wizfan89 | March 26, 2008 10:38 AM

Bullter Fever #1 hit it on the head again. The Wiz do not match up well with the quicker, more athletic team like Philly, Atlanta, Charlotte, and Portland. I question EJ's unwillingness to change up the lineup when the matchups clearly weren't working.

Our 2nd team got us back in the game and played with some energy, chemistry, and desire which was missing minus CB3 in the 1st quarter. The rest of the starters looked they still hadn't gotten off the team bus. Going to need a much better effort against a quick, athletic, young Seattle team tonight or we're looking at 0-5 on this road trip with or without Gilbert.

The Wizards inconsistency is maddening after beating strong Orlando and Detroit teams last week.

Posted by: wizfan89 | March 26, 2008 10:39 AM

DESHAWN S. PLAYS LIKE A HIGH SCHOOL PLAYER WHEN UNDER PRESSURE. HIS DRIVES TO THE BASKET END IN TURNOVERS ABOUT 20%, BLOCKED SHOTS ABOUT 20%, AND POINTS ABOUT 20% OF THE TIME. AS A SLASHING GO TO THE HOOPS GUARD HE IS INCOMPENT AND COULD NOT SURVIVE ON MOST TEAMS. AGREED HE IS A BLUE RIBBON DEFENDER!! IT APPEARS THAT HE TRIES TO GET TOO CLOSE TO THE RIM BEFORE RELEASING THE BALL AND/OR HE DOES NOT TRY TO USE THE BACKBOARD THE WAS OUTSTANDING DRIVERS DO. MAYBE NEXT YEAR.

Posted by: CHARLES | March 26, 2008 10:47 AM

Songaila maybe slow of foot but he knows how to use his foot work to set a guy up.
The Wiz do have trouble this year against teams that really like to scurry all over the floor.

The best way to beat a team like that isn't so much trying to outrun them, but playing at a level offensively they can't match. Daniels and Stevenson can't bring that kind of firepower to the game. Young, when healthy and more experienced, and Gil are a backcourt combo that would match better with Portland.

Mason does better against teams with alot of quickness at gaurd then Daniels. Daniels does one heck of a job for the Wiz, but some nights there's no one in the other backcourt that he can matchup against.

Not a game that I really expected the Wiz to win. I don't bet on basketball myself, but one of the things that some guys follow is a team's record on the first night after a cross country flight. I never traced it myself, but a friend told me that the Wizards are an easy bet to lose on the first night on a west coast string.

Posted by: GM | March 26, 2008 11:10 AM

Agree with the posters that Identify that this team can not match up with fast athletic teams.
It exposese the limited capabilities of BH. He can not compete on a consistent basis, especially against the athletic big men.
Take a look at the atheltic and physical team that Philly now has. They are running good and experienced temas off of the floor, conistently in last quarters.
The Wiz, like I have repeatedly said, need to get into the weight room, and get more physically strong and athletic...goodbye Songalia, BH ,AD...welcome back GA.
BH has helped this season in developing a trade bait, that hopefully will bring us an atheltic younger big man.
ET is very far from any answer. He lacks skills and is way undersized.
As for EJ, it has all been said...no adjustments to game situations for starters. Also the lack of 3 ball defense is continually apparent.

Posted by: mricklen | March 26, 2008 11:28 AM

Uhhh, nevermind your own offensive power, if you can't stop anyone on the defensive end, you're likely to lose. Loss yesterday was really bad in light of the fact that Roy got hurt early and only played 14 min, while Aldridge didn't play at all.

Posted by: DC Man88 | March 26, 2008 11:29 AM

Every NBA team has at least a few games each season in which the basket seems like it has a lid on it, but the other team can't miss. Last night was one of those nights. (The Blazers had theirs against the Sonics the previous night.) If I was Eddie, I would have gone to McGuire early for defensive intensity, slowed the pace offensively and tried force-feeding BTH in the low block, to see if he could exploit his length and strength advantage over Pryzbilla.

