Maybe It Is Time to Tank


Yo, Nick and JaVale, I was wondering what would happen if you guys got to play like me. (By Jonathan Newton -- The Washington Post)


Okay, maybe not tank in the sense of purposely throwing games for the sake of getting more ping-pong balls in the NBA draft lottery (Although it's hard to tell the difference right now). But perhaps it is time to start focusing on the future and giving JaVale McGee and Nick Young more consistent minutes. Yes, giving, even if they haven't earned them. Their sometimes poor and sporadic play might well be the result of insecurity and fear. If they make mistakes, they will not always get much of an opportunity to correct them.

I was talking to an NBA veteran recently about Young and he said he believed Young should get more minutes. This veteran was a fan of Young and his potential. He mentioned that when he watches Young play, he notices that if Young makes his first few shots, he's fine, but if he misses his first few, he immediately starts looking at the bench, expecting to get yanked. While waiting for the inevitable hook, Young gets distracted and unfocused on defense, then an avalanche of mistakes follow -- more bad shots, defensive lapses, etc.

The veteran said the only way to resolve that is to guarantee Young at least 20 minutes a night, so that he can shoot his way out of slumps and figure out how to mature on the floor. If Young knows that he has 20 minutes to work his way through his problems, he might actually do it. He might even earn a few more minutes.

Right now, it's a cycle. If he misses a few shots, he has to wallow on the bench. If he scores, he plays -- sometimes. Last night, Young actually earned a few more than 13 minutes. The guy scored 14 points on 4 of 9 shooting with just one turnover -- and he didn't play in the fourth quarter. Was Young to blame for Chris Paul's explosion?

And what is eight minutes going to do for McGee?

Interim Coach Ed Tapscott loves to talk about how minutes will be earned, and how it is unfair to the veterans who come with a professional attitude and approach each day to give minutes to inconsistent youngsters. But the Wizards are not even winning one out of every four games right now. At their current pace, the Wizards will win just four games the rest of the season. How much worse could it be if Young, McGee and even Crittenton play more? They win two or three?

Look, this season is over. Caron Butler and Antawn Jamison should not be playing 40 minutes for a 15-win team. And, at this stage of the season, it should be about Young and McGee, not Darius Songaila and Mike James. Songaila and James are what they are and they aren't going to improve. Young and McGee can still become players.

Coaches love to rely on veterans because they are safe. When a seasoned vet is on the floor, you rarely look disorganized because a veteran figures out how to get it done. But these veterans really aren't getting it done. They might be consistent, but so are the losses.

Remember a few years ago, when Boston decided to ride the roller coaster of Rajon Rondo, Kendrick Perkins, Al Jefferson, Gerald Green, Ryan Gomes and Sebastian Telfair? It was quite ugly and resulted in the Boston Celtics finishing with the second worst record in the NBA. But in the process of playing their youngsters, the Celtics were able to develop the pieces it needed to acquire Kevin Garnett, and Rondo and Perkins were experienced enough to play alongside him without a difficult transition. Think those guys would've been ready if those minutes had gone to, say, Brian Scalabrine or Michael Olowokandi?

I don't think that fans would be too upset if the Wizards decided to give Young and McGee the green light over the final 17 games. Right now, the Wizards should be focused on making sure that their draft picks start to play their way out of rough patches. If they prove that they aren't part of the future -- given the utmost freedom -- maybe you can convince another team to take a chance on them. If they figure it out, in the long run, the team and its young players will be better for it.

By Michael Lee |  March 12, 2009; 11:34 AM ET
Previous: No Tanking Here | Next: Race to the Bottom (17 Games Left)

Comments

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Agreed. Very well written. There is truely no point in playing the Vets all these minutes, other than to wear them down.

Tapscott sucks. Someone needs to step in and tell him to play the youngsters or I'm going to break out of prison and cut him with my colon shank!

Posted by: PrisonBalls00 | March 12, 2009 11:40 AM

Oh, and 1st.

Posted by: PrisonBalls00 | March 12, 2009 11:40 AM

completely agree. in fact, it was time over a month ago.

Posted by: doogiex | March 12, 2009 11:55 AM

Mike, absolutely fantastic entry. Now could you please make sure it gets to Tapscott and Grunfeld?

Posted by: jmg878 | March 12, 2009 11:55 AM

This is most certainly far and away the best thing I've seen posted on Insider this season.

Posted by: goaway41 | March 12, 2009 11:56 AM

Amen, amen, amen! Thank you, Mike. It's been baffling to see the Wiz keep playing the vets, who are known quantities, 40 minutes a night with the same end result. It's completely maddening, and I hope at some point soon, that ET/EG give in to reason and just let the kids play. Thanks for the great post.

Posted by: tigerquoll | March 12, 2009 11:57 AM

I Agree 100%! Is Tapscott trying to expose Jamison or Butler to injury needlessly? Poor coaching and poor management strategy!!!!

Posted by: rickgonz | March 12, 2009 11:57 AM

At this point in the season, I now agree. Play 'em. I think that (verbally) guaranteeing minutes is a mistake though. I say just give them the minutes, don't tell them or anyone else you are giving them minutes. Just do it and that in itself will be an immediate confidence boost.

But Ivan you can't compare the wiz to Boston a few years ago, because they just plain didn't have a choice but to play their young guys. Pierce was the only legit guy on the team and they didn't have many other 'solid' veteran role players (like a songaila) to take minutes and give them a marginally better chance to win night in and night out.

Posted by: jones-y | March 12, 2009 12:01 PM

I couldn't agree more. The Wizards's sole focus the rest of the season should be developing their young players, figuring out whether they can transform their potential into NBA production, and accumulating ping pong balls. To accomplish these ends, we should be playing Young, McGee, Blatche, Crittendon, Pecherov, and D-Mac at least 25 minutes a night each. We should also be saving the aging legs of Butler and Jamison, each of whom shouldn't play more than 30 mpg. Songaila and James will be contributors next season, but there is no reason to have them taking minutes away from the young guys. We need to know whether our youngsters can produce, or whether we really need to start a thorough rebuilding process. It baffles me that Tapscott is not letting this informative process play out. How good is Pecherov? No one knows, due to his non-existent playing time.

Posted by: Dellis2 | March 12, 2009 12:03 PM

Thank you. The most honest and rational post of this season.

Posted by: NewManagement | March 12, 2009 12:05 PM

"I don't think that fans would be too upset if the Wizards decided to give Young and McGee the green light over the final 17 games."

Probably not. But the teams tow highly paid veteran captains probably would, and that's the crux of the problem.

Posted by: kalo_rama | March 12, 2009 12:09 PM

Best thing I've read all season and it comes from the man covering ALL NBA teams, not just the wizards. Why couldn't Ivan write this rather than reiterating what Tabscott and the Vets say. GREAT PIECE THAT SHOULD BE FRONT PAGE MATERIAL.

A million thank yous Mike Lee, really, I mean it!!

Posted by: BurgwithaU | March 12, 2009 12:12 PM

ditto. i just don't get what the hell the coaching staff is trying to do here, and it's adding another entire layer of frustration to the season. as solid as songaila's been, as needed as james, as consistent as AJ & CB, it's just not about this season at this point. see, e.g., gilbert.

Posted by: PopeyeJones | March 12, 2009 12:12 PM

Michael Lee, please talk to Ivan.

nuff said

Posted by: original_mark | March 12, 2009 12:15 PM

But Ivan you can't compare the wiz to Boston a few years ago, because they just plain didn't have a choice but to play their young guys..

Posted by: jones-y | March 12, 2009 12:01 PM

Michael Lee wrote this. Jackass.

Posted by: elfreako | March 12, 2009 12:15 PM

You are 100% on target Mike and this has been a problem all season! JaVale and Nick should see significant increases in their minutes. Tap has done a very poor job in allocating playing time and making appropritate in-game substitutions.

Posted by: thebone | March 12, 2009 12:17 PM

Not to sound negative, but this is what many Wizards fans -- if not most -- have been saying for a few months now. With the season going this poorly and with no chance to really compete, the goal is to improve the team for next season.

Mike James should not be playing anywhere close to 30 minutes in any game. We all know that Jamison and Butler are professionals at their job, but playing them 35+ minutes a night and refusing to give McGee, Crittenton, and Young consistent minutes makes no sense. And it doesn't take the words of an NBA veteran to come to that conclusion.

The mismanagement of Young's minutes this season has been especially difficult to witness.

Posted by: mkremnitzer0 | March 12, 2009 12:18 PM

FINALLY! FINALLY! FINALLY!
This article should have been written a while back.

Posted by: iamdawalrus | March 12, 2009 12:18 PM

But the teams tow (sic) highly paid veteran captains probably would, and that's the crux of the problem.

I agree with you but I'd like to highlight the words 'highly paid'. As employees, they need to be quiet and go along with the program. If they're truly the professionals Tapscott claims they are, they'll go about their jobs without causing major distractions and accept it. AJ was made a 6th man years back and he didn't like it. How did he respond? By winning the 6th man of the year award.

At this point it's time to stop kowtowing to the players (including and perhaps especially Gil) and start managing/coaching them.


Final note: Jamison is no longer playing for a contract and has no reason to want to play major minutes at this point in his career other than perhaps ego. I don't foresee him causing any issues if he were asked to play only 32 minutes per game. Just my opinion, though.

Additionally, assuming Gil comes back at 100% or close to it, he should only be playing 35 minutes per game. Give Critt 10.

Posted by: original_mark | March 12, 2009 12:23 PM

Not only was Tap the wrong choice to coach the team this season, but in the process he won't play the young Wiz Kids. It's amazing that a 15 win team won't let their 1st round pick get the bulk of minutes because D. Songalia is taking them! Are you kidding me? Why is DS starting? Where's McGee? I want to see McGee, Blatche, McGuire, Critt, Young, and even Pech to get the minutes, real minutes like 20 + a night. They've got 15 wins and it's March! Officially Tap has become the worst choice for interim coach that EG could have ever made. Play the kids and spare Caron and Jamison. Wake up already!

