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Happy 4th

Not a whole lot to add to the story I wrote today on Gilbert Arenas agreeing to a six-year deal worth $111 million.

One aspect I really didn't get into was how Ernie Grunfeld's strategy paid off. He came big with the max offer and really put Arenas a spot where he could live up to his own words from the past ("I'll take less it will help us win.") or ignore those past statements by taking more. It worked.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/07/03/AR2008070304161.html

By Ivan Carter  |  July 4, 2008; 3:02 PM ET
 
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Next: Summer league roster announced

Comments

I knew Gil was coming back. These max guys don't need agents. It's really a simple decison. I know Ray Allen negotiated his last contract. I bet the agents hope this doesn't become a trend. WHy did Chris Paul need an agent to get a max contract. Please, what team would not have offered Paul a max contract? He could have kept the commission. With a a salry cap and mid level exceptions, agents will soon be a thing of the past for the top level players.

If Mason goes, James Jones would be a nice pick-up. He's cash money from the 3 and the WIzards need a playerthat can flat out kill you from the outside. Jones was 3rd in the NBA in 3 point shooting last year at 44%. He's 6'8 and would be in the mid level exception range.

Posted by: PTP23 | July 4, 2008 3:26 PM | Report abuse

For a change, it would be nice see the Wizards completely healthy and be able to play together as a unit.

Some long-time Bullets/Wizards fans forget the mediocre years this team endured until making the playoffs became routine over the past few years. On paper, this team (as presently constructed along with Roger Mason and a 3rd point guard signed) should compete with the league's best teams.

All they need is a bit of luck with regards to staying injury-free.

Posted by: JekyllnHyde | July 4, 2008 3:35 PM | Report abuse

I think he should have taken less...If he really wanted to help the team, he would take much less so the team has a lot of flexibility to move forward with other acquisitions. True, he didn't take as much as he could have; But I still don't think he lived up to his word completely.

Posted by: Jim (DC) | July 4, 2008 3:53 PM | Report abuse

I love bashing Gilbert. He's immature. He's a trouble maker. He's not a leader. He's not a good teammate. He doesn't play defense. I couldn't find anything real bad so I will just use those to bash him.

I'm on Kobe's nutz though. So what if he he's a bad teammate, he's immature, he got accused of rape, he cheated on his wife, snitched on Shaq, undermined his coach. I will continue to defend him. I know I look stupid defending Kobe and bashing Gilbert, but i'm just an old bitter man.

I'm on Iverson's ballz too. So what if he's a bad teammate, he's immature, had gun & drug charges, cheated on his wife. He doesn't play defense either. It seems as if Iverson has more faults than Gilbert, but I'm bias so I will just bash Gilbert.

Posted by: Coach Thompson | July 4, 2008 4:07 PM | Report abuse

I got it!!! Holy Shyt! Coach Thompson is
DCMann88!

Posted by: B-Mitch | July 4, 2008 4:09 PM | Report abuse

B-Mitch is my Bytch. We're just waiting for his contract to run it so we can kick him to the curb. He's AWFUL on radio.

Posted by: Coach Thompson | July 4, 2008 4:10 PM | Report abuse

I almost hate to suggest this (because he is a good player and class act), but I think it would be better for the Wiz to not to try to re-sign Roger Mason. They have enough SGs and Nick Young needs to get more minutes.

It would be better to focus on getting a pretty good SF to backup CB so he can play less minutes and in case he gets injured again as he has the last two years. I am not sure McGuire will be ready for this next year and AB should mainly play PF and some C.

The last roster spot should be for a young PG who can come in and bring some energy and play some D on the small, quick PGs that sometimes give the Wiz fits.

Posted by: Tim | July 4, 2008 4:22 PM | Report abuse

I guess I should give Ivan credit for the idea of getting another SF on the roster to backup CB. He mentioned it a few blogs ago and I agree with it.

Posted by: Tim | July 4, 2008 4:32 PM | Report abuse

"I think he should have taken less...If he really wanted to help the team, he would take much less so the team has a lot of flexibility to move forward with other acquisitions. True, he didn't take as much as he could have; But I still don't think he lived up to his word completely."

********************************************************************************************

How so? He took 13% less than offered. Do you have a quote where Arenas said he would take 20-40% less than the max to help the team? I love you 60k a year fools talking about how Gil should given up more than the $16 million he did give. GTFO. I knew there were a lot of stupid people in this country, but some of you are downright retarded.

Posted by: frankbones | July 4, 2008 4:44 PM | Report abuse

I'm watching all the traffic but will just wait and see whether it all worked until October, when the games count for real.

Every summer and training camp the past few years there's been a lot of enthusiasm, only to see that fade when the season began. The enthusiasm is a big improvement from the era when the Bullets/Wiz weren't doing anything special, and I'm glad the team is at a point where there's some real excitement about what they're doing. But it won't matter unless they come out in the fall playing coherent offense and cohesive defense.

At this point, talent isn't what is holding the Wizards back in my opinion -- it's consistent good play. I hope they have a lot more of that to offer in 08-09 and beyond.

Posted by: iceberg | July 4, 2008 5:00 PM | Report abuse

Please go read this article on ESPN.

http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/columns/story?columnist=hollinger_john&page=FreeAgency-080703

perfectly sums up what i have been saying about this team for over a year. We are an average team and just capped ourselves out to stay average. Goodbye EG/EJ. they will both be fired within the next year or 2.

Posted by: | July 4, 2008 1:35 PM

Is this the same Johnn Hollinger that said of the 2006-07 Wizards team: "I think it's more likely than not that this team misses the playoffs entirely"

The same John Hollinger that predicted the Wizards would end the 2007-08 season with a record of 33-49, 5th in Southeast, 13th in Eastern Conference - out of the playoffs?

So he's now saying that the 2008-09 Wizards made a mistake... Hollinger's quote "It sure seems to me the fear of losing out on big-name stars caused Washington to miss out on a fantastic opportunity to remake its roster." indicates he thought the better idea would have been to blow up the roster, and start from scratch...

Given Hollinger's previous "predictions" for the Wizards being so WRONG; I'd say he just VALIDATED the moves and the Wizards will be on their way to the Championship.

Posted by: Rook | July 4, 2008 5:15 PM | Report abuse

"Given Hollinger's previous "predictions" for the Wizards being so WRONG; I'd say he just VALIDATED the moves and the Wizards will be on their way to the Championship."


Keep dreaming these moves are going to get a lot of people fired including EG/EJ. No chance this current roster is anywhere close to a championship.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 4, 2008 5:41 PM | Report abuse

"Some long-time Bullets/Wizards fans forget the mediocre years this team endured until making the playoffs became routine over the past few years. On paper, this team (as presently constructed along with Roger Mason and a 3rd point guard signed) should compete with the league's best teams."

Haven't forgotten at all, but the reality is this team is a 500 team that likes to lose in the first round every year. The team as it is will not win a championship.

They paid Gil too much money and now they are stuck with him.

- Ray

Posted by: Ray | July 4, 2008 6:04 PM | Report abuse

"I knew there were a lot of stupid people in this country, but some of you are downright retarded."

I have yet to see someone post where Gil taking an average of $2.67 mil a year benefits the team. Until someone posts the benfits of that, the Wiz paid Gil too much money and it seems more like a PR move then anything else.

Anybody??

He took less, ok we got that. How does this help the roster out?????

He should have just taken the max IMHO because the only thing they can offer anyone right now is the mid-level.

- Ray

Posted by: Ray | July 4, 2008 6:13 PM | Report abuse

"Haven't forgotten at all, but the reality is this team is a 500 team that likes to lose in the first round every year. The team as it is will not win a championship.

They paid Gil too much money and now they are stuck with him."

- Ray

The only REALITY is that "Ray" is NEVER, EVER positive about ANYTHING. Geez....
Posted by: Ray | July 4, 2008 6:04 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | July 4, 2008 6:21 PM | Report abuse

Can't wait for us to win a title so the ignorant negative fan base on here can still cry about everything we do.
If we didn't sign Gil you same bastards would cry how we just destroyed the team.
If all you can do is complain please go jump off a bridge and save us all from the negativity

Posted by: wtf | July 4, 2008 6:23 PM | Report abuse

"He took less, ok we got that. How does this help the roster out?????"

It really isn't that much of a head scratcher.

Him taking almost $3 mill less gives the team at least that much space under the lux tax ceiling (and possibly more, depending on (A) where the ceiling is actually set and (B) whether they might have been below it even if Arenas had taken the max.

The more space they have under the tax threshold, the more money they have to spend on a FA without going over the tax threshold, which will likely increase their willingness to go out and spend money on a FA.

"He should have just taken the max IMHO because the only thing they can offer anyone right now is the mid-level.

The MLE is all they would have had to spend regardless of how much or how little Arenas was re-signed for. As has been stated numerous times already, the only way they could have freed up any significant amount more than the MLE would have been to renounce both Arenas and Jamison.

Posted by: kalorama | July 4, 2008 6:24 PM | Report abuse

"The last roster spot should be for a young PG who can come in and bring some energy and play some D on the small, quick PGs that sometimes give the Wiz fits.

Posted by: Tim | July 4, 2008 4:22 PM "

I agree.

There is absolutely no way that a team remains healthy throughout the season.

Wiz need to groom a PG to eventually take over at the 1 and move Gilby to the 2.

Also, AJ needs to become 6th man and AJ needs to start at 4.

Unless the team invests time in their young guys early, this team will run their older guys into the ground again and they'll be stuck with raw young dudes come playoffs (knock on wood).

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 4, 2008 6:33 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for the updates Ivan have some brews and relax, i know i will be.

Posted by: Johansen | July 4, 2008 6:35 PM | Report abuse

"Haven't forgotten at all, but the reality is this team is a 500 team that likes to lose in the first round every year. The team as it is will not win a championship.

They paid Gil too much money and now they are stuck with him.

- Ray

Posted by: Ray | July 4, 2008 6:04 PM "

I agree...

As reported today, EG felt had no choice but to offer Gilby max money outright because the Wiz were worried that if Gilby was offered something less than max as a starting point, that he would throw a hissy fit and take less from another franchise.

I find it comical that Gilby is getting tons of credit for "giving back" 16 mil, but if EG/Abe didn't broach the subject that the lux welfare was important to them, Gilby would have walked away with 127 mil and not looked back.

For all you Gilby lovers, here's another funny quote:

""I looked at like this: There is nothing I can do for my family with $127 million that I can't do with $111 million," said Arenas, who is traveling in Asia and Europe for two weeks as part of a promotional tour for a shoe company. "I mean, college is expensive but it ain't that dang expensive....."

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 4, 2008 6:42 PM | Report abuse

Also, AJ needs to become 6th man and AJ needs to start at 4.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 4, 2008 6:33 PM

I think you meant that "AB needs to start at 4", although I don't know (after last year) if AB is yet ready for it.

Posted by: Tim | July 4, 2008 6:45 PM | Report abuse

"Can't wait for us to win a title so the ignorant negative fan base on here can still cry about everything we do.
If we didn't sign Gil you same bastards would cry how we just destroyed the team.
If all you can do is complain please go jump off a bridge and save us all from the negativity

Posted by: wtf | July 4, 2008 6:23 PM "

Keep waiting...

Resigning Gilby means Wiz are near status quo....if they resign Mason, then they'll officially be back to status quo.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 4, 2008 6:46 PM | Report abuse

"I think you meant that "AB needs to start at 4", although I don't know (after last year) if AB is yet ready for it.

Posted by: Tim | July 4, 2008 6:45 PM "

Yes, thanks for the catch.

EJ is a guy who only likes to play his vets, and has a short leash on his young guys.

If anything, DSong would be the likeliest dude to come off the bench at 4 rather than AB right now.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 4, 2008 6:47 PM | Report abuse

""I looked at like this: There is nothing I can do for my family with $127 million that I can't do with $111 million," said Arenas, who is traveling in Asia and Europe for two weeks as part of a promotional tour for a shoe company. "I mean, college is expensive but it ain't that dang expensive....."

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 4, 2008 6:42 PM

The complete opposite of Spreewell's quote...

Posted by: Anonymous | July 4, 2008 7:03 PM | Report abuse

"One aspect I really didn't get into was how Ernie Grunfeld's strategy paid off."

I'm not so sure about that, Ivan. The only other viable alternative was Golden State, and didn't they withdraw their offer so that they could make an offer to Elton Brand? Ernie's job SHOULD be to get Gil to sign at the lowest price feasible. But instead he (perhaps at Abe's direction) handled Gilbert a blank check. If it turns out that Gilbert is overpaid (based on performance in the future), the blame's on Ernie.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 4, 2008 7:12 PM | Report abuse

nuts

Posted by: Anonymous | July 4, 2008 7:30 PM | Report abuse


It'll be another 3 seasons/years before the Wiz have any chance of real improvement.

The next bumper crop of top free agents won't be until the summer of 2011 when LeBron James, D. Wade, Chris Bosh and CB3 become unrestricted FAs.

Mediocrity for 3 more years!!! Yes!!!!!

Posted by: Baller4Life | July 4, 2008 7:57 PM | Report abuse


From espn.com..AP article.

DALLAS -- Former slam dunk champion Gerald Green signed a one-year, minimum-salary contract with the Dallas Mavericks on Thursday.

The 6-foot-8, 200-pound swingman is known mostly for his exploits in the last two dunk contests, winning it in 2007 and finishing second to Dwight Howard this year. In games that count, he has career averages of 8.1 points and 2.2 rebounds. He's played for Boston, Minnesota and Houston in his three-year career since being drafted 18th overall coming out of high school.

The Mavericks are hoping that pairing Green -- who is still only 22 -- with Jason Kidd will bring out the best in the former teen prodigy.

----

Where was EG on this one??? He could've gotten a 3 to be a backup for CB3. Dallas got him on the cheap also.

Posted by: Baller4Life | July 4, 2008 8:11 PM | Report abuse

Kudos to Gil for being a man of his word and leaving the Wiz some space under the luxury cap to purse a backup 3. As much as it would have been nice to get a tough, low post presence as a backup at the 4 or 5, it looks like we'll be trying to find a backup at the 3.

