Arenas Update

I just talked to Gilbert Arenas and he kind of confirmed that he plans to try to play Saturday night against Detroit saying: "It's true if that's what ends up happening. First, I have to see how I feel in the practices this week, then I have to be totally cleared with the medical staff and then I have to talk to [interim coach Ed Tapscott] about a plan for how I'm going to play."

Arenas did rule out the possibility of playing either tonight against Chicago or Wednesday against Charlotte. And he said he only tentatively plans on playing two road games: at Cleveland April 8 and at Boston April 15. That means no back-to-backs.

Dan Steinberg was at shootaround this morning when Tapscott answered questions about Arenas.

I'll talk to Tapscott before tonight's game for more on how he plans on using Arenas. Whether he'll start, how many minutes etc. The team will have three practices before Saturday's game: tomorrow, Thursday and Friday. Those days will also be the first three times that Brendan Haywood will be able to fully participate in full contact practices.

By Ivan Carter |  March 23, 2009; 11:57 AM ET
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Here's a post from the Times' Mike Jones (who?) with some quotes directly from Arenas on his plan to return this Saturday:
http://www.washingtontimes.com/weblogs/outlet/2009/Mar/23/arenas-saturdays-plan/

I don't see how this hurts/helps the lottery chances. I know that this team will be getting back one of it's top players, but there's the whole issue of mixing him in with the new coach and the players. I think it's a toss up on how the team performs the rest of the season. Michael Lee seemed to think that this definitely hurts the team's chances of being the worst team in the league, don't know if I agree with that...

Posted by: -CN- | March 23, 2009 12:01 PM

1st. Wow, oh well it won't make a different now!!They can play spoiler role
to determine the seeds in the playoff. next year peeps.....

Posted by: joe12341 | March 23, 2009 1:11 PM

when gil comes back... does JC lose all of his PT while mike james still gets time to shoot 38%?.. im thinkin its already a lock.. :/

Posted by: sexypills03 | March 23, 2009 1:18 PM

As far as Gil calling the shots...

Don't fool yourselves, Jamison and Butler have been calling their shots all season long. That's what happens when you have players with more basketball credibility than the coach they play for.

Posted by: psps23 | March 23, 2009 1:20 PM

NOOOOO! I hope this doesn't happen. The Wiz needs to loose every last game if they can. The heck with integrity! I want Blake Griffin. We need every ping pong ball we can get. Haywood, Griffin, Jamison, Butler and Arenas as the starting five is a dream come true. With a little health luck we go from 60 losses to 55 wins next year. No Arenas, Haywood, Butler or even Jamison if they can get away with it. We will have integrity next year. I'm a Wizards fan, obviously I have the patience.

Posted by: MDterpfan | March 23, 2009 1:35 PM

"Don't fool yourselves, Jamison and Butler have been calling their shots all season long. That's what happens when you have players with more basketball credibility than the coach they play for. Posted by: psps23"

And guaranteed contracts.

Posted by: Samson151 | March 23, 2009 1:36 PM

He should play the last 5 minutes of the games that we are down 20 points just to have some fun.

Posted by: charley42 | March 23, 2009 1:39 PM

A lot of games of cat and mouse,with this Arenas cat.I hope he plays the 8th of April in Cleveland against LeBron.

Posted by: jeremydvid | March 23, 2009 1:51 PM

I think his presence alone on the court would make Cb and Aj get less attention and more effective. If nothing else, he can and will make 3's.

We need Griffin, so I hope he only comes in when we're down 20 like charley42 says.

Charley Taylor is my all time favorite Skin growing up, BTW. beast.

Posted by: original_mark | March 23, 2009 1:54 PM

...on the other hand, how nice would it be to see us beat Cleveland and cause LA to get the best record and homecourt advantage throughout the playoffs?

Top that with Cleveland losing to LA in the Finals in a game 7 in LA because of a controversial home town call. Now THAT would make this season worth it.

Posted by: original_mark | March 23, 2009 1:56 PM

Cool. My name is Charley also, so that's my handle here. CT was my favorite growing up,
too.

Posted by: charley42 | March 23, 2009 2:10 PM

"NOOOOO! I hope this doesn't happen. The Wiz needs to loose every last game if they can. The heck with integrity!"

I don't think Arenas playing for the first time in 2 years is going to turn this team into some sort of contender at the flip of a switch. Don't worry about the team becoming a winner to end the season simply because Arenas stepped back out onto the court. This team is really, really bad, in case you haven't noticed.

