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Wizards (6-24) at Celtics (28-5), Stevenson out (back)


Update: Andray Blatche rolled his left ankle early in the game, briefly returned and is now out for the remainder of the game.

Information on tonight's game:

-Wiz G DeShawn Stevenson is out with a lower back issue that he said has been bothering him since training camp. Steveonson said an x-ray revealed a disk problem that in turn is causing him problems with his legs. He said he expects to miss no more than 2 1/2 weeks. Stevenson last missed a game on April 13, 2005 when he missed a game as a member of the Orlando Magic to attend the birth of his daughter.

"It's tough because I hate leaving my teammates hanging," Stevenson said. "It's just something I have to take my time and get right."

-Wiz F Caron Butler, who missed the last three games with a srained left anke, will start.

Wiz starters: Mike James, Caron Butler, Dominic McGuire, Antawn Jamison, Andray Blatche.

Celtics starters: Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, Kendrick Perkins, Ray Allen, Rajon Rondo.

Line: Celtics by 14 1/2.

Notables: Huge tests tonight for McGuire and Blatche. McGuire will likely see time defending Ray Allen and Paul Pierce while Blatche will see a lot of Garnett...Boston has lost three of four...Boston is 17-1 at home...With Stevenson out, interim coach Ed Tapscott said Nick Young and Javaris Crittenton will see more action.

By Ivan Carter  |  January 2, 2009; 5:44 PM ET
 
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Next: Celtics 108, Wizards 83

Comments

Are the Wiz trying to follow the Caps' blueprint with this injury situation?! lol.

And I'm not sure how much Blatche will cover KG if he's the center. Who would cover Perkins then? Jamison?! that's not a good matchup...

Posted by: sargeantmofo | January 2, 2009 6:56 PM | Report abuse

What a blessing in disguise. It's noble of DS to be a warrior and play through the pain, but it was obviously affecting his play. It'll be great to see some of the young'uns getting his minutes - let's hope they can produce.

Posted by: tigerquoll | January 2, 2009 7:09 PM | Report abuse

His game was just starting to come around. This may be Critt's opportunity, but I think we'll see 30 minutes of NY and 20 minutes of Dixon. We'll lose on the defensive end with them getting most of the minutes at 2, but we'll gain offensively.

NY has to step up for us to have any chance. We aren't gonna beat these guys on the defensive end. We'll need some offensive production at the 2 to wear out Ray Allen. We will need to keep pace and hope for some big shots and key rebounds down the stretch.

Posted by: jones-y | January 2, 2009 7:24 PM | Report abuse

So bad for DStev. All the wrath he got from so many of us...turns out he's had this medical issue all along and it could be attributal to his woeful play.

Get well DStev and we'll see you back at top of your game.

Let us find out that injuries might be our ally....as I see AB now hobbling to the locker room. Hope it is not serious, but it forces minutes for JM.

LarryInClintonMD

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 2, 2009 8:00 PM | Report abuse

Seems like Boston ain't taking no prisoners.

You got to at least give JM time to work up a sweat, get in a groove, if not, put Etan in from the get go. Man.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 2, 2009 8:07 PM | Report abuse

Boston is focused.

With JC and NY together they want to run. That's good.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 2, 2009 8:15 PM | Report abuse

I like JC.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 2, 2009 8:22 PM | Report abuse

I think JCs got it. He is smart. He is team first. That is rare.

You are crazy to keep this guy on the bench.

You have found your point guard.

LarryInClintonMD.

Did I mention he wants to Run' the Ball'.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 2, 2009 8:30 PM | Report abuse

YEAH,YEAH,YEAH....WHATEVER Boston's slapping us around like a pimp slaps a ho on fourteenth street!!! and Andray rolled his ankle poor baby ever heard of tape Dray? oh yeah can't risk that ankle,need it for later at "club love".

Posted by: dargregmag | January 2, 2009 8:41 PM | Report abuse

At this point, is it safe to say that Javale McGee is not in ETaps plans?

I think that is an impeachable offense.

Impeach him I say, Impeach him. What you say my good friend? Ay or Nay?

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 2, 2009 8:45 PM | Report abuse

JaVale was just starting to build confidence and play well. Then Tap benched him and has hardly played him at all the last several weeks. Now he's a shadow of his earlier-season self.