Posey will probably want the full MLE of roughly $5.5M and Boston wants him back badly as do other contenders. Some less expensive options would be Mickael Paetrus or Matt Barnes of GS. James Jones is a nice 3-point specialist, but I don't see him being a defensive stopper behind CB3.

Posted by: wizfan89 | July 4, 2008 8:31 PM | Report abuse

Gerald Green? This is NOT NBA 2K8. That's the only realm where he is any good. Period. DC Fans are so fickle. Do you realize the other year the top 3 scorers in the league were LeBron, Kobe and GILBERT? He almost single handedly got us past Cleveland and the refs and LeTravel. He's 26...maybe everything hasn't clicked for him yet...leadership, defense, maturity. How many champions came into the game with all of those qualities? Jordan didn't...and you don't let players with Gil's kind of talent walk away. I really hope if and when he returns to old form there is as much Gil-bashing as there is now. I really expect Gilbert to improve on his weaknesses anyway.

Posted by: DC Fan | July 4, 2008 9:08 PM | Report abuse

EJ is a guy who only likes to play his vets, and has a short leash on his young guys.

If anything, DSong would be the likeliest dude to come off the bench at 4 rather than AB right now.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 4, 2008 6:47 PM

Every year these "young guys" become more veteran and less young.

Posted by: Johnnie Futbol | July 4, 2008 9:11 PM | Report abuse


Almost doesn't count DC Fan. Almost winning a game isn't good enough. Almost winning a playoff series isn't good enough.

Potential untapped is useless.

I didn't hear John Thompson railing on about Gilby, but John Thompson has commented on the lack of ball movement whenever Gilby is in the game, according to Doc Walker.

There are deals to be done out there..so far EG hasn't made any moves to improve the team...deals were being done left and right on draft night and all the Wiz did was draft and sell the 2nd round pick for cash.

I like EG but so far he hasn't shown any of the creativity he had with the NY Knicks.

Posted by: Baller4Life | July 4, 2008 9:24 PM | Report abuse


Offering the no. 18 pick in the first round and the virtually non-existent first round pick from Memphis-JCN deal was just so pathetic by EG.

Posted by: Baller4Life | July 4, 2008 9:31 PM | Report abuse

I went to a 1976 Finals Game and though we lost to the Supersonics, I will never forget how exciting it was.. full of possibilities. I went to the last playoff game this year, and it was the first time I have ever left a game at the end of the third quarter. It was plain boring. Truth be told, we have no superstars on this team. There's is no one that we couldn't do without. No Kobe, D. Wade, Garnett, nothing close. Yes, we have some good players, but great... noped. For all of his talent, Arenas hasn't proven anything to me. When the pressures on.. Olympics.. playoffs... All Star competitions, it's easy to see where he is in the pack. We're not going past the first round, it we get there!!

Posted by: LK | July 4, 2008 9:56 PM | Report abuse

We lost to the Sonics in '79.

Posted by: Bullez | July 4, 2008 10:04 PM | Report abuse

No, we lost in 1977 and won in 78

Posted by: LK | July 4, 2008 10:10 PM | Report abuse

And Arenas was not playing in the last playoff game this year.

You need to find another team...especially if you thought Dwyane Wade was exciting this year.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 4, 2008 10:14 PM | Report abuse

"Every year these "young guys" become more veteran and less young.

Posted by: Johnnie Futbol | July 4, 2008 9:11 PM "

That's obvious, but if these boys 2 men players don't get any PT, they will suck and will have nothing to offer nomatter how old they get.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 4, 2008 10:30 PM | Report abuse

"I didn't hear John Thompson railing on about Gilby, but John Thompson has commented on the lack of ball movement whenever Gilby is in the game, according to Doc Walker.

There are deals to be done out there..so far EG hasn't made any moves to improve the team...deals were being done left and right on draft night and all the Wiz did was draft and sell the 2nd round pick for cash.

I like EG but so far he hasn't shown any of the creativity he had with the NY Knicks.

Posted by: Baller4Life | July 4, 2008 9:24 PM "

John Thompson 2 is a very biased, hypocritical, and hard headed individual. But, he's funny though.

I don't listen to his show enough to know that he bashes Gilby, but if he does, then I'm glad someone is not going Ga Ga over Gilby.

I'm not sure if JT2 can comment about ball movement though. When he coached AI, he just let AI do whatever he pleased. Of course, AI is a much bigger and better superstar than Gilby, but given that, JT2 only knows about defense.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 4, 2008 10:34 PM | Report abuse

Ivan, do you know what possible FAs the Wiz could be targeting?


I see backup SF as a much more pressing need than backup backup PG.

I hope we can get Mickael Pietrus.

Posted by: arenasmvp4ever | July 4, 2008 10:34 PM | Report abuse

How about signing ryan gomes to be the backup SF, although he's a restricted free agent. I just hope Dmac develops quickly this summer to obtain the backup 3 role. i really want to see if McGuire really has the potential to be the Danny Granger that DraftExpress said he could be.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 4, 2008 10:36 PM | Report abuse

""I mean, college is expensive but it ain't that dang expensive....."

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 4, 2008 6:42 PM

The complete opposite of Spreewell's quote...

Posted by: | July 4, 2008 7:03 PM "

The "funny" portion of his statement was comparing "giving back 16 mil" to college not being "that expensive." Talk about extremes.

Given all that though, I think it was fair for Gilby to "give back" teh 16 mil.

Why you ask?

It's because last season, he didn't listen to the doctors and trainers and did his own thing for PR purposes (parachute running, biking around town, and playing pickup ball at Barry Farms). Because of this, as we all know, he injured himself.

Therefore, he got paid about 12 mil for a few games last season. Poor return for Abe on that investment.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 4, 2008 10:39 PM | Report abuse

No, we won in 78 and lost in 79.

Look it up.

Posted by: A Fan | July 4, 2008 10:41 PM | Report abuse

Spot on assessment by Hollinger. Sounds to me like Groundhog Day for the next half decade:

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

Are the Wizards any better off by re-signing their stars?

In three seasons with the trio of Arenas, Antawn Jamison and Caron Butler, the Wizards have won 43, 41 and 42 games and haven't made it past the first round of the playoffs. The three players are 26, 32 and 28, respectively, so it seems likely that we've seen about the best we're going to get from them. They're an average team, and without an infusion of vastly better players around them, they'll keep being an average team.

Yet instead of blowing that trio up, the Wizards took a Bob-Beamonesque leap of faith this week. First they extended Jamison for four years and $50 million, and then they offered Arenas a monstrous six-year, $127 million package. Given that Arenas is coming off a major knee injury that kept him sidelined nearly all of last season and is heavily dependant on his quickness to be an elite scorer, his offer in particular appears to be a reach.

Washington is committing to these two for another half-decade and, in the process, tying up most of its salary flexibility. If either's numbers plummet, his contract will make him nigh untradeable, except in exchange for somebody else's flotsam. For better or for worse, the Wizards are stuck with these guys.

The Wizards' alternate reality was letting both go in free agency and using what would have been a big chunk of cap space to try to remake the team around Butler -- their best player this past season and the least expensive of the three going forward -- and whomever else they could have signed. At worst, it seems they would have come away with Maggette, and their cap situation would have been far better over the next five seasons -- in fact, they might have been able to get into the LeBron bidding in 2010; James recently named Washington, D.C., as one of his favorite cities.

One can take a glass-half-full approach and say the likes of Andray Blatche (22), Nick Young (22), Oleksiy Pecherov (23) and JaVale McGee (20) give the Wizards hope that help is on the way for their high-scoring trio. On the other hand, almost every team in the league can make the "maybe our young guys will turn out to be awesome" argument, and in Washington's case, Blatche is the only one of the four who was any good last season.

If Arenas is healthy, and the kids are better, and the team improves on defense, and none of the veterans fall off ... then maybe the Wizards will push into the mid- to high 40s in wins and grab a No. 3 or No. 4 seed in the East. Is that the upside they're investing close to $180 million in over the next half-decade? It sure seems to me the fear of losing out on big-name stars caused Washington to miss out on a fantastic opportunity to remake its roster.

http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/columns/story?columnist=hollinger_john&page=FreeAgency-080703

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 4, 2008 10:43 PM | Report abuse

That's obvious, but if these boys 2 men players don't get any PT, they will suck and will have nothing to offer nomatter how old they get.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 4, 2008 10:30 PM

In Blatche's three years in the NBA, his mpg have gone from 6.0 to 12.2 to 20.4. Considering he came in to the NBA out of high school and got shot just prior to his 1st season, what more can you expect?

If the Wizards don't resign Mason what do you think that'll do to Young's PT?

Posted by: Johnnie Futbol | July 4, 2008 10:49 PM | Report abuse

Hollinger:

"If Arenas is healthy, and the kids are better, and the team improves on defense, and none of the veterans fall off ... then maybe the Wizards will push into the mid- to high 40s in wins and grab a No. 3 or No. 4 seed in the East. Is that the upside they're investing close to $180 million in over the next half-decade? It sure seems to me the fear of losing out on big-name stars caused Washington to miss out on a fantastic opportunity to remake its roster."

This is just plain dumb. The Wizards won 43 games last year. So if:

1. Arenas is healthy
2. Butler and Jamison don't fall off
3. The defense improves
4. The young guys improve

That's only good for 2, maybe 5, extra wins?

Absurd.

Posted by: Johnnie Futbol | July 4, 2008 10:57 PM | Report abuse

"In Blatche's three years in the NBA, his mpg have gone from 6.0 to 12.2 to 20.4. Considering he came in to the NBA out of high school and got shot just prior to his 1st season, what more can you expect?

If the Wizards don't resign Mason what do you think that'll do to Young's PT?

Posted by: Johnnie Futbol | July 4, 2008 10:49 PM "

He needs to stick AB in the starting lineup. Let him sink or swim.

Mason should not be resigned. Wiz already have a young guy who needs to develop in the 2/3 role (NY). Instead, they need to focus on a backup at 2. Duhon can probably be had for the MLE.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 4, 2008 10:59 PM | Report abuse

"That's only good for 2, maybe 5, extra wins?

Absurd.

Posted by: Johnnie Futbol | July 4, 2008 10:57 PM "

Maybe, maybe not...but he did say they could get a 3 or 4 seed, which isn't absurd.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 4, 2008 11:02 PM | Report abuse

i think EG told told Gil not to hire an agent???...think about it, if he has an agent at $127M, the agent gets roughly 10% of that. so, Gils agent would have ended up with about $13M - leaving Gil with $114M. instead, Gil gets $111M of that cake to himself, and he looks like a good guy in the process while only realistically sacrificing $3M. its a win-win for everyone involved!!!

Posted by: Carl | July 4, 2008 11:06 PM | Report abuse

A 3 seed will require a 50+ win season. It's possible a 4 seed will too if the conference gets more competitive at the top.

So no, that part wasn't absurd.

Posted by: Johnnie Futbol | July 4, 2008 11:12 PM | Report abuse

"I see backup SF as a much more pressing need than backup backup PG."

Agreed, but I also think at least part of the answer at SF is staring them in the face: Andray Blatche. Everyone talks about how solid he was a s a starter, but I maintain the jump in his effectiveness had less to do with him starting or even playing more minutes than it did with him playing out on the floor instead of inside. Most of the games he started he started in place of Butler, which meant that, unlike when he came off the bench, he wasn't tethered to the pain defensively and wasn't having to bang with guys who had 20 lbs on him on the offensive end.

Posted by: kalorama | July 4, 2008 11:36 PM | Report abuse

"Mason should not be resigned. Wiz already have a young guy who needs to develop in the 2/3 role (NY). Instead, they need to focus on a backup at 2."

So they shouldn't re-sign Mason because he'll take Young's minutes at the 2? But, at the same time, they need to "focus" on signing a backup 2? Yeah, okay.

"Duhon can probably be had for the MLE."

(A) Duhon's not a 2 he's a 1. (B) The Knicks already signed him.

Posted by: kalorama | July 4, 2008 11:40 PM | Report abuse

Yeah AB's frame is suited to the 3, He's actually developing a decent jumper, to. I don'tthin he has 3 point range yet but hey, CB doesn't shoot a lot pf them either. I think AB can hang with the 4's physically. It's not like a lot of them are low post bangers anyway. Boozer is a tough inside matchup but most 4's in this league shoot jumpers.

Posted by: mark | July 5, 2008 12:03 AM | Report abuse

I rather not see the sink or swim appoach with AB and start him. You dont pay someone 50 mil(AJ) to come off the bench. At least not in the first 2 years of the contract.ButI would give him more min at the 3 because DS is AJ back up and NOT AB.So he can get some playing time there. So I really dont understand why we are looking for Carons back-up. Remember Etan is comming back also and I am one who believe he is a better fit for the Wiz then BH (Bredan is soft).Etan just dont have the hands, but one thing he is going to bring is toughness were Labron wont be so tempted to drive so much against us and settle for some jumpers. Also I think that kid from Georgtown will win our 3 string pg position J. Wallace. so he will be pretty cheap. I think its best for the wiz is to be patient and see how the season unfold and make some decisions later but not know. Dont even give up on Opec unless we can get that kid from Memphis (K.Lowery)

Posted by: d square | July 5, 2008 1:14 AM | Report abuse

I maintain the jump in his effectiveness had less to do with him starting or even playing more minutes than it did with him playing out on the floor instead of inside.

Extremely interesting point, Kal. I hadn't considered that. But it might have been a combination of the two. Blatche, to me, just seemed more focused from the outset of a game when he knew he was starting.

If you use Blatche to back up Caron, who's backing up Antawn (assuming Thomas is backing up Haywood)? OPech looks like he's not near ready (although I'm not close to giving up on him, like most here seem to be. It was his rookie year, and he was injured half the season. I consider it a mulligan). McGuire has the frame/size to be a 3. McGee could see duty at the 4/5, but he's probably as raw as OPech. Maybe you split Blatche's minutes between the 3 and 4?