Posted by: psps23 | March 23, 2009 2:34 PM

It doesn't matter who the Wizards draft or how high they pick, unless they are going to be moving several of these acid contracts off the roster, the money isn't there to sign him. Look for some kind of sign and trade package this year to clear salary cap space for next year's free agents and draft picks. This means the 2009-10 season will most likely have to be sacrificed to get this franchise back on line.

Posted by: dandyhuffman | March 23, 2009 3:04 PM

Realistically, there's no way for the Wizards to clear salary space to be anything more than fringe players in next year's FA market. As long as they're over the cap, they'll only have the MLE to spend. And even if they let all of their expiring contracts walk next summer without re-signing any of them (that includes Haywood, Thomas, James, Young, Pech, and McGuire) they still wouldn't be far enough under the cap to have more than the equivalent amount of the MLE to spend, esp if (as has been predicted) the cap actually goes down for the first time in league history.

Posted by: kalo_rama | March 23, 2009 3:18 PM

The NBA draft is a totally different animal than the draft in almost any other major sport. NBA draft picks come in and produce in a big time way. I have never believed in teams tanking to set up the draft, but the Wiz are a different animal. We know how good this team is with all its parts (50 wins and a playoff spot between 3-5) so there is no need to see what we have. The rookies have had all year to play so we know what we have there. The one thing we don`t have is a true PF and will you look at that, Blake Griffin will be available and the exact player we need. Sit Gil, sit Brendan and get ready for a run at the big boys in 09-10. Viva Les Bullez!

Posted by: np2131 | March 23, 2009 3:30 PM

It is amazing that the Wizards have only won 15 games with two 20 point scorers on the floor in Jamison and Butler.

But that's what happens when you have zero bench and the entire starting 5 including your scorers simply refuse to sacrifice on the defensive end in the fourth quarter.

I have watched the end of a number of Wizards games this year where the team was within 6 or 7 points late and simply let other teams score uncontested layups and open shots to pull away.

Younger players on this team like Blatche, Young haven't really stepped up and showed any trendline improvement.

They are what they have been - guys who occasionally get hot and put up solid numbers and then disappear the next night.

Posted by: leopard09 | March 23, 2009 3:33 PM

"We know how good this team is with all its parts (50 wins and a playoff spot between 3-5) so there is no need to see what we have."

When was the last time the Wizards (A) had all their parts and/or (B) won 50 games? Neither of those things (let alone both of them) have happened in so long that any assumptions about their likelihood fall under the heading of wishful thinking at this point.

Posted by: kalo_rama | March 23, 2009 3:41 PM

After watching the last couple of games, it's clear that we could have 5 20 ppg scorers yet we'd still lose. I've defended JM but I watched a bunch of average players just stroll down the lane for uncontested dunks about 20 times in the last couple of games while every big on our roster stood by and watched.
I have defended the players and blamed coaches but at some point personal pride should have kicked in and somebody should have been laid out for trying to show this team up. I know I would have hacked the **** out of somebody for trying to dunk.

As much as I like BTH, even a great interior defender would have trouble trying to close the holes in this dike by himself. Thabeet may be a stiff or bust but he's still 7'2" or 7'3". If Griffin is not available, we need to get him. Forget Rubio. Scoring points isn't our main problem (at least won't be next year). Defending is.

Posted by: original_mark | March 23, 2009 3:50 PM

When Gil comes back and shoots 8-20 and plays little defense, let's remember that he's not getting defensive coaching either. I know he'll get a lot of heat on this board but let's face it...No one on our team but McGuire plays good defense. I can count the number of players that even attempt it on one hand.

Critt tries and Songaila tries to play man defense but doesn't attempt to help. That's about it. AB locks down for short spells on occasion but it never lasts.

No one else even attempts defense.


Finally, it's telling that Gil is talking about coming back only for road games against Cleveland and Boston. That and home games. Sounds like he's only trying to play televised big games. Someone needs to tell him to either suit up for the Memphises and Sacramentos as well as the big ones or wait til next year.

Posted by: original_mark | March 23, 2009 3:56 PM

No! Sit all of them (Arenas, Jamison & Butler.) Play the yong guys to finish out the season and Pray we get the #1 for Blake Griffin. Nothing to play for except #1 pick!

Posted by: Toochilled | March 23, 2009 4:00 PM

If Thabeet's a bust, then what difference does it make how tall he is? A tall bust is still a bust.

Personally, I don't think he'll be a total bust (in that he'll probably be able to be a contributor in some role on the right team) but he's not going to be a guy who justifies being a high lotto pick. Even if his shot blocking turned out to be as impactful in the NBA as college (not going to happen) his lack of any other NBA ready skills will be his undoing.