Posted by: ejaaronson | March 12, 2009 12:24 PM

Michael Lee, if you read my bost in the blog below this one, you addressed every point I made. I just don't understand how Grunfeld can just sit idly by and do or say nothing. This has to be the strangest season I have seen since following the Wiz in terms of mismanagement. I just don't get what the strategy of the GM is with hiring an untried and inexperienced person to coach your team. Boggles the mind.

Posted by: ivyleague | March 12, 2009 12:27 PM

Great Article... Only problem I see though is that if these young guys start performing up to their high potential we could be playing our way out of the Blake Griffin sweepstakes. Lets face it, the play really couldn't get much worse. Maybe Tapscott is really a "tank" mastermind and we never knew!

Posted by: poparoni | March 12, 2009 12:29 PM

Also, what kind of sick joke is it that Ed Tapscott's previous position was "Director of Player Development?" In retrospect, could there be anyone WORSE at developing players? Unreal. This organization needs big changes - top to bottom.

Posted by: tigerquoll | March 12, 2009 12:31 PM

"If they're truly the professionals Tapscott claims they are, they'll go about their jobs without causing major distractions and accept it."

I'm sure the way butler and Jamison see it,their job is to get out on the floor and play basketball and try to win games, so it's unlikely they'd see sitting on the bench while guys who aren't as good as them get extended minutes as "going about their jobs."

AJ was made a 6th man years back and he didn't like it. How did he respond? By winning the 6th man of the year award.

Which has nothing to do with the Wizards' current situation. The Mavs were a 50 win playoff team. The Wizards are a 15-win lottery team. I doubt he'll be winning any awards for this season.

At this point it's time to stop kowtowing to the players (including and perhaps especially Gil) and start managing/coaching them."

That's a nice Utopian ideal that holds very little sway in the real world of pro sports, esp. when big guaranteed contracts are concerned.

Posted by: kalo_rama | March 12, 2009 12:31 PM

I guess it just took a while for Michael Lee to see what fans have been saying for a while. How much worse can it be if Tapscott starts playing the young guys? So what if they set a franchise low for wins? At least they'll be in the record books.

Although, I do wonder why McGuire seems to get minutes while Young and JaVale can't find their way to the court. Are they really that bad in practice? Or is McGuire just that damn good?

Posted by: tundey | March 12, 2009 12:33 PM

BTW, love the photo caption.

Posted by: kalo_rama | March 12, 2009 12:33 PM

Definitely agree to the nth degree. As fans, we sometimes get frustrated when our writers seem to be speaking the "company line" too much, and it has seemed that way most of the time. You expressed very well how we feel and why the Wiz most loyal fans are so frustrated with the team and the coach. My compliments again, and as a previous poster stated, "please make sure this gets to EG" and don't label it as coming from you, you have our permission to use, "Frustrated and confused but loyal fans crying out for help and to be heard!"

Ron

Posted by: faninAlex | March 12, 2009 12:34 PM

DARN I-- thought that was the GAME Plan all season. You mean to tell me the Wizards were really trying to be competetive. My oh my if TANKING was not the original plan then Ernie need to be fired. The WIZ will blow the first pick if they get it. I say offer the first pick(it they get it) for some quality starting players and future draft picks.

Posted by: edt912 | March 12, 2009 12:34 PM

I wonder if Michael Lee (or Ivan Carter) will ask Tapscott these questions. 'Cos there's not point espousing on your blog. Ask him these pointed questions and see how he responds.

Posted by: tundey | March 12, 2009 12:35 PM

This post should be in tomorrow's newspaper. Finally someone has said what everybody on this blog has been saying for months. Playing CB and AJ 40 plus minutes a game is not getting you more wins, so why not reduce their minutes and play other people. In addition, there is no need to have either one of them in game at all times. I think someone said on this blog earlier this season, AJ and CB are not Michael and Scottie, let the other guys play without having to defer to AJ and CB all the time. Thanks for the post!

Posted by: 33dgriffin | March 12, 2009 12:36 PM

Amen. We're missing one possibility, however -- Tapscott is doing what he's doing out of selfishness, not due to any "principles."

The only way Tapscott gets offered the head coaching job next season (and the big money that comes with it) is to put a winning team on the floor, or at least one that is organized and productive. (A delusional idea, I know.) So Tapscott gives heavy minutes to his veterans, trying to get a win here and there, ignoring player development and the wear and tear he is putting on his vets, especially Jamison. He then disguises his selfish plan by criticizing the younger players, telling the media they need to earn minutes, etc. (and if they don't, he will play Butler and Jamison 40+ minutes per game).

Cynical, yes, and maybe not fully accurate, but doesn't that theory seem to fit what we've been seeing? What other explanation can there be for giving Mike James so many minutes? What other reason to have 32 1/2 year old Antawn Jamison leading the league in minutes played this season?

Posted by: disgruntledfan | March 12, 2009 12:45 PM

GRIFFIN: 6'10"; 250+; INCREDIBLE SPEED, LEAPING, STRENGTH, INTENSITY, SKILLS, and B-BALL IQ (coach's son). What more would you want?

"He may be the best player I've ever gone against, as a player and a coach," said Oklahoma State Coach Travis Ford, who played with future NBA all-star Jamal Mashburn at Kentucky. In addition to his height, Ford said Griffin is "the fastest guy on the court. Jumps the highest on the court. Strongest guy on the court. Great skills. Great touch. Great understanding. Great attitude. Great demeanor. Great team player, and he understands the other team is going to send everybody at him and it isn't going to bother him."

Posted by: BulletsFan1 | March 12, 2009 12:47 PM

I hope no one thinks this organization will ever do any thing like Boston does. Instead, look at what the Clippers do since they are the Wizards real role models.

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | March 12, 2009 12:50 PM

The theory raised by disgruntledfan that Tapscott may be vying for the head coaching job, might be quite real. It kinds of explains everything. It is highly unlikely that Tapscott can go back to his old job after the debacle of this year. Also he has created so much animous that the new coach may not want him around as well.

If anyone from the organization reads this, I will not renew my season tickets if Tapscott stays on as coach. Grund\feld gets a pass but he should be gone also

Posted by: NewManagement | March 12, 2009 1:00 PM

shame you see the light but Tap will continue to ride out the season as we watch Caron and Antawn go for 20 each night and a L at the end each time.

Tap and Ernie are complete morons

Posted by: WizardsExtreme | March 12, 2009 1:01 PM

I find it highly unlikely that Tapscott has designs on coaching the team next yer, although I'm fairly sure he'll still be with the organization in some capacity.

Posted by: kalo_rama | March 12, 2009 1:04 PM

Bulletsfan1, here are some quotes for you from NCAA coaches:


"We're not the best offensive team in the league but we're a pretty good defensive team with Hasheem in the middle," Calhoun said. "He affected 20 penetrations in the lane. Don't get caught up in stats with him, even as good as they are, because he is one of the most amazing forces in basketball in America."

“Syracuse Coach Jim Boeheim called Thabeet a "tremendous defensive player."
"I've said it before and I still believe he's the best we've had in this league," Boeheim said. "We're an inside team and takes that away from you."


"Thabeet, to me, might be the best player in the country," Seton Hall coach Bobby Gonzalez said. "I don't know who has a better player than him, who is a more dominant guy than him in the country. He, to me, is the No. 1 player in America. In my opinion from what I have seen, you know I am not trying to push him out the door, have him go pro, but if I was an NBA franchise I would take him No. 1 in the draft."

"He's so tough you need a broom, you need some extra help," said Seton Hall center John Garcia."He is that talented, that athletic, that long. That is why he'll be a lottery pick."


Like I’ve said before, drafting Griffin would be foolish. I’m taking nothing away from Griffin, he’s a great player. But the Wizards need Thabeet.

Posted by: cj658 | March 12, 2009 1:06 PM

I've stopped watching the games. We watch the same veterans night and night out, and 80% of the time they lose, and look boring doing it. If they're gonna lose, at least let us watch some fresh faces. You also need to play them, now that the season is over, to see what we have and let other personnel men see it so they have trade value. If we end up drafting, say Thabeet, we might want to package Mcghee and another player for an enforcer at PF, or if it's Harden, Nick Young for a pure point guard. Right now, both have nearly zero trade value because they are sitting in the shadows. Meanwhile, our all-stars overplay and hasten the end of the careers. Tapscott is like Pollin, more about veteran and inner-circle loyalty than sage and disciplined in his approach to building a proper franchise and contender. With Pollin's decline, Grunfeld has been free to run the show with his own mouthpiece in as coach and zero accountability for assembling a mess of a team. Both Grun and Taps are looking to pad their stats and keep their jobs in the short term by winning as many games as possible, rather than taking a long term view of the franchise. This is why this team is, and will forever be, the Washington Wizards.

Posted by: SammyT1 | March 12, 2009 1:06 PM

agreed, but tap has no idea except to make it appear that he knows what he is talking about. The dude hasn't won anywhere he's been, yet keeps getting jobs in the NBA. AT american he had a losing record, he took the bobcats from new to horrible. Doing the same to the Wiz.

Tap = the new Wes Unseld.

Posted by: tedunni1 | March 12, 2009 1:09 PM

cj658,

You should not consider Gilbert a coward for missing free throws(remember he got them into overtime with the 3-point shot). That's like saying Barkley was a coward for not fouling MJ hard enough during the finals. The year prior to that, Gilbert hit a game winning shot to rescue the Wiz in Chicago.

Besides, I don't think he's a coward for missing 4 free throws, Gilbert hasn't turned into Nick Anderson yet..lol There are plenty of stars who missed crucial shots, it's all about how you recover from your mistakes is where you would consider whether he is a coward. Good example, remember Kobe when he air-balled those 3-point shots in the Jazz game, or when Lebron last season missed those free throws in game 7 vs the Celtics. Or even Pat Ewing missing an OPEN LAYUP in game 6 vs the Pacers..lol I remember that one too well.

Anyways, Gilbert maybe consider a coward but not because that. It's because of how he behaves with the coaches. He didn't show Eddie Jordan any respect and even his team. Remember when Kwame complained Gilbert takes too many shots, which he does, Gilbert responded by not shooting the ball until the 4th qtr. He did the same crap again when Eddie told him to play more defense in one game. So if you consider him a coward point out those antics.