Posted by: Keithinator | July 5, 2008 7:11 AM | Report abuse

I see it this way:

Arenas --> NY
Stevenson --> Daniels
CB --> Blatch --> McGuire
AJ --> Songaila --> OPEC/Javlee
Haywood --> Thomas --> OPEC/Javlee

I think we need another gaurd, preferably point.

Posted by: Shahman | July 5, 2008 8:19 AM | Report abuse

Duhon has a real crack at being a starter for the Knicks and might have expected the same had he signed with Orlando. All he could have realistically expected here was to be the third point guard unless the Wizards unload Daniels, which IMO should be considered as he will never have more value in a trade than he does now.

[Note to the people who have said that comments like this are a slam on Daniels... Not so, the guy is a gamer and has been a very good player for us but he is 34 years old and his growing reluctance to pull the trigger on outside shots is beginning to be a noticeable drag on the spacing of our half-court offense.]

Given that the Warriors have lost Baron Davis, a deal of Daniels for Pietrus or Barnes (with throw-ins to make the salaries work) could be envisioned.

Daniels obvously would not replace Davis but he would allow the Warriors to have a re-tooled guard rotation that allows Don Nelson to start Monta Ellis as a shoot first point guard much as Arenas is here. The Warriors could then shift Stephen Jackson to the 2-guard. Daniels would be the first guard off their bench allowing Elis to slide over tothe 2 and Jackson to the 3 etc. This would also give GS the chance to find out if Bellinelli is an NBA player.

From the Wizards perspctive, parting with Daniels then makes it very reasonable for us to re-sign Roger Mason, Jr, who could then be the first guard off the bench without endangering Nick Young's chance for more minutes, which he must have if he is to develop into the eventual starter at the 2. That in turn leaves room to sign a young "pass-first" point guard (e.g. Jonathan Wallace) with potential but no immediate expectation of serious minutes as a fifth back court player.

How the Wizards put these final pieces of the team's roster in place is important business, but of course it all pales beside the burden that now rests on Gilbert Arenas to take his game to the highest level, and on Young, Blathce and McGee to grow up faster than they would have to on a rebuilding team.

It either works or it doesn't... We will know soon enough.

Posted by: khrabb | July 5, 2008 8:54 AM | Report abuse

So khrabb - The Wizards have 14 players under contract...

AND you want to trade Daniels for Pietrus or Barnes PLUS player(s) to even salaries?

THEN you want to resign Roger Mason?

Which player(s) would you OUTRIGHT RELEASE (and still pay the Salary Cap slot) to keep within the League mandated maximum of 15 roster spots?

Posted by: Rook | July 5, 2008 9:20 AM | Report abuse

Top 25 salaries 2008
Gil Arenas will probably slot in somewhere between spots 22 to 25
1. Kevin Garnett Boston $24,750,000
2. Stephon Marbury New York $21,937,500
-. Allen Iverson Denver $21,937,500
4. Jason Kidd Dallas $21,372,000
5. Jermaine O'Neal Indiana $21,352,500
6. Kobe Bryant LA Lakers $21,262,500
7. Tracy McGrady Houston $21,126,874
8. Tim Duncan San Antonio $20,598,703
9. Shaquille O'Neal Phoenix $20,000,000
10. Steve Francis Portland / Houston $19,814,480
11. Dirk Nowitzki Dallas $18,077,904
-. Paul Pierce Boston $18,077,904
-. Shawn Marion Phoenix $17,180,000
14. Ray Allen Boston $17,388,430
15. Rashard Lewis Orlando $17,238,000
16. Michael Redd Milwaukee $15,780,000
17. Mike Bibby Atlanta $15,225,000
18. Andrei Kirilenko Utah $15,080,312
-. Pau Gasol LA Lakers $15,080,312
20. Yao Ming Houston $15,070,550
-. Amare Stoudemire Phoenix $15,070,550
22. Zach Randolph New York $14,666,666
23. Lamar Odom LA Lakers $14,559,000
24. Ben Wallace Cleveland $14,500,000
25. Chris Bosh Toronto $14,410,581
-. Dwyane Wade Miami $14,410,581
-. Carmelo Anthony Denver $14,410,581
-. LeBron James Cleveland $14,410,581

Posted by: Anonymous | July 5, 2008 10:04 AM | Report abuse

"Mason should not be resigned. Wiz already have a young guy who needs to develop in the 2/3 role (NY). Instead, they need to focus on a backup at 2. Duhon can probably be had for the MLE.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 4, 2008 10:59 PM "

Correction.

I meant the Wiz need a backup at the 1. A young backup.

Wiz already have a backup at the 2. His name is DS.

I know I said that I want AB at the 4. He needs PT. The interesting question is how well he will gel with the other starters. The good thing is that he will be looked upon to score b/c AJ puts up a lot of points as a starter.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 5, 2008 10:05 AM | Report abuse

There is no question that AB needs more playing time...the main problem I think is AB's ability to make the most of that PT. Last year he was clearly not in shape and got winded very quickly...even late into the season. I believe EJ commented on this frequently, in his patented passive-agressive manner.

Personnel wise, the Wiz do need a quick pass first PG, clearly. I would also like to see them get another 3 point shooter, preferrably at the 3. Also, how do we know ET will be effective this year, or even play at all? I'm not so sure he loves the game or his fella's so much he is willing to risk refracturing his sternum. Therefore, I think the Wiz still need another banger, veteran Center. I know the Wiz dont have room for another 1,3, and 5, but they clearly still have some holes to fill sooner than the rookies and 2nd year players most likely will be ready.

Also this year, I would like to see EJ play AD and GA together much more. And as a result, force the $111 million man to play some serious D on the opposing 2s...or yank him.

That said, I still think the biggest problem this coming season is the coach. Lack of leadership and and lower than average in-game intelligence are his major deficiencies. The players know it and he gets very little respect from his players becasue of it. Also, EJ has got to play is young guys much much more, both early and later into the season and not be so fearful about losing his job because the early win-loss record may not be not stellar. He is wearing his key guys down early and it is causing injuries every year. Maybe EJ thinks he cant get fired if they lose in the first round every year because of injury. I dont know, but he cant keep doing the same thing over and over. It is not working. This is insanity.

Clearly the 2nd biggest problem is GA's lack of leadership and maturity, which translates into a lack of willingness to play defense. Hopefully this move to give something back to allow room for adding another minor player and stay under the cap is the beginning of a new level of maturity from GA. At $111M, I agree with Wilbon, this is no longer cute.

And finally, there has been and will be no better time for Abe to go over the cap and get a player than can really make a major difference than right now. There are a couple of players out there (Loul Deng or Corey Maggett come to mind) who could be what the Wiz need to be unstoppable in the East. If "going over the cap for only the right reason", as Ernie has said in the past, is truly feasible for the Wiz than Ernie needs to present the case to Abe and Abe needs to approve it. With the improvements the other teams in the East have made last year, the Wiz will have an uphill battle with just the pieces they have. The time to bite the "bullet" Abe, is now. Now more than ever...

Posted by: oddjob | July 5, 2008 10:58 AM | Report abuse

For all the people favoring using Blatche as Butler's primary backup, what about grooming him to be Jamison's eventual replacement? 3 years from now, what position do you see Blatche playing?

Posted by: Johnnie Futbol | July 5, 2008 11:23 AM | Report abuse

Gil's signing was strictly business. He makes a lot of money for the Wizards and any returns as far as winning is concerned are a bonus. The Wiz will no more games than they have in the past unless one of the youngsters, namely, Blatche, Young or McGee, becomes a star. Don't think that the amount of money given to him means he's the focal point of a championship in terms of his play on the court.

Posted by: Firuz | July 5, 2008 11:52 AM | Report abuse

I have yet to see someone post where Gil taking an average of $2.67 mil a year benefits the team. Until someone posts the benfits of that, the Wiz paid Gil too much money and it seems more like a PR move then anything else.

Anybody??

Every little bit can count when getting under the luxury tax and salary cap. I seem to recall the only reason we were able to sign Gilbert in the first place is when the Washington Wizard opted out of his contract and gave another 3 million under the cap.

Just something to think about...

--Mike

Posted by: Mike in Las Vegas | July 5, 2008 12:10 PM | Report abuse

But we are not talking about 3 years from now. Today Darius S. is Antawns back-up, and AB is third and he cause more problems for other teams when he plays the 3 spot. Poster here should stop sleeping on Etan also,I believe he will come back. If they can make a face mask then they can make a protective for his chest, which should ease any mental problems that may slow him down. We wiz fans saw alot of Etan and we know what he can do , so I dont agree with Ernie and his assessment of Etan. If Etan get the ball in the post then hes going to go up strong and dunk. "Brenda" well who knows, man hes soft on offense and on D.

Posted by: d square | July 5, 2008 12:22 PM | Report abuse

I have yet to see someone post where Gil taking an average of $2.67 mil a year benefits the team. Until someone posts the benfits of that, the Wiz paid Gil too much money and it seems more like a PR move then anything else.

Anybody??

--------

No one said the benefit would be for THIS year's roster.

Perhaps Ernie Grunfeld, looking at this year's poor crop of FA's, will decide to do something creative next year - when Etan Thomas and Antonio Daniels' contracts will be enticing trade bait for other teams.

Building a Championship team takes either a once-in-ten-years trade (Shaq O'Neil to the Lakers, Shaq to the Heat, Garnett to the Celtics), a tremendously lucky #1 pick in the draft to land a truly elite player (Tim Duncan, LeBron James), OR a slow build up of core players and other assets (with savvy trades along the way).

I like the third option - it means contending for a Championship for multiple years; as opposed to a one-time shot.

Posted by: Rook | July 5, 2008 12:30 PM | Report abuse

If Etan get the ball in the post then hes going to go up strong and dunk. "Brenda" well who knows, man hes soft on offense and on D.

Posted by: d square | July 5, 2008 12:22 PM

So, even after last year, when Brendan Haywood proved he's a more than competant starting Center in the League - we're back to the "Thomas is a beast" and "Brenda is soft" BS ... LOL

Posted by: Anonymous | July 5, 2008 12:34 PM | Report abuse

"Every little bit can count when getting under the luxury tax and salary cap."

I agree and that's fair, but how are they a better team except like Wilbon wrote that they can sign thier own players now?

"The more space they have under the tax threshold, the more money they have to spend on a FA without going over the tax threshold, which will likely increase their willingness to go out and spend money on a FA."

"The MLE is all they would have had to spend regardless of how much or how little Arenas was re-signed for."

This makes no sense...they can sign a FA for more but yet they can only give the mid level??

I'm really not trying to pick on you, but that makes no sense. Now they can re-sign Roger Mason *maybe* and pick up for arguments sake a "James Posey" with the MLE.

Now you have to ask yourself "will that be enough to win a championship here?"

The answer is no. :(

I love the Wizards, but they REALLY overpaid for Arenas.

Ivan, tell Wilbon to stop reading your blog and writing stories from it. :P

- Ray

Posted by: Ray | July 5, 2008 12:42 PM | Report abuse

Even before we can contend for anything close championship Gil (our 111 mil. dollar man) has got to play some defense. Just like the real Coach Thompson says. Dont just bring the ball up the court and thow up those crazy 5 feet behind the arc 3 pointers and not look to create for teammates. I would also make gil play some 2 guard alittle more just for those reasons.

Posted by: d square | July 5, 2008 12:43 PM | Report abuse

I am not saying Etan is a beast, because he is far from that. For real he has Kwame Brown like hands, he fumble the ball alot and hes gets too excited when he has it in the post. But he will knock you on you AZz he see you comming down the lane and he likes contact. Thats more than I can say for Brendan. I am not even saying he should start over Brendan because,he should not, but Etan brings things that Brendan dont. Etan can help this team complete the 5 spot as Brendan back-up and that should not be over looked. There is not a better back up center in the league when healthy and dont sleep in trying to replace him so quick.

Posted by: d square | July 5, 2008 12:58 PM | Report abuse

I'm still waiting for Wilbon to apologize for all the assumptions he made about why Sean Taylor got shot, before all the facts came out.

The other people that made similar assumptions gave apologies once the facts came out.

Since I bash Gilbert about everything, I blame this on him. He should have apologized for Wilbon. It's Gilbert's fault.

Posted by: Coach Thompson | July 5, 2008 1:06 PM | Report abuse

I am not saying Etan is a beast, because he is far from that. For real he has Kwame Brown like hands, he fumble the ball alot and hes gets too excited when he has it in the post. But he will knock you on you AZz he see you comming down the lane and he likes contact. Thats more than I can say for Brendan. I am not even saying he should start over Brendan because,he should not, but Etan brings things that Brendan dont. Etan can help this team complete the 5 spot as Brendan back-up and that should not be over looked. There is not a better back up center in the league when healthy and dont sleep in trying to replace him so quick.

Posted by: d square | July 5, 2008 12:58 PM

Haywood improved so much last year, and definitely developed more of a physical style of game. that said I agree that Etan brings something different and can be a welcome addition to the team next year.

As long as those two can coexist.

Posted by: Johnnie Futbol | July 5, 2008 1:13 PM | Report abuse

I know this idea seems pretty stupid but hey, everybody else is. In those same two years that EG/EJ get fired, Boston will be done, Detroit's reign will end, SA will be done, LeBron will be in NYC, Portland will be the best in the West! Gasol will still be soft and Kobe two years older. But hold on, instead of Daniel Snyderizing like people want Grunfeld to do, this team will have grown together and be serious contenders in the East. How about that idea!

Posted by: Vince | July 5, 2008 1:56 PM | Report abuse

I think some of you Wiz fans are fooling yourselves. You think that Abe really cares about winning championships. I think he is happy with a competitive team in the regular season, that sells out the Verizon Center and making it to the playoffs. As long as he makes money off the team he is happy. Some of you have the Wizards confused with other franchises. Their expectations aren't as high as the Lakers or Celtics.

Posted by: bryan | July 5, 2008 2:29 PM | Report abuse

this team will have grown together and be serious contenders in the East. How about that idea!

