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Butler update


Just touched down after scary flight from New Orleans to national airport. The wind had the thing moving but the pilot came through with a gritty effort and landed that baby anyway. Man......

Caron Butler, who has missed the last three games with a sprained left ankle, underwent an MRI exam today. The results were consistent with the initial diagnosis and he will continue to be listed as day-to-day. The Wizards were off today but practice tomorrow and play at Boston Friday night. The team is 2-1 without Butler after last night's loss at New Orleans.

Last night, Butler said he was still unable to push off of the left foot. I'll have an update for you after practice tomorrow. Happy New Years!

By Ivan Carter  |  December 31, 2008; 4:38 PM ET
 
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Next: Butler will likely play

Comments

Wizards Year So Far + Last Day of the Year, figures you'd get turbulence on your last ride home for 2008!

Glad you made it back safely Ivan, hopefully we start the new year off with some better news all the way around.

Posted by: jmg878 | December 31, 2008 4:58 PM | Report abuse

Ivan,

I drive under the BWI airpath on Rt.100 going to work and there's been times where I have genuinelly seen planes rock so bad in the wind they look like they are flying sideways.

Very scary!

Thanks for the Caron news and Happy New Year!

- Ray

Posted by: rmcazz | December 31, 2008 5:56 PM | Report abuse

Just touched down after scary flight from New Orleans to national airport

See, covering the Wizards is exciting despite the critics claims.

Not as scary at this, I hope: Yikes.

Posted by: SteveMG | December 31, 2008 6:39 PM | Report abuse

Happy New Year, Wizards! I guess the Wizards can join most of the rest of us in wishing 2009 will be better than 2008.

Unfortunately for the Wiz, injuries are part of the game even when the starters aren't overplayed. It's too bad that injuries are the only way for young players to see the light of day in Washington.

The young players need playing time and support to improve -- and we need them to improve.

For example, under EJ, Blatche played only 17 minutes a game. He got a lot of bad press. Most fans had written him off. Kallie said there were only a few teams in the league who would even take him.

Under ET, Blatche has played over 25 minutes a game. On a forty minute basis, he is averaging 18 points and 10 boards a game.

On a per minute basis, his points and rebounds have increased about 15% under ET. More telling, his turnovers on a forty minute basis are down from 4.5 to 2.1. He's playing with more confidence, knowing he won't get yanked for every silly mistake.

Given his recent performance, it pays to remember that the dude is only 22, has played the equivalent of only one year in the NBA, and is being used out of his natural position. That means that he has a lot more upside if developed further.

I hate to lecture, but the organization needs to learn this lesson and get focused on developing all of its young players, particularly including McGee.

Without doing that, best case with the current crop of vets is one and out (forever).

Posted by: Izman | December 31, 2008 6:42 PM | Report abuse

Sit Caron down until he's fully healed. What does he have to play for anyway?

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | December 31, 2008 7:24 PM | Report abuse

dcman88 writes: "Sit Caron down until he's fully healed. What does he have to play for anyway?"

For one thing, he has to show he's earning all those millions of dollars... Abe Pollin has a thing about paying for nothing. He's already doing that with Arenas.

But Butler and Jamison are playing more than they should, given the Wiz' prospects for the remainder of the season. Jamison went for 42 minutes in New Orleans. I think the fans get their money's worth from a solid 30 minutes of hard playing a night -- including the whole 4th quarter. There are several other worthy vets on the squad to mix in with the kiddie corps. And when Gilbert does come back -- he is coming back, right? -- you've got a chance to show some real improvement at season's end.

You don't want to blow that high lottery pick, guys. It's your best chance, and you know it.

Posted by: Samson151 | December 31, 2008 7:31 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for all the work this year. The behind-the-scenes moments are great. Thanks again. And a very Happy New Year.

Posted by: joe2chase | December 31, 2008 9:21 PM | Report abuse

"For one thing, he has to show he's earning all those millions of dollars... Abe Pollin has a thing about paying for nothing. He's already doing that with Arenas.