To point your theory on a person being a coward is nice but I would NEVER compare anyone to Kobe when it comes to being a coward or any childish behavior . Kobe is the biggest baby on the floor. Only thing about Kobe's game is he one of the most competitive players in the game (i think D.Wade and Lebron are tied for second) so it's overlooked but that guy complains way too much.

Posted by: rcnasa | March 12, 2009 1:20 PM

He is right, why wear out CB and AJ to get to 20 wins for a coach who wont even be their next year? Give the younsters minutes and the vets some rest before one of them blows out a knee and are out next season. Give the youngsters more time so they will come into next season with experience under their belts ET is a practice coach. He does not know how to manage NBA players in a game.

Posted by: ged0386 | March 12, 2009 1:32 PM

I consider Gilbert a good player but I would never compare him to any of the people mentioned (Kobe, Lebron, Wade). Simply because they've all been to the finals. The jury is still out on whether Gilbert can actually carry a team to the next level. Sure Gilbert brings excitement to the team and is really good in the community. But, none of those things can produce wins and when he's career is over that's what he'll be compared to, it's about the wins.

As for the young guys on the team Ed is right, you have to earn your minutes nothing is given in life therefore you have to earn them. Telling Jamison, Caron and the rest of the guys, were benching you to tank the season is dumb. Outside of Jamison and Caron(when Caron is healthy) this talent has ZERO TALENT!!! Besides, we don't have to worry about tanking a season because the Wizards aren't good enough to beat all of the teams in the league

I seriously doubt in 2 yrs most of the young players on the team will still be on the roster, (Young, Blatche, McGuire)

Thabeet will not help the Wizards right away. I think the guy would be better off on a team like the Thunder, or the Kings where expectations are lowered and the focus is more in team development in the future (like 3 yrs) rather than team development next season. How many rookie big men you know has improved a teams defense in a season and performed that well into the playoffs? Remeber Wizards fans expect this team back into the playoffs when everyone is back health. If Thabeet comes in and there is a set back the finger will be point and him along with other players on the team. I'm not saying Griffin won't be faced with the same situation it's seems as those Griffin is heads and shoulders better than anyone in the NCAA but he is also "NBA Ready" so he can come in and bang around with the other guys in the league.

Posted by: rcnasa | March 12, 2009 1:33 PM

Red meat from Mike to the critial bloggers. But here's the reality:

Impress your boss, get more responsibility. Even if you disapprove or disagree with your boss, you still gotta give it your best effort. Each new boss that comes around demands that.

Act like a kid, or perform with immaturity, or even display obvious inexperience, and get little extra responsibility.

That's a life lesson and Tapp is sticking to it. Good for him. Sure there might be a different way of looking at development as Mike Lee's source suggest. But Tapp picked a philiosphy and he's sticking with it. And who really cares? It's not like his strategy is screwing up our chance at Griffin or Rubio.

And come on, do we care about Nick Young that much? We KNOW what he is: a one-dimensional shot-jacker like Larry Hughes and Juan Dixon. If he doesn't care about developing a complete game - and Ivan's report about proactice a few weeks ago suggested that - then screw it..play Mike James and hope MJ gets so cocky about himself that he opts out of his contract. There's a better chance of that fanatsy working out than praying NY suddenly trys to fight through screens.

I don't think McGuire and Songalia are all that great, but I like the way Tapp is using them to demonstrate to McGee and Young: TRY to be a complete player and you'll get time.


Obviously Tapp isn't going to be a coach again. But if he were looking for a job as a player development exec his philosophy of "At least TRY to be a $^&&ing professional!" is one that will probably get him hired.

Posted by: cballer | March 12, 2009 1:36 PM

I consider Gilbert a good player but I would never compare him to any of the people mentioned (Kobe, Lebron, Wade). Simply because they've all been to the finals. The jury is still out on whether Gilbert can actually carry a team to the next level. Sure Gilbert brings excitement to the team and is really good in the community. But, none of those things can produce wins and when he's career is over that's what he'll be compared to, it's about the wins.

As for the young guys on the team Ed is right, you have to earn your minutes nothing is given in life therefore you have to earn them. Telling Jamison, Caron and the rest of the guys, were benching you to tank the season is dumb. Outside of Jamison and Caron(when Caron is healthy) this talent has ZERO TALENT!!! Besides, we don't have to worry about tanking a season because the Wizards aren't good enough to beat all of the teams in the league

I seriously doubt in 2 yrs most of the young players on the team will still be on the roster, (Young, Blatche, McGuire)

Thabeet will not help the Wizards right away. I think the guy would be better off on a team like the Thunder, or the Kings where expectations are lowered and the focus is more in team development in the future (like 3 yrs) rather than team development next season. How many rookie big men you know has improved a teams defense in a season and performed that well into the playoffs? Remeber Wizards fans expect this team back into the playoffs when everyone is back health. If Thabeet comes in and there is a set back the finger will be point and him along with other players on the team. I'm not saying Griffin won't be faced with the same situation it's seems as those Griffin is heads and shoulders better than anyone in the NCAA but he is also "NBA Ready" so he can come in and bang around with the other guys in the league.

Posted by: rcnasa | March 12, 2009 1:37 PM

I agree with most of what you say, renasa. My only point of divergence is when you say McGuire won't be here in two years. I think of all the current crop of youngsters, he's the one most likely to be retained. Aside from Pech (who's basically already gone) I think Young and Blatche are most likely to be shown the door.

Posted by: kalo_rama | March 12, 2009 1:39 PM

Great article Mike. It's about time something like this was posted. We have been talking about it forever over at WizardsExtreme.
http://www.wizardsextreme.com/showthread.php?p=59146#post59146
Hopefully this article is read by Tap and EG.

Posted by: LooseCannon1 | March 12, 2009 1:40 PM

Agreed! The "youngsters" should've been playing steady minutes since the all star break. No matter how Jamison felt. Because if you look at it, he's the only one that is holding up the youth movement. Caron has missed games that I think he would've played in if the team was in contention. And MeShawn just vanished into thin air. So its time to stand up to Jamison and give him 25 minutes a game the rest of the way.

Posted by: CBell29 | March 12, 2009 1:40 PM

great post, Mike. i was at the new orleans game last night and wondered why McGee and Young didn't get more run, especially once the hornets broke it open in the second half.

but please guys, don't hate on Ivan because he didn't post this. look at the title of this post compared with Ivan's from 3 hours earlier this morning: "No Tanking Here." Ivan and Mike probably coordinated the two posts.

Ivan's been asking Taps about PT for a while now. and remember, he's the beat reporter. writing a scathing critique of the head coach's line-ups doesn't seem like the greatest idea come interview time. i think Ivan and Mike are playing a little good-cop-bad-cop.

Posted by: worstideaever | March 12, 2009 1:41 PM

And one more thing,

My dad pointed out to me how dumb Tapscott is yesterday. Here we are, 3 seven footers on the team, and we have a 6'8 center, THAT DOESN'T EVEN JUMP CENTER!!!! He has McGuire jumping center! Our 2 gaurd!!!! Completely pathetic. I can't wait til the season is over so I don't have to watch his atrocious coaching EVER AGAIN!!!!

Posted by: CBell29 | March 12, 2009 1:42 PM

We can all agree with Mike till we're blue in the face. Taps ain't changing nothing. The guy's a goofball. Every game I hold my breath just praying that AJ and CB come through with no major injuries. We can't be lucky to make it through the end of the season without them getting hurt. Not at 40 minutes a night. We can't be.

Posted by: Matte | March 12, 2009 1:47 PM

Excuse the caps but,
THIS SHOULD BE FRONT PAGE OF THE SPORTS SECTION!! The fans are tired of the same old excuses! We have 50 losses; that should tell you something.

Posted by: lameotron | March 12, 2009 1:52 PM

I feel like the only reason they wont just buckle up and play the young players is because they want to sell tickets. They dont want to seem like they are giving up on the season. They need to realize the season was over once they fired Eddie Jordan. I think Ed Tapscott means well but he seems like he is overthinking this whole situation. His main job as "interim coach" is not to win games but to improve the team. What better way to improve the team than to play the youngins 30 mins a game and rest up Caron and Antawn for next season. Sounds simple enough but the Wiz seem to be lacking in the common sense department.

Posted by: tywill28 | March 12, 2009 1:53 PM


kalo_rama

Yes, I mis spoke when I mentioned McGuire. I've kinda turned the corner on McGuire. He is perhaps really showing he is a professional in practice and games. I still think he should go to D-League but of the young guys you mentioned (Pech, Young, Blatche) McGuire might be likely to stay on the team. Besides, his price tag won't be too high.

Posted by: rcnasa | March 12, 2009 1:55 PM

I think Taps is trying to avoid getting stuck with the "worst in franchise history" label. It was bad enough that he got stuck with the job in the first place, but then to be remembered as the worst of all time, that has to sting.

Posted by: yop32 | March 12, 2009 2:05 PM

Tapscott may be angling for consideration for the head coaching position next season and the sure way to drop out of contention would be to completely lose the respect of Jamison or Butler. I think EG needs to sit Taps down and say, "you are not in the running for the head coaching position next season -- not in a million years." Then continue by calling in Jamison and Butler and letting them know that you really appreciate and recognize the effort these two have given every night this year. But for the final 15 games, we are going to cut back on your minutes -- it is not a reflection on these guys but a move to get ready for next season.

AJ and Butler would have to accept this. They know that Arenas, Stevenson, and Haywood will be back in the starting lineup come next season and they will likely be battling for the 4th spot in the East.

Posted by: Chad32 | March 12, 2009 2:06 PM

Thank you. PLEASE make these suggestions to tapscott and ask him to explain ANY benefit to continuing doing something that hasnt worked for 65 games now. I agree with every word you wrote

Posted by: T-ROB | March 12, 2009 2:11 PM

kalo_rama, if they dont want their minutes reduced, they should win more and have an actual reason to play that much. They should be professional and accept the current situation

Posted by: T-ROB | March 12, 2009 2:14 PM

"I think Young and Blatche are most likely to be shown the door"

And if they get axed they will probably go to another team and be a solid contributor that they really are which some wiz fans can't appreciate.

Posted by: Dave381 | March 12, 2009 2:15 PM

Young just doesn't have it. he's a lost cause. At best he might become a three point specialist. Bad draft choice.

