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Wizards Insider: April 12, 2009 - April 18, 2009

Tapscott Will Not Return as Coach

Wizards President Ernie Grunfeld has officially announced that Ed Tapscott will not return as coach next season, but will remain with the team. From the news release: "Ed has our sincere gratitude and appreciation for stepping up to lead this team through what turned out to be a very difficult...

By Alexa Steele  |  April 17, 2009; 4:12 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (95)
 
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Wizards Win! (Lottery Tiebreaker)

The Washington Wizards won their tiebreaker over the Los Angeles Clippers through a random drawing on Friday. The Wizards and Clippers finished tied for the second-worst record in the NBA at 19-63, but the tiebreaker ensures that the Wizards will pick no lower than fifth in the NBA draft. Stu...

By Michael Lee  |  April 17, 2009; 2:40 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (39)
 
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What Will You Remember?

Was this the highlight of the season? (Reuters Photo) Gilbert Arenas had a lot to say the past two days, but he played in only two of the 82 games this season. He wasn't around for the Wizards' season-opening five-game losing streak or their first victory of the season against...

By Michael Lee  |  April 17, 2009; 2:05 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (17)
 
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You Tell Us: Wizards MVP

Now that this miserable season is behind us, let's take a deep breath and remember that there were a few positive moments in these past 82 games. Veterans Antawn Jamison and Caron Butler never gave up, no matter how fruitless it all seemed. And there were flashes of potential from...

By Alexa Steele  |  April 17, 2009; 11:10 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (28)
 
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Poll: Play the Blame Game

We got some interesting responses to this question throughout the day. Here is a highly unscientific poll compiling the top answers: poll by twiigs.com...

By Alexa Steele  |  April 16, 2009; 5:39 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (41)
 
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You Tell Us: Why Were the Wizards So Bad?

Michael Lee's story today about the Wizards' season-ending loss to the Celtics almost served as an obituary for this miserable season. And his blog item after the game explained why Gilbert Arenas didn't play in more games. Here's a chance to weigh in and look back on the season. I...

By Alexa Steele  |  April 16, 2009; 1:23 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (57)
 
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Final Night at the Improv

Say what you will about perceived lack of focus or the way-too-playful nature of the Washington Wizards, but you really won't find a funnier locker room in the NBA. You'd think that in a season that eventually ended with a franchise-worst-tying 63 losses, there might be a time when the...

By Michael Lee  |  April 16, 2009; 9:33 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (30)
 
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Celtics 115, Wizards 107; Arenas Speaks

It's over. This season of bad luck, bad breaks, bad shots, bad passes, bad box outs, bad picks, bad rolls, bad news and bad defense mercifully came to an end, with the Wizards doing no damage on their lottery position. They will finish the season tied with the 2000-01 Wizards...

By Michael Lee  |  April 16, 2009; 12:44 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (41)
 
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Wizards (19-62) at Celtics (61-20)

Wizards starters: Javaris Crittenton, Dominic McGuire, Caron Butler, Darius Songaila, JaVale McGee Celtics: Rajon Rondo, Stephon Marbury, Tony Allen, Leon Powe, Kendrick Perkins Refs: David Jones, Olandis Poole, Eli Roe Line: Celtics by 4.5 A lot of folks are looking for updates on the Flip Saunders situation. This is what...

By Michael Lee  |  April 15, 2009; 8:03 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (38)
 
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The Other Side Finale: Boston Celtics

If we don't have KG in the playoffs, it's going to hurt like my elbow to Varejao. (AP Photo) Surely, when the NBA schedule-maker decided to have the Washington Wizards face the Boston Celtics in the season finale, the intention was that this would be a really competitive game...

By Michael Lee  |  April 15, 2009; 5:36 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (7)
 
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MMPG: Most Valuable Player

LeBron James, Cleveland Cavaliers I rest my case. How can you keep the MVP from me this year? (Photo by Ron Hoskins/NBAE via Getty Images) Yes, Dwyane Wade re-entered the discussion for the game's best player. Yes, Kobe Bryant is the league's reigning most valuable player. But what more does...