As a fan, I feel robbed...

Posted by: sargeantmofo | January 2, 2009 8:50 PM | Report abuse

i'm sorry im pretty pissed right now....we're down by 30 and NY, McGee, and JCrit are getting 3-5 min in hte game? I'm sorry but Tapscott has to be the biggest idiot in the NBA, GIVE THEM SOME PT

Posted by: insanity999 | January 2, 2009 9:14 PM | Report abuse

Ok now is the time to let the young guns play the whole 4 quarter. The season is already lost and we're down by 30 points. No point of playing the vets what more can they do. If etap doesnt do this then it's time for him to tap elsewhere.

Posted by: demonj21 | January 2, 2009 9:21 PM | Report abuse

Rondo 14 ast Wizards 18 ast?
Jamison 6-20 0-3 tpa?

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | January 2, 2009 9:23 PM | Report abuse

Look at Doc Rivers. He is becoming more and more like Phil Jackson. Give a pupil his instruction and let him go and achieve. No need to stand on the sideline barking while the the pupil is trying to achieve it.

Have faith in your whole team and not just part of it.

For, if your instruction is well planned, thought out and executed well in practice, then your pupils will surely follow it. All of them will and not just some of them.

And surely, if some of them are not up to your instructions in your evaluation and because of your eval' you do not give them a chance to achieve your instruct's, then, your instructions are indeniably, flawed.

You see, in order to win a championship as 78 has pointed out, It takes the whole organization.

Therefore, if any part of the org' is not doing their part, then it must be addressed accordingly, and if it is not, then the org' will not succeed.

The most glaring, faltering part, is the philosophy of play applied to team.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 2, 2009 9:32 PM | Report abuse

PBP:
9:36 WAS - O. Pecherov enters game for D. Songaila
8:53 WAS - O. Pecherov misses a 25-foot three-pointer from the right wing

Yep, just what we need from OP.

Yes, he's far down on the list of problems for this team. But, man what a stiff this guy is.

It's time to get this stated: He has no business wearing an NBA uniform.

Posted by: SteveMG | January 2, 2009 9:33 PM | Report abuse

Jeez, I'm watching this game, and thinking maybe somebody should call the cops and report an assault. Or with the kids on the floor, what about Child Protective Services?

The Celts look like they're still a tad annoyed over that Blazers' game. But I'm wondering if we're not onto something here. Any team that's under 25% wins could get handicapped to use an extra man twice in each half, just to keep the games closer.

Using horse racing as a model, we could also require the players on the better team to wear a couple extra pounds of fishing weights in a mesh belt... or maybe play with only one shoe on...

Posted by: Samson151 | January 2, 2009 9:40 PM | Report abuse

For those of you who know the game of Pinochle, there are many hands to play and different strategies from one play to another.

I cannot figure out what ETaps is doing. All good Pinochle players figure out whats going on and then you play your best to maximize your and your partners results.

I sincerely hope we don't get to the end of this season, or the end of game as in Pinochle and we find out that ETaps knows the rules, but he cannot play a damn lick.

Then we got to spend all next season doing things that should be done this Season.

Ernie G' does your boy know how to Play?!?!

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 2, 2009 9:46 PM | Report abuse

That's it! Seriously can anyone tell me what the deal with Etap and JM? This doesn't smell right.

Posted by: demonj21 | January 2, 2009 9:49 PM | Report abuse

2 minutes left in the game, and Tap pulls JaVale out of the game to put in Dixon. Is he INTENTIONALLY trying to peeve off the fans?!?! WTF IS HE DOING?!

Posted by: sargeantmofo | January 2, 2009 9:50 PM | Report abuse

Yep, just what we need from OP.

Yes, he's far down on the list of problems for this team. But, man what a stiff this guy is.

It's time to get this stated: He has no business wearing an NBA uniform.
SteveMG

I agree. What in the heck did Ernie see in this guy? He's a standstill, can't jump or move his feet player who doesn't like to work on the post. Didn't they pick up his option? Why?

Posted by: ptp23 | January 2, 2009 9:53 PM | Report abuse

In second quarter, Nick flys through the lane and throws down a dunk. As soon as he's back on defense, they pull him out of the game at the 6:47 mark and we don't see him again until the 4th quarter. Let's see, he must have made a defensive mistake. Who exactly was playing defense on the Wizards? Double Standard Tapscott is a joke.