Posted by: kalo_rama | March 23, 2009 4:03 PM

If Thabeet's a bust, then what difference does it make how tall he is? A tall bust is still a bust.

Well, we know that he's tall, solid and semi-athletic. I think he's gonna be pretty average and one dimensional at best but that one dimension is one that we sorely need. Shotblocking.

Of course, PJ Ramos was also tall, semi-athletic and heavy....

Posted by: original_mark | March 23, 2009 4:33 PM

Critt should just pack up his things on Friday and go on vacation. His handful of minutes will actually go down to probably 3 minutes a game the rest of the way. Unless Gil shifts to 2 which makes the most logical sense since this team is loaded now with point guards and has McGuire at 2. of course, this is all moot if "Tough Juice" decides to play. I can't believe i'm actually marginally disappointed in Arenas' return. I went from being a huge fan to just seeing him as a complete "me" guy who has this entire franchise wrapped tightly around his finger. Will he play? it's up to him. will he shut it down? it's up to him. With the young guys lose all minutes? it's up to him. the only thing not up to him is starting the season over getting a re-do.

Posted by: superwilks | March 23, 2009 4:45 PM

As I recall Thabeet did not look particularly good against someone his own size (i.e. Roy Hibbert), so there is a chance he will just be a reserve player in the NBA. Earlier I supported drafting him, but now I feel if we don't get Griffin we should trade the pick.

EG is scouting Rickie Rubio right now, but my understanding is he said he is not declaring for 2009 and wanted to wait until 2011. Has this changed? He looked good at the olympics, but the physical play of the Greece team made him look like a kid playing with men. He will see alot more physical play like that in the NBA with bigger and stronger guards.

Posted by: MeviousMan | March 23, 2009 4:48 PM

Second Kal's points on the potential signing of FA's. There are too many large contracts that would need to be moved including Jamision's (which will never happen) in order to create cap space. Except for Butler and Jamision, we only have expiring contracts like ET, James, and possibly Haywood that could be moved. The Wiz made their decision about the next 5 years when they re-signed AJ and Agent Zero last summer.

As for the future, the Wiz can only hope they get the No. 1 pick and Blake Griffin. He's the only player in the draft who will have an immediate impact and would address some of the Wizards may holes up front. EG has his work cut out with trying to move a lot of bad contracts and young players (AB, NY) who haven't panned out.

Posted by: wizfan89 | March 23, 2009 4:49 PM

The real issue for Arenas is if he will ever be able to play back to back. His most recent surgery was a minor proceedure so this long recovery period does not seem warranted. I hope I am proven wrong, but I think he has a permanently bum knee.

Posted by: MeviousMan | March 23, 2009 4:54 PM

"He looked good at the olympics, but the physical play of the Greece team made him look like a kid playing with men. "

Well, he was a kid playing with men, which is one of the reasons why a a year or two more in Europe would serve him well.

Posted by: kalo_rama | March 23, 2009 5:04 PM

"Well, we know that he's tall, solid and semi-athletic. "

Well, we know he's tall.

Posted by: kalo_rama | March 23, 2009 5:06 PM

NOOOOO! I hope this doesn't happen. The Wiz needs to loose every last game if they can. The heck with integrity! I want Blake Griffin. We need every ping pong ball we can get. Haywood, Griffin, Jamison, Butler and Arenas as the starting five is a dream come true. With a little health luck we go from 60 losses to 55 wins next year. No Arenas, Haywood, Butler or even Jamison if they can get away with it. We will have integrity next year. I'm a Wizards fan, obviously I have the patience.

Posted by: MDterpfan | March 23, 2009 1:35 PM

Are people on this blog really this stupid? First of all, it's "lose" not "loose." Second of all, you are hoping for a starting 5 next year of 1 center, 3 forwards, and 1 shoot-first point guard? Okay, you're just not very bright. Not to mention the fact that you are hoping we lose so that we get 5% more ping pong balls in the lottery, yeah that's a GREAT reason to lose games, Einstein. Last but not least, you and several others on here continue to discuss players in the draft when it's pretty obvious we are not keeping the rights to our draft pick no matter what pick we end up with. It's getting packaged along with Etan Thomas and Mike James to a place far, far away from here.

Posted by: Barno1 | March 23, 2009 5:08 PM

My theory on "fans" that root for their team to lose is, these are the kinds of fans who don't actually watch the games. I mean, how can you root against your team in an actual game? So you are actually hoping so and so on the Wiz misses shots? Aren't you the same people on here b*tching on here about so and so missing shots? Am I the only one that sees the irony in this?