Blatche is a keeper. he's really got skills. Now if somebody can just get him to play every day. He should be getting a lot of Jamison's minutes for the rest of the season.

McGee should be the starting center. he stinks right now, but he's no worse than the other guys. It's possible he could get signficantly better. It's absurd that an overmatched and underskilled Song starts.

Posted by: stevie2 | March 12, 2009 2:16 PM

Amen. Good article, articulates a lot of the points people have been making on this board this season.

As I see it, Antawn and Caron were complicit in this team investing 18.5 million of salary cap space to Gilbert this season. They wanted to keep their big three in tact, even if it meant the team losing while Gilbert got healthy. Frankly, who even knows if he will ever even play for the Wizards again?

I don't think the Vets are the real problem here though. Its Grunfeld and Tapscott, mostly Tapscott. Grunfeld constructed this team and, apparently, with no contingency plan for Gilbert. That may have been why he drafted Nick Young and Young does have promise (those three games in January, for example), but he will never become consistent without getting burn in games. Thats where Tapscott comes in, he is completely derailing the careers of these young players. Or at least setting them up for the Wizards to be embarrassed (again) in a few years when they excel on other teams. Tapscott has been a loser on every NBA team he has been on. New Yorkers know him for the Frederic Weiss debacle. He accomplished absolutely nothing in Charlotte, and here he is ruining the Wizards.

Posted by: rgm34 | March 12, 2009 2:17 PM

"They should be professional and accept the current situation"

They have accepted the "current situation." The current situation is that their coach is choosing to continue to play them big minutes. They can't accept a different situation until the coach decides to change it.

Posted by: kalo_rama | March 12, 2009 2:17 PM


Dave381,

Sorry but they've haven't shown much but flashes. Maybe Nick Young will improve next season but Blatche has already hit his ceiling.

Posted by: rcnasa | March 12, 2009 2:18 PM

For a second I was really proud of ivan for writing this, but no dice. Thank you a thousand times over for finally making some sense. It is sad to see tap treat the young guys with such a brutal double standard, somehow the 15-50 record hasn't led him to believe maybe winning a game requires some new strategy. And by the way nobody cares about winning anymore, I certainly do not think we should try to lose, but the measure of our success this year is the young guys development and has been for about 30-40 games now and tapscott has not yet realized this. We put nick in and tell him to make everything, if he does not he comes out, how could his confidence not be shattered. And mcgee's lack of minutes is so much worse than nick's story. Does he see darius on the defensive end, does the paint matter, layups are easy shots, we should seek to limit them, with aj and song inside we are pathetic.

"Look, this season is over. Caron Butler and Antawn Jamison should not be playing 40 minutes for a 15-win team. And, at this stage of the season, it should be about Young and McGee, not Darius Songaila and Mike James. Songaila and James are what they are and they aren't going to improve. Young and McGee can still become players." Thanks yet again for the best thing written about this team all year, very nicely done.

Posted by: bford1kb | March 12, 2009 2:21 PM

Anyone who thinks that either Young or Blatche will be shown the door should pick something other than NBA basketball to follow. There is zero chance these two will be shown the door (unless they get in serious trouble off the court). Blatche is a skilled big man that is at worst, a solid contributor off the bench. NYoung is in his second year -- to say he was a bad pick shows that the person saying that has taken no time to see who was drafted after him.

A draft pick is a not a wasted pick if every player drafted after him has had similar or less success. Rudy Fernandez is the only player drafted after NYoung in the first round in 2007 that has had more success -- but there was no guarantee that Fernandez was coming to the NBA so drafting him was not the best option.

If you are going to make strong statements, at least take the time to do a minimal amount of research to back up your assertion.

Posted by: Chad32 | March 12, 2009 2:27 PM

For the most part this season, Blatche has played with heart and energy. In fact, my friend (who is an independent observer who really only started truly following the team this season) mentioned to me that Blatche is one of his favorite players on the team due to his "no nonsense" attitude. I laughed at first, but looking at this season alone (since EJ was fired) he kind of has a point ("no nonsense" on the court). He really has turned a corner in my opinion. Other than McGuire, I think Blatche has improved more than any other player on the team, and he should be a keeper from here on out. Now, if only we can afford to play him in is proper position...

Posted by: psps23 | March 12, 2009 2:36 PM

"Rudy Fernandez is the only player drafted after NYoung in the first round in 2007 that has had more success"

And exactly what kind of "success" has Nick Young had as the 7th or 8th man on a 15 win team? Scoring 10 ppg on 43% shooting and 33% from 3 pt range?

Woo hoo!

Posted by: kalo_rama | March 12, 2009 2:38 PM

"A draft pick is a not a wasted pick if every player drafted after him has had similar or less success."

This has nothing to do with whether or not Nick Young can cut on an NBA level. They're independent of one-another.

I still maintain hope that instead of trading away the top pick, the Wizards move Nick Young paired with Etan Thomas or Mike James to a team that's still enamored with his "potential". Clear cap space, move a bad contract, and draft a much higher potential player with a top lottery selection.

Posted by: psps23 | March 12, 2009 2:42 PM

"Maybe Nick Young will improve next season but Blatche has already hit his ceiling.

Posted by: rcnasa"

There isn't a 22 year-old in the league that has hit his ceiling. It's absurd to suggest otherwise.

Posted by: psps23 | March 12, 2009 2:44 PM

I just wish Mcgee had a chance to practice with Brendan this year. That may have helped him become accustomed to bigger centers and develop more lost post moves and such.

Posted by: BurgwithaU | March 12, 2009 2:46 PM

blatche has yet to even get minutes at the proper position, he is nowhere near his ceiling

Posted by: bford1kb | March 12, 2009 2:49 PM

"There isn't a 22 year-old in the league that has hit his ceiling. It's absurd to suggest otherwise. "

No, it's not. Youth may represent potential, but potential doesn't always necessarily translate in actuality.

Could Blatche improve? Sure. But there's nothing that guarantees he will. And if he doesn't, then he has indeed hit his ceiling.

Posted by: kalo_rama | March 12, 2009 2:49 PM

We should have started giving them consistent minutes weeks, maybe a month or two ago. Jamison, Butler, Songaila, Mike James, Juan Dixon getting 20, 30+ minutes is just plain stupid for a team that's going nowhere. Look at Golden State, they're resting their starters every once in a while. We can't even tank right... DEVELOP THE YOUNG PLAYERS!!!

Posted by: MOrgil | March 12, 2009 2:50 PM

My sentiments exactly, Chad32.

Posted by: original_mark | March 12, 2009 2:53 PM

"Youth may represent potential, but potential doesn't always necessarily translate in actuality."

A ceiling represents potential, not actuality. When someone says "McGee has an extremely high ceiling", they're referring to the idea that McGee's potential is very high, not that his actual play is at a high level right now.

To imply that Blatche has already reached his ceiling is to imply that Blatche cannot get any better than he already is. And that is simply untrue for Blatche, or any other 22 year old in the league.

Posted by: psps23 | March 12, 2009 2:56 PM

But Ivan you can't compare the wiz to Boston a few years ago, because they just plain didn't have a choice but to play their young guys..

Posted by: jones-y | March 12, 2009 12:01 PM

Michael Lee wrote this. Jackass.

Posted by: elfreako | March 12, 2009 12:15 PM


Okay then. I'm a jackass.

Posted by: jones-y | March 12, 2009 3:01 PM

Amen. I wish Ivan would look at things with Mike's critical eye.

Posted by: TheFunBunch | March 12, 2009 3:03 PM

"But Ivan you can't compare the wiz to Boston a few years ago, because they just plain didn't have a choice but to play their young guys..

Posted by: jones-y"

Didn't they have Wally World, Theo Ratliff's expiring body, and Michael Olowakandi?

Not that any one of them are actually good, but Wally's now playing a role in Cleveland, Ratliff was playing a role for Detroit last season, and Olowakandi was traded and immediately became a starter for Minnesota. Sounds kind of like the role of player Songaila should be expected to be, only Boston opted to play their youngsters over them, unlike the Wizards.

Posted by: psps23 | March 12, 2009 3:09 PM

kalo -- I am not saying NYoung has had great success -- just saying that it is inaccurate to say drafting him was a mistake. There were no better options based on the performance of the players drafted after him. He has not been as good as he should but to label him a bust suggests that there were better options -- there were not.

Posted by: Chad32 | March 12, 2009 3:10 PM

Michael Lee,

A tremendous post.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | March 12, 2009 3:10 PM

rcnasa,

Most coach will want a good passing big man in their team. I bet put Andray in a passing system like the Lakers and he'll be a solid player that will fit in nicely in the rotation (For others, I repeat , solid not all-star).
As for NY, every team will want somebody who can put the ball in the hoop like he does. Hell, if there is a place like Bonner, JJ Redick in a team then Young surely have one either.

Posted by: Dave381 | March 12, 2009 3:15 PM

As for Blatche -- he has been an excellent draft pick. He was drafted in the second round and no player drafted after him has played as well as he has. He also has a cheap, long contact so he is not overpaid.

All the people whining about players being bad picks need to do some analysis because for the most part -- over the last 4 years, the Wiz have done a decent job drafting. Even Pech was not a horrible selection because Rondo is the only player drafted in the first round after him that has done anything in the NBA. Pech has not become much of a player but the Wiz did not miss out on some stud either, so quit whining.

Posted by: Chad32 | March 12, 2009 3:16 PM


Chad32,


There is zero chance these two will be shown the door (unless they get in serious trouble off the court).
==========================================

Chad, Blatche was shot his rookie season and was arrested during his contract season for soliciting an undercover prostitute, how much more trouble does the boy need to get into?

