Wizards (16-55) vs. Bulls (32-38)

Injury update: Caron Butler will miss his sixth straigh game with tightness in his hamstring whlie Juan Dixon (officially a game-time decision) will try to play after testing his sore achilles in pregame.

Darius Songaila will not play. He suffered a pinched nerve in his neck against Utah Friday night and played through it Saturday night but is having a hard time raising his arm above his head.... Luol Deng did not make the trip for Chicago.

Wizards starters: Mike James, Nick Young, Dominic McGuire, Antawn Jamison, Andray Blatche.

Bulls: Derrick Rose, Ben Gordon, Joakim Noah, Tyrus Thomas, John Salmons.

Refs: Monty McCutchen, Jack Nies, John Goble.

-The last time the Bulls rolled into town, on Feb. 27, the Wizards gave the President and noted Bulls fan a show with a 113-90 victory. Unless I don't know something, Obama will not be in the house tonight.

-This morning, Gilbert Arenas said he plans on making his return Saturday night. Interim coach Ed Tapscott did not committ to that and talked at length about a "process" that must be followed before Arenas gets back out on the court.

Tapscott said he had a "brief" chat with Arenas today. Team President Ernie Grunfeld is in Europe scouting and has to be consulted as well though we all know who will make the ultimate decision (he wears number zero).

"It's wonderful that he wants to come back and play," Tapscott said. "What we have to now is formulate a plan and make sure that all responsible parties weigh in and do this in a way that is beneficial to everybody and that is the process we are going through now. So, we are hopeful that we'll have all of our ducks in a line so that will be a reality. We are not yet 100 percent sure."

Tapscott on what the team looks like with Arenas in practice: "Aggression. He brings a certain amount of aggression to his game. There's a quicker pace of attack because he's a guy who really pushes the ball. Guys who run know that they'll get the ball if they run so, you see that effect. And, there's a highest sense of competitiveness. Gilbert has requested oftentimes to practice with the second group and that has obviously created some more competitive scrimagging in practice."


By Ivan Carter |  March 23, 2009; 5:11 PM ET
Previous: The Other Side: Chicago Bulls | Next: Bulls 101, Wizards 99

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Maybe Gilbert decided to play ,after He heard about Ernie in Europe scouting Ricky Rubio.

Posted by: brandonjamal13 | March 23, 2009 6:32 PM

sick of Arenas. He talks too much for how fragile he's become. Anyone of us who have had his injury knows that it is a several month process, not going on 2 years. I wish he would shut up and take orders from the management until he shows he's the old Arenas. He claimed he was fully healthy, what, a few months ago and ultimately his "would you come back?" reference was fitting for him. He's turned into a completely selfish me first guy and that doesn't translate well when you can't get on the floor. I think it would be hilarious and ironic if this organization finally puts its foot down and tells HIM when to do things and what to do. Until he's the player coach/GM, this team should not be held hostage by his weird, calculated antics. At least until he proves he can stay healthy for a lengthy time period. Then he can get a little cushion for his "Gilbert being Gilbert" act.

Posted by: superwilks | March 23, 2009 6:34 PM

Chad Ford on Thabeet...


Hasheem Thabeet, C, Jr., UConn
Once again, Thabeet is proving that just because you're 7-foot-3 and taller than anyone else in college basketball doesn't mean you'll be making a huge impact on the floor. UConn largely ignored him on offense during its rout of Texas A&M on Saturday.

Against Texas A&M's strong front line, Thabeet took two shots in the game, grabbed six boards and watched Jeff Adrien do all the work down low. That's not the type of performance you really want to see in the tournament from a possible top-10 pick.

Posted by: original_mark | March 23, 2009 6:46 PM

and Griffin....

Blake Griffin, PF, So., Oklahoma
Griffin has been the most dominant college player in the country this season and he seems to have turned it up another notch in the tournament -- he was awesome in first- and second-round games versus Morgan State and Michigan.

He dropped 28 points and 13 rebounds on Morgan State and followed that up with a 33-point, 17-rebound performance against Michigan. Throwing in some serious highlight-reel dunks, he is shooting a sizzling 78 percent from the field in the tournament.

One NBA executive on the East Coast commented to me Monday that he believes Griffin is an even better prospect than Derrick Rose and Michael Beasley were last year. That's pretty good news for what otherwise looks like a weak draft.

Posted by: original_mark | March 23, 2009 6:48 PM


original_mark,

Your right, Griffin could have came out last year and would have been in the top 3 pick. But because he was playing in the same conference as Beasley and the hype he recieved, Griffin was kinda overlooked. But this season he is going no#1 and I doubt he'll stay in college, thats too much money to pass up.

Thabeet is not ready for the NBA. He still needs time to learn the game and with the lottery pick the Wizards will recieve, I don't think they should waste it on another project big man when we already have 3 project big men on the team. Griffin is "NBA-Ready" and any team he plays for he'll contribute right away.

Posted by: rcnasa | March 23, 2009 7:27 PM

Am I the only one that notices how frequently Caron Butler gets injured? Look at his games played per season, it's not going in the right direction. He's good for 15-20 missed games due to injury a year. Book it. And about 10 of 'em will come down the stretch. What up wit dat?

Posted by: justice98 | March 23, 2009 7:48 PM

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | March 23, 2009 8:48 PM


To those who watched Jamison play that is a man who is not looking to quit. He's the only player from last season's starting 5 is on pace to playing all 82 games. I'm point this out because some folks love to bash Jamison and overlooks his performance to this team. And thats all credit you how well Jamison stays in condition. That's why I think if Jamison can keep this up for 4 more seasons he should be considered for the Hall of Fame. If probably won't get it because he played on poor team but his numbers can compare to those who are already in the HOF, like Adrain Dantley.

I hope the young guys can have a strong April. I'm looking for Blatche, Young and the rest of the young players to finish the season on a strong note. Tonight was good, so a little more of that.

Your not alone justice98, in noticing Caron's injuries. As Caron gets older, his number of games drop every year. Problem is Caron plays too minutes which causes him to break down

If Gilbert comes back that would be great, but only if he is health enough to play. Not come back to do that same thing he did last season with the Wiz in the playoffs. Also, if Gilbert plays he should play the REST of the SEASON!!! and not play a few games so he could face the cavs then sit out the rest of the games.

Posted by: rcnasa | March 23, 2009 9:34 PM

To have Agent Zero back when it doesn't count is like taking your sister out on a date.

I know Gilbert is gonna be ready, so I want to see him next season when it's gonna count.

I have never looked so forward for next season to be here now.

I just pray that his knee is healed and ready to go.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | March 24, 2009 12:06 AM

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