By Michael Lee  |  April 15, 2009; 4:06 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
 
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Nick Young: Last Man Standing

I made it! (AP Photo/Lance Murphey) If Nick Young, as expected, enters tonight's season finale against the Boston Celtics, he will be the official winner of "Survivor: Washington Wizards Edition." Antawn Jamison will not play because of a sprained right foot suffered during the Wizards' loss to Toronto on...

By Michael Lee  |  April 15, 2009; 1:52 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (21)
 
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MMPG: Most Improved Player

Devin Harris, New Jersey Nets I couldn't do this last year. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun) When Rod Thorn trade Jason Kidd to Dallas last season, he was almost apologetic while explaining the deal, as if a package centered around Devin Harris was the best he could do. But Harris has made...

By Michael Lee  |  April 15, 2009; 1:42 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
 
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MMPG: Executive of the Year

Danny Ferry, Cleveland Cavaliers Mo Williams, mo wins. (Getty Images) Danny Ferry has been on the job for only four years, and he has learned from previous mistakes (such as overpaying Larry Hughes and Damon Jones) to turn the Cavaliers into a championship contender by making the right tweaks. He...

By Michael Lee  |  April 15, 2009; 12:59 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
 
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MMPG: Sixth Man of the Year

Jason Terry, Dallas Mavericks I'm J-E-T. Jet, Jet, Jet. (AP Photo/Donna McWilliam) The Dallas Mavericks don't have any championships, but they have been on a pretty impressive run of sixth men this decade. From Antawn Jamison, to Jerry Stackhouse to now Jason Terry. Terry gets starters minutes, but he comes...

By Michael Lee  |  April 15, 2009; 12:22 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
 
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MMPG: Coach of the Year

Mike Brown, Cleveland Cavaliers Well, if nobody else will applaud me, I will. (AP Photo) It's easy to look at the Cleveland Cavaliers' record and assume that they had an adversity-free season, but that would be a huge mistake. The Cavaliers withstood serious injuries to their starting center (Zydrunas Ilgauskas),...

By Michael Lee  |  April 15, 2009; 11:16 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (5)
 
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MMPG: Defensive Player of the Year

Dwight Howard, Orlando Magic Just gimme that. (AP Photo/Jeffrey M. Boan) Dwight Howard just became the fifth player in NBA history to lead the league in both blocked shots (2.92) and rebounds (13.9), joining an elite fraternity that includes Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Bill Walton, Hakeem Olajuwon and Ben Wallace. He will...

By Michael Lee  |  April 15, 2009; 10:35 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
 
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MMPG: Rookie of the Year

Derrick Rose, Chicago Bulls I am No. 1, cause two is not a winner and three nobody remembers. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Chris Young) Like the last No. 1 pick fortunate enough to play for his hometown team, Derrick Rose lived up to the hype of being the top overall...

By Michael Lee  |  April 15, 2009; 9:51 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
 
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Monday Morning Point Guard (A Few Days Late)

Hai yah! You sure you want to see me in June? (AP Photo) The Flip Saunders story (nothing new to report) has pushed back the final Monday Morning Point Guard a little later than usual, but with the regular season ending tonight, I had to finish out with a wrap-up...

By Michael Lee  |  April 15, 2009; 9:12 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
 
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You Tell Us: Biggest Challenge?

Flip Saunders' hiring appears to be inevitable. Please weigh in on the challenges he faces. poll by twiigs.com...

By Alexa Steele  |  April 14, 2009; 2:29 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (36)
 
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Report: Flip's Coming

Flip Saunders has agreed to become the next head coach of the Washington Wizards, an NBA executive told the Associated Press. The source told the AP that the team is expected to make a formal announcement some time next week, because the Wizards have one more game remaining at Boston...

