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Day I, Evening Practice

The Wizards let reporters in for the final half hour of practice, which provided us with a good chance to see the players go at each other in scrimmages. And trust me, they went at each other. The moment we walked through the doors, Antawn Jamison had taken the opening tip toward the basket for an uncontested layup when Andray Blatche came charging to contest the shot -- and knocked Jamison to the floor, as both players crashed near the basket support.

The most entertaining aspect of the scrimmages was that Coach Flip Saunders let his assistants coach the teams. Sam Cassell led the black team, which included Blatche, Gilbert Arenas, Nick Young, Brendan Haywood, Dominic McGuire and Javaris Crittenton (they were the only team with a reserve). Don Zierden guided the blue team of Jamison, Mike Miller, Mike James, JaVale McGee and camp invite Vincent Grier. Randy Wittman led the white team, which had Randy Foye, Caron Butler, DeShawn Stevenson, Fabricio Oberto and camp invite Paul Davis.

The black team defeated the blue team, 16-7, and the white team, 23-9, and you can probably imagine that the loudest voice at Siegel Center belonged to Cassell, who was especially animated as he directed his team. After winning both games, Cassell slapped five with Blatche and said, "Way to whip [butt], black! Way to whip [butt]!"

At one point in the first game, Grier left Arenas open near the top of the key and before the ball splashed through the nets, Cassell shouted, "We'll take that!" Later in the game, Crittenton took an ill-advised long jumper and Cassell shook his head. "Young fella, use your strengths."

The most interesting matchup of the first game was between Haywood and McGee. It's early, but I think McGee is going to learn a lot from going head-to-head against Haywood every day in practice. Haywood isn't going to give him anything. McGee caught the ball on the left side of the box and tried to dunk on Haywood. Haywood was offended and knocked the ball from McGee's hands, igniting a fast break.

Arenas wore a protective sleeve on his left knee, unlike when he was at Barry Farms earlier this summer. It's likely just for precaution, since trainer Tim Grover is in town through Saturday to monitor Arenas and pass along his knowledge to the Wizards training staff. Arenas also had some blue tape on his left middle finger after dislocating it last week. It didn't appear to be anything serious, especially as he split a James-Jamison double-team to get to the rim. He even attempted to finish with his left hand. He missed, but still.

Nobody really stood out in the first game, but Nick Young looked pretty good in the second scrimmage against the white team. He came around a screen -- somebody's been watching his Reggie Miller and Richard Hamilton DVDs -- and knocked down a jumper. No dribble. He hit another pull up jumper. Again, no dribble. He had a rebound a tip on a Haywood miss. Dominic McGuire blocked Butler's jumper, Crittenton quickly pushed the ball up the floor and fed Young for a finger roll. He also hit a baseline jumper on another catch-and-shoot.

Young might have scored more, but he crashed into McGuire as both hustled chase down a loose ball. Young hit the ground. McGuire got the breakaway dunk.

Feeling good about going 2-0, Cassell was talking a little trash about keeping both teams under 10 points. Jamison shot back that he gave away about 12 points with his missed free throws and layups in the first game, but Cassell just shrugged. Afterward, the 39-year-old Cassell was working on his classic low-post, turnaround, high-arching jumper. He hit a few in a row and Butler was impressed. "Hey Ernie," Butler shouted to Wizards President Ernie Grunfeld. "He can still play. Ten day!"

Hey, the Wizards do have an extra roster spot.

Don't forget. I'll have a chat at 11 a.m. to talk about everything surrounding the Wizards, Gilbert Arenas, Flip Saunders and the rest of the NBA. Feel free to drop me a question or two.

UPDATE: Here's some video from last night's session, via www.nba.com/wizards.

By Michael Lee  |  September 30, 2009; 7:08 AM ET
 
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Next: Day 2, iPods And The Goonies?

Comments

It sure sounds like Nick Young sure worked hard on his summer assignment. That kid learns to work off the screener and really set a guy up, he's going to have a nice career in this league.

Like the fact that Suanders is pitting McGee against Haywood and Oberto in scrimages. The kid will wear some bruises before camp's out, but he'll be a better player for it.

Sam Cassell is going to be a huge asset for this team, the guy's a winner and an experienced pro. Hope he works with Critt and teaches him that turn around jumper in the lane. That could be a killer move for the 6'5" Critt.