Posted by: Samson151 | December 31, 2008 7:31 PM "

Caron, I don't believe, is in a contract year. I think he's got two left including this one.

Even if his current contract were coming to a close, there's no guarantee that he would want to return here to a perennial losing franchise that's not willing to "do whatever it takes" to win unless ownership changes.

Also, I think Les BouleS might let him walk for compensation b/c too many contracts are coming due on this team, nevermind the free agents that will hit the market.

Les BouleS are already paying Gilby franchise money and locked in with AJ for the next 4 years with another big contract.

So, I doubt if they want to or can afford another high dollar guy on this mediocre one and done playoff team.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | December 31, 2008 10:16 PM | Report abuse

Happy New Years Everyone!!

Brought my New Years Cooking and watching my Tarheels dismantle Nevada.

You know them Tarheels do it all. They Jack it up First, They Run to the Hoop, They Set it Up, They D', and most importantly they play their game, they don't waste time adjusting to the other team.

Ivan, there is a lesson to be learned here. The Wizards are as athletic and are capable of playing this way. But why they appear to be one way in there play is a mystery to me.

For the New Year Ivan, can you kinda get the Wizards to open it up a bit.

Happy New Years, LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 1, 2009 1:11 AM | Report abuse

MeTawn throws up 25 shots from the field but only manages 4 attempts at the FT line.

HUH?!?!

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | December 30, 2008 10:52 PM

DC_MAN88,

That is a direct result of slow ball coaching. And he missed two of them free throws. You can't work up no grove walking the rock up the court. Just sorry, he should have made all four.

But, you cannot get free throws setting up half court offense for good shots. In order to get maximum fouls you must UpTempo the ball. You cannot blame AJ for playing slow ball.

That is the coaching philosophy of Ed Tapscott.

DC_MAN88 I'm with you, but MeTawn as you call him is one of the best Damn Players in the NBA and there are many.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 1, 2009 1:38 AM | Report abuse

Ivan,
In your tenure as beat reporter, isn't this the first time that an MRI has actually *confirmed* the diagnosis initially offered by the Wiz medical staff? It's a miracle! I can already tell '09's going to be a great year.

Posted by: TheFunBunch | January 1, 2009 6:57 AM | Report abuse

Need some help...is it just me being critical or does AJ take more long two pointers than anyone in the game. My point is that i think he means to take 3's and his foot is always on the line. The long two is probably the worst shot in the game. Anyone agree?

Posted by: IZZY3 | January 1, 2009 9:55 AM | Report abuse

Where is Larry Hughes? Not here yet.

Posted by: JoeC2 | January 1, 2009 10:12 AM | Report abuse

"DC_MAN88 I'm with you, but MeTawn as you call him is one of the best Damn Players in the NBA and there are many.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 1, 2009 1:38 AM "

I've never questioned MeTawn's ability to score and rebound.

His problems are that he's a weak defender (has the skills, just not the heart), he can't make his man pay by going to the free throw line, he avoids contact, and his career has shown that despite how much he's getting paid, he doesn't have the ability to take the team by the throat and carry the team.

He's a stats guy. He'll get his points, win or lose.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | January 1, 2009 10:20 AM | Report abuse

Happy New Year to all. I hope a year from now we are talking about another Zards playoff run cause this year it certainly ain't happening.

Interesting thoughts about Jamison by DCMan88. (By the way, let me say that I greatly appreciate the tone of your posts now so I don't skip them as in the past. keep it up!) Let me deconstruct the statement you made:

"I've never questioned MeTawn's ability to score and rebound. His problems are that he's a weak defender (has the skills, just not the heart), he can't make his man pay by going to the free throw line, he avoids contact"

The raw numbers verify the fact that he can "score and rebound" so this is unarguable. I think some on this site think he only gets easy boards. No. He works hard and battles and gets some tough ones as well despite the fact that he doesn't have great hops. This is savvy, veteran skill and great anticipation of ball flight.