Posted by: Vince | July 5, 2008 1:56 PM

But Vince, that requires patience. Something Washington Basketball fans have shown very little of in the last 3 years.

You see - most don't remember how the Wizards (then called the Bullets) won their 1st (and only) NBA Championship. They did it the right way... building piece-by-piece, until they could contend for many years... (not just a ONE-AND-DONE)

They drafted a top player (Wes Unseld) in 1968... drafted an all-star guard (Phil Chenier) in 1971, added another player by trade (Elvin Hayes) in 1972. That core group played together for most of 9 seasons... contending for the NBA Championship every year in the late 70's.. and winning the title in 1978.

The point is, they didn't blow the team up after 2 or 3 years... they patiently waited until the team could gel...

Posted by: Rook | July 5, 2008 2:32 PM | Report abuse

I think some of you Wiz fans are fooling yourselves. You think that Abe really cares about winning championships. I think he is happy with a competitive team in the regular season, that sells out the Verizon Center and making it to the playoffs. As long as he makes money off the team he is happy. Some of you have the Wizards confused with other franchises. Their expectations aren't as high as the Lakers or Celtics.

Posted by: bryan | July 5, 2008 2:29 PM

Yeah Bryan - that makes complete sense to me.... The guy is on death's doorstep, and all he cares about is taking a few extra dollars with him when he dies...!!! Makes perfect sense.

Posted by: Rook | July 5, 2008 2:33 PM | Report abuse

I just think the fans care more about winning a championship than Abe Pollin does. I think he is happy with a competitive team, a couple of all-stars and playoff appearances.

Posted by: bryan | July 5, 2008 3:07 PM | Report abuse

Death's doorstep or not, if anybody thinks Abe is doing whatever it takes to win, not only are they on crack, but they need to read what a Wiz insider thinks. Spending under the cap money doesn't equate to spending wisely.

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

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.html

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 5, 2008 3:17 PM | Report abuse

"You see - most don't remember how the Wizards (then called the Bullets) won their 1st (and only) NBA Championship. They did it the right way... building piece-by-piece, until they could contend for many years... (not just a ONE-AND-DONE)

They drafted a top player (Wes Unseld) in 1968... drafted an all-star guard (Phil Chenier) in 1971, added another player by trade (Elvin Hayes) in 1972. That core group played together for most of 9 seasons... contending for the NBA Championship every year in the late 70's.. and winning the title in 1978.

The point is, they didn't blow the team up after 2 or 3 years... they patiently waited until the team could gel...

Posted by: Rook | July 5, 2008 2:32 PM "

LMAO!

If only the game 30 years ago is the same as it is now.

Boston surely "proved" that they won a championshop by building piece by piece over the years when they acquired KG and Ray Allen during the offseason.

Same thing for the Heat, nevermind them acquiring Shaq and those other old pieces (AWalker, etc.) for that Championship glory.

Spurs built a championship with the draft, but it looks more and more like there's no way possible the players the Wiz drafted are at the level of the Spurs players.

I will give EG the benefit of the doubt and say that he would have made a lot more moves if not for his hands being tied by Abe.

Rookie, stick to number crunching. Analysis is not your strength.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 5, 2008 3:24 PM | Report abuse

"I know this idea seems pretty stupid but hey, everybody else is. In those same two years that EG/EJ get fired, Boston will be done, Detroit's reign will end, SA will be done, LeBron will be in NYC, Portland will be the best in the West! Gasol will still be soft and Kobe two years older. But hold on, instead of Daniel Snyderizing like people want Grunfeld to do, this team will have grown together and be serious contenders in the East. How about that idea!

Posted by: Vince | July 5, 2008 1:56 PM "

Assuming you are correct, what would the Heat, Pistons, and Spurs have to show for their run?

Ummm, 1, 1, and 4 championships, respectively.

What will the Wiz have? Enduring hope/gullibility. Doesn't matter to ownership..as long as they stay in the black and keep collecting that lux tax welfare.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 5, 2008 3:29 PM | Report abuse

"Rookie, stick to number crunching. Analysis is not your strength.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 5, 2008 3:24 PM"

If you follow that line of thinking, you should just stick to ranting about Gil.

Posted by: babbtong | July 5, 2008 3:51 PM | Report abuse

Death's doorstep or not, if anybody thinks Abe is doing whatever it takes to win, not only are they on crack, but they need to read what a Wiz insider thinks. Spending under the cap money doesn't equate to spending wisely.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 5, 2008 3:17 PM

You keep dredging up 2-year old articles, and we'll keep dredging up Sun Ming Ming, Coby Karl and 7,000

Posted by: Anonymous | July 5, 2008 4:50 PM | Report abuse

"Rookie, stick to number crunching. Analysis is not your strength.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 5, 2008 3:24 PM"

If you follow that line of thinking, you should just stick to ranting about Gil.

Posted by: babbtong | July 5, 2008 3:51 PM

Yeah - DC, just stick to what you know - Arenas hate..

Posted by: Anonymous | July 5, 2008 4:52 PM | Report abuse

Assuming you are correct, what would the Heat, Pistons, and Spurs have to show for their run?

Ummm, 1, 1, and 4 championships, respectively.

What will the Wiz have? Enduring hope/gullibility. Doesn't matter to ownership..as long as they stay in the black and keep collecting that lux tax welfare.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 5, 2008 3:29 PM

You just agreed with my point.... that building through the Draft and acquiring additional pieces is the way to go if you want to compete for a Championship over multiple years....

You only want one and done? Go the way of the Miami Heat and Boston Celtics... mortgage your future for a chance at a #1 draft pick, or trade for a future HOF player.. either way - it's a longshot. A longer shot than building slowly, through the draft and trades.

And the payoff is bigger building the slow, steady way.

Posted by: Rook | July 5, 2008 4:55 PM | Report abuse

This makes no sense...they can sign a FA for more but yet they can only give the mid level??

Uh .. What are you talking about? That's not even close to what I said. Read it again ... slowly.

I'm really not trying to pick on you, but that makes no sense. Now they can re-sign Roger Mason *maybe* and pick up for arguments sake a "James Posey" with the MLE.

No, they can't because it would take most or all of the MLE to sign either one of them and, as I believe I made quite clear, the MLE is all they have to spend. It's all they were ever going to have to spend unless they renounced both Jamison and Arenas.

Now you have to ask yourself "will that be enough to win a championship here?"

No, actually I don't have to ask myself that.

The answer is no. :(

I never said the answer was "yes." You asked how Arenas signing for less helps the team. I explained why--because it will give them additional flexibility to use the MLE on a FA. That simple, really. Whether or not it will help the team has nothing to do with Arenas' contract and everything to do with if and/or how wisely Grunfeld spends the money. But that's a totally different question than the one you initially asked and I answered.

Posted by: kalorama | July 5, 2008 5:12 PM | Report abuse

"If you use Blatche to back up Caron, who's backing up Antawn ...?"

Songaila.

Posted by: kalorama | July 5, 2008 5:45 PM | Report abuse

"You just agreed with my point.... that building through the Draft and acquiring additional pieces is the way to go if you want to compete for a Championship over multiple years....

You only want one and done? Go the way of the Miami Heat and Boston Celtics... mortgage your future for a chance at a #1 draft pick, or trade for a future HOF player.. either way - it's a longshot. A longer shot than building slowly, through the draft and trades.

And the payoff is bigger building the slow, steady way.

Posted by: Rook | July 5, 2008 4:55 PM "

Unfortunately your assessment doesn't apply to the Wiz. You have to draft well, make trades to move up, trade well, etc. in order to get better.

The Wiz don't draft well and aren't aggressive enough to move up to get the guy they need, not just want. That's why the typical excuse is "we'll get the best player available at our slot."

BTW, in case you didn't read, reread the quote from EJ that I posted earlier. He freely admitted that this isn't a team that does whatever it takes to win.

Also, you can bash Wilbon, but his article today says that the Heat could be just as good as the Wiz since they now have Beasley and Marion to go with the DWade.

You'd be hard pressed to find a team that has regrets after they've reached championship glory.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 5, 2008 5:50 PM | Report abuse

"You keep dredging up 2-year old articles, and we'll keep dredging up Sun Ming Ming, Coby Karl and 7,000

Posted by: | July 5, 2008 4:50 PM "

Please do, but the funny and truthful thing is that my words, or anyone else's words, on this blog aren't as significant and impactful as a paid insider like EJ, or Gilby, calling out his own organization for winning not being the top of the agenda.

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

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.html

"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 | July 5, 2008 5:54 PM | Report abuse

""Rookie, stick to number crunching. Analysis is not your strength.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 5, 2008 3:24 PM"

If you follow that line of thinking, you should just stick to ranting about Gil.

Posted by: babbtong | July 5, 2008 3:51 PM "

And if you follow that line of thinking, you should never write or speak another word for the rest of your life.

baby thong!

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 5, 2008 5:56 PM | Report abuse

"I think some of you Wiz fans are fooling yourselves. You think that Abe really cares about winning championships. I think he is happy with a competitive team in the regular season, that sells out the Verizon Center and making it to the playoffs. As long as he makes money off the team he is happy. Some of you have the Wizards confused with other franchises. Their expectations aren't as high as the Lakers or Celtics.

Posted by: bryan | July 5, 2008 2:29 PM "

I couldn't agree more.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 5, 2008 5:57 PM | Report abuse

If Etan get the ball in the post then hes going to go up strong and dunk.

Posted by: d square | July 5, 2008 12:22 PM

I could see that argument being made if he'd ever done that consistently in his career to date... He hasn't.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 5, 2008 6:28 PM | Report abuse

Ivan, where is the summer league roster? what are the chances of signing Roger Mason or is Matt Barnes more likely? seems like we are overloaded at center and PF for the summer league? I'm assuming the starting lineup will be
Blatche C
Pech PF
McGuire SF
Young SG
PG?
McGee off the bench at center

Where do you see Etan right now? Is he the third center or 2nd center? Where does that put Blatche's minutes? It seems like the team is overloaded at C and PF and underloaded at PG, SG and SF

Posted by: ksm | July 5, 2008 7:03 PM | Report abuse

Any player ideas if they don't sign RM?

What about JR Smith from the Nuggets? or Krstic looks available from Nets.

I like Josh Smith. He is still so young and very gifted. But it looks like he will get more than the midlevel exception from someone and Atlanta most likely will match.

Posted by: tony montana | July 5, 2008 7:59 PM | Report abuse

Ray, it seems you're confused about the salary cap. Hopefully, this provides answers.

First, start here. It's confusing, but it's helpful.

I'll try to summarize the best I can.

There are two important lines. The first is the salary cap, which should be set somewhere around 58 million dollars this year (that figure doesn't become official until July 9). If you are under the salary cap, you can sign any free agent from another team, so long as that signing won't cause you to exceed the salary cap. For example, Golden State was able to offer Gilbert Arenas a max contract because they have enough cap space after losing Baron Davis.

The other key line to remember is the luxury tax, which should come in at around 71 million this year (again, it doesn't become official until July 9). Once you pass the luxury tax threshold, you have to pay an additional dollar back to the league for every dollar you go over. That money is then redistributed to any team that is under the luxury tax threshold. There's no iron-clad rule that you can't go over the luxury tax (the Lakers are over it, as are the Knicks, for example), but it definitely costs owners money.

Here's the Wizards' salary information. It doesn't include the new contracts for Antawn, Gilbert, and JaVale McGee.

http://www.shamsports.com/content/pages/data/salaries/wizards.jsp

McGee's salary next year for being the 18th pick in the draft should be a little more than one million.

Antawn's first-year salary is expected to be a little less than 10 million. That brings our total number to around 54 million, or about 4 million dollars underneath the salary cap and 17 million under the luxury tax.

Gilbert's first-year under this new contract is for about 14.5 million. Had he signed a max contract, that first year would have been close to 17 million, which would have put us right up against the cap. Now, at least we have a little room under it.

There are exceptions to these rules. The most important one is known as the "Larry Bird Exception." It allows teams to go over the salary cap in order to sign their own free agents. It also allows teams to offer six-year contracts, when normally teams can only offer a maximum of five years. That's why Arenas' contract is so large. Golden State offered a higher annual salary, but the sixth year pushed it to 111 million.

Another exception is known as the mid-level exception. Every year, any team can spend up to the league-average salary on a free agent, no matter what their cap situation is. That should amount to something around 6 million a year (again, we'll know the exact figure on July 9). This can be split among multiple free agents, or it can be used on one free agent.

Another exception is called the low-level exception. It allows a team to spend about 2 million a year on a free agent no matter their cap situation. You're only allowed to use it once every two years. The last time we used it was to sign Michael Ruffin before the 2004/05 season.

Now, as to the confusion about only having the mid-level no matter the figure of Arenas' contract, here's why: Jamison's contract brings our total team salary to around 54 million. If Arenas signed for, say, 90 million, that'd still be enough to push us over the salary cap. We'd have more room under the luxury tax, but either way, we'd be over the salary cap, meaning we could only use either the mid-level or low-level exceptions.

The only way we'd have a large sum of salary cap space is if Arenas and Jamison both went elsewhere. Then, we'd have a little more than 14 million under the cap, which could, key word could, allow us to sign someone like Josh Smith or Andre Iguodala. (I say "could" because their teams could just match the contract we offer and we'd lose out, because those two are restricted free agents).

If we only signed Jamison, we'd be about 4 million under the cap, enough to use our mid-level and a little extra.

That's why we couldn't just use Gilbert's salary on two guys from other teams. Remember, a team can go over the cap to sign their own free agent, but they can't to sign someone else's (unless it's for the mid-level or low-level exceptions).

I think that should solve the confusion. Let me know if it doesn't.

Posted by: Pradamaster | July 5, 2008 8:19 PM | Report abuse

Thanks Pradamaster. The WaPost and WaTimes should explain how the cap and lux tax work in the NBA but they never seem to.

One thing I have gotten from this blog, if nothing else, is a clear explanation of this along with how the mid-level and low-level exceptions can be used.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 5, 2008 8:53 PM | Report abuse

Pradamaster,

That was some good shyt. That's the best explanation regarding the NBA cap and exceptions and etc. I don't think most analysts know it as well in detail.