Nic Young MAY have some potential but I need to see more than just a few jump shots. Next season Gil and Steveson will be back so there will be a log jam at guard. We'll see if Young is good enough to beat out any of the guards on the team (Stevenson, Critteon, James).As for better players, Aaron Brooks is starting for the Rockets, and Dequan Cook is playing nicely for the Heat both were picked far below Nick Young. Nick needs to improve more, otherwise he'll just be another kid who is in and out of the league in 5 yrs. As for Blatche, he stinks! When I watch how soft he plays it makes me sick. Folks love to dog out Haywood but he did play much better around the basketball than Blatche. I don't see any upside to Blatche. When he first came into the league i thought he would be close to KG's game now I see him as a low grade Lamar Odom/ Kwame Brown, you see flashes but not enough. Blatche's game sucks, it shows he doesn't put any effort in practice or in the weight room. He should be filling out in muscle, instead he's filling out in being over weight. And Blatche is always in foul trouble, how can you come off the bench and avg 3 fouls a game...damn

If they let Blatche go I'd be happy, I wasn't for the signing of him. Any price the Wizards give him is too damn much. But because he's Ernie's pick, Blatche stayed. If both Blatche and Young played for ANY of the current and future Hall of Fame coaches in the league (P.Jackson,L.Brown, D.Nelson, D.Rivers and G.Popovich) both players wouldn't get ANY MINUTES. And if you believe Chad that Blatche would progress on any other team then you need to follow another sport.

Posted by: rcnasa | March 12, 2009 3:19 PM

Three cheers for common sense from Michael Lee!

Posted by: keithward64 | March 12, 2009 3:19 PM

If you want to talk about draft busts -- look at NYoung's draft class and the players drafted ahead of him -- Yi Jianlin, terrible. Corey Brewer -- terrible NBA player and out for the year with injury. Yoakim Noah -- below average. Mike Conley Jr -- below average. Brandan Wright -- still trying to earn playing time. Acie Law -- terrible. All these players were drafted high in the lottery portion and have not done anything.

Posted by: Chad32 | March 12, 2009 3:20 PM

I'm not saying every players on the team should be any all-star. But you cannot be outplayed by lesser talented big men and mostly importantly be outplayed on you home court. Many times Blatche doesn't show up against tougher big me. Heck, he'll be playing D.Howard 4 times a year he better learn to hold his own otherwise they'll find someone who can.

Being a big man is more than just fancy dribble and an occasional fancy passing. It's rebounding clogging the middle and not allowing easy baskets. Having a small man like Chris Paul have a triple double is embarrassing. It doesn't matter how good the player is it shouldn't happen on your floor. It's like Kobe dropping 50 and a win in the Boston Garden, it ain't happening not on KG's watch.

Posted by: rcnasa | March 12, 2009 3:26 PM

I couldn't care less if he gets a prostitute and blaming him for getting shot is absurd, perhaps expecting him to be kg was a bit too lofty huh? Also he is a power forward and until he gets real minutes there, characterizing his career as anything is foolish

Posted by: bford1kb | March 12, 2009 3:26 PM

"If both Blatche and Young played for ANY of the current and future Hall of Fame coaches in the league (P.Jackson,L.Brown, D.Nelson, D.Rivers and G.Popovich) both players wouldn't get ANY MINUTES."

Right, because Dennis Rodman, Kobe Bryant, Rasheed Wallace, Stephen Jackson, Paul Pierce, and Antoine Walker NEVER had any issues on or off the court. Never would a "questionable" but talented character like Blatche see the court for any of those coaches.

Posted by: psps23 | March 12, 2009 3:27 PM

"As for Blatche -- he has been an excellent draft pick. He was drafted in the second round and no player drafted after him has played as well as he has. He also has a cheap, long contact so he is not overpaid"

Totally agree Chad32. People that keep on putting down Blatche are the same people that have been praising McGuire because of him being a steal as a 2nd round pick and they forgot that AB is also one.

Posted by: Dave381 | March 12, 2009 3:28 PM


Dave381,

Burying Nick Young on the bench is not the answer. Just because JJ Redick is in the league doesn't give the excuse for Nick Young. Remember, we drafted Nick Young and not the guys you mentioned so I expect better effort than what he's providing. As I mentioned perhaps Nick may improve over the next 2 season but right now, he's not doing too good of a job

Posted by: rcnasa | March 12, 2009 3:31 PM

AMEN BROTHER!!!! NUFF SAID!!!

Posted by: Bigmon411 | March 12, 2009 3:33 PM

First you say: "I'm not saying every players on the team should be any all-star."

Then you compare: "It's like Kobe dropping 50 and a win in the Boston Garden, it ain't happening not on KG's watch."

Blatche is a face-up power forward. He is not a clog-the-lane, 260 lb center designed to match-up with Dwight Howard. It's absolutely ludicrous that you're attempting to downgrade Blatche for being a completely different style player than you want him to be. While you're at it, might as well start blaming Dominic McGuire for lighting up the scoreboard like Paul Pierce.

Posted by: psps23 | March 12, 2009 3:34 PM

Edit: "While you're at it, might as well start blaming Dominic McGuire for not lighting up the scoreboard like Paul Pierce."

Posted by: psps23 | March 12, 2009 3:36 PM

Kala_rama and CJ658, I left some followup responses for you back on the last two threads.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | March 12, 2009 3:39 PM


bford1kb

Wow, really didn't know I hit a sore spot with Blatche. Number 1 Blatche followed chicks to their home. It was a damn setup he doesn't use his head to understand he's making millions therefore he is a target. There was an NFL played killed because of what he did. I let it pass because hey he's 19 we all did dumb things at that age but to follow up 3 1/2 years with a undercover prositute. The kid don't have a head on his shoulders. Anyways, who cares the wiz took a chance on the drama.

According to the post and times the kid doesn't even put in the effort in the weight room. He's hit his ceiling. The kid is counting his cash and chasing girls and god bless him for that but to say he's doing good is a joke. if he was actually doing well, this team would have more wins. And so many people would not be talking about either trading for a big man or drafting one.

Posted by: rcnasa | March 12, 2009 3:40 PM


psps23,

The Worm and Kobe are hall of famers(Dennis put of hall of fame numbers) are you saying Nick Young and Blatche are hall of famers??

Posted by: rcnasa | March 12, 2009 3:43 PM

rcnasa - In my opinion Young is doing AVERAGE as a player and surely not a BUST. We Wiz fans tends to be a little bit harsh on this players expecting them to be the next superstar of the team. I would love to see both players under a different coach with different philosophy and team play not the broken down Princeton O.

Posted by: Dave381 | March 12, 2009 3:45 PM

Tap = the new Wes Unseld.

Posted by: tedunni1 | March 12, 2009 1:09 PM

Very good point.

Posted by: disgruntledfan | March 12, 2009 3:45 PM

For the love of God, please force this idea down Tapscott's throat. You and Ivan should be asking him about this after every game in which he continues this stubborn pattern of his.

Posted by: tmilt27@aol.com | March 12, 2009 3:52 PM

Nope, which is why I threw Antoine Walker and Stephen Jackson in there to spice it up.

By the way, "character" guy Stephon Marbury just started for Doc Rivers the other day.

Posted by: psps23 | March 12, 2009 3:53 PM


Dave381,

Were all entitled to our opinions. But I feel the guys should show some improvement. if there are specific examples in games where you see them please explain. But to criticize coach Tap for not playing Young enough and not a good case. Ed hasn't done the best job with this team and I'm sure he knows it too. I don't think he'll be back even if Ernie wanted him. But I can say this, he's demanded perhaps the same our of his players and do most coaches in the league and to think Young and Blatche would flourish in another system, esp a system on a champion contending teams is only purly not true. You can see effort in a player.

Even last season when Blatche had playing time on a playoff contending team he struggled. i mentioned several times there could be hope with Young. Earlier in the season he played well off the bench esp with Dixon but i don't know what happened in December because he fell off, hard. Young improved his points but his free throws and field goal. His rookie season he drove to the basket more but this season he settles to quickly for a jump shot.

I never mentioned anything about how great McGuire is, in fact, I think McGuire should go to the D-League to work on some of his mechanics..lol but compared to Young so can see, he does hussle on the floor and not just on one side like Young. McGuire doesn't really do much at all around the ball but he does try to help on the boards and with defense Young doesn't do too much of that.


A lot of folks who defend Blatche haven't been long time Wizards/Bullets fans. I can remeber people saying how Etan had potential and how young and good he can be if given the minutes. Now people are adding him on the trading block. Some players you can see the effort and others you see they can do much more than what there doing. As far as picks. It shouldn't matter, Hall of Famers were picked in the 2nd round also so plaese stop point those things out...it not where your picked but how you perform in your career is what counts. Ernie is desperately looking for the Antony Mason/ Michael Redd hard working player and Blatche isn't that person. Okay I've written too much about both Blatche and Young. Next season we'll see how well they perform when the roster is at full health

Posted by: rcnasa | March 12, 2009 4:06 PM

A ceiling represents potential, not actuality. When someone says "McGee has an extremely high ceiling", they're referring to the idea that McGee's potential is very high, not that his actual play is at a high level right now.

A ceiling represents the upper limits of a player's development. That limit is defined ultimately by how good he actually becomes, not how good he could be. If a player reaches a point where his improvement trails off and he plateaus, he's reached his ceiling. It doesn't matter if he has the potential to get even better if he fails to do the things necessary to achieve that potential.

"kalo -- I am not saying NYoung has had great success -- just saying that it is inaccurate to say drafting him was a mistake. "

I never said drafting him was a mistake or that he was a bad pick. What I have said is that he's underperformed given his talent. And he has.

Posted by: kalo_rama | March 12, 2009 4:10 PM


psps23,

What about Jr. Rider, that's who I think Blatche is...lol There were tons of troubled players who performed well under champion coaches...Don't forget Glen Robinson. But those guys you mentioned, I bet they will play hard in practice and the games and thats why they will get minutes. not because of their age in the league, etc.

Posted by: rcnasa | March 12, 2009 4:11 PM

Rudy Fernandez is the only player drafted after NYoung in the first round in 2007 that has had more success -- but there was no guarantee that Fernandez was coming to the NBA so drafting him was not the best option.

If you are going to make strong statements, at least take the time to do a minimal amount of research to back up your assertion.

Posted by: Chad32 | March 12, 2009 2:27 PM


Players drafted after Young in the first round who have been more successful at their position than Nick Young.

Picks:

21-Daequan Cook (3-pt champ)
23-Wilson Chandler
26-Aaron Brooks
28-Tiago Splitter
(steal of the draft,playing overseas, but can be a starter when he comes over)

Posted by: closg | March 12, 2009 4:19 PM

"Players drafted after Young in the first round who have been more successful at their position than Nick Young.