Posted by: ptp23 | January 2, 2009 9:58 PM | Report abuse

He's a standstill, can't jump or move his feet player who doesn't like to work on the post

Exactly.

Even with most of the other European players that took 2-3+ years to develop (long list), you could see that they had some ability, they would show spurts of potential. Something that indicated that they could play.

He's got nothing at all. What has he shown that says, "Hmm, maybe in a couple of years....."?

Granted, most of his PT has come during unstructured mop-up time. But even then...

Posted by: SteveMG | January 2, 2009 9:59 PM | Report abuse

Answer to Les BouleS woes:

Greg Monroe coming out after his freshman year.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | January 2, 2009 10:01 PM | Report abuse

Greg Monroe is not what the wiz need. He is undersized (6'9) and not that big. He is a good passer and an average perimeter player.

Blake Griffin is a guy that would help the wiz. He is a rebounding machine, extremely strong, freakishly athletic and getting better on O.

Posted by: mikejc80 | January 2, 2009 10:03 PM | Report abuse

No more big men. Ricky Rubio is what we need.

Posted by: demonj21 | January 2, 2009 10:14 PM | Report abuse

OP. What in the heck did Ernie see in this guy?

Ernie never saw OP play, ABE is too cheap to fly someone overseas to scout a player.

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | January 2, 2009 10:23 PM | Report abuse

Ivan, do you know how to play Pinochle?

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 2, 2009 10:28 PM | Report abuse

"

Greg Monroe is not what the wiz need. He is undersized (6'9) and not that big. He is a good passer and an average perimeter player.

Blake Griffin is a guy that would help the wiz. He is a rebounding machine, extremely strong, freakishly athletic and getting better on O.

Posted by: mikejc80 | January 2, 2009 10:03 PM "

According to espn, Greg Monroe is 6-11, 250 lbs, and 18 years old.

By the time he matures into his body, he could be much more solid. He'd be perfect at the 4.

http://sports.espn.go.com/ncb/player/profile?playerId=41733

Blake Griffin on the other hand, is rumored to be about 6-7.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | January 2, 2009 10:29 PM | Report abuse

Let's see:

1) the starters came out flat
2) CB had not recovered but played anyway against a team 16-1 at home
3) the game was a blow out but AJ played most of the first half and logged 31 minutes for the game.
4) NY scored 15 points on 6 shots but played only 17 minutes.
5) McGee played only 11 minutes and got yanked with two minutes to go.

On the positive side, Crit played 21 minutes and looked okay on the offensive and defensive sides. (James played no D).

I wonder if EG reviews ET's coaching decisions with him after each game. Somebody needs to tell him the obvious.

Posted by: Izman | January 2, 2009 10:35 PM | Report abuse

I just saw the end of the OKC and Denver game. Durant hits a 3 with 5.3 on the clock. The house is packed and everybody is standing and cheering. Then Carmello hits a 3 from the corner to win for the Nuggets.

You can imagine how their hearts sunk when Carmello's shot went in.

I wonder how long its gonna take for the VC to get like that again.

You see, it does not always take a winning team to bring out the Fans, sometimes all it takes is the right coaching philosophy to play the right players and play with excitement and courage and know that your team is headed in the right direction.

We don't know what ETap's is doing. Not the Fans, Not the Players.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 2, 2009 10:53 PM | Report abuse

Weird that Etan Thomas and Javale McGee combined got zero rebounds. Zero. Pecherov, for all his faults, at least got some rebounds and points.

Posted by: PostSubscriber | January 2, 2009 10:54 PM | Report abuse

The Celts really showed the Wiz up for the impostors they are. It seemed like Boston had an extra guy or two on the floor, the Wiz could barely get off a pass. Our lads looked totally lost.

Critt looked okay. He may turn out to be a decent point guard, but it's way too early to tell.

I agree with all the above comments about Pech and EG's astuteness (yeah right) in drafting him.

Posted by: shovetheplanet | January 2, 2009 10:55 PM | Report abuse

Izman, I surely hope that ETaps is being evaulated. And I hope somebody knows something that we all are not seeing.