By Michael Lee  |  April 14, 2009; 12:18 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (46)
 
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Raptors 97, Wizards 96

Oh, what a night. For Wizards fans, the night was in ruin the last 6 minutes, 30 seconds as the little team that couldn't figured out every possible way it could to blow a 13-point fourth-quarter lead. For me, my night was all shook up around the time I happened...

By Michael Lee  |  April 14, 2009; 12:21 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (37)
 
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Wizards: No Saunders Deal Yet

Like a lot of you, we saw the Yahoo report that Flip Saunders has agreed to a four-year, $18 million deal to coach the Wizards. Michael Lee had a couple chances to go straight to the source(s) tonight, even as the Wizards were letting a fourth-quarter lead against the Raptors...

By Keith McMillan  |  April 13, 2009; 10:15 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (42)
Tags: Ed Tapscott, Flip Saunders, coach  
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Wizards (19-61) at Raptors (31-49)

Wizards starters: Javaris Crittenton, Dominic McGuire, Caron Butler, Antawn Jamison, Brendan Haywood. Raptors: Jose Calderon, Anthony Parker, Shawn Marion, Chris Bosh, Patrick O'Bryant Refs: Mark Wunderlich, Derrick Collins, Mark Ayotte Line: Wizards by 2.5. Gilbert Arenas will miss his fifth consecutive game and 78th overall. Interim Coach Ed Tapscott reiterated...

By Michael Lee  |  April 13, 2009; 6:46 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (39)
 
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The Other Side: Toronto Raptors

When is this season going to be over, already? (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Frank Gunn) Caron Butler daggggerrred!!! the Toronto Raptors on Friday with a step-back buzzer-beating jump shot over Shawn Marion, to give the Washington Wizards a 100-98 victory and save them from an(other) embarrassing loss. The Raptors...

By Michael Lee  |  April 13, 2009; 4:26 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
 
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Tap on Flip

This will be the final night the Washington Wizards don gold uniforms, but this will also be District native Ed Tapscott's final home game as coach of this team. The Wizards are closing in on Flip Saunders and hope to get something done sooner than later. That has moved Tapscott...

By Michael Lee  |  April 13, 2009; 1:25 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (20)
 
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Gilbert's Vendetta Against Flip

Dan Steinberg has dug up some vintage Gilbertology. Remember the Eastern Conference Assassin? Well, Arenas once vowed to get back at Flip Saunders -- possibly the next Wizards coach -- because of a perceived all-star snub. The AP reported back in 2006: Arenas said his teammates were fired up because...

By Alexa Steele  |  April 13, 2009; 12:40 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
 
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Flip Saunders Update

I just wanted to check in with an update on the Flip Saunders situation. There is no done deal until a deal is done, but the Wizards have made an offer to Saunders to be their next coach and hope that something can be resolved before the end of the...

By Michael Lee  |  April 13, 2009; 9:22 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (34)
 
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Kings "Win" Race to the Bottom

Lord knows there are more important things to talk about this morning, Flip Saunders primary among them, but the Kings' loss to the Spurs on Sunday night means they've officially clinched the worst record in the NBA this season. They're 16-64 with two games remaining. That gets the Wizards and...

By Keith McMillan  |  April 12, 2009; 11:32 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (16)
Tags: draft, draft lottery, draft pick  
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Saunders Is Likely Choice

Sources tell Michael Lee that the Wizards are close to naming Flip Saunders their next head coach. In a story for Monday's newspaper, he reports that Saunders is the top choice of GM Ernie Grunfeld, and that Saunders has already tabbed former NBA player Sam Cassell as an assistant, according...

By Alexa Steele  |  April 12, 2009; 4:55 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (38)
 
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You Tell Us: Grading Tapscott

With Michael Lee writing a feature for Sunday's print edition that pretty much defines Ed Tapscott as we've come to know him -- classy and insightful, if not a perfect fit for the Wizards' coaching job -- now's a good a time as any to ask this: What do you...

By Keith McMillan  |  April 12, 2009; 11:09 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (65)
Tags: Ed Tapscott  
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