Hopefully this will stop all the Arenas' haters and stupid columnists like Wilbon from saying that the money should have been used to sign 1 or 2 other all star caliber players.

Posted by: Bangladesh | July 5, 2008 9:04 PM | Report abuse

"And if you follow that line of thinking, you should never write or speak another word for the rest of your life.

baby thong!

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 5, 2008 5:56 PM "

Whatever. You've more than made your idiocy and your bias clear on this blog. You can't even think of an original comeback, and you have to resort to name calling/immaturity.

Posted by: babbtong | July 5, 2008 10:16 PM | Report abuse

"Whatever. You've more than made your idiocy and your bias clear on this blog. You can't even think of an original comeback, and you have to resort to name calling/immaturity.

Posted by: babbtong | July 5, 2008 10:16 PM "

I think you wrapped your baby thong too tight around your head.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 5, 2008 11:04 PM | Report abuse


JaVale McGee..I don't know whether to laugh or cry. Maybe both.

EG: "Hi (any other NBA team GM), I'd like to move up/down some spots. We'll give you our pick at no. 18 and a non-existent future 1st round pick that we got from Memphis in the JCN deal in exchange. What do you say?"

Any other NBA team GM: "Hell no! Get bent!"

EG: "Oh c'mon, it's a great trade!"

Any other NBA team GM:

Posted by: Baller4Life | July 5, 2008 11:23 PM | Report abuse

Thanks guys. I kind of have to know this stuff if I want to run a site like Bullets Forever.

A lot of the stuff about Gilbert was covered here.

http://www.bulletsforever.com/2008/6/11/550003/the-gilbert-arenas-offseas

It's kind of interesting to look back and see how it all turned out.

Posted by: Pradamaster | July 6, 2008 12:00 AM | Report abuse

"If we only signed Jamison, we'd be about 4 million under the cap, enough to use our mid-level and a little extra."

Not quite.

http://members.cox.net/lmcoon/salarycap.htm

20. How do exceptions count against the cap? Does being under the cap always mean that a team has room to sign free agents? Do teams ever lose their exceptions?

If a team is below the cap, then their Disabled Player, Bi-Annual, Mid-Level and/or Traded Player exceptions are added to their team salary, and the league treats the team as though they are over the cap. This is to prevent a loophole, in a manner similar to free agent amounts (see question numbers 29, 30, 31, 32). A team can't act like they're under the cap and sign free agents using cap room, and then use their Disabled Player, Bi-Annual, Mid-Level and/or Traded Player exceptions. Consequently, the exceptions are added to their team salary (putting the team over the cap) if the team is under the cap and adding the exceptions puts them over the cap. If a team is already over the cap, then the exceptions are not added to their team salary. There would be no point in doing so, since there is no cap room for signing free agents.

The Disabled Player, Bi-Annual, Mid-Level and Traded Player exceptions may be lost entirely, or the team may never receive them to begin with. This happens when their team salary is so low that when the exceptions are added to the team salary, the sum is still below the salary cap. If the team salary is below this level when the exception arises, then the team doesn't get the exception. If the team salary ever drops below this level during the year, then any exceptions they had are lost.

For example, with a $49.5 million salary cap, assume it's the offseason, and a team has $41 million committed to salaries, along with a Mid-Level exception for $5 million, a Traded Player exception for $2.5 million, and an unrenounced free agent whose free agent amount is $2 million. Their salaries and exceptions total $50.5 million, or $1 million over the cap. What if their free agent signs with another team? The $2 million free agent amount comes off their cap, so their team salary drops to $48.5 million. This total is below the cap so the team loses its Mid-Level and Traded Player exceptions.

There is logic behind this. The whole idea behind an "exception" is that it is an exception to the rule which says a team has to be below the salary cap. In other words, an exception is a mechanism which allows a team to function above the cap. If a team isn't over the cap, then the concept of an exception is moot. Therefore, if a team's team salary ever drops this far, its exceptions go away. The effect is that a team may have either exceptions or cap room, but they can't have both.

Are you saying the Wizards would have been under the cap by $4 mill (if they re-signed Jamison and renounced Arenas) before or after the exceptions were added in? If it's before, then adding in all of the exceptions (which equal more than $4 mill) would put them over the cap, which means that they'd have the MLE, but wouldn't have $4 mill in cap space. Conversely, if the $4 mill figure represents their cap number after the exceptions are added in, then they'd still be below the cap and wouldn't have the MLE to spend.

Either way, they wouldn't have been able to spend both the cap space and the MLE. Teams get one or the other, not both.

Posted by: kalorama | July 6, 2008 12:29 AM | Report abuse

I stand corrected. Thanks.

Posted by: Pradamaster | July 6, 2008 12:42 AM | Report abuse

And I meant the former, i.e. before the exceptions.

Posted by: Pradamaster | July 6, 2008 12:43 AM | Report abuse

"I think you wrapped your baby thong too tight around your head.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 5, 2008 11:04 PM"

What is a baby thong?

Posted by: Anonymous | July 6, 2008 12:54 AM | Report abuse

Wouldn't that be a baby sized thong (underwear)?

Posted by: Anonymous | July 6, 2008 1:05 AM | Report abuse

so DC Man88 is a pedophile too?

Posted by: Anonymous | July 6, 2008 1:25 AM | Report abuse

People should check out the Bullets Forever site. Very well run, requires signup/logins to keep out the riffraff (or those like me who are too lazy to make one), and the debates are just that. Very little name calling and childish mud slinging, just good ol' basketball debate. Pradamaster is pretty good at moderating it, too (hint hint Ivan/Mike/WaPo).

Posted by: babbtong | July 6, 2008 1:34 AM | Report abuse

Have some faith, I really love our team lets go far with this

Posted by: poo | July 6, 2008 2:40 AM | Report abuse

The Cavs' Boobie Gibson and Delonte West are both restricted free agents. We should offer one or both of them our space under the luxury tax.

At the worst, we drive up the price Cleveland has to pay to re-sign them.

At best, we get a pretty decent third PG and Cleveland either has to depend more heavily on Eric Snow/Damon Jones, or they have to break in a new PG.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 6, 2008 7:36 AM | Report abuse

I was at the CapGrill last night...the rumor going around was Ernie has but Mason on the back burner and something cooking with Minn.

Posted by: oddjob | July 6, 2008 11:42 AM | Report abuse

I was at the CapGrill last night...the rumor going around was Ernie has but Mason on the back burner and something cooking with Minn.

Posted by: oddjob | July 6, 2008 11:42 AM

Any other insight?

Posted by: Prison Balls | July 6, 2008 1:04 PM | Report abuse

Re Wolves.

Perhaps Ernie remembers the 36 point hosing Craig Smith laid on us last year... 6'8" 250 lbs... now there is a backup 3-4 with the tools we need.

Daniels for Smith, then sign Mason and a 3rd string PG.

Posted by: khrabb | July 6, 2008 1:58 PM | Report abuse

Re Wolves.

Perhaps Ernie remembers the 36 point hosing Craig Smith laid on us last year... 6'8" 250 lbs... now there is a backup 3-4 with the tools we need.

Daniels for Smith, then sign Mason and a 3rd string PG.

Posted by: khrabb | July 6, 2008 1:58 PM

How would mason be our 3rd when we traded daniels for smith.

Posted by: Mikey | July 6, 2008 2:12 PM | Report abuse

What about this:

Stevenson, Thomas, 09 1st and memphis pick

FOR
Mike Miller

Starters:
Arenas
Miller
Butler
Jamison
Haywood

Posted by: Mikey | July 6, 2008 2:14 PM | Report abuse

You guys live in a fantasy land....Stevenson is going nowhere. And I can't see Daniels being traded either...he has been our glue the past 2 seasons.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 6, 2008 2:38 PM | Report abuse

"I was at the CapGrill last night...the rumor going around was Ernie has but Mason on the back burner and something cooking with Minn.

Posted by: oddjob | July 6, 2008 11:42 AM "

I'm not surprised.

There's plenty of room under the MLE to sign Mason, and if EG wanted him badly enough, it would have been a done deal by now.

Can someone wake Ivan out of his Stella Artois hangover so that he can get us an update?

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 6, 2008 3:26 PM | Report abuse

If Minn is the target, I wonder if EG prefers Corey Brewer or Ryan Gomes at SF. Gomes is like another Caron.

It would be miraculous if EG could pull an Al Jefferson trade.

Sebastian Telfair?

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 6, 2008 3:29 PM | Report abuse

88er just a sick Gil-stalker in in his mother's basement.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 6, 2008 4:08 PM | Report abuse

I don't see anyone official (ESPN, AP, etc) reporting this so far, so it may not be anything.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 6, 2008 4:33 PM | Report abuse

I wouldn't get too excited about Craig Smith. That 36 he hung on the Wizards was just another example of the team's porous defense making an opponent's marginal role player look like a one-night All-Star. He put up semi-decent numbers for a reserve on one of the worst teams in the league. On a good team he's a deep bench player who sees limited PT. Having both him and Songaila on the team would be superfluous.

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

I don't know why everyone is so down on the wiz. Building a team is never instant gratification. The wiz are actually shaping up to be a freakishly long and tall team? Our shortest players are 6-4 Starting with Andre I couldn't find the wingspan listed but I know hes got a monster reach as well. Any team you can think of that has our size and length. Portland is the only team I can think of. If anyone can fill in the wingspans for the roster id appreciate it.

Primary Position Sample Size Avg Height w/o Shoes Average Weight Average Wingspan Average Standing Reach
PG 139 6' 0.40" 184 6' 4.6" 8' 0.4"
SG 132 6' 3.67" 202 6' 8.2" 8' 5
SF 113 6' 6.13" 213 6' 10.5" 8' 8
PF 219 6' 7.73" 235 7' 0.7" 8' 10.5"
C 115 6' 9.96" 251 7' 2.8" 9' 1.7"

33 Brendan Haywood
C, 7-0, 263
Wingspan 7' 6.5"

JaVale McGee **
C-F, 7-0, 237
Wingspan 7' 6"

1 Nick Young
G, 6-6, 200
Wingspan 7' 0"

3 Caron Butler
F, 6-7, 228
Wingspan 6' 11.5"

5 Dominic McGuire
F, 6-9, 220
Wingspan 6' 10.5"

0 Gilbert Arenas (FA)
G, 6-4, 215
Wingspan 6' 9.5"

6 Antonio Daniels
G, 6-4, 205
Wingspan 6' 8"

32 Andray Blatche
F, 6-11, 248

36 Etan Thomas
C, 6-10, 260

14 Oleksiy Pecherov
C-F, 7-0, 234

4 Antawn Jamison
F, 6-9, 235

9 Darius Songaila
F, 6-9, 248

2 DeShawn Stevenson
G, 6-5, 218

8 Roger Mason (FA)
G, 6-5, 212

Posted by: ForThePeople | July 6, 2008 6:43 PM | Report abuse

"The wiz are actually shaping up to be a freakishly long and tall team?"

Unfortunately, freakishly long and tall does not automatically equate to good or winning. Not saying they won't be good or won't win, just pointing out that extrapolating quality based on height and reach is ... well, a reach.

Posted by: kalorama | July 6, 2008 6:49 PM | Report abuse

GM'er is so frustrated that his ice melt isn't selling this summer that he's beating his meat with his inventory of hoes.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 6, 2008 7:05 PM | Report abuse

"People should check out the Bullets Forever site. Very well run, requires signup/logins to keep out the riffraff (or those like me who are too lazy to make one), and the debates are just that. Very little name calling and childish mud slinging, just good ol' basketball debate. Pradamaster is pretty good at moderating it, too (hint hint Ivan/Mike/WaPo)."

Posted by: babbtong | July 6, 2008 1:34 AM


Yeah i would really like to see them change things around a bit in this posting system. Make people register to post and get someone who regularly mods it. Things can get out of hand quickly and goes off topic. sifting through 50 garbage posts gets old

Posted by: Anonymous | July 6, 2008 7:07 PM | Report abuse

By itself it doesn't mean anything but together with an attitude of winning where guys work hard it is encouraging. Also having specimens is a must for trades.

Posted by: ForThePeople | July 6, 2008 7:08 PM | Report abuse

"Also having specimens is a must for trades."

Specimens?

Anyway, teams don't trade players by the inch, they trade them based on how good they are. Besides, measurements aside, the fact is that when to comes to what happens on the floor, most of the Wizards frontline players actually play smaller than their size.

Posted by: kalorama | July 6, 2008 7:32 PM | Report abuse

Yummy reference to one of my favorites, Stella Artois. But its only like 5% alcohol isn't it?

"Stella!" If the Wizards hadn't drafted Kwame #1, they "coulda been a contenda!"

Posted by: Brando | July 6, 2008 7:52 PM | Report abuse

resign juan dixon detroit free agent

Posted by: nick | July 6, 2008 10:27 PM | Report abuse

Hey, re-sign me! I used to be the best swingman in Latvia!

Posted by: Tyrone Nesby | July 6, 2008 10:39 PM | Report abuse

MATT BARNES MATT BARNES MATT BARNES MATT BARNES MATT BARNES MATT BARNES
MATT BARNES MATT BARNES MATT BARNES
MATT BARNES MATT BARNES
MATT BARNES

Posted by: Anonymous | July 6, 2008 10:42 PM | Report abuse

Yeah i would really like to see them change things around a bit in this posting system. Make people register to post and get someone who regularly mods it. Things can get out of hand quickly and goes off topic. sifting through 50 garbage posts gets old

Posted by: | July 6, 2008 7:07 PM

LOL - posted by an Anonymous poster...!!

Posted by: Rook | July 6, 2008 11:15 PM | Report abuse

Yeah i would really like to see them change things around a bit in this posting system. Make people register to post and get someone who regularly mods it. Things can get out of hand quickly and goes off topic. sifting through 50 garbage posts gets old

Posted by: | July 6, 2008 7:07 PM

LOL - posted by an Anonymous poster...!!