Depends on how you measure "success." Glen Davis isn't putting up big numbers, but he's playing a key role and having a positive impact on a good team. Ditto Carl Landry (although his numbers are actually pretty good). And, of course, there's Dominic McGuire (minus the "good team" part). Marc Gasol (who was drafted 32 spots after Young) has flat out been better than Young, and this is his first season vs. Young's second.

Posted by: kalo_rama | March 12, 2009 4:35 PM

The minutes aren't going to Brian Scalabrine and Michael Olowakandi, though; they're going to Caron Butler and Antawn Jamison. It's intellectually dishonest to act like that's the same thing.

Posted by: IrenePollin | March 12, 2009 4:38 PM

Glenn Davis and Carl Landry -- great, two more undersized PFs. That is exactly what the Wiz need with Jamison currently manning the PF spot and playing 38+ minutes.

Cook has been a little better than NYOung this year but was worse last year. Although Miami was looking to include him in a tradeline deal so does not seem that they are that high on him -- and don't give me the 3-pt contest. Tim Legler won that and he will not be confused with a good NBA player.

Aaron Brooks just began to start after Rafer Alston was traded. He also plays PG -- something at the time of the draft the Wiz did not need since Arenas and AD were currently playing all the minutes.

Wilson Chandler -- really? Product of NY Knicks style of play. decent player but not better than NYoung.

And Tiago Splitter -- you cannot be serious. Guy has never set foot on an NBA floor. So you are telling me that instead of having NYoung you would prefer that the Wiz draft some guy who may never come to the NBA. That is classic Wizard fan whining with no real purpose.

Posted by: Chad32 | March 12, 2009 4:45 PM

Well said, Mike.

What you can't publish is an analysis of Tap's stated rationale for his coaching decisions. Virtually all of them are factually incorrect.

Maybe the Post needs a ghost writer to cover the Wiz.

The sad part is that it takes consistent minutes for more than 17 games for young players to gain confidence. But it would be a start.

Posted by: Izman | March 12, 2009 4:46 PM


You Blatche fans made me do it..lol

Ryan Gomes was the steal in that 2007 draft. He was picked BELOW, Andray Blatche and look at his numbers. Gomes's team is just was bad as the Wizards and he is playing well. and I bet he earned those minutes from hard work in practice and the weight room unlike Blatche.

Also, you can make all the excuses you want about Blatche. Come playoff time Blatche will face tough big men, Bosh(if on a good team), Howard, KG, etc. He has to step up and provide tough defense. Stop looking at the weight. If Blatche is listed as a PF, chances are he'll have to face a talented big man(PF and Center). Shaq at the time, was the biggest man in the league and centers had to face him because it was there job. Ryan Gomes is small but he's listed at PF when the Wolves play the Magic and D.Howard is in the post, chances are Gomes will have to defend him. Folks, if you enjoy Blatches game please provide some good examples as to where he is doing good at. The points I'm making are simple. if you a PF, you have to face a big man, and rebound etc. Plus again, Blatche STAYS in foul trouble.

And for those who hate Jamison, yes he also has to defend D.Howard even though he doesn't do a good job at it..lol

Marbury started because Rondo was injured so don't try to pull that stunt..lol

Posted by: rcnasa | March 12, 2009 4:48 PM

"Glenn Davis and Carl Landry -- great, two more undersized PFs. That is exactly what the Wiz need with Jamison currently manning the PF spot and playing 38+ minutes."

Who said the Wizards needed them? I didn't. I was just pointing out that they've been more successful in their roles than Young, thus putting to lie the idea that Rudy Fernandez is the only guy drafted after Young who's been successful.

Posted by: kalo_rama | March 12, 2009 4:49 PM

You can go on and on and on about Young and Blatche.

Doesn't matter a lick.

Bottom line, Caron and Jamison should not be ridden like rented mules, just to eke out another win or two in the remaining 15 games. They should be playing no more than 30 a night. If that.

As a bonus you get to see if the young guys are worth keeping around.

Posted by: Matte | March 12, 2009 4:55 PM

Furthermore, nobody is expecting Blatche or Young, both of whom I like, to be the second coming of Michael Jordan. But I believe they could contribute, off the bench, to a winning team. Hopefully, the team we'll have next season.

Sorry ... I guess I couldn't resist going on and on and on about Young and Blatche myself.

Posted by: Matte | March 12, 2009 4:59 PM


Matte,

Are you a coach? Maybe they want to play 30 plus minutes. If they didn't like it perhaps they would whine about it...that's right there professionals with pride. Caron and Jamison don't want to give up....case closed!

Posted by: rcnasa | March 12, 2009 5:00 PM

"Furthermore, nobody is expecting Blatche or Young, both of whom I like, to be the second coming of Michael Jordan."

Maybe not Jordan, but it's quite clear that many people (including some in the Wizards organization) expect more out of Blatche than they've gotten.

Posted by: kalo_rama | March 12, 2009 5:03 PM


Listen, some of you Wizards fans want to give up that's find don't watch any games until October. But I respect Caron and Jamison for being professionals and playing hard every game. Why quit??? Even if they lose it doesn't guarantee the number 1 pick. And I can see why both Caron and Jamison continue to play, they don't want to sit on the bench and watch this team get further embrassed than they are. And who wants to be considered the worst team in franchise history?

And last NBA coaches and players around the league pay attention to things like this. I'd rather have a team fight even if they lose than a team who goes out every night and get blown out just so they can get Griffin. You don't win any quality free agents by quitting. That's why teams like the Grizzles are always in the top 5 draft. Because they always tank hoping to get the next superstar....that's stupid.

I guess you can't win as a player, if you stop playing minutes your criticized for quitting and only caring about money but if you play 30 plus minutes your considered selfish.

Posted by: rcnasa | March 12, 2009 5:12 PM

"Ryan Gomes is small but he's listed at PF when the Wolves play the Magic and D.Howard is in the post, chances are Gomes will have to defend him." Seriously you think gomes will draw the assignment of howard? you really like drugs huh?
Blatche averages more rebounds, assists and blocks, steals are a push, and has better fg%, he gets 8 less minutes and averages 9.8points to 13.1 for gomes, they are very comparable stat wise except blatche has seen a lot less time on the floor this season and over his career gomes has averaged 29 mins to blatche's 17. He was taken one pick behind blatche, how is he a steal and blatche somehow a bum?
Like gomes, Jamison does not guard dwight howard either, how do you think this?

Posted by: bford1kb | March 12, 2009 5:16 PM

Playing the young guys is not quitting, it is trying to do what is best for the team, how do you want to see the same script over and over, we are 15-50 we get blown out now, we don't know how we'd do giving the young guys big minutes, but we certainly know 4 more wins will be a tough chore as currently managed

Posted by: bford1kb | March 12, 2009 5:23 PM

You must only watch sportcenter highlights? if haywood and etan is out. Who the hell is at center?? McGee gets far less minutes and songalia gets in foul trouble also. Basketball is about movement when the team places zone chances are a PF will face a center. how is that far fetched??

Did I say Gomes is running up and down with centers, no. I don't follow wovles games but it ain't hard to believe. Teams can exploit a match up and sometimes team like the Magic will match up their big men on smaller players, likea Center on a PF..right?

Therefore, PF can guard centers and vice vera.If the teams center is in foul trouble and the coach is desperate they do on occasion have their PF guard a center. If you can come up with stats on Gomes vs. Blatche why can't you understand Blatche may and has guarded centers in the league..okay, I see your a person who don't understand much about strategy otherwise you'd have a better point.

Posted by: rcnasa | March 12, 2009 5:32 PM


bford1kb,

If there not doing well with the minutes given how do you expect they'll improve next season? I'm not criticizing seriously..how? Gilbert, Stevenson, Haywood and the draft pick, where are some of the young guys going to get minutes??

Posted by: rcnasa | March 12, 2009 5:37 PM


bford1kb,

Your not a long time Wizards/Bullets fan so you really don't understand...I'll say it again folks said the same BS about young guys like Kwame, Etan, Courtney Alexander, Juan Dixon, etc. If these kids were doing well, I think they'd get the minutes.

Just keep being a Wizards fan, you'll learn or you'll start cheering for another team, like most folks around here do..lol

Posted by: rcnasa | March 12, 2009 5:41 PM

Huh?

They've been tanking since the start of the season....30 years ago. That's why they call it the curse of Les BouleS.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | March 12, 2009 5:42 PM

kalo -- you are completely missing the point which is about whether it is fair to call NYoung a bust of a pick. You may find guys drafted in the 2d round that are doing better or players at a different position but the Wizards drafted a need position. In addition, 2d round picks are lucky -- every team that drafted after the Wiz felt they were not first round material either -- these players likely feel into good places. Glen Davis is not that good -- that would be shown if and when he leaves Boston after this year.

So my post was in response to any one who thinks NYoung is a bust of a pick. He was the right pick based on where the Wiz were drafting and what they needed. He may not pan out but there is a long list of players drafted outside the lottery that don't pan out. That does not make them busts or worthless.

Posted by: Chad32 | March 12, 2009 5:44 PM

Ryan Gomes is okay but he is not the player that Blatche is -- Gomes plays because Minnesota is terrible and because Corey Brewer is out for the year. Blatche was starting at center until he got hurt -- he should be back starting but Tapscott is a complete moron.

Both Gomes and Blatche were solid picks late in the 2d round. There is no doubt there but Blatche is younger, bigger and more talented. Blatche is nothing like JR Rider -- that is just stupid.

Posted by: Chad32 | March 12, 2009 5:49 PM

"I'm a big fan of PGs, but have you noticed how few of the really good 'pure' PGs wind up with NBA rings? I don't really have a good explanation for that. If the position is so important, it seems reasonable that the championship clubs would tend to have the best PGs. But for the most part, they don't.

You know what they do seem to have? With some notable exceptions, they tend to have the best big men.

Posted by: Samson151 | March 12, 2009 6:54 AM "

You mean like Isiah Thomas, Chauncey Billups, and Tony Parker? How about Rondo who averages over 8 apg and Sam Cassell?

BTW, DWade is listed as a SG, but he's got great skills as a PG and may end his career as a PG.

They all have rings.

