Back In Cleveland
The Wizards had a light practice late this afternoon at the Cleveland Cavaliers' former practice court at Quicken Loans Arena.
Gilbert Arenas did not participate, but Nick Young and Juan Dixon did. Young and Dixon were both injured in the Wizards' loss to Miami last Saturday; Young spraining his left knee and Dixon aggravating his sore right Achilles. Interim Coach Ed Tapscott said Young look fine during the Wizards' walk through. All three will be game-time decisions.
Asked if it was difficult going into every game with so many "game-time decisions", Tapscott shrugged. "I've been doing this so long, it doesn't bother me. I have multiple game plans, based on potential participants," Tapscott said. "I've always said health is a primary concern, so I'll be ready for anybody who is able to go."
I spoke to Arenas briefly about his prospects of playing on Wednesday. He made it sound like he won't play against the Cavs, then finally said he'll be a game-time decision. Arenas said he is motivated to make sure that the Wizards do not finish with the worst record in franchise history.
"We cannot finish with 18 wins," Arenas said. "We get one more win, I'm done."
Arenas said he wants to help the Wizards get one more win to avoid the ignominy of having the fewest wins and/or worst winning percentage. When I told him that the Wizards actually need two more wins because the 82-game record for fewest wins is 19, Arenas said, "You sure?"
I told him I was pretty sure and he said, "I might have to change my plans."
I'm not quite sure what his plan really is, since he seems to change it every day, but I'd be surprised if he played against Cleveland. Then again, you can't really be surprised with Arenas these days, right?
I also asked Tapscott about the April snow storm in Cleveland. "I've been through a year where I've seen a lot of stuff, so a little snow doesn't bother me in April. Now, if was snowing in July ... okay, maybe I'd make a special note of it," Tapscott said. "We've had a season with a lot of twist and turns, so a little snow, another twist."
I must say, it was a strange feeling coming back to Cleveland this afternoon -- and not just because it was snowing like crazy here ... in April!?! I had to ask my cab driver if I had caught a flight or a time machine back to December.
It just feels sort of weird knowing that there will not be a playoff game between the Wizards and Cavaliers this season. There won't be any LeBron James tap-dancing along the baseline, Gilbert Arenas going for 40, James patting Arenas on the chest at the foul line, Brendan Haywood delivering hard fouls, Larry Hughes calling out the Wizards' offensive plays, Damon Jones and Delonte West hitting long corner jumpers, DeShawn Stevenson talking smack, Soulja Boy doing whatever he does or Jay-Z writing diss records. You get the feeling that the playoffs will be a little less entertaining this year.
I checked into my hotel room, at the same hotel that I've spent the past three postseasons, and it'll be the last time I'll be here this season. It's not like I really loved coming to Cleveland, but you get used to stuff. And, there is a good chance I'll be back here in June. You guys should read Mike Wilbon's column about how much the teams have changed since they first clashed three years ago.
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