Posted by: Rook | July 6, 2008 11:15 PM | Report abuse

if you all hate this team so much burn your tickets and dial up the Cavs website. Sure you can make some friends there...

Posted by: g | July 6, 2008 11:18 PM | Report abuse

Touche to the poster who suggested that Craig Smith's 36 against the Wizards was a gift of our defense... BUT...

If the Wolves (or his own health, I could not tell from the ESPN stats) had not held down Smith's minutes in March he would have averaged 10.5 pts and 7 rebs for the season in around 19 MPG. His final numbers were 9.4 and 6. This was by a player on a salary of $687,500, although admittedly on a horrific team.

We need a beefy forward off the bench to counter players like Maxiell, Powe et al.

Minnesota made a qualifying offer to Smith on June 29th... presumably in the $1 million range.

Would you prefer to spend $1 million of Abe's money on Smith or Pech??

Posted by: khrabb | July 7, 2008 2:14 AM | Report abuse

As one of the few guys here wh thinks Pech may actually be able to play a little bit, I'll submit my vote for Pech right now over Smith. Pech has gotten a bad rap because of his injuries, the below average shooting, and the hump in his back. I'd like to get him completely healthy and give him some minutes so that we can evaluate him. I think he's an effective rebounder and inside presence on defense. His outside shooting was supposedly his forte and it has abandoned him thus far but he's shown enough flashes for me to think that he could be decent in spots.

Posted by: mark | July 7, 2008 7:50 AM | Report abuse

ForThePeople, I agree with you about the importance of arm length. Anyone who's played ball (even streetball) knows that while other physical attributes are good, long arms are the one thing that really make a difference on defense. They also help with rebounding if you don't have the solid base. Andray Blatche can't bust a grape but got 5 rebounds in 20 minutes per game because he reaches over other ppl and tips the ball to himself. Tayshawn isn't a great athlete by any stretch but his span helps turn him from good to very good.
Wingspan isnt everything. (see Olawakandi) In fact, standing reach is probably more important. Some guys like Eddy Curry have a long wingspan but a lot of it is because they are wide-shouldered. Other guys like Haywood aren't as thick and their standing reach is higher because the arms are long going up and not just out.
I agree with Kal in that we can't assume that we'll be good just because we're long. On the other hand, ForThePeople has reason for defensive optimism in that 2 of the top 3 highest standing reaches belong to BTH and McGee. Only Pavel "Andre the Giant part 2" Podkolzine was higher. With both BTH and Mcgee in the game during crucial defensive stretches (McGee is agile enough to play PF, supposedly), it would be tough for opponents to get any inside shots off.
Imagine this lineup at the end of a game when we need a big stop...

Gil (for his quickness), Deshawn, McGuire, McGee, BTH.

I'm ok with that on the defensive end. Caron in that lineup would work, too because he has a lot of help behind him.

Posted by: mark | July 7, 2008 8:10 AM | Report abuse

One more thing about McGee...
Looking at draftexpress numbers, there have only been a handful of big guys drafted since 2001 that are over 6'9" and with a higher max vertical than McGee's 32.5 inches. They are:
Shaquille ONeal, Greg Oden, Tyson Chandler, Dan McLintock??, Andrew Bogut, Yi Jianlian, Joakim Noah, Marcim Gortat??, Troy Murphy, Chris Bosh, LaMarcus Aldridge, Kwame Brown, Steven Hunter, Jason Smith, Okafor (almost 6'9").

I may be missing a couple but my point is that McGee is pretty athletic and has a long standing 'upreach'. His frame doesn't guarantee success in the league but I certainly wouldn't bet against him. Given his pedigree, I'm sure he loves the game and he certainly isn't one of those guys who was pushed into it because he was the tallest guy in the school. I think we may have found a gem in McGee and he's a guy that teams 5-17 could be wishing they'd picked up a couple years from now.

Last stat I calculated quickly.... I looked at the big guys and combined the standing reach with the max vertical to see if I could figure out a total of how high up they could get up. Shaq was tops at 12 feet, 5 inches. Dwight Howard was next at 12'3". Guess who was next on the list? Yep. Our guy was next at 12'2.5". Steven Hunter tied our guy in 3rd place (which brought me crashing back down to earth) but still, it's not bad company to be in. I'm thinking that at the very least, he should be good defensively. Even hunter is considered to be that.

Posted by: mark | July 7, 2008 8:36 AM | Report abuse

if you all hate this team so much burn your tickets and dial up the Cavs website. Sure you can make some friends there...

Posted by: g | July 6, 2008 11:18 PM
I prefer to invite every negative poster on here to move to Seattle.
All the Arenas haters, Pollin critics, Grunfeld wannabes, you can all have the empty stadium in Seattle if you like since the Wizards will never meet your approval anyway. You might as well start from scratch and get to recruit your own owner, GM and players!

Posted by: rgz | July 7, 2008 8:59 AM | Report abuse

Standing reach is always good. Very good.

Vertical leaping ability, on the other hand, is only useful in combination with other skills.

On offense, vertical jump combines well with good jump shooting touch to shoot over defenders. It also combines well with big strong hands and good body control to get points in the paint.

On defense, vertical jump is only useful if a player has good timing to block shots and get rebounds. Without good timing, you're just going to pick up cheap fouls and hand out "and 1's".

Posted by: Anonymous | July 7, 2008 9:07 AM | Report abuse

Craig Smith is 6 7" without great leaping ability; he's strong and crafty in the lowpost but would be a defensive liability worse than our current options at the 4. If Minnesota thought he was a rotation player, they would have not tendered Ryan Gomes.

Wiz are waiting to see what offers Mason fields from San Antonio and others. If it's more than $2-2.5m/annually, I see them letting him walk and trying to sign a "cheap" FA like Matt Barnes of Mickael Paetrus. Re: trading Daniels or Thomas, both have 2 years left on their deals at roughly $6M each that come off the books on 2010. That means their trade value is pretty minimal until at least next summer when teams may want their expiring contracts.

Posted by: wizfan89 | July 7, 2008 9:16 AM | Report abuse

I remember Craig Smith abusing us that ine game. I also remember talk about him being useless defensively. It doesn't hurt to have a bruiser on the team but again... what minutes would he realistically get? Is he the first PF off the bench behind Jamison?
The thing I'm waiting for is to see what EJ does now with the lineup. Even with little experience i would put Mcgeei n there as BTH's primary backup getting 10 minutes a game. That would allow me to move AB to the PF spot. AB would be my first backup at PF and SF. I'd give McGuire minutes at the SF spot whenever AB was at PF. If Pech figures into the mix, then he should be the 3rd string C (2nd string if McGee is used at PF). Eddie's got some interchangeable big pieces and now he needs to put them all together.

Posted by: mark | July 7, 2008 9:52 AM | Report abuse

With the exception of McGee, all of those "tall and long" players were on the roster last season. Unless I missed something, their presence failed to result in stalwart consistent defense around the rim.

Doesn't matter how nice your kit of tools is if you can't get them to work properly.

"Looking at draftexpress numbers, there have only been a handful of big guys drafted since 2001 that are over 6'9" and with a higher max vertical than McGee's 32.5 inches. They are: Shaquille ONeal, Greg Oden, Tyson Chandler, Dan McLintock??, Andrew Bogut, Yi Jianlian, Joakim Noah, Marcim Gortat??, Troy Murphy, Chris Bosh, LaMarcus Aldridge, Kwame Brown, Steven Hunter, Jason Smith, Okafor (almost 6'9")."

Of the 14 names on that list, only about half provide any kind of demonstrated meaningful inside presence at either end. The rest are either unproven, marginal role players, outright busts, or really tall jumpshooters.

Projecting quality based on a player's height is how teams end up drafting Sam Bowie over Michael Jordan or Darko Milicic over Dwayne Wade.

Posted by: kalorama | July 7, 2008 10:30 AM | Report abuse

Miscounted. It's 15 names. Point still stands.

Posted by: kalorama | July 7, 2008 10:37 AM | Report abuse

I do agree that McGee could become quite a player... and if it happens sooner than later our problems will be solved and then some.

A little insurance never hurt so long as the cost is reasonable and it is in that context I imagined Craig Smith (whom the Wolves also tendered) might help. I like Gomes too.

If the preference is for a long athletic pure 3 who could step into the starting lineup if Butler was injured, though, I would really like to see Trevor Ariza on the Wizards. However, I suspect Kupchack would be thinking twice if Grunfeld showed up on his doorstep bearing gifts.

Posted by: khrabb | July 7, 2008 10:46 AM | Report abuse

If you look at the 15 within the context of all the drafted players since 2001 that had the above mentioned physical skill/attributes, it's still pretty impressive. The fact that he jumps well for his height better than all but 15 or so is a good thing.
I'd actually count 9 out of 15 on that list that I wouldn't mind having with the jury is still out on 2007 draftees Yi Jianlin and Jason Smith. I think that the Wiz could have used Shaquille ONeal, Greg Oden, Tyson Chandler, Andrew Bogut, Joakim Noah, Troy Murphy, Chris Bosh, LaMarcus Aldridge or Okafor.
I know it's stupid to look at workout warriors like Troy Bell or even Joe Alexander and project greatness for them. It's also dumb to pass up great athletes who've accomplished a lot in college over taller ones just because of height. (Bowie over MJ). I just think that it's just as unwise to ignore some physical attributes when they jump out at you.
There are no guarantees with young guys, tall or short. I realize that. I just want to try to give some of the anti-McGee posters here some reason for at least guarded optimism. I believe the young man has a chance to be a real player. It takes physical skills, heart, and a desire to want to be good. He has the physical stuff. I believe the passion and the desire to be good are there based on his parents' careers and the fact that he was brought up playing ball. His heart is the only thing we can't read. One poster who has seen him play on numerous occasions said that he wants to be a beast inside and plays like he wants to dominate. I'm looking forward to summer league. We should see some signs there.

Posted by: mark | July 7, 2008 11:19 AM | Report abuse

The big 3 will carry the load again next season and the rest of the guys will do their best with whatever they can do.

That's status quo and that's what you get from a team that basically hasn't changed its makeup.

Getting hyped about a very raw McGee is reaching, at best.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 7, 2008 11:21 AM | Report abuse

"I prefer to invite every negative poster on here to move to Seattle.
All the Arenas haters, Pollin critics, Grunfeld wannabes, you can all have the empty stadium in Seattle if you like since the Wizards will never meet your approval anyway. You might as well start from scratch and get to recruit your own owner, GM and players!

Posted by: rgz | July 7, 2008 8:59 AM "

Horsecrap.

Any person can make a comment about the hometown team if they want to.

I dare Abe to uproot his franchise and take it elsewhere. This is a cash cow for him, whether the team wins or loses. If he leaves, Stern will put another team in VC.

I'm sure Bob Johnson wouldn't mind moving his Bobcats to DC.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 7, 2008 11:25 AM | Report abuse

If McGee turns out to be a solid player who loves to play D then that will be a huge help for the Wiz. Etan can be the PF bruiser (if he comes back healthy) the the team lacks. And Andre can switch to SF and PF depending on the rotation and match-up. AB at the 3 is a match up nightmare for other team and he's quick (& long) enough to play defense with the other SF.

Posted by: Roy | July 7, 2008 11:27 AM | Report abuse

The big 3 will carry the load again next season and the rest of the guys will do their best with whatever they can do.

That's status quo and that's what you get from a team that basically hasn't changed its makeup.

Getting hyped about a very raw McGee is reaching, at best.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 7, 2008 11:21 AM

It'll only be status quo if 1 of the big 3 gets hurt for the season. If they can remain healthy, and particularly all be healthy come playoff time, the end result could be markedly different.

In this case, status quo has plenty of upside.

Posted by: psps23 | July 7, 2008 11:34 AM | Report abuse

Hey Roy! Have you forgotten who our coach is? EJ never has, nor will he ever know how to utilize/develop big-men.

Posted by: Wizzy | July 7, 2008 11:42 AM | Report abuse

88,
I'm not getting TOO hyped especially because I know EJ won't give McGee many minutes no matter how well he performs. I know, though, that one guy can swing the pendulum in a particular matchup. Tim Duncan averaged 15 and 13 and shot 42% against the hornets primarily because of Tyson Chandler. Those numbers were down across the board from the other 2 playoff series he played in. It was almost enough to get the Hornets into the conference Finals. Can I go out on a limb and assume that McGee could have a similar impact? Though big Z didn't really kill us this past series, as slow as he is, I can see his shot getting spiked by a younger quicker big man like McGee.

Posted by: mark | July 7, 2008 11:52 AM | Report abuse

"If you look at the 15 within the context of all the drafted players since 2001 that had the above mentioned physical skill/attributes, it's still pretty impressive."

Not really. The only thing that's impressive is what they actually accomplish in the context of games that matter.

"I just think that it's just as unwise to ignore some physical attributes when they jump out at you. "

And, again, physical attributes don't define success. Lots of long, tall guys get drafted every year. How many of them end up being serious impact players, let alone stars? Not many.

But my main problem with the whole issue isn't even McGee. It's too early to judge him because he hasn't had a chance to do anything. I was originally reacting primarily to ForThePeople's point about the whole team's length and it supposedly being a cause for optimism.

Sorry, don't see it. They've had essentially the same team for the past three years, but all of that length has failed to accomplish the three things that you most expect it to provide: interior defense, interior scoring, and rebounding, three areas in which the Wizards have been under-performing for years. Even if McGee does pan out, and of course there's a chance he will, he's not going to singlehandedly make up for the fact that all of the Wizards other bigs play small.

Posted by: kalorama | July 7, 2008 11:54 AM | Report abuse

"Hey Roy! Have you forgotten who our coach is? EJ never has, nor will he ever know how to utilize/develop big-men."

Wizzy - Yes, I know who the coach is. EJ has a lot of flaws but he did improve a little bit last year (i.e., trusting BTH more) that he MIGHT improve more. If not, you will hear a lot of "Fire EJ" again. I believe this is a make or break season for him. EJ did get a lot of accolades for the Nets success well B Scott proves that he WAS the main man.