My theory is the "fans" who are rooting for the Wiz to lose are the ones who simply read the box scores and don't actually put the 2 plus hours in several nights each week to watch these games.

Just my 2 cents.

Posted by: Barno1 | March 23, 2009 5:14 PM

All togethr now ...

WHO CARES?!?

Posted by: DudeCameron | March 23, 2009 5:29 PM

I bet he will play tonight. He has us thinking one way, but he will do the unexpected

Posted by: MeviousMan | March 23, 2009 5:50 PM

Well, we know he's tall.

LOL.

Potential bust, for sure. Make that probable.

Posted by: original_mark | March 23, 2009 5:57 PM

IF the Wiz get the 1st pick, they are not trading it. Anyone that says otherwise is a moron.

Posted by: BulletsFan1 | March 23, 2009 6:13 PM

Did anyone read Gil's quotes on Mike Jones' blog? The guy is bonkers.

Posted by: BulletsFan1 | March 23, 2009 6:16 PM

I could sit here and type out all the problems of the Wizards but I'll keep it brief and short. Besides the Big 3, Haywood, and DeShawn Stevenson the rest of the team sucks. We have one of the worst benches in the league along with a terrible coach.... This offseason, the Wizards need to look for coach, get Tabscott out of here and get better bench players. Mr. Turnover after turnover Young, Mr. I can't play defense so I foul alot Blatch, Mr. I can't buy a basket but I'll keep shooting James (who will back-up Arenas once he returns), and Mr. NO SKILLS AT ALL Etan Thomas would get their walking papers if I were GM of the team. Look for a better coach and bench players this off-season. Keep Arenas away from the court so we could get that Lottery Pick..... I would even go as far as benching Jamison and Butler and let the scrubs play to secure that Lottery Pick....

Posted by: outbeeze | March 23, 2009 6:23 PM

Good! I posted awhile back that I thought he should play about the last dozen games or so of the season. How prophetic! lol Time to get my lottery ticket.

And, it's absurd to think he is going to do anything to change the lottery fortunes of this team. He is going to be as rusty as rusty can be. I think the organization deserves a look see at their 117 million dollar man if he is 100%

Posted by: rphilli721 | March 23, 2009 6:40 PM

It will ge good to see Gilbert play, as long as he really is 100%. If I knew for sure i would probably try and go.

Posted by: washwiz | March 23, 2009 6:43 PM

psps23 |and Barno1,

Lighten up you morons! This team would strike gold if it ended up with the top pick. Loosing games from here on out just raises the chance of that happening. Thats all. Winning does nothing but hurt those chances. You can be a big fan of a team and want that to happen.

I love all the morons on here that come up with their own trades. Barno1, I wish you were the GM of another team. You probably would take the 13 mil in salaries for Mike James and Eton off our hands. You guys are pathetic.

Posted by: MDterpfan | March 23, 2009 7:49 PM

Most of you keep saying that the Wizards need to keep losing, so they can get the #1 pick. That logic is asinine!

The team with the worst record in the NBA RARELY gets the #1 pick. If this were the NFL, then losing on purpose in order to get the #1 would make some sense. The NBA draft is totally different.

Posted by: SELAHSIXX | March 23, 2009 8:41 PM

A gimpy, ball hogging, no defense, head case cancer, combo guard. LOL. Wiz are cursed for the remainder of his contract.

I wanted Baron Davis.

I swear Gilbert put on a fake afro and a 1970's Bullets uniform and convinced senile Able Pollin that he was Wes Unseld or Pearl Monroe....maybe that's why Abe signed the gimpy cancer.

Posted by: jdgreger@yahoo.com | March 23, 2009 8:49 PM

Forget THE PICK!!!! The only way the Wiz can sign it would be to trade a toxic contract and Butler (the only real value of the team.)

In the long run. they'd be better off to trade this pick to the Clippers (a dependable team) for next years pick. Thomas and James will be gone by then. They will know whether Gilbert can play, become a 3-point specialist, or spend the next few years as an INACTIVE on the end of the bench in a 3-piece suit. By the end of 2009-10 they should know the biggest need, which may just be the best player available to start at any positon.

Forget 2009-10, the Nats should have a higher winning percentage, and possibly even lose fewer games.

Gilbert once was a flashy player who could put folks in the seats, perhaps a less intense Iverson. MJ was a better player his first year with the Wiz than Gilbert could have thought of being.

Posted by: lrmc623 | March 23, 2009 9:01 PM

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