Why Memphis Makes Sense
Although I still suspect that Gilbert Arenas will play Thursday against Cleveland, it might actually make more sense for him to play against Memphis tomorrow.
First off, he will be facing one of the worst teams in the league instead of the team with the league's best record. He'll also have plenty of scoring opportunities against a shoddier defense that surrenders 99.6 points compared to Cleveland's league-leading 90.9.
I mean, would you rather have two youngsters like Mike Conley and O.J. Mayo guarding you or have to deal with Cleveland's stifling defense, a physical defender like Delonte West, and the possibility of LeBron James sneaking from behind for a blocked shot off the glass?
But the main reason Memphis makes sense is that it will give Arenas two days of rest before the Wizards face Miami on Saturday. If Arenas plays on Thursday, he would only have one day for the bumps and bruises to heal. Considering that the Wizards will be in Cleveland on April 8, it's not like Arenas won't see the Cavaliers again. He would also have three games under his belt rather than one.
Asked about his surgically-repaired left knee this afternoon, Arenas said, "It feels good. No complaints from me."
Arenas is probably looking at a situation where he can play three games spread over eight days (Memphis, Miami and Cleveland), rather than having two games in three days (Cleveland and Miami) and another game four days later (Cleveland). Since Arenas doesn't want to play limited minutes, it might be better for him to go all out and then take extended time off, rather than play short spurts with limited rest.
But you wish the guy would communicate with his coach first.
This is the third time in the past six weeks that Arenas has said one thing, while Ed Tapscott has said another. First, he admitted that he was practicing while Tapscott continued to cover for him. Then, Arenas announced that he would return to action against Detroit on Saturday while Tapscott said the plan had yet to be finalized. And finally, Arenas said that he could play against Memphis only a few minutes after his coach said that he prefers to rest Arenas against the Grizzlies so that he can play in a home game.
Wonder who runs the show? Like the late Christopher "Biggie Smalls" Wallace -- not to be confused with Christopher "Memphis Grizzlies general manager" Wallace -- once said, "If you don't know, now you know, you know."
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