How many shoot first, ball hogging, no D playing PG's do you know of that won championships?

They include Gilby, SFrancis, Marbury, etc.

They've all won nothing.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | March 12, 2009 5:58 PM

you have no clue how long I've been a wizards fan and yes during the course of a game maybe a pf matches up against a center, but generally not, and if so for matchup purposes. certainly neither gomes nor jamison would ever be used to defend howard by design. I guess not wanting to guard the most dominant center in the league with either of two poor defensive pf's means I lack understanding of the game. Way to bring out courtney alexander's name to prove your undying loyalty, which I surely cannot aspire to. How about labradford smith is that far enough back? or never nervous? the louisville connection is sure bring the title back with wes at the helm.
"bford1kb,
Your not a long time Wizards/Bullets fan so you really don't understand..." truly brilliant argumentation, you must have excelled in debate, I know this is crazy, but you're is two words in one

Posted by: bford1kb | March 12, 2009 5:59 PM

Your reasoning for this strategy is that the Wizards are way out of playoff contention. Did this situation just develop or as I recall have we been out of the playoff hunt since at least January?

Posted by: emmet1 | March 12, 2009 6:17 PM

Well written piece Mike. Of course I have been yelling for McGee & Crittenton to start like everyone, but I had already given up on Young and Pesh. You provided some a different perspective, and I think you are right. Let's hope Ed & Ernie follow

Posted by: djnumb | March 12, 2009 6:40 PM

"you are completely missing the point which is about whether it is fair to call NYoung a bust of a pick. "

No, you're missing the point. The point being: I never called Nick Young "a bust of a pick."

"So my post was in response to any one who thinks NYoung is a bust of a pick."

Except you started your post with:

"Anyone who thinks that either Young or Blatche will be shown the door should pick something other than NBA basketball to follow."
Posted by: Chad32 | March 12, 2009 2:27 PM

An obvious shot at my saying:

"I think Young and Blatche are most likely to be shown the door."
Posted by: kalo_rama | March 12, 2009 1:39 PM

But nowhere in that post or any other did I call Young a "bust of a pick," so trying to frame everything I said against that statement is the ultimate in straw man arguments.

Posted by: kalo_rama | March 12, 2009 7:20 PM

"You mean like Isiah Thomas, Chauncey Billups, and Tony Parker? How about Rondo who averages over 8 apg and Sam Cassell?"

Other than Isaiah Thomas, none of those guys fall under the "best PGs" in the game category. He's talking about Jason Kidd and Steve Nash, not Chauncey Billups. And he's talking about Chris Paul and Deron Williams, not Tony Parker and Rajon Rondo. Additionally, you can throw in Stockton and Payton, though nobody can forget Magic Johnson -- although he was much more than a PG.

"How many shoot first, ball hogging, no D playing PG's do you know of that won championships?

They include Gilby, SFrancis, Marbury, etc."

Didn't you answer your own question? Or did you forget you listed Tony Parker there. The difference between Parker and Arenas? Parker has had Tim Duncan and Bruce Bowen playing defense for him.

Posted by: psps23 | March 12, 2009 7:43 PM

But Ivan you can't compare the wiz to Boston a few years ago, because they just plain didn't have a choice but to play their young guys..

Posted by: jones-y | March 12, 2009 12:01 PM

Michael Lee wrote this. Jackass.

Posted by: elfreako | March 12, 2009 12:15 PM


HAHAHAHA LMAO

Posted by: forbid | March 12, 2009 9:17 PM

I wonder if Michael Lee (or Ivan Carter) will ask Tapscott these questions. 'Cos there's not point espousing on your blog. Ask him these pointed questions and see how he responds.

Posted by: tundey | March 12, 2009 12:35 PM

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/wizardsinsider/2009/03/no_tanking_here.html

Amen. I wish Ivan would look at things with Mike's critical eye.
Posted by: TheFunBunch | March 12, 2009 3:03 PM

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/wizardsinsider/2009/02/something_to_ponder.html

Posted by: crs-one | March 12, 2009 9:32 PM

"Other than Isaiah Thomas, none of those guys fall under the "best PGs" in the game category. He's talking about Jason Kidd and Steve Nash, not Chauncey Billups. And he's talking about Chris Paul and Deron Williams, not Tony Parker and Rajon Rondo. Additionally, you can throw in Stockton and Payton, though nobody can forget Magic Johnson -- although he was much more than a PG."

Yes, Tony Parker, Chauncey Billups, and Rondo are the best guards in the NBA right now. They played critical roles in their teams winning rings. That's why they are point guards. They make their teammates that much better.

"Didn't you answer your own question? Or did you forget you listed Tony Parker there. The difference between Parker and Arenas? Parker has had Tim Duncan and Bruce Bowen playing defense for him."

Wrong. The difference between Tony Parker is that he's not a ridiculously flashy shoot first point guard, but instead, focuses on getting his teammates involved in the game, understands fundamentals and how to run a team, and can carry his own weight on the court.

Again, no shoot first point guard ball hog has won anything in the league. AI got close, but didn't win, but AI is a much more special player than Gilby was or ever will be.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | March 12, 2009 10:11 PM

"Yes, Tony Parker, Chauncey Billups, and Rondo are the best guards in the NBA right now."

No, there isn't a GM in the league that would take any one of those PGs over Chris Paul or Deron Williams. Not even close.

"The difference between Tony Parker is that he's not a ridiculously flashy shoot first point guard"

Flashy? No. Shoot first? Absolutely.

"but instead, focuses on getting his teammates involved in the game"

...by ensuring the defense focuses on him and his shoot first ability and mentality.

"and can carry his own weight on the court."

Which implies that Arenas can't. And that is one the dumbest thing anyone can say about Arenas.

But once again, keep telling yourself that Tony Parker isn't a shoot-first PG.

Posted by: psps23 | March 12, 2009 11:04 PM

THIS IS THE BEST INSIDER POST OF THE YEAR!

Posted by: Michael52 | March 12, 2009 11:41 PM

"No, there isn't a GM in the league that would take any one of those PGs over Chris Paul or Deron Williams. Not even close."

How many GM's and their teams have a legit shot at a championship from season to season? I'd say maybe 3 or 4. Don't give GM's more credit than they deserve...case in point the hometown GM.

BTW, Chris Paul and Deron Williams are pure point guards, not shoot first divas.

"Flashy? No. Shoot first? Absolutely."

Tony Parker is such a shoot first point guard that he averages 13 shots for his career while hitting .488 while Gilby averages 17 shots for his career while hitting .427.

Tony averages 1.6 shots at 3 with .319 while Gilby averages 6 shots at 3 at .358.

Yeah, sure....Tony is clearly shoot first.

"...by ensuring the defense focuses on him and his shoot first ability and mentality."

Since he's got 3 rings, he must be doing something right...which includes being healthy most of his career. Defenses against the Spurs focus on Duncan first.

Yes, Tim Duncan who averages 16 shots/game...which is higher than Parker's 13 shots/game.

"Which implies that Arenas can't. And that is one the dumbest thing anyone can say about Arenas."

The dumb thing is that you are omitting the rest of my statement in a weak attempt to prove your so called point.

As I said, "he's not a ridiculously flashy shoot first point guard, but instead, focuses on getting his teammates involved in the game, understands fundamentals and how to run a team, and can carry his own weight on the court."

Gilby doesn't focus on getting his teammates involved nor does he show any ability to run a team unless the team is just himself. Running a team is not having 4 other guys standing around because you won't pass the ball to them.

"But once again, keep telling yourself that Tony Parker isn't a shoot-first PG."

He scores when he needs to....but when compared to traditional shoot first guards like AI (career average 22 shots/game with one season at almost 28 shots/game) or Gilby, he's clearly not a shoot first point guard.

Only this season has Tony averaged 17 shots/game while shooting at a higher percentage than Gilby. Gilby, on the other hands, has averaged almost 21 shots/game 2 seasons in a row, and 19 during another season, nevermind the many 3's that he takes.

If Tony does not shoot, opponents will double down or triple team Duncan. Gilby just shoots b/c he's a pure ball hog.

"Posted by: psps23 | March 12, 2009 11:04 PM "

You clearly and absolutely know nothing about what you're trying to talk about.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | March 12, 2009 11:45 PM

"You clearly and absolutely know nothing about what you're trying to talk about."

Really...

"Only this season has Tony averaged 17 shots/game while shooting at a higher percentage than Gilby. Gilby, on the other hands, has averaged almost 21 shots/game 2 seasons in a row, and 19 during another season, nevermind the many 3's that he takes."

Tony Parker this season is averaging 17 shots per game....per 33 minutes. That equals .515 shots per minute.

Gilbert Arenas' highest shot per minute season was 21 shots per 40 minutes. That's equal to .525 shots per minute. His other 21 shot season was per 42 minutes, at a .500 shots per minute; and his 19 shots per game came during a 41 minutes per game, or .463 shots per minute.

Now given that, as a team, the Wizards have been a faster paced team and taken more field goal attempts than the Spurs in EVERY season Arenas has played with the Wizards, the distribution of shots shows that Tony Parker takes MORE shots per possession than Arenas.

In Arenas' highest shot per minute season, this team averaged 93.3 possessions. Given that Arenas played in 40 out of 48 minutes (or 83.3% of the minutes), he roughly participated in 78.2 possessions. That means he averaged 21 shots in 78.2 possessions, or .269 shots per possession.

In Parker's highest shot season (this season), his team averages 88.6 possessions per game. Parker plays in 33.7 of 48 minutes (or 70.2% of the minutes), which means he participates in roughly 62.2 possessions per game. That means he averages 17 shots in 62.2 possessions, or .273 shots per possession.

So, in their relative highest shots per minute seasons, Tony Parker averaged MORE shots per possession than Gilbert Arenas. Parker shoots on 27.3% of his possessions, Arenas shot on 26.9% of his possessions.

Now please, repeat that paragraph over and over in your head, then shove your foot in your mouth, as "you clearly and absolutely know nothing about what you're trying to talk about."

Posted by: psps23 | March 13, 2009 12:17 AM

Edit: in Arenas' highest shot per minute season, the team averaged 94.1 possessions per game, not 93.3 (I used the incorrect season). That means he participated in roughly 78.4 possessions per game, which translates into him shooting on 26.8% of his possessions, not 26.9%.