Posted by: John Brisker | March 26, 2008 11:34 AM

Yep, absolutely ugly loss. Can't quite wrap my hands around this team. You never know from one night to the next how they will play. They can play brilliant one night and stink it up quite foul the next. Will they win tonight or any of the other road games coming up? I wouldn't bet the farm on it. Too inconsistent to count on.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 26, 2008 11:37 AM

Yep, absolutely ugly loss. Can't quite wrap my hands around this team. You never know from one night to the next how they will play. They can play brilliant one night and stink it up quite foul the next. Will they win tonight or any of the other road games coming up? I wouldn't bet the farm on it. Too inconsistent to count on.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 26, 2008 11:38 AM

Trade everybody!!!!!!!!!
Fire EJ!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: Anonymous | March 26, 2008 11:58 AM

My made-up conspiracy theory isn't sounding so strange now after reading how the docs are telling him to get ready for the Eastern Conference Finals. In fact, it's starting to look like they want to hold him out for the rest of the year. It actually makes good business sense. The team has more trade options if he's 'supposedly healthy' but no one has seen him actually play. Of course, this is assuming that there's a potential trade partner. If he plays now and isn't himself, the Wiz have no option but to sign him or let him go and the negotiations would be tough if GA insists on a max deal.
Side note: The guy really wants to play and I love his heart. people may talk all this crap about 'Gilbertology' but the difference between GA and other players is that he's saying what a lot of other guys are just thinking.

Posted by: mark | March 26, 2008 12:04 PM

The last thing any GM wants to hear when considering a player for max money is that this player is such a loose cannon that he wants to ram his car into a tree or drown in a lake. Money well spent there.

Posted by: DC Man88 | March 26, 2008 12:07 PM

"Agree with the posters that Identify that this team can not match up with fast athletic teams.
It exposese the limited capabilities of BH. He can not compete on a consistent basis, especially against the athletic big men.
Take a look at the atheltic and physical team that Philly now has. They are running good and experienced temas off of the floor, conistently in last quarters.
The Wiz, like I have repeatedly said, need to get into the weight room, and get more physically strong and athletic...goodbye Songalia, BH ,AD...welcome back GA.
BH has helped this season in developing a trade bait, that hopefully will bring us an atheltic younger big man.
ET is very far from any answer. He lacks skills and is way undersized.
As for EJ, it has all been said...no adjustments to game situations for starters. Also the lack of 3 ball defense is continually apparent.

Posted by: mricklen | March 26, 2008 11:28 AM "

And as you excitedly welcome back Gilby, you will also say goodbye to 1 ball defense.

Posted by: DC Man88 | March 26, 2008 12:10 PM

"1-ball defense"? I'm all about the team, but that sounds kind of painful.

Posted by: Gilby | March 26, 2008 12:16 PM

iz all bushes faultzen!

Posted by: otto | March 26, 2008 12:26 PM

To the last anon poster, last night was not the first time the subs played better than the starters and got yanked regardless. But, last night might have been the most blatant.

Sometimes it's not the losing so much as how you lose. And a lot of our bad games this year we've just been blown away by teams that were in similar situations as Portland last night. We did not just lose we got stomped by Pryzbilla, Webster, and Jack. Huh? That's not much better than Miami's D league team. They had a few possessions with 3/4 offensive rebounds.

It makes me wonder what the game plan is going into these games as well. It's like the Cleveland game where the Cavs had like 6 players on the roster after the trade. Instead of pressing them and running them ragged we played perhaps our most methodical game of the year, which only allowed Cleveland to stay as fresh as possible and pull out the victory.

Ugh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: Rob P | March 26, 2008 12:59 PM

mricklen, you want to trade BH now that he is playing the best basketball of his career? What? The NBA is not stocked with even decent centers and BH is definitely a decent center.

I like our entire roster when healthy. As most of you know, I'm most skeptical of the coaching. But, this is a good solid group of players that could contend in a healthy year with maybe a tweak here or there. These players are also good dudes.

As far as athletic teams giving us problems, there is some truth to that, but you got to stick to your system and impose your will on them. NY and McGuire were drafted in part to help improve our athleticism as well. San Antonio is not the most athletic team in the league either, but you don't see them losing to the Atlanta's, Charlotte's, and Portland's of the NBA.

Posted by: Rob P | March 26, 2008 1:26 PM

Gilby coming back has one real motive, and that is to show teams that he can still score in bunches. As he said in his blog, he's got 20 minutes in the game to prove that, so EJ can pretty much sh#tcan the game plan for those 20 minutes b/c Gilby will be jacking up shots "without a conscience."