I find it really interesting Grover's onboard at the Wizards' camp. I hope Ernie picks his brain about how to set up a good player care system. It shouldn't be just about rehabb, but also be geared to keeping guys from getting hurt in the first place.
GM

Posted by: flohrtv | September 30, 2009 7:50 AM | Report abuse

Oh, and Micheal, thanks for the early bird post...
GM

Posted by: flohrtv | September 30, 2009 7:52 AM | Report abuse

Man, this is exiting! I can't wait.

Posted by: zxhoya | September 30, 2009 8:03 AM | Report abuse

so does arenas go all the time in camp or do they rest the knee

Posted by: Rvf0509 | September 30, 2009 8:51 AM | Report abuse

I agree with GM, the most interesting part of the post was...

Tim Grover is in town through Saturday to monitor Arenas and pass along his knowledge to the Wizards training staff.

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | September 30, 2009 9:15 AM | Report abuse

Things sound encouraging so far. If Nick Young can turn a corner this year (so to speak), that would be fantastic.

To echo what others have mentioned in other threads, who coaches the the big men? We have Cassell for the guards.

I know McGee will likely go against Haywood and Oberto in scrimmages, but is this enough? Who is teaching him how to move in the low post? Did he go to a big man's camp this year? These are some questions I would like to see answered.

Posted by: cannontl | September 30, 2009 9:24 AM | Report abuse

I'm excited for the first time in years for this season!

If Nick Young can become a dependable off the screen shooter with efficiency, it will really help us out. Prior to this, his style reminded me of Courtney Alexander, an extremely inefficient scorer who would dribble dribble dribble and then throw up a wild ass 3 pointer right before the shot clocked expired. He's just gotta keep grinding and get in great shape like Rip is.

Cassell is a good role model. A really good player who absolutely maximized his abilities to the fullest. Strange to think Charlie Ward started in front of him?

Also good to hear Mcgee is getting pushed around by Haywood. He desperately needs to develop techniques for holding position and not depending on athleticism.

Lets just hope Gil stays healthy. Go Wiz!!!!

Posted by: rock77music | September 30, 2009 9:37 AM | Report abuse

The black team is too strong. I'd switch Haywood and McGee.

Other than that, they are already light years ahead of the previous teams.

Grover has a lot riding on Arenas' knee (i.e., his reputation and future earnings).

In contrast, the Wiz trainers don't seem to have any skin in the game. Maybe EG should change their compensation structure to properly align their incentives with the team's.

Posted by: Izman | September 30, 2009 9:52 AM | Report abuse

"The Devil's in the details"

Flip seems to be the detail kind of guy, a coach can either get so lost in the details that he can't see the big picture.Zorn...he's the only guy in the stadium that doesn't realize his playcalling inside the 20 is predictable.

Or, he can just let a lot of sloppy stuff go on, and half way through the season realize his team isn't playing the type of ball that they can win with down down the stretch, and in the playoffs. Eddie Jordan, and Norv Turner...Then complain he doesn't have the players to compete,

Or, he can just be in so far over his head that he doesn't have a clue why his college system isn't working in the pros. The Ole Ball Coach...Never figured out that his pass patterns took to long to develop, by the time his guys came out of their break, his QB was buried.

We've had a ton of coaches that aren't playoff ready around here. Suanders has been there, and been deep. He knows what it takes, and these players should be able to see there's a method to to his madness, the devil's in the details. And he's put it in an iPod hanging around their neck, a stroke of genius.
GM

Posted by: flohrtv | September 30, 2009 9:58 AM | Report abuse

Tenth!

Gil's back... this year is gonna be fun!

Posted by: The_Brown_Vice_President | September 30, 2009 10:05 AM | Report abuse

Tim Grover is in town through Saturday to monitor Arenas and pass along his knowledge to the Wizards training staff.

He needs to be here longer than that in order to give the Wiz medical staff time to absorb it all. Maybe he can put the info on Ipod Touch's that they can wear around their necks.

Posted by: original_mark | September 30, 2009 10:09 AM | Report abuse

How did Gil look in terms of his quickness, Mike?
According to Hollinger, he a quickness-dependent player and if that's gone, his game is gone. I actually disagree and think he's one of the best shooters in the league.

