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Cavaliers (27-5) at Wizards (6-25)

Information on tonight's game:

-Wizards C Andray Blatche will start despite a sprained left ankle. Blatche said he was going to give it a go after spraining his ankle in the first eight minutes of the Wizards' 108-83 loss to Boston on Friday. He emerged from a locker room with his ankle heavily taped, but he didn't sound too concerned about his injury. "I'm hurt, but not as hurt as I am in my heart," Blatche said, seemingly about to make a deep statement. "I just heard that people no longer think 50 Cent is the best rapper out." The Wizards apparently had a deep debate in the training room over who is the best rapper in the game. Blatche said that "Kobe Bryant is the 50 Cent of the NBA." Because nobody would seriously engage Blatche, I have no idea who won the argument. But given the state of hip hip music, I don't care, either.

Wizards starters: Mike James, Caron Butler, Dominic McGuire, Antawn Jamison, Andray Blatche; (Gilbert Arenas, Brendan Haywood and DeShawn Stevenson are out).

Cavaliers starters: Mo Williams, Delonte West, LeBron James, Ben Wallace and Anderson Varejao; (Zydrunas Ilgauskas, Eric Snow and Jawad Williams are inactive).

Line: Cavaliers by 9.

Notables: . . . Wizards G Gilbert Arenas said that he played two-on-two for the first time after Saturday's practice. Arenas said he and newly acquired Mike James teamed up to defeat Nick Young and Javaris Crittenton. Then went on to beat Young and Dominic McGuire. McGuire blamed Young for the second loss . . .Cavaliers C Zydrunas Ilgauskas is out with a chipped bone in his left ankle . . . Although the Wizards and Cavaliers are in two different NBA worlds this season - the Cavs are in the penthouse; the Wizards are slumming it - don't think for a minute that this rivalry has subsided - at least from the Wizards' end. This game should be pretty competitive despite the team's records (In the first half, at least). These afternoon games are pretty sloppy. Expect some eye-covering action during certain times.

By Michael Lee  |  January 4, 2009; 12:51 PM ET
 
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Next: LeBron Travels, Wizards Hold On, 80-77

Comments

Wizards G Gilbert Arenas teamed up with newly acquired Mike James and played two-on-two for the first time after Saturday's practice. Arenas said he and James had no assists all game?

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | January 4, 2009 1:39 PM | Report abuse

I cannot believe up till now, the 6-minute point, how good the Wizs look.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 4, 2009 1:53 PM | Report abuse

I'm going to repeat this from one of my Blogs some time ago.

This team as constructed right now should be playing 500 or better ball.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 4, 2009 2:11 PM | Report abuse

first half wiz 3 ft cavs 13
on xmas Cavs 26 ft wiz 7
same story different game

Posted by: bford1kb | January 4, 2009 2:24 PM | Report abuse

I cannot believe what I am seeing up till the 5:49 point of the 3rd. They ard playing some ball baby.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 4, 2009 2:38 PM | Report abuse

I like the play but not enough points on the board.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 4, 2009 2:42 PM | Report abuse

In keeping with my New Years resolution I am watching playoff game instead of the Wizards. There are two lessons the Wizards could learn form the Mia-Bal game.

1.Hire a proven winner like Bill Parcells who turned the 1-15 Dolphins into a playoff team.

2.Playing good defense can win games.

Let’s see at the end of the season what the Wizards will do about starting to build a team that can win a championship and not be content by just making the playoffs. They need to start by getting some better players and hiring a great coach who has a winning philosophy.

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | January 4, 2009 2:44 PM | Report abuse

Looks like Deshawn just shot another brick. He comes decked out in a nice suit, but it is the Caverliers colors. Boy, he needs to get well in a hurry.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 4, 2009 2:47 PM | Report abuse

78 I'm flipping the channel, the Ravens should take care of business. There defense is something Bill did not want to see.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 4, 2009 2:53 PM | Report abuse

After I felt the euphouria from there good play something hit me about the low scoring.

77 with less than a minute.

Good play by any team means nothing when you don't score.

Too much emphasis on defense, i.e. overwater the plant, overcoaching, responding to quickly to mistakes, will turn a prime growing season, an easy game, to a dogfight.

This should have been a easy game based upon the play.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 4, 2009 3:35 PM | Report abuse

Double double by McGuire -- nice. Now he just needs to dial down the turnovers.

Etan Thomas got three blocks and three rebounds in 13 minutes. Is he getting his timing back?

Posted by: PostSubscriber | January 4, 2009 3:42 PM | Report abuse

Wow! Rather shocking!

Posted by: charley42 | January 4, 2009 3:43 PM | Report abuse

For some reason I had a hunch this might happen. Based more on how poorly the Cavs had played last Christmas than on the Wiz. Neither squad shot the ball at all well. It's important the Wiz step up in games like this, at home, against a rival. And they did.