Posted by: DC Man88 | March 26, 2008 1:30 PM

San Antonio is not the most athletic team in the league either, but you don't see them losing to the Atlanta's, Charlotte's, and Portland's of the NBA.

Posted by: Rob P | March 26, 2008 01:26 PM

Rob P. Is it because the Spurs have a guy named Tim Duncan and we do not? Is it also possible they know and "also want" to play lockdown "d" the whole game, including the primeter contesting faceup jumpers? The Wiz don't have either of these facets in their game, so comparing the Spurs and Wiz are like comparing apples and oranges.......

Posted by: Bullets Fever #1 | March 26, 2008 1:35 PM

It is true that Wizards have problem handling the athletic teams. It is a problem of matchup. It does not mean athletic teams necessarily fair better than Wizards in the league. Nor do we need a wholesale trade. A quick PG can solve half of the problem. Once you stop (slow down) the ball, you take away their fast breaks and dunks.

Posted by: Sagaliba | March 26, 2008 1:46 PM

BulletsFever, I am not comparing us to San Antonio. You missed the point, which is that so called non-athletic teams can and do win even against more athletic teams all the time. What I've noticed against those teams is we revert back to jacking up shots and not running our offense say like we did against Detroit. We start doing the 1/2 pass offense or isolations and get disjointed not only on offense, but it affects our defense as well.

If we are missing shots after running the offense that's one thing, but EJ can certainly tell the team to run the offense and not shoot until we pass the ball around. There have been many many games where I don't even see an "offense" being run for a majority of the game. It's like a leftover GA mentality kicks in. The Detroit game was a perfect example of what we CAN do.

Our two biggest weaknesses right now:
1. Last in the league defending the 3.
2. 27th in the league in assists!!!!!

Is that what the infamous Princeton offense that teams are supposedly copying is supposed to produce? I think not!

Posted by: Rob P | March 26, 2008 1:59 PM

Sagaliba, your right. But, we do have one of the quickest players in the league and he, even when healthy, has never helped stop penetration even by the less quick guards in the league. GA played matador defense.

At least Daniels keeps the guards he can handle from penetrating and Mason does a pretty solid job too.

Running a well balanced offense helps immensely as well bc you stop all the breakouts of the other team.

Posted by: Rob P | March 26, 2008 2:06 PM

Rob P., we're seeing diferent things. It seems to me that usually the opponent position that gives us the most trouble is PG. I'd say that AD is a willing passer but whiffs as much as GA did on defense. He's the weakest defensive link in our starting rotation. Even AJ has improved to the point were he's capable.
The Lenovo stats have AD as the worst of our starters in his +/- ranking. That boob Hollinger's PER rating has DS a couple of points lower than AD but that's primarily because he's a defensive player and doesn't shoot or pass much. AD is still below the league PER average. I love his heart as much as anyone here but when we start talking about the comparison between GA and AD, there really IS no comparison.

Posted by: mark | March 26, 2008 2:47 PM

Rob P - Yes I do agree with you that the Wiz did not "run" the offense last night. To many faceup jumpers without passing the ball and looking for cutters for my taste. They have to realize that is the formula for winning and not just one pass and jack it up will win them anything.

As for your comment about AD, he gets smoked just as much as Gilbert at the top of the key, if not more. The only guy on that team that can play pretty decent primeter defense is DMac... Just ask Chris Paul what he thinks.

AD is hurt right now plus he is 32, so those two things weigh into his lack of defending opposing point guards. The Wiz need to look at picking up a point guard in the draft (in case Gilbert leaves) and/or signing a veteran like Keith Bogins or Carlos Aroyal (spelling???) who are both UFA's.

Posted by: Bullets Fever #1 | March 26, 2008 3:12 PM

I love all the comments from fans who never ever under any circumstance consider that maybe, just maybe, Portland really wanted this game last night. Why would they, you say, they aren't in the playoff hunt? Well, for starters, they had their worse loss of the season the previous night, against lowly Seattle (who was playing with Chris Wilcox, without Earl Watson, without Adrian Griffin, without Gelabale).

Gee, ya think maybe, just maybe, Portland was especially fired up for this game coming off that humiliating loss the night before?

Nah...couldn't be.

Posted by: Barno | March 26, 2008 3:35 PM

That should've read Seattle was playing withOUT Wilcox the night before.