Also, I know it's early but if you had to pick a 8 or 9 man rotation that Flip is gonna use, which 8 or 9 do you think it will be? Looks to me like McGuire is azz out.

gil, cb, aj, mm, rf, ny, ab, jm, bth

HAVE to be in the rotation. There's no room for anyone else.

Posted by: original_mark | September 30, 2009 10:15 AM | Report abuse

You don't put a square peg into a round hole!

People need to stop trying to make Gil a true point guard. But with that, scoring has never been the problem with Gil at point. And Gil averaged how many assists? 5-7 a game? I have seen him run plays, setup players by penetrating and dishing...the problem is when he dished, it was to people like Michael Ruffin who would proceed to blow the layup. Guess what, no assist on the play because the layup was blown even though the play looked great. But guess what, this wizards team has better finishers than the past. How many layups did Jeffries blow. All people want to remember was Gil scoring, carrying the offense with his Big 3mates, while ignoring the garbage that was surrounding the Big 3. Gil has never played with an interior finisher, especially one who plays above the rim. Haywood stunk back then. He is better know. Though the first time Haywood finishes an oop will be the first time I see him do it. Blatche is a way better finisher than Ruffin and Etan. McGee is better too, if you set him up right. JaVale can be to Gil, what Tyson Chandler was to CP3.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 30, 2009 10:17 AM | Report abuse

I forgot to mention Deshawn. He's probably not in the rotation either.

Posted by: original_mark | September 30, 2009 10:38 AM | Report abuse

Eff it. I'm buying season tickets.

(I'm such a sheep)

Posted by: GshawnJohnson | September 30, 2009 11:06 AM | Report abuse

Haywood stunk back then. He is better now.

G-Man11

Haywood stunk back then because Gil never dished the ball inside, he is better now because of the year Gil did not play! Gil had the great 20/10 man AJ so don't blame not getting assists on who he played with.

I don't think anyone expects him to be John Stockton! I want to see is him getting the team involved in the game before trying to win the game all by himself.

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | September 30, 2009 11:12 AM | Report abuse

GM,

It is erie how time after time I am reading your posts and saying to myself, is this my post, did I write this.

It is uncanny not so much that I apree with a lot of your posts, but the way you put them is like I would have written them.

Where is your apple tree from?

Never mind, I'm full of myself, shouldn't be asking you bout' your origins on the Blog Site.

But Man.

Now that I think about, I just remembered you saying something about going to the Bullets game as a young fella.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | September 30, 2009 11:16 AM | Report abuse

Start of the year regular season rotation:

You've got four assured -- Arenas, Butler, Jamison and Haywood.

Three new guys who will play unless the sky falls -- Foye and Miller, and then Oberto as a 10 minute reliever. That's seven.

That leaves three principal off-the-bench spots, shrinking to two as the season goes on.

I'm guessing he bases his initial selections for those last three spots on how people play in camp. Players will rotate in and out of those spots during the season based on injuries and team needs.

Most coaches prefer to have a defensive stopper, so that would suggest an advantage to McGuire or Stevenson. McGuire is the more versatile of the two. Additional outside shooting would seem like less of a need than last year.

He needs a big man behind Jamison, which suggests Blache or (less likely) McGee.

The third spot might go to Nick Young.

But who knows? That's why they have camp.


Posted by: Samson151 | September 30, 2009 11:19 AM | Report abuse

G-Man11,

"Haywood stunk back then" as you put it, also because the coaching decisions never gave him a fair chance to be better. He wasn't given the minutes and was constantly subbed for lesser players than he.

All uproven NBA players must grow and prove themselves, but when that growth and improvement is stunted by coaching phylosophy and the player knows it, it will affect his play.

Haywood's quote breakout season was because Jordan had to play him and then he barely played an average slightly over half a game if my fact brain is correct.

Just think, if Jordan had given Haywood the equal chance to prove himself like he did for ET, Haywood might just have been a better player a lot sooner.

I don't want to belabor this 'cause certain people think I am being partial to Carolina Blue. Haywood back then was still the best center on the Team and if Jordan had realized that and coached him up accordingly, he would not have had to wait till 2-yrs ago to learn Haywood's real worth.