Negligible difference, but if it changes anything, it shows how Parker shoots more times per possession this season than Arenas ever has in a season.

But hey, clearly Tony Parker isn't a shoot-first point guard.

Posted by: psps23 | March 13, 2009 12:49 AM

It's a darn good thing that Tony Parker IS a shoot-first point guard, or the Spurs would have been beaten badly by the Suns last week. Instead, he all but single-handedly took Phoenix out of the playoff hunt in the West, totally taking over the second half of the game, scoring from outside and inside, and also kicking out to Mason and Finley for open threes (and he gets to go home to Eva Longoria, too, but I digress)... I say give Gilbert Arenas a Tim Duncan-type big man to play with (I think his potential clone is down in Oklahoma now getting ready for the NCAAs) and watch the fun.

I also do love to watch Nick Young when he is on, and I have been at a couple of games when his shot was falling and he was driving to the basket as well. On those occasions, you wonder why he was still in the Green Room at #17. Still in all, when I also see his lack of defensive skills and court sense, I get the feeling I am watching Courtney Alexander Part II. Guys who can tantalize you with the occasional 28 or even 35 point game and then...

Posted by: khrabb | March 13, 2009 3:48 AM

Wow, knew this post would get the critical masses in this frustrating season all riled up...now take a deep breath.

"Red meat from Mike to the critial bloggers. But here's the reality:

Impress your boss, get more responsibility. Even if you disapprove or disagree with your boss, you still gotta give it your best effort. Each new boss that comes around demands that.

Act like a kid, or perform with immaturity, or even display obvious inexperience, and get little extra responsibility.

That's a life lesson and Tapp is sticking to it. Good for him. Sure there might be a different way of looking at development as Mike Lee's source suggest. But Tapp picked a philiosphy and he's sticking with it. And who really cares? It's not like his strategy is screwing up our chance at Griffin or Rubio."

- cballer

Congrats, best post in the whole damn thread!
I don't really care if both NY and McGee in particular don't get increased mins as they have not shown to me they deserve it on a nightly basis at all. On the other hand, Crittenton, McGuire, and Blatche have all shown me they deserve more mins and for the most part they are getting them.

Anyway, get back to me next season if we are still tanking. Otherwise, the whole rotation issue is pretty much a non issue for me. Lost season, who cares!!!

Stick to your principals Tap and avoid breeding a losing culture!


Posted by: rphilli721 | March 13, 2009 5:20 AM

An organization that is 15-50 can't afford not to change and experiment.

If the vets have to put up with childish behavior in the locker room, so be it.

The President/GM drafted or traded for these young guys. Until the team gives up on one or more of them, the coach needs to have an explicit objective to develop them.

What exactly has this team done to improve themselves for next year?

Posted by: Izman | March 13, 2009 7:19 AM

"Stick to your principals Tap and avoid breeding a losing culture!"

When you stick to the exact same principles day in, day out and it leads to a 15-50 record, that's precisely what you are doing; breeding a losing culture.

But as they say, some people just don't "get it".

Posted by: psps23 | March 13, 2009 8:15 AM

Mike Lee, GREAT POST!! I have been a regular on this site since last year, but I have not even looked at it that much in the last month or two due to Eddie Tapscott and Eddie Tapscott only. I just couldn't take it anymore.

I have been a Bullets/Wiz Fan since the "Fat Lady" days and have always watched every game in every losing season. This is the first time ever I am missing games on the regular and not caring about it.

I look at the box scores to see the minutes given out and I see nothing has changed since January. Mike, I am glad you are bringing this issue to the light because it looks like "certain people" are not seeing what you and the rest of us have been seeing with Tapscott the last two to three months pertaining to his sorry coaching and hypocritical management style.

Again, GREAT POST Mike!!!!!! Are you sure this is not Jason La Canfora "moonlighting" as a Wizard's beat writer? If so, keep the truth coming brother....

Posted by: BulletsFever | March 13, 2009 9:31 AM

I am so disgusted with the Wizards management(Ernie G). They fire Eddie Jordan because they thought that they have enough to win better than a 10%s rate. They were right, the new coach is winning at a 23 % rate. How stupid is it to risk the careers of Jamison and Butler to play 40++ minutes only to loose at a 77% rate.

How stupid it was to let Gilbert play on one leg last year.

How stupid it is to let the young players play so few minutes. Perhaps more minutes would turn them into real players.

How stupid it is to let good players go because of the luxury tax. Roger Mason and the Spurs have profited from this stupidity.

It is time to do whatever is needed to get Abe Polin what he wants most, a championship.

Posted by: JoeC2 | March 13, 2009 11:07 AM

psps23,

A losing record and a losing season does not a losing culture make especially when the culprit is team health. Sure, it could lead to that particularly if you start rewarding players with mins who are either not performing or doing the things they need to do to earn extra playing time.

Say what you will, but this team has not tanked and not quit even though they are over matched virtually every game.

So, like I said, get back to me next year if this sort of thing continues, otherwise, it's a blip in EG's vision/management and not the final verdict as some have made it out to be!

Posted by: rphilli721 | March 13, 2009 12:53 PM

"A losing record and a losing season does not a losing culture make especially when the culprit is team health."

I'm not saying it does. But you're second part of the statement is precisely why the Wizards situation IS creating a losing culture.

It is much, much, MUCH worse for team health to do everything you can to win every game, and then lose almost all of them. That means you don't know how to win, and you're perpetuating it by drilling the same losing philosophies over and over and over again. That's what breeding a losing culture is. I hate to say, but we now have 2 "all-stars" getting "all-star" numbers with no effect on the W-L record. Butler and Jamison forgot what it takes to win games. They're in jeopardy of entering Baron Davis territory, who's career will likely only be salvaged by a change of scenery.

On the flipside, teams like, say, Oklahoma City Thunder or Memphis Grizzlies (or Portland from 2 years ago) are doing something different. They're NOT focused on winning every game. They're focused on improving their players. The massive difference is instead of killing themselves only to realize they just aren't that good, they're killing themselves with the idea of making themselves better. They don't miss a shot and then look over at the bench to see if they're coming out. They don't get beat off the dribble, then sulk on the court because their coach expects them to immediately match up with productive, seasoned veterans. They make their mistakes, keep their heads up, then take the challenge head on the next time around.

In particular with Nick Young, Tapscott is KILLING his "team health". He was doing the same with McGee for a majority of this season. These were two of the brightest young spots entering this season, and they'll need to be productive if this team is to have any shot next year. But instead of getting these guys prepared, putting them in the mentality of "you're getting better, you're improving, we need you out there", they're both getting "you guys just aren't good enough". And that's an awful philosophy to have with your young talent.

I applaud what Taps has done with Mcguire and Blatche (to an extent). Those two guys have been given the reign to make mistakes and learn on the fly. But what he has done to Nick Young, and also to an extent to McGee, is downright putrid.

Posted by: psps23 | March 13, 2009 2:45 PM

This team will not win twenty games this season. If Grunfeld and Tapscott are not replaced at the end of this season the following season will be pretty much the same. They more than likely will not make the playoffs next season if they are not replaced.

Posted by: SBRUCE8 | March 13, 2009 2:57 PM

"Really..."

Yes, really.

"Tony Parker this season is averaging 17 shots per game....per 33 minutes. That equals .515 shots per minute."

Do you judge a guard based on one season or his entire body of work? In case you didn't notice, Ginobli has missed almost 50% of the games this season due to injury. Someone's got to pick up the slack, which is why Parker's # of shots is highest in his career this season.

In contrast, Gilby shoots a high number of shots despite Les BouleS having other scorers on the team.

"Gilbert Arenas' highest shot per minute season was 21 shots per 40 minutes. That's equal to .525 shots per minute. His other 21 shot season was per 42 minutes, at a .500 shots per minute; and his 19 shots per game came during a 41 minutes per game, or .463 shots per minute."

And, Parker has a better FG% compared to Gilby, which means Gilby continues to jack up shots despite not hitting. He's a volume scorer.

"Now given that, as a team, the Wizards have been a faster paced team and taken more field goal attempts than the Spurs in EVERY season Arenas has played with the Wizards, the distribution of shots shows that Tony Parker takes MORE shots per possession than Arenas."

Again, you're overhyping your own narrow stats.

Go to Parker's second highest shooting average year, which was last year, where he played 33.5 min and took 15.1 shots and you'll see he shot .450/min. Earlier seasons are even lower.

Parker is clearly a more efficient shooter, while Gilby continues to shoot at a lower percentage.

Parker has few weapons on his team with Ginobli out, while Gilby has many weapons on his team but hogs the ball. Parker in fact is forced to shoot more, while Gilby shoots because he's a ball hog.

You clearly and absolutely know nothing about what you're trying to talk about.

"Posted by: psps23 | March 13, 2009 12:17 AM "

While you're busy cooking up stats, compare the # rings that Parker has, with his "shoot first mentality" vs. the # rings Gilby has, with his shoot first mentality.

And again, back to the point, shoot first guards like Gilby and AI are less likely to win championships compared to pure point guards like Parker, Billups, Thomas, etc. who are able to run their team, play defense, and aren't ball hoggers.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | March 13, 2009 4:28 PM

"Negligible difference, but if it changes anything, it shows how Parker shoots more times per possession this season than Arenas ever has in a season.

But hey, clearly Tony Parker isn't a shoot-first point guard.

Posted by: psps23 | March 13, 2009 12:49 AM "

Again, you're wasting everybody's time including your own by only looking at this season for Parker.

With Ginobli out, Duncan and Parker are their two offensive weapons. That's about it.

When Gilby was shooting the most shots/season, which was for 2 seasons approaching 21 shots/game, there were many other offensive options on the team such as Caron, AJ, DS, etc.

Your narrow stats focus eliminates reality, and that is that Ginobli being hurt forced Parker to shoot the most he's ever shot in his career.

Add that to the fact that Parker shoots at a much higher shooting percentage, which means he's taking better shots...not just jacking the ball up whenever he feels like it.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | March 13, 2009 4:34 PM

WW

Posted by: joe12341 | March 15, 2009 5:04 AM

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