Posted by: Barno | March 26, 2008 3:36 PM

Daniels actually just turned 33, even at 23 he didn't have the quicks to guard many of the quickest point guards. Mason can actually come off the bench to do better against some of the quicker guys then Daniels does. I'd agree a quick point could be an area of need.

What they end up looking for in the draft really is up in the air. With Gil and Jamison FA's along with Mason, it depends on who is resigned or not the Wiz's needs could really change going into the draft.
Or if there is a sign and trade involving any of their FA's.

The Wizard's offensive efficency as a team is normally very good. I.E. points per 100 possesions, but the plus/minus for the starting tandom of Daniels and Stevenson isn't that great.

Against a team where Daniels was really struggling on defense it pretty clear to almost anyone that a guy with Gil's normal big scoring advantage over the opponent's point and his ability to get the Wiz's fast break moving, that he'd help on those nights.

Rob P.'s point about the plodding offense against Cleveland is a very valid one. But what I've noticed that it is Daniels that's really slowing the team to a crawl sometimes. The guy's really banged up and has played way more minutes then anyone ever quessed he would play, and without him the Wiz would have been toast this season.

But more and more I see Eddie waving his arms and calling for the Wiz to push the pace. And Daniels is walking it up. Sometimes the guy is just plain gassed.

Before Young got hurt Eddie had been turning to Young and Mason to pick up the pace against some matchups.

Posted by: GM | March 26, 2008 3:50 PM

Yeah, the Wiz have trouble defending the 3, but they give up far fewer points this year than last, so there is improvement.

Tough game overall. Seemed like the Wiz started in a funk and were never able to shake it. They're still doing very well lately; let's not blow one loss all out of proportion. And Barno is right; the other team gets paid, too. Portland shot very well.

Posted by: Keithinator | March 26, 2008 3:59 PM

Other team? There's another team? Huh. Who knew?

Posted by: kalorama | March 26, 2008 4:02 PM

This is just one of those games where we will look back and say "we just didn't have it that night" . We're not gonna shoot 30 something % too many games. We have to make it up by winning a game we are expected to lose. NP.
Being completely honest, I'd rather get the 6th seed and face the Magic or the 7th and face the Pistons. I like our chances a lot against the Magic.

Posted by: mark | March 26, 2008 4:17 PM

"The Wiz need to look at picking up a point guard in the draft (in case Gilbert leaves) and/or signing a veteran like Keith Bogins or Carlos Aroyal (spelling???) who are both UFA's."

The Wiz should definitely think about brining in some fresh legs for the PG spot even if Gilbert stays (in which case it should be a young guy they'd be grooming for when Daniels is done). But Bogans isn't a PG, and if defense is what they're looking for, they definitely shouldn't be looking at Arroyo.

Posted by: kalorama | March 26, 2008 4:19 PM

...to follow up, LeBron gets more superstar calls than Dwight Howard at this point. Those fould calls make a big difference in slower paced, playoff style basketball games. Though I think that Cleveland is not very talented, I'd still rather face the Magic.

Posted by: mark | March 26, 2008 4:20 PM

The Wiz should definitely think about brining in some fresh legs for the PG spot even if Gilbert stays (in which case it should be a young guy they'd be grooming for when Daniels is done). But Bogans isn't a PG, and if defense is what they're looking for, they definitely shouldn't be looking at Arroyo.

Posted by: kalorama | March 26, 2008 04:19 PM

Yeah Kal - that's why I think they should draft Collison... Unfortunately, he's showing why I like him so much during the Tournament - AND is likely playing himself into a higher draft position (out of reach of the Wizards)...

Posted by: Rook | March 26, 2008 5:06 PM

The way I see it, the Wizards aren't so full of depth at any position that they can afford to pass up any potential NBA ready player. They should forget about position and take the best player available, regardless of where on the floor he plays.

Posted by: kalorama | March 26, 2008 5:24 PM

maybe we can trade for Juan Carlos navarro. I hear he's pretty good.
yes, I'm kidding.

Posted by: mark | March 26, 2008 5:29 PM

Our two biggest weaknesses right now:
1. Last in the league defending the 3.
2. 27th in the league in assists!!!!!

Is that what the infamous Princeton offense that teams are supposedly copying is supposed to produce? I think not!