Posted by: Roy | July 7, 2008 12:09 PM | Report abuse

Kal, I've been railing about the 2 undersized all stars for years. We're not gonna be great defensively ever with those guys starting. BTH is a known underperformer as a rebounder but he's decent on defense.
Interior defense: with AJ in there, it's always gonna be average or below.
Interior scoring: AJ tries to avoid contact and doesn't really score in the paint. BTH doesn't get many chances on this team.
Interior rebounding: AJ's a beast and BTH is average. We're ok in this dept, actually.
My Bottom line: This current iteration of the Wiz is going to have to beat teams with offense, not defense. Projecting a few years down the road, I wouldn't mind having a frontcourt that includes an old BTH, McGee, and AB.

Posted by: mark | July 7, 2008 12:10 PM | Report abuse

Wiz fans I hate to tell you this but it is not a make or break year for anyone in the Wizards organization. Abe Pollin will not fire EJ or EG if they don't go far in the playoffs. I think Abe is very happy with the state of the franchise. They are winning and making the playoffs. Those of you who think Abe wants more than that haven't been paying attention to Bullets/Wizards for the last 20 years.

Posted by: bryan | July 7, 2008 12:32 PM | Report abuse

"88,
I'm not getting TOO hyped especially because I know EJ won't give McGee many minutes no matter how well he performs. I know, though, that one guy can swing the pendulum in a particular matchup. Tim Duncan averaged 15 and 13 and shot 42% against the hornets primarily because of Tyson Chandler. Those numbers were down across the board from the other 2 playoff series he played in. It was almost enough to get the Hornets into the conference Finals. Can I go out on a limb and assume that McGee could have a similar impact? Though big Z didn't really kill us this past series, as slow as he is, I can see his shot getting spiked by a younger quicker big man like McGee.

Posted by: mark | July 7, 2008 11:52 AM "

Or, the more likely scenario is that Tim Duncan, a future hall of famer with 4 rings, will easily foul out McGee in 10 minutes with a few isolation plays.

BTH though, has shown effectiveness against the likes of KG and DHoward.

I'd have to say BTH is untouchable with regard to trades, on this team, especially with his "low" salary.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 7, 2008 12:33 PM | Report abuse

"It'll only be status quo if 1 of the big 3 gets hurt for the season. If they can remain healthy, and particularly all be healthy come playoff time, the end result could be markedly different.

In this case, status quo has plenty of upside.

Posted by: psps23 | July 7, 2008 11:34 AM "

In 05-06, with the Big 3, the Wiz lost in the 1st round after Gilby choked on those 3 free throws. They ended the season 42-40.

Granted that was 3 seasons ago, but with the big 3 nonetheless.

Now, nobody knows what kind of player Gilby will be when/if he returns, especially with the emergence of the Big 2 and now that Ayers will be barking in Gilby's face about having to play D...nevermind the fact that most teams in the East have gotten a lot better.

I wouldn't bet on upside just yet.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 7, 2008 12:39 PM | Report abuse

88, work with me here. I like McGee with 2 years of college better than Chandler coming out of high school. If we could go back and get a mulligan on 2001, we'd all pick Tyson over Kwame. OK. Enough about Mcgee.

I like the fact that we didn't panic and make wholesale changes without seeing what a healthy squad could do. The Suns are an example of a team that second guessed themselves and mad a bad move. Undo the Shaq trade and they may have had a better shot.

Posted by: mark | July 7, 2008 12:54 PM | Report abuse

It seems we're forgetting that a HEALTHY Etan Thomas will be the backup center and AB will be AJ's caddy at the 4. One can only hope that AJ's professionalism has a positive effect on Blatche who is 21 and has a lot of upside. It looks to me that Songaila's playing time will hinge on whether AB plays minutes at the 3 or if EJ gives D-Mac a longer look. The positive is we have more depth and that should translate into CB3 and AJ hopefully playing fewer minutes.

McGee is a very nice, long-term project. Anyone who is expecting much out of a 20-yr. old kid who started one season in the WAC this year is deluding themselves. I see him picking up more PT in his 2nd and 3rd year as Thomas and Songaila are likely on their way out as their contracts start to expire and their play declines. It's a nice situation to have some veterans to mentor the younger players, but it falls on EJ and his staff to development them.

Posted by: wizfan89 | July 7, 2008 12:56 PM | Report abuse

The Wizards will never win, Pollin is a cheapskate, Grunfeld makes the most horrible trades and drafts, Arenas knee will never heal plus he's a terrible point guard, Jamison is just old and avoids contact, Haywood is too soft, Nick Young turns the ball over too much, Daniels is old and slow, Stevenson is overrated, Blatche is undisciplined, Songaila can't jump, Butler can't guard Lebron, Dominic can't shoot, all Etan can do is wave his elbows after a rebound....

I hate the Wizards, I want the Wizards to move to the Key Arena, but only if Abe sells the team to Ted Leonsis, Ernie gets fired, Eddie's contract is rescinded, and the whole roster is blown up.
Ka-boom!

Posted by: Seattle fan | July 7, 2008 12:58 PM | Report abuse

Ivan?

Posted by: Anonymous | July 7, 2008 1:04 PM | Report abuse

"Interior scoring ... BTH doesn't get many chances on this team."

There's a good reason for that (one we've discussed many, many times).

"Interior rebounding ... We're ok in this dept, actually."

Not really.

19th in own rebounding, 19th in opponent's rebounding, with a barely positive rating in rebounding differential (+0.39). That's not really ok.

"This current iteration of the Wiz is going to have to beat teams with offense, not defense. Projecting a few years down the road, I wouldn't mind having a frontcourt that includes an old BTH, McGee, and AB."

If you're banking on winning with offense, an older slower Haywood wouldn't seem to be the ideal centerpiece, given the limited offensive capabilities of a younger, (relatively) faster Haywood. Blatche is inconsistent, at best, on offense, and McGee wasn't exactly known as a scorer coming out of college.

That's some serious projecting.

Posted by: kalorama | July 7, 2008 1:07 PM | Report abuse

"The Suns are an example of a team that second guessed themselves and mad a bad move. Undo the Shaq trade and they may have had a better shot."

Based on what? They never managed to win a title (or make it as far as the finals) before Shaq. There's no particular reason to think that sticking with the same thing that hadn't worked for years before was going to work this time around. It's fair to criticize them for possibly making the wrong move in going after Shaq, but there's no reason to think they'd have been better off making no move at all.

Posted by: kalorama | July 7, 2008 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Positives going into next year: we won 3 of 4 from Boston, 1 of 3 from Detroit who is aging, and Cleveland has one of the oldest teams in the league (3 top big men are all 33 or older). Orlando is the team we should be most concerned about since they are a good PG away from making it to the next level.

Assuming we maintain the health we had in 2005-2006, Arenas returns to his pre-injury form, and our youngsters continue to improve, we should be able to get the 4th seed and have homecourt, which has proven to be a huge factor in the early rounds. Boston and Detroit are both older teams whose stars are up there in years. Please check the games missed by their starters last year and you'll see they were near the bottom in missed games. The key is not burning out your starters during the regular season, which is a problem the depleted Wizards faced the last two year. EJ is only partly to blame since we had almost no experienced depth last year and a 11-man roster.

Posted by: wizfan89 | July 7, 2008 1:23 PM | Report abuse

"The Suns are an example of a team that second guessed themselves and mad a bad move. Undo the Shaq trade and they may have had a better shot.

Posted by: mark | July 7, 2008 12:54 PM "

The Suns booted a malcontent in Marion who had asked to be traded and was probably going to opt out at the end of the season anyway. They had also brought in Grant Hill who had some overlapping abilities with Marion.

With the Marion trade, they got a veteran in Shaq with championship experience who was supposed to add toughness as the Suns got beat up by the Spurs the previous year. Also, Stoudemire was allowed to move back to his natural 4 position. Sounds like strategizing to me for a team that was close.

For the Wiz, who have experienced one and done the past 3 seasons to include one that had the big 3 healthy into the playoffs, sitting on their hands with status quo as other eastern teams get better doesn't sound like a winning strategy to me.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 7, 2008 1:31 PM | Report abuse

"Positives going into next year: we won 3 of 4 from Boston, 1 of 3 from Detroit who is aging, and Cleveland has one of the oldest teams in the league (3 top big men are all 33 or older)."

Yet Boston won the title and we didn't. How is a .33 winning percentage against a team that's been to the conference finals 6 years in a row a positive? And how old is Lebron James? Because when talking about Cleveland, he's the only name that really matters.

Posted by: kalorama | July 7, 2008 1:40 PM | Report abuse

re: the Suns...based on what most NBA 'experts' have agreed. Most of the analysts and ppl who know ball think that without the questionable suspensions, the Suns would have made it the year before.
Why blow up a first place team to try to create a favorable matchup in a playoff round that you might not even get to? That trade was made with an eye on the Spurs. It didn't work out.

Posted by: mark | July 7, 2008 2:11 PM | Report abuse

There are no positives for next year. Its going to be a long difficult season with many people getting fired at the end. Unless the franchise is satisfied with another one and done season....if we even make the playoffs. All it takes is one injury to caron or jamison and the season is over. I would say Arenas as well but we have already proved we have the same record with or without him. Good thing we gave him 111mil coming off multiple surgeries...GREAT MOVE Ernie

Posted by: Anonymous | July 7, 2008 2:14 PM | Report abuse

"The Suns are an example of a team that second guessed themselves and mad a bad move. Undo the Shaq trade and they may have had a better shot."

Not true Marion was going to opt out and leave at the end of the season. So basically they got an aging shaq for marcus banks. It was a brilliant trade if you ask me. Didnt work out to well last year but it took old shaq 2 years in Miami as well. Give the Big cactus a chance

Posted by: Anonymous | July 7, 2008 2:16 PM | Report abuse

The rebounding differential of +.40 is 14th in the league. 14 out of 30 is ok/average/not bad. I'd measure against the opponent, not the entire league. That's what's really important.
BTH should not get a lot of shots on this team with the Big 3 and I think everyone here agrees with that.
I think you misunderstood me. Winning with offense is THIS iteration, not the one years from now. We have the current youngish, slow Haywood and I thin kwe can win with him. The projected Wiz team will have more talent on defense assuming we keep the current roster intact.

Posted by: mark | July 7, 2008 2:17 PM | Report abuse

"re: the Suns...based on what most NBA 'experts' have agreed. Most of the analysts and ppl who know ball think that without the questionable suspensions, the Suns would have made it the year before."

An analysis I agree with. But that doesn't change the fact that the analysis is functionally irrelevant. The fact is that they didn't make it. And in the end, that's all that matters.

Posted by: kalorama | July 7, 2008 2:19 PM | Report abuse

Where is the Wiz Summer League roster? It is supposed to be posted by now.

Posted by: Wizzy | July 7, 2008 2:20 PM | Report abuse

Even with Marion with one foot out the door, they had a pretty decent shot THIS year, I thought. Who knows? Maybe a trophy would have kept him in Phoenix. They got more than just Shaq. They also got a couple of years of that monstrous salary, which could hinder future moves, right?
Cmon, Anon, You gotta know the Big Cactus has nothing left.

Posted by: mark | July 7, 2008 2:21 PM | Report abuse

"I'd measure against the opponent, not the entire league. That's what's really important."

You can't arbitrarily separate one from the other. The overall rating is a function of the cumulative ratings against each individual opponent. So, unless the Wizards play opponents who aren't in the league, they're both connected.

Posted by: kalorama | July 7, 2008 2:22 PM | Report abuse

As long as Gilbert and jamison are both on the court you can say goodbye to Defense. We will give up over 100 again this year and I will bet anyone on that. Last year we were able to play very good team D b/c we only had one person who we had to cover for at most times. When Gil and Jamison are out there together the team can only do so much. They can make up for 1 person but not 2. The D is like swiss cheese when both are out there we will be giving up about 105 no doubt.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 7, 2008 2:25 PM | Report abuse

"BTH should not get a lot of shots on this team with the Big 3 and I think everyone here agrees with that. "

The fact that some people routinely complain about it suggests otherwise.

Posted by: kalorama | July 7, 2008 2:25 PM | Report abuse

"Even with Marion with one foot out the door, they had a pretty decent shot THIS year, I thought. Who knows? Maybe a trophy would have kept him in Phoenix. They got more than just Shaq. They also got a couple of years of that monstrous salary, which could hinder future moves, right?
Cmon, Anon, You gotta know the Big Cactus has nothing left.

Posted by: mark | July 7, 2008 2:21 PM "

One aspect that parallels with Gilby and what Gilby lovers always argue is that having Shaq on the team raises the profile of the Suns and brings people to the arena. Win or lose more games is another issue, same with Gilby.

I think Shaq had 2 years on his contract when he got traded, so after next season, he'll be off the books.

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 7, 2008 2:25 PM | Report abuse

Wizfan89/voice of reason, Agreed on the youngster. It may be a while before he has a real impact on this team.

Kal, would you say that trading the best defensive player (better than Raja by most accounts cuz he guards multiple positions) and their best rebounder for Shaq while they were in first place was a good gamble? I hated it for Phoenix when it was announced. As I'm sure you know by now, I'm a proponent of running and high octane offense. I wanted to see a running team win it or at least get close so that copycats teams would open it up and make the games more exciting.

Well, the trade did not work out for the Suns. As you say, that's all that matters. Hindsight is, of course, 20/20. In Hindsight, that trade was not a good one.

Posted by: mark | July 7, 2008 2:27 PM | Report abuse

Cmon, Anon, You gotta know the Big Cactus has nothing left


I'm not giving up on him yet. He put up solid numbers in pheonix. If that team is contending he will stay in shape and play hard and be a huge part of anything they do.

He's old but I would give up haywood/etan and more to have him. Don't want his contract but hes better than any of our big men.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 7, 2008 2:27 PM | Report abuse

"Well, the trade did not work out for the Suns. As you say, that's all that matters. Hindsight is, of course, 20/20. In Hindsight, that trade was not a good one."