Some highly subjective observations:

That veteran nucleus -- Jamison and Butler -- isn't the Wiz' problem. They're still quite effective, even with injuries.

Mike James doesn't have to score for the team to win, but he does have to shoot enough to draw the defense's attention.

Songaila is valuable -- probably more to an established contender than to a fixer-upper like the current Wiz.

Blatche is more comfortable when he's passing than when he has to score a lot.

The Cavs are a flawed team. They usually play together very well but sometimes when the light's right (like today), you can see the cracks in the foundation. Wish them well in the playoffs, but...

The kids are getting a little better.
-- isn't the problemfairly solid. is an All Star caliber scorer. Butler Blatche seems much more comfortable when

Posted by: Samson151 | January 4, 2009 3:52 PM | Report abuse

McGuire is this years MIP!

Posted by: jeremydvid | January 4, 2009 3:54 PM | Report abuse

When the whistle blew I figured another and 1 for the NBA's chosen one but the ref actually made the right call, three steps on lebron. The fourth quarter tonight was awful basketball though, we should have been able to skate away with this one. blatche needed to be on the floor late, not songaila.

Posted by: bford1kb | January 4, 2009 3:59 PM | Report abuse

If the Wizards keep this up they will let OKC, Sac, Minn, the Clippers, Memphis and GS get ahead of them on the ping pong count and end up with the 7th pick in the draft?

If you are not going to make the playoffs play the young guys, get a good draft pick, and look towards the future.

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | January 4, 2009 4:08 PM | Report abuse

I hear EG is high on Miroslav Raduljica he is a 7'0" 230 lbs Forward who shoots a great 3 pointer, but is a project?

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | January 4, 2009 4:13 PM | Report abuse

I thought ever since the refs stopped calling traveling on MJ (letting him take four steps) that superstars were never called for traveling. I guess we got a break.

Posted by: charley42 | January 4, 2009 4:21 PM | Report abuse

charley42: "I thought ever since the refs stopped calling traveling on MJ (letting him take four steps) that superstars were never called for traveling. I guess we got a break."

My favorite uncalled foul is palming. That even on the books anymore? I'm pretty sure if you check LeBron's palm you'll find Superglue. I'm waiting for Vince Carter to dunk in a game and have the ball stick to his hand instead of going through the basket.

Posted by: Samson151 | January 4, 2009 4:43 PM | Report abuse

LOL! 50 Cent as "the best rapper in Hip-Hop"...HILARIOUS. Just shows what a YOUNG BOY Blatche truly is! Meanwhile, kudos to the Wiz for (FINALLY) not choking against Cleveland...

Posted by: ntlekt | January 4, 2009 4:59 PM | Report abuse

They beat Cleveland.

My assessment of this team do not fool me.

We need to stop the candy tomfoolishnes and put these players in the proper position to win every game.

Anything short of that is choosing to be incompetent.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 4, 2009 5:02 PM | Report abuse

And about the 4th Q.

They seem to stink.

James is doing his best, and he probably should be on the court in the 4th. That said, he is probably not the right floor leader in the fourth.

When the game is on the line, you need a balling take no prisoners, gametime attitude kind of guy.

That guy on this team right now is Juan Dixon. A lot of you won't agree, but put him in charge in the 4th and he will score and get others to score as well. And, the Wizs will stop stinking in the 4th.

You heard from LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 4, 2009 5:18 PM | Report abuse

"But given the state of hip hip music, I don't care, either. " - Ivan

LMAO!

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | January 4, 2009 5:26 PM | Report abuse

About 50 cent. I am from way back, but I ain't stuck in time. I listened to Rap and Hip Hop from the beginning when you could not understand what they were saying and the music was also bad. Today it is ten times better and I too like 50 cent, but he is not the best Rapper on the charts today. Blatche is young and he might not know his music as well.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 4, 2009 5:28 PM | Report abuse

"About 50 cent. I am from way back, but I ain't stuck in time. I listened to Rap and Hip Hop from the beginning when you could not understand what they were saying and the music was also bad. Today it is ten times better and I too like 50 cent, but he is not the best Rapper on the charts today. Blatche is young and he might not know his music as well.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 4, 2009 5:28 PM "

I thought FITTY be gone since he said he was going to leave the game if his last album didn't beat out Kanye West's album.

It didn't.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | January 4, 2009 5:40 PM | Report abuse

DC_Man88 and Ivan,

I know we talking basketball, but since Blatche put us on the subject, music is sound that is pleasant to the ear. What may be pleasant to someone's ear may not be pleasant to another.

That being said, Five years ago or longer Rap/Hip Hop became the number one listened to music in the world. Surpassing what was then #1 in world, Country Music.