You see, when BH and GA comes back, and we get whomever from the draft, it won't make a bit of difference. Unless ETaps is one of the biggest Con Artist we've ever seen, he is killing this team and he won't know what to do with everybody on-board.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 2, 2009 11:06 PM | Report abuse

Let me see -- Arenas out, Haywood out, Thomas still trying to get his game back after heart surgery, Stevenson out for 2-3 weeks with back injury, Butler with a bad ankle, Blatche with a turned ankle, Jamison dinged up . . . .

Time to go to Plan B.

Posted by: PostSubscriber | January 2, 2009 11:09 PM | Report abuse

Larry,

ETaps is one of the biggest Con Artist we've ever seen, he is in the NBA as a coach isn'r he?

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | January 2, 2009 11:09 PM | Report abuse

How come no one can rebound? You stand in the paint long enough during the game and that's a guaranteed 5 Rebs. Bring in Dennis Rodman as an assistant coach!!!

Posted by: t-train | January 2, 2009 11:41 PM | Report abuse

Part of getting rebounds is good offense and defensive position on the floor.

Because our philosophy is bad we are always out of position and when we are in position we have the wrong player(s) on the floor.

Have you noticed on the offensive ends how many shots we take and there is no one under the basket to even attempt an O-rebound.

On defense, we switch too much instead of manning good defensive positions.

T-train, its obvious that ETaps does not teach this. Dennis Rodman new all of this and his effort made him a superior rebounder.

Dennis Rodman got his Rings but the NBA owes him several more defensive and All-Star honors that he earned but did not receive.

Postsubscriber and T-train, not getting rebounds is a telling blow to inadequate coaching philosophy.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 3, 2009 12:10 AM | Report abuse

Stucky (Pistons)picked right before Young dropped 38 tonight. Took 29 shots with Allen Iverson. Think Young would ever get 29 shots here? Ha!

Posted by: ptp23 | January 3, 2009 12:26 AM | Report abuse

Again,

I really like what little I have seen of JC. I'll be the first to admit if I'm wrong, but I think this guy is gonna be Damn Good! I think he is already better than James right now. I say with this team, he should play more, now.

LarryInClintonMD.

If ETAPS is learning on the job, then why not everybody else.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 3, 2009 12:32 AM | Report abuse

dcman88 wrote: "According to espn, Greg Monroe is 6-11, 250 lbs, and 18 years old... Blake Griffin on the other hand, is rumored to be about 6-7."

Here we go with actual height versus 'program' height (meaning what's listed in the team program.) We won't know the truth until the NBA teams start showing up with their measuring tapes.

Like last year, we learned that 6'9" PF Michael Beasley was actually 6'7"+ SF Michael Beasley. Kevin Love, in a reversal, turned out to be taller than he looked, at a shade under 6'10".

It used to be worse. Kevin McHale claims that before he started to shrink with age (we all do) he measured 7' in his socks -- a half inch shorter than Parish and a full inch or inch and a half under Bill Walton, who insisted the program list him as 6'11", for reasons known only to the Grizzly Bill.

Olajuwon and Patrick Ewing were both listed at 7' even, although when you saw them standing beside one another, Ewing appeared to have a good 2 inches on his opponent. Charles Barkley was listed at 6'5", which he might have been if they let him wear lifts in his sneakers.

So the reality is that ESPN probably has no idea how tall Greg Monroe or Blake Griffin is. They're just parroting the program.

They both look like pretty good country basketball players to me.

Posted by: Samson151 | January 3, 2009 12:49 AM | Report abuse

A team like Boston can afford to keep a roster spot or 2 for a potential prospect to develop for the future.

The Wizards with their record and lack of talent can't afford that luxury. They need to get Crittenton on the court. They need to release Pecherov and pick up a player who can actually contribute.

Posted by: Darnell1 | January 3, 2009 3:12 AM | Report abuse

Get McGee on the court too.

Posted by: Darnell1 | January 3, 2009 3:13 AM | Report abuse

Would anyone here consider a trade sending Butler, Blatche, Young and Pecherov for Carmelo Anthony?

Posted by: Darnell1 | January 3, 2009 3:20 AM | Report abuse

That's the kind of move we gotta make if this team is ever gonna do anything.

When healthy we'd have a front 5 of Haywood, Jamison, Anthony, Stevenson, Arenas. A bench of Etan, McGee, Songaila, McGuire, Dixon, Crittenton, James.