To say that Haywood stunk back then is disengenuous, it says more for how Jordan handled players, not just Haywood, but Blatche, ET, and DSon as well.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | September 30, 2009 11:42 AM | Report abuse

I still think McGee is more likely to start the season in the rotation than Oberto. Based on his past success, Saunders' matchup zone defensive scheme seems to be better suited to a long mobile big than to an undersized plodder like Oberto.

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 30, 2009 11:46 AM | Report abuse

Haywood stunk back then because Gil never dished the ball inside, he is better now because of the year Gil did not play! Gil had the great 20/10 man AJ so don't blame not getting assists on who he played with.

I don't think anyone expects him to be John Stockton! I want to see is him getting the team involved in the game before trying to win the game all by himself.


Posted by: bulletsfan78 | September 30, 2009 11:12 AM

Don't be ridiculous. Plenty of games Gil would feed Haywood in the post in the first quarter. Haywood would proceed to go into a post move and appear to be shooting with his eyes closed. This is one area where Haywood improved based on Haywood's off-season work. Haywood needs to be credited for this. His second area Haywood improved was from getting stronger. You know, lifting weights. Haywood getting stronger allows for him to shed defenders and go up stronger on finishes after receiving a pass from a penetrator. Gil had nothing to do with Brendan going up weak back then. Don't lay that on Gil. Give Brendan credit. His work ethic is what led to his improvement, not Gil being out.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 30, 2009 11:55 AM | Report abuse

Any one who wants Arenas to be changed as a true point gard is the enemy of washington.He is paid 111 million for his agressive offense, we do not want that to fade away completely, with maturity i just want Arenas to look more to open man any where in the court maily when he is attracting an additinal defender.I want him to continue to elevate for every game wining shoot, who could do it better than him?

Posted by: gtefferra | September 30, 2009 11:56 AM | Report abuse

When I read the concern once again for a big man coach, a thought crossed my mind. It makes more sense to me the more I think about it.

Flip Saunders himself might just be the big man coach we are looking for and keep clamoring for.

After all, he did do pretty damn well with Kevin Garnett. I don't recall any mishandling with Kevin on his part.

What do you all think about the fact that Flip Saunders might just be the best big man coach for this Team?

LarryInClintonMD.

Two for One Anybody!

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | September 30, 2009 11:58 AM | Report abuse

Larry

I agree with you regarding Brendan's lack of improvement partially due to EJordan.

I felt back then that both Etan and Brendan, while decent shotblockers and rebounders, had offensive games that stunk. I felt that when Etan was on the bench watching Haywood, Etan would think "I am better than Haywood, I should be starting and getting most of the minutes". And when Haywood was on the bench watching Etan, Haywood would be thinking, "I am better than Etan, I should be starting and getting most of the minutes". With both of them thinking they were better than the other, this led to their intense competition and thus, the famous fight. I think EJordan felt that Etan handled the situation better than Haywood, who probably would pout and gripe. Etan, being the more naturally mature one, was favored over the griping, less mature Haywood.

I still think Haywood should be credited with his improvement, not Gil blamed for Haywood's bad offense.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 30, 2009 12:05 PM | Report abuse

"It didn't appear to be anything serious, especially as he split a James-Jamison double-team to get to the rim."

A James-Jamison double-team?!? That has got to be the easiest double-team in NBA history to penetrate and break down! Hope we will never see that combination in an actual NBA game...again!

Posted by: JohnWWW | September 30, 2009 12:26 PM | Report abuse

Great reporting! Thanks for the update.

Posted by: Fontana1 | September 30, 2009 12:43 PM | Report abuse

NO way McGee doesnt get in the rotation.
We know for sure about at least 8 of the spots. The only thing up for grabs is one spot.

JM, AB, and BTH are our only bigs. They're All IN (to coin a phrase).

Gil, CB, and AJ. Big three is in.

That leaves 2 or 3 spots.

MM is the first choice to start at the 2 and the principal backup at the 3. He's in. Foye is the best backup pg we have on the roster. He's in.

That's our top 8. If we go 9, its between NY, DS, and DM.

NY has the most talent and would seem to be the perfect come-off-a-screen-and-shoot guy for Flip's offense.

Looks like a no brainer to me. Our 2 best individual defenders (DM and DS) are out of luck. Hopefully with the matchup zone, we dont need man defenders as much.