Posted by: Rob P | March 26, 2008 01:59 PM

Hey stupid, how many games has Arenas missed? How many games has Butler missed? How many games has Daniels missed?
The Wizards have had 3 of their top contributors either not playing or in and out of the linup for most of the season.
Sorry if the offense isn't running as smoothly with the guys hurt and in and out of the lineup. These guys have toughed it out and overcome adversity to be where they are right now, and you complain about how many assists they have per night?
GET A CLUE.

Posted by: The Real Wizard | March 26, 2008 6:54 PM

Our two biggest weaknesses right now:
1. Last in the league defending the 3.
2. 27th in the league in assists!!!!!

Is that what the infamous Princeton offense that teams are supposedly copying is supposed to produce? I think not!

Posted by: Rob P | March 26, 2008 01:59 PM

Hey stupid, how many games has Arenas missed? How many games has Butler missed? How many games has Daniels missed?
The Wizards have had 3 of their top contributors either not playing or in and out of the linup for most of the season.
Sorry if the offense isn't running as smoothly with the guys hurt and in and out of the lineup. These guys have toughed it out and overcome adversity to be where they are right now, and you complain about how many assists they have per night?
GET A CLUE.

Posted by: The Real Wizard | March 26, 2008 6:54 PM

Well, I'll just say there is no comparison between AD and GA on defense bc AD is a much better defender. Is he NBA first team? No. But he is a definite upgrade and there are some guys who blow by everybody like a Chris Paul. So what? Did you see how AD handled Billups in the Detroit game? He is a player that may be big and strong, but he ain't exactly lightening quick. AD contained him big time. He has feasted on GA in the past along with some other point guards not even as good as him.

You don't think our upgrade to 11th in the league on defense isn't partially due to the fact that it is not CONSTANTLY broken down by the opposing PG. And I mean constantly when GA is in there! Perhaps you'll get a chance to see here soon.

I am not blowing this loss out of proportion or any one other, but there is still no reason to lose these games. How many games have we lost to has beens or teams missing key players? I think we're past our allotment and it's the main reason we don't get the national respect people refer to in here.

Sorry if I posted this prematurely a couple of times. It was an accident.

Posted by: Rob P | March 26, 2008 7:03 PM

Hey, therealwizard, have I called you any names? I am not going to stoop to your level , but your a real class act.

What's your excuse for last night?

And, the reason you have systems is so you can plug your players in there and still get production. The Princeton offense is supposed to be about passing and cutting etc etc.... For example, the Detroit game. It's not a system where you would expect us to be 27th in the league in assists. Hell, GA has missed more than anyone and he has never been known to be a big assist man so you would think that might have even helped.

I love the posters who give virtually none of their own opinions, but just want to call names and try, however lamely, to dissect other's opinions.

Posted by: Rob P | March 26, 2008 7:13 PM

Not only is AD a better defender, but his biggest contribution is getting the team set and making sure the offense runs its sets. With Gilby, you're lucky if there's a pass after midcourt.

Posted by: DC Man88 | March 26, 2008 7:46 PM

GA has averaged 5 assists per game career, which is precisely what AD is getting this season. AD's assist-to-turnover ratio is superior, but both of them hit the open man fairly effectively. GA, of course, rates a lot higher in overall offensive impact because he scores so many points and draws so much defensive attention, which creates opportunities for other players, even if he doesn't actually get assists on those plays.

Where AD is clearly superior is on defense. If you check the stats at 82games.com and compare GA's 06-07 performance to AD's this season, the wizards are giving up fewer assists when AD is on the floor than they did when GA was out there. Some of that improvement may be due to the fact that they're rotating defensively better this year, anyone who's watched them play knows that it's mostly because AD is much better at stopping dribble penetration than GA was.

That's the real glaring weakness in GA's game--he lets his man get a step on him and get into the lane too often, even when he's up against a relatively slow guy like Kirk Hinrich. But it's also a flaw that he could correct. He's quick enough and strong enough to get up into a guy on defense and stay in front of him on the perimeter. (He doesn't really have to worry about being posted up, because he's too big and strong for most PGs to do that.) If he puts his mind to it consistently, he could go from being a subpar defender to one of the best at his position. The question is whether he will.

Posted by: John Brisker | March 27, 2008 11:25 AM

What is up with Butt-ler grabbin' BRoy and pulling him to the ground to try and draw a foul! You ended a REAL all-star's season, nice move Kobe wanna-be.

Posted by: Blazer Fan | March 27, 2008 9:53 PM

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