I'd make that move in a heartbeat.

Posted by: Darnell1 | January 3, 2009 3:31 AM | Report abuse

And, again, the question must be asked: Why the hell would Denver make that deal?

mark, now do you see what I was talking about? In case you're still wondering, THAT's what it looks like when a good team takes it to the Wiz full bore from the opening tip, rather than coasting through to the 4th quarter like they did in all those "close" games the Wiz have lost. Not pretty, was it?

And Pecherov is now officially done. Nothing says "bust" like being a long-armed 7-footer and having your shot partially blocked 20 feet from the basket by that noted high-flyer . . Brian Scalabrine.

Posted by: kalo_rama | January 3, 2009 4:39 AM | Report abuse

Pech sighting !! He did about what is to be expected of a guy who has the flu and hasn't played in a long time. He looked slow but at least willing on defense. He also looked like he's good enough to grab a rebound if it's anywhere near him unlike Songaila.
He stroked a 3 when he was left open but he also missed a couple. He clearly didn't have the ability to play quick forwards but may be ok against some centers.
In short, he looked a lot like AB, Mcgee and a bunch of other guys when they were getting no minutes. He's clearly been given the green light to hang around the perimeter or he wouldn't keep gravitating there. Players don't just repeatedly ignore the coach and do what they want to do. Someone's telling Pech to stay outside and shoot, obviously.

Verdict: Inconclusive.

Posted by: original_mark | January 3, 2009 7:37 AM | Report abuse

Kal, I hope you see what I was talking about. This wasn't just a 'good team'. These were the world champions. Like I said this week, we're facing a stretch where we play the best teams in the league. We're going to look bad in some of the games.
Also, when AB went out we were still in the game. Losing your center 7 minutes into the game will affect the outcome. He had 4 points, 2 rebounds and 2 assists in those 7 minutes. I'm not saying we would have won with him in there but I don't think it would have been as bad as it was. Right now he's playing better than anyone on the team besides Jamison.

I think we still would have lost because it was Boston in Boston. But we shouldn't panic and start changing things because of this loss.

My last thought:
Crittenten can clearly play and is probably our best pure pg by far. I'm not sure whether he can shoot well enough to keep defenses honest but the guy appears to be a keeper. He has size, quickness, a good handle and wants to pass it. Forget Rubio. I'll take this dude.

Posted by: original_mark | January 3, 2009 7:44 AM | Report abuse

If you really think having Blatche on the floor could have somehow prevent the Wiz from being crushed by the Celtics, then there's no point even continuing to talk about this. You're already too far gone.

Hate to break it to you, but players ignore coach's instructions all the time (esp. players who only play in garbage time and only think about chucking it up as soon as they get in). That's one of the reason why guys end up getting nailed to the bench for extended periods. On the other hand, what point would there be in telling Pech not to hang around the perimeter and shoot 3s, since he's never demonstrated any ability to do anything else?

"But we shouldn't panic and start changing things because of this loss."

No one said anything about panicking. As for changing ... what can they change? They're stuck with what they've got and what they've got is a 6 and 20-whatever team that's not getting any better. They can shuffle the lineup all they like, but moving the deck chairs won't keep the ship from sinking.


Posted by: kalo_rama | January 3, 2009 7:55 AM | Report abuse

Stop with all the Pecherov post the kid is not a player in this league period, this goes back to Ernie Grunfeld (genius)and his lack of basketball acumen where Euro players are concerned,he looked lost out there last night and from what i've saw and seen the upside is not very bright.Stop bashing ETAPS(thats my job)but seriously the man is overmatched where X's and O's are involved and he doesn't have a grasp of player rotation's and why you may ask? BECAUSE HE DOESN'T KNOW THE PLAYERS STRENGTH'S AND WEAKNESS ESPECIALLY THE YOUNG PLAYER'S, HELLO!!! to know that you would had to have spent time coaching them in numerous practice's(Eddie Jordan) over a period of let's say maybe at least a year or longer do you think the GM thought about that before he made the change? NO! that's why Ted Leonsis needs to buy the team and fire Grunfeld and bring in a real basketball professional.

Posted by: dargregmag | January 3, 2009 9:53 AM | Report abuse

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