So before you start dissing what you call Hip Hip, don't show your ignorance.

By the way Ivan, Can you play Double Deck Pinochle? You never answered my question. I fully aware you do not have to answer to me, just thought you might be inclined. Or, maybe Bridge is your game.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 4, 2009 5:51 PM | Report abuse

I think Blatche can relate to 50 Cent being shot and all and both from New York.

Posted by: jeremydvid | January 4, 2009 5:56 PM | Report abuse

BulletsFan78 you tout some mean strategy. However, I don't want to play for the lottery.

I'd rather Run and Gun and Kick Butts instead.

78, let me tell you a something about me.

When I used to play I was a runnin' gunnin', foul so quick they couldn't call it and never got tired kind of player.

Then one day this guy says to me, "you know what Larry I hate to play against you and I don't want to play with you either."

Everytime I thing about that, it warms my heart and it probably adds years to my life because I always laugh all over.

When he played against me, he never won, and when he was on my team, he was not an UpTemPo guy, so he never injoyed the wins.

78, play the young guys, but lets play them cause we want to win and not because of the lottery.

LarryInClintonMD.

BulletsFan78, I understand totally, but to play for the lottery sounds like I give up to me. We do not want that perception anywhere in our strategy.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 4, 2009 6:34 PM | Report abuse

The Wizards looked like a high school team in the fourth qtr.with back to back to back turovers during one stretch,I mean Gilbert can't get back fast enough for me and Dominic played well but Etaps put him in then took him out late in the game,make up your mind will ya,the travel call against la travel was,well in a word shocking i'm sure when Lord Commisioner gets the film on that call that crew can forget about any work during the playoffs.

Posted by: dargregmag | January 4, 2009 6:52 PM | Report abuse

Getting back to the 4th Q. We might need to go with JD at the point and James at the 2.

With this team makeup, with these two guys and give the green light and the floor control, will give this team a great chance to keep scoring, thereby, winning the 4th Q, and the game.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | January 4, 2009 7:02 PM | Report abuse

At the game today. Couldn't understand why Blatche got the bench much of the 4th quarter. He was playing well on both ends. Not sure if it's a coincidence but besides McGuire being inserted into the starting line-up, since Randy Ayers has gotten back on the bench, the defense is much better. He is very active during the game giving defensive instructions. I think the team has turned the corner and will be much more competitve the rest of the way and will likely not end up with the worst record in the east but should still qualify for the lottery.

Posted by: ptp23 | January 4, 2009 7:09 PM | Report abuse

I know we blew the lead and almost lost it, but isn't anyone HAPPY about this win?? Come on, it felt so good to see the look on LeCrybaby's face when he got called for extra steps.

I like the effort we've been playing with since the last Cleveland game...I think we have a decent schedule coming up after the Orlando game and if we play like we have been the last few games we should get our share of wins.

Our youngsters, Dominic and NY are definitely getting better and I think Blatche has turned a corner with his game too. Now they just need to give JCrit and McGee more run so they can develop and I think we can continue to win games with the core of Butler Jamison and Gilbert
when he gets back soon.

Also, if he is playing 2 on 2 why cant he start doing more team things?

Posted by: insanity999 | January 4, 2009 7:11 PM | Report abuse

I am excited about this win and everyone this team gets. Its a long season and this team is building and getting better every game. Gil will come back and whatever pick we end up with in the lottery is enough for this team to be back next year.
The only thing that I dont understand is why Caron Butler isn't more consistent. Maybe his teammates are just losing track of him.
We may have had trouble with the cavs over the years but we have 7 of the last 8 at home. At the end of the day we havn't been healthy so thats a pretty impressive mark.
GO WIZ

Posted by: AWizinLA | January 4, 2009 8:10 PM | Report abuse

yes i'm still very happy because lebron faked another injury after his charge, cried about his travel which he called a signature move in his post game interview, claiming that the 1,2 was as FLUENT as any, i think he meant the 1,2,3 was as FLUID as any, and he missed an ugly barely grazing the rim 3 only to fall in the stands and have the fans undoubtedly yell some heinous things his way. The league is not happy about lebron's travel, they most certainly think their dollars only pour in with the and 1 and not the correct call. Donaghy's buddy that he called before and after an alarming number of games the league knew donaghy bet on, for no more than 2 minute conversations in any of the over 100 calls, yes foster is still reffing it up. Way to sweep the proverbial excrement-storm under the rug David Stern. Today there was some justice, after lebron's charge the refs proceeded to call any minuscule contact to lebron for about 5 straight possessions but at least one of the refs out there tonight had some cahones, making the right call instead of the league mandated no traveling for anyone who sells a jersey outside of his own city rule, good luck reffing women's high school ball in the near future but thank you.

Posted by: bford1kb | January 4, 2009 9:19 PM | Report abuse

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