Posted by: original_mark | September 30, 2009 1:05 PM | Report abuse

Agreed, G-Man11.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | September 30, 2009 1:07 PM | Report abuse

with all the options on offense we have, i think NY will have to really excel to keep DM/DS from getting minutes. somebody's gota defend and rebound

Posted by: divi3 | September 30, 2009 1:22 PM | Report abuse

Looks like a no brainer to me. Our 2 best individual defenders (DM and DS) are out of luck. Hopefully with the matchup zone, we dont need man defenders as much.

That's an attitude that won't get you far.

Posted by: SDMDTSU | September 30, 2009 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Original_Mark,

I like the way you break the rotation down.

The only hickup I have with any breakdown though is who will back up Gill. Probably, at this point as everybody seems to agree, is that it will be Foye.

Something tells me though that Crittendon might supplant Foye as first of the bench at the point. Maybe not right away, but a lot quicker than people think.

I just think his speed and size meshed with this Team would create enormous gametime adjustments to slow us down.

For him to come in behind Gilbert would still wreak havoc on the other Teams Defenses. With Gilbert they would have to worry about the scoring and then, here comes Crit and they would have to worry about the pace.

I know I sound a bit ambitious, but I am just excited about this Team.

And it is not because it is my/our Team, as we look around the League and compare the Wizards to other Teams, I think we stack up pretty damn well.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | September 30, 2009 1:56 PM | Report abuse

When it looks like a no-brainer -- trust me, it's a brainer.

Posted by: Samson151 | September 30, 2009 2:08 PM | Report abuse

That's an attitude that won't get you far.

LOL. True.

Posted by: original_mark | September 30, 2009 2:23 PM | Report abuse

I forgot to mention Deshawn. He's probably not in the rotation either.
Posted by: delusional_mark | September 30, 2009 10:38 AM

I forgot how big of a crackhead you are. Everyone in the league is asking about defensive improvements and u say there is no room for our best defender?? lmao Here is what Gilbert had to say about DeShawn last week:

“The warrior's always gonna win,” Arenas declares. “If you can't beat out our best defensive guy, then you're not gonna play. Until they take it from DeShawn, they're not going to start. Doesn't matter that he's not a scoring shooting guard. He's our Derek Fisher, our Bruce Bowen, the guy who gets down and dirty. He's there as the equalizer. And I can promise you this, if any of those three are going after his job and have to match up with him, he's gonna battle them and they're not gonna look good trying to score on him.”
http://www.washingtontimes.com/weblogs/outlet/2009/sep/15/agent-zero-uncut/

Here is what Mike Lee had to say about the rotation from camp today:

Michael Lee: I have been grappling with that one for a while. If I had to go with a top nine right now, I'd go with Arenas, Butler, Jamison, Haywood, Miller, Foye, Stevenson, Young and Blatche
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/discussion/2009/09/25/DI2009092502562.html


ftw

Posted by: prescrunk | September 30, 2009 2:29 PM | Report abuse

BTH is in a contract year and now doesn't have to deal with the distraction of playing against Etan in practice or sharing minutes. His work ethic not only in getting stronger but becoming a better foul shooter in 2007-2008 can't be overlooked. He's simply become a more physical, aggressive player who other teams can't just foul every time he's close to the basket. I'd think his scoring and rebounding numbers should match or exceed those from 2007-2008.

As for the rotation, I see McGee playing as the backup center against more athletic, finesse teams and Oberto playing against the more physical ones like Boston, Cleveland, and Orlando. McGee must get stronger if he's going to be able to be on the court for significant minutes against the more physical teams and that may not happen for another year. Oberto will probably play 10-15 minutes a night with BTH playing 25-30 and McGee getting the rest. AB can't play the 5 and will have to earn his minutes backing up AJ. I'm sure the Wizards would like to see Jamison's minutes be more in the 30-35 range so he can be fresh over the course of the season.

Posted by: wizfan89 | September 30, 2009 2:35 PM | Report abuse

Any player who views competition and having to work to earn minutes as a "distraction" isn't a player I want on my team.

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 30, 2009 2:49 PM | Report abuse

Blatche will probably get the nod early on,but if history is any indication, from the minute they tip off the first game the clock will be ticking on how long until he plays his way into the doghouse.

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 30, 2009 2:53 PM | Report abuse

Kal how