How did it not work out? It was a complete wash. They would have lost 1st round to the spurs with or without shawn. They werent going to win anything with shawn Marion. Also all these people that talk about how good of a Defender he is are crazy. He might have been the suns best defender but league wise he is below avergae.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 7, 2008 2:31 PM | Report abuse

There are only about 10-15 players in the entire league that play Defense until the playoffs start. Then about 25-30 people in the league play D.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 7, 2008 2:34 PM | Report abuse

I checked hoopshype and Shaq is on the books for 2 more seasons. 2008/9 and 2009/10.

Gotta disagree, Kal. In this case you CAN separate them and it isn't arbitrary. We're ranked 19th in the overall number of rebounds per game at 41.59. The crucial stat is how many rebounds you get as opposed to how many your opponent gets. If we'd been dead last in rebounds per game at 36 yet held our opponents to 33, we'd be in good shape. The 36 rebounds per would put at 30th in the league but compared to the opponents 33, we'd be at +3 and in good shape.
I'm not really trying to argue the point but just emphasize that among our many weaknesses, rebounding isn't the greatest of them.

Posted by: mark | July 7, 2008 2:36 PM | Report abuse

"I'm not really trying to argue the point but just emphasize that among our many weaknesses, rebounding isn't the greatest of them."

I have to agree. You can put in Health, Defense and Coaching ahead.

Posted by: Roy | July 7, 2008 2:49 PM | Report abuse

anon, I think the Suns kinda lost their mojo and identity when they had to slow it down for Shaq's glacially paced azz to come upcourt (or downcourt). We'll never know what would have happened but I'd personally take the Marion team over the Shaq one.
You'd give up BTH for Shaq? You know Shaq has been notoriously poor at defending the pick and roll. Plus, we don't have to take BTH out at the end of games. There's No Hack-a-Wood strategy that would cause us to lose games.
No thank you to Shaq for me.

Posted by: mark | July 7, 2008 2:50 PM | Report abuse

Anon, you're right on about individual defense. The best teams collapse and help out. It's good to have one guy who can try lock down but it's all about helping out with great defensive teams.

Posted by: mark | July 7, 2008 2:53 PM | Report abuse

Ernie missed an excellent chance to blow this roster up and rebuild around Butler. That Jamison contract is going to come back and bite them by year 2 and who knows about Arenas anymore? When was the last time a player came back from TWO knee surgeries within one year of each other and approached anything resembling his former self? If anyone thinks re-signing Roger Mason is the missing piece they are crazy.

Posted by: Non-believer | July 7, 2008 3:25 PM | Report abuse

No new news yet.

Does EG have to wait until after July 9 where he signs AJ and Gilby before he makes another move?

Is he waiting for the new salary cap figure to be announced?

Earth to mars!!!

Ivan, is that Stella hangover that bad?!?!

Posted by: DC Man88 | July 7, 2008 3:46 PM | Report abuse

Aaron Miles is playing for the Dallas Mavericks in the Las Vegas summer league, still hoping to catch an NBA ride.

The Wizards' first game will be on Monday July 14. I suspect they may not have the final roster until tomorrow or Wednesday.

Posted by: rgz | July 7, 2008 5:39 PM | Report abuse

^^^^ I guess I was wrong, just looked at Dallas's summer team and Miles is not on it. I got the info about Miles on the Dallas team from an online video interview on the KUSports page.

Posted by: rgz | July 7, 2008 5:44 PM | Report abuse

"Gotta disagree, Kal. In this case you CAN separate them and it isn't arbitrary. We're ranked 19th in the overall number of rebounds per game at 41.59. The crucial stat is how many rebounds you get as opposed to how many your opponent gets. If we'd been dead last in rebounds per game at 36 yet held our opponents to 33, we'd be in good shape. The 36 rebounds per would put at 30th in the league but compared to the opponents 33, we'd be at +3 and in good shape."

That's a rather convenient spinning of the stats. And, no offense, it's also bull. On several levels.

To take the last first: If the Wizards had a +3 rebound differential, rebounding might not be as much of a problem. But they don't. They have a positive differential of just barely 1/3 of a rebound. That means they live on the razor's edge of being beaten on the boards on any given night. Which means they lack to ability to dominate opponents in a crucial category needed to help win games. Which puts the lie to all the hubbub about the value of their "length."

As for your analogy: let's take that same reasoning and apply it to defense. Let's imagine that the Wizards gave up 105 ppg. By itself, that number implies a team that played essentially no defense and, taken on its own, that would be a serious concern. But at the same time, let's say that the Wizards themselves scored 105.5 ppg. According to your line of reasoning, they would be in fine shape, because as long as they averaged more points than their opponents, then they would be on the right side of the scoreboard. As you say that would be the "crucial stat."

So following your reasoning to its logical conclusion, there'd be no reason to worry or complain about defense, because no matter how many points they gave up, they'd be fine as long as they averaged a fraction of a point more than their opponents. Thus no one would have any cause for concern or complaint about the team's defense.

But we both know that's not how it works.

"I'm not really trying to argue the point but just emphasize that among our many weaknesses, rebounding isn't the greatest of them."

You're right, you aren't arguing the point because I never made that point. To wit: I never said rebounding was the team's "greatest weakness," but it is, undeniably, a weakness, and it's a weakness that will require more than the development of McGee to correct.

Posted by: kalorama | July 7, 2008 5:56 PM | Report abuse

"Kal, would you say that trading the best defensive player (better than Raja by most accounts cuz he guards multiple positions) and their best rebounder for Shaq while they were in first place was a good gamble?"

It's not a question of whether it was good gamble, it's a question of whether it was a necessary gamble.

Given the framing of your question, I assume you didn't read (or chose to ignore) the post where I said:

It's fair to criticize them for possibly making the wrong move in going after Shaq, but there's no reason to think they'd have been better off making no move at all.

My point and position remain that there was no reason to think they were going to win a title if they did nothing. Was trading for Shaq the right move? We won't really know the answer to that until the "Shaq era" is over. If it ends without them winning a title, then, as I've already said, it's fair to say it wasn't the right move. But (A) we don't know that yet and (B) they had to do something, because sticking with the same formula wasn't producing the desired results.

Posted by: kalorama | July 7, 2008 6:04 PM | Report abuse

Ivan,

Where is the summer league roster? Please give us your best guess on playing time in the summer league and what the coaches plan to accomplish

Posted by: ksm | July 7, 2008 6:08 PM | Report abuse

The summer league roster is listed on bulletsforever.com

Posted by: Rook | July 7, 2008 6:35 PM | Report abuse

Ivan, where are you my man? We've got other sites blatantly advertising in the comments, DBag88 posting the same Stella Artois joke twice, and a debate on the Phoenix Suns. We need a real update.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 7, 2008 7:50 PM | Report abuse

Figured Wallace would be on the roster. Looks like he'll get a few minutes.

# Andray Blatche 6-11 South Kent Prep (CT)
# Vytas Danelius 6-9 Wake Forest
# Dontaye Draper 5-11 Charleston
# Frank Elegar 6-9 Drexel
# Gary Forbes 6-7 Massachusetts
# Dominic McGuire 6-9 Fresno St.
# Taj McCullough 6-7 Winthrop
# JaVale McGee 7-0 Nevada
# Oleksiy Pecherov 7-0 Ukraine
# Mike Peeples 6-6 Fairleigh Dickinson
# Jason Rich 6-3 Florida State
# Will Thomas 6-7 George Mason
# Vladimir Veremeenko 6-10 Belarus
# Jonathan Wallace 6-1 Georgetown
# Nick Young 6-7 USC

Posted by: pg posse | July 7, 2008 8:36 PM | Report abuse

wow, reading some of the Miami summer league posts, seems like Beasley and Chalmers did really well. Chalmers better than Rose, played good defense based on their web site - Miami.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 7, 2008 8:47 PM | Report abuse


Mugsy Bogues, Calbert Cheaney and Manute Bol have verbal agreements to sign with the Wizards! Buhahahahahahahahaha.

Posted by: Baller4Life | July 7, 2008 8:48 PM | Report abuse

wow, reading Miami's summer league comments and it seems like Beasley and Chalmers did well. Chalmers played good defense on Rose and it seems like they are very pleased--he looked better than Rose, based on the comments. Beasley already has a cracked sternum or something, wearing a brace already. He had 28-10 and didnt play much.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 7, 2008 8:53 PM | Report abuse

The genius EG could have drafted Chalmers at 18 or traded down to get him.

Posted by: Baller4Life | July 7, 2008 9:25 PM | Report abuse

# Andray Blatche 6-11 South Kent Prep (CT)
# Vytas Danelius 6-9 Wake Forest
# Dontaye Draper 5-11 Charleston
# Frank Elegar 6-9 Drexel
# Gary Forbes 6-7 Massachusetts
# Dominic McGuire 6-9 Fresno St.
# Taj McCullough 6-7 Winthrop
# JaVale McGee 7-0 Nevada
# Oleksiy Pecherov 7-0 Ukraine
# Mike Peeples 6-6 Fairleigh Dickinson
# Jason Rich 6-3 Florida State
# Will Thomas 6-7 George Mason
# Vladimir Veremeenko 6-10 Belarus
# Jonathan Wallace 6-1 Georgetown
# Nick Young 6-7 USC

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All scrubs. Buhahahhahahahahaha. Esp. OPec. LMAO!

Posted by: Baller4Life | July 7, 2008 9:28 PM | Report abuse

(B) they had to do something, because sticking with the same formula wasn't producing the desired results.

Posted by: kalorama | July 7, 2008 6:04 PM

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

Using this logic, then this offseason the Wizards should have "had" to do something as well. Up to this point, the Wizards have yet to produce the desired results, much like the Suns - and the makeup of the two teams were remarkably similar (3 all-stars, 1 at the end of his prime - AJ vs. Nash - 1 in the midst of his prime - Butler vs. Marion - and 1 younger guy entering his prime - Gil vs. Stoudemire. You could even go further with these two and say both were youngsters with potentially career-altering knee injuries, though Stoudemire has proved to move past that).

I agree the end result is what's going to matter. If the Suns end up winning a title with Shaq, there can't and won't be any arguing. And likewise if the Wizards end up rebounding and win a title, then they were "right" in their moves. But if neither end up creating the desired results, there will ALWAYS be "what-ifs" asked, and a degree of "wrong" will be labeled on the critical GM opportunities.

But I for one will never say that a team in 1st place with current all-stars and good on-court chemistry should "have" to make a move, unless it's an absolute steal (like Gasol for 10 cents on the dollar). In this case, it was not. This book isn't closed yet, but the incoming results aren't looking too hot. (And as much of a headache as Marion may have been off the court, he fit perfectly with their style on the court).

Posted by: psps23 | July 7, 2008 9:28 PM | Report abuse

"Ernie missed an excellent chance to blow this roster up and rebuild around Butler." - Non-believer

i'm not sure butler is the type of player you build a team around. he is by no means one of the most dominating players in the nba. and he has yet to show he can raise his game to another level in the playoffs. the best thing about him right now is his performance-per-dollar. we were lucky to sign him to an extension before he reached his first all-star game. as a result, he's relatively "cheap." but he's also never played a full nba season. in fact, in 6 seasons, he's only played more than 65 games twice.

i'm not saying either jamison or arenas is someone you build around, but butler isn't either. if we had renounced both arenas and jamison, we would have had about $17 million or so to spend. we could've made a run at brand. or tried to overspend on josh smith and hoped that atlanta wouldn't match. but we wouldn't have enough money to sign two big name guys. maybe davis and maggette, but would that really be a better team?

we could've not signed anyone, and regressed for the next few years, i guess...then hoped we could land one of the possible unrestricted free agents of 2010, or boozer next season.

another thing to consider...if all of our big three prove to play just as well this upcoming season as they have when healthy in the recent past, but we still don't improve as a team, each of those players is a tradable asset. arenas is expensive, but an expensive pg, who is 26, averaging 28pts and 6asts is still very highly regarded. jamison would be oldish, but if he continues to prove that age is not affecting him, he becomes a moderately priced 20/9 a night player. and butler is an all-star pf making less than $10 mil a year.

so one could argue that resigning both arenas and jamison allows us more options to rebuild more quickly the next few seasons via trades.

Posted by: JC | July 7, 2008 9:35 PM | Report abuse

I didn't spin the stats. Numbers don't lie. The delta is what matters, not totals. Winning by an average score of 80-77 is the same as winning by an average score of 105-102.
Applying this to a different sport, it's what allowed a poor Bears team to dominate a couple years ago even though their offense sucked. They scored few. Their opponents scored fewer. Our rebounding is ok, as I stated in my initial posting. OK=average. 14 out of 30 is almost exactly average.

Posted by: mark | July 7, 2008 10:02 PM | Report abuse

Moving on,
Brook Lopez had 5 fouls and no rebounds in 19+ minutes in the first summer league game. Thank goodness he wasn't available for us to screw up on. I'm calling bust on this guy and his brother. Poor man's Joakim (I also called bust on him last year)

Posted by: mark | July 7, 2008 10:09 PM | Report abuse

This is the ho that Gil left Laura for.

http://thesuperficial.com/2008/07/mya_in_a_bikini.php

Posted by: Anonymous | July 7, 2008 11:07 PM | Report abuse

I'm back! Listen up my pupils. This team has made a serious mistake in resignig to players who could not guard their shadow. What a terrible mistake by management to spend that kind of money 111 mil. on a player with a bum knee.

This team should trade Blatche to Golden State for Stephen Jackson and a second round pick to add some toghness. He is a guy who could handle Labron James.

Even the new world champs shook up the line!

Posted by: thegodfather | July 8, 2008 12:44 AM | Report abuse

All scrubs. Buhahahhahahahahaha. Esp. OPec. LMAO!

Posted by: Baller4Life | July 7, 2008 9:28 PM
So when do you move to Oklahoma City "baller"?

Posted by: Anonymous | July 8, 2008 2:13 AM | Report abuse

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Posted by: carrie | July 15, 2008 5:40 AM | Report abuse

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