"weak defender"- I agree. I watched Gil MacGregor the analyst for the Hornets on their feed the other night online and every time AJ scored he reminded the audience that he scores but he can't play D so go back at him. It was ridiculous, but true.

"has the skills, not the heart" I absolutely think you have the reason reversed. His lack of foot speed and his lack of jumping ability are his liabilities. I suggest that he makes up for them as best he can through hustle and heart. He does all that scooping and floating and twisting to the hoops to compensate for lack of ability to just sky over guys. I am not calling him non-athletic because it takes athleticism to score as he does. But it is not the classic, NBA air show that we often see.
I think he has tons of heart and I think he should ultimately be our 6th man. He is too slow to guard other small forwards and too weak to guard power forwards. Off the bench he could play against second stringers, get 22-25 minutes a game, be the leader in the locker room, and it would extend his career. I think playing 38-40 minutes this year is utterly ridiculous at this point. They paid him all that money and now they are gonna burn him out.

BmoreRev

Posted by: stanlong23 | January 1, 2009 11:31 AM | Report abuse

"Interesting thoughts about Jamison by DCMan88. (By the way, let me say that I greatly appreciate the tone of your posts now so I don't skip them as in the past. keep it up!) Let me deconstruct the statement you made:

The raw numbers verify the fact that he can "score and rebound" so this is unarguable. I think some on this site think he only gets easy boards. No. He works hard and battles and gets some tough ones as well despite the fact that he doesn't have great hops. This is savvy, veteran skill and great anticipation of ball flight.

Posted by: stanlong23 | January 1, 2009 11:31 AM "

Strange things happen when the site admin restructures the blog and prevents people from posting comments using your handle and/or using multiple log in names to attack you.

I do think MeTawn gets easy boards. He takes long shots, which results in long rebounds, so those players clustered under the rim probably are at a disadvantage.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | January 1, 2009 1:44 PM | Report abuse

BmoreRev... I think you have it right and that the 6th man role is AJ's destiny with the Wizards... but not immediately.

My guess is probably by the end of next season or certainly during 2010-11... It all depends on whether Blatche continues to show the progress he has of late, McGee can be developed more predictably, McGuire can develop as even a fourth-option scoring threat to complement his defense and/or we can pick up a legit 4 in this year's rather thin draft (if Gil returns we could also exlpore packaging our pick and Mike James to OKC for Chris Wilcox). The variables that will affect AJ's PT and long term durability (he could be a real contributor into his late 30s if his body holds up) are unfortunately not within his control.

Now AJ did play too many minutes and probably jacked up too many out of range shots against the Hornets, but unlike the two previous games (when he averaged 29.5 points and 7 rebounds) he was not getting the same level of scoring help he got against OKC and Houston.

It is pretty scary when your team goes 1-11 from 3 point range and the one you hit is a 45 foot prayer at the first half buzzer.

With Gil still out and Caron down for probably one or two more games (it would be good if he was healed enough to return for the Cleveland game on Sunday, as I think the Cavs are in a downswing right now), AJ has to be "the Man" for this team.

Glad you survived the scary landing at DCA, Ivan... I have heard that most pilots consider it a tricky approach and in my "road warrior" days I had my share of white knuckle landings, including at least three aborts where the pilot had to basically climb hard at the instant before his landing gear would have touched and try again, at National.

Posted by: khrabb | January 1, 2009 1:51 PM | Report abuse

Chris Broussard of ESPN said this morning that he has spoken with Gil and Gil definitely plans to play this season - is shooting for February. That he has been practicing and working out and definitely does not want to go 2 years without playing despite the Wizards record. My question: Why wait until February?

Ivan, can you get an update on this for us? Also, what about Brendan?

Posted by: Lisa_R | January 1, 2009 2:26 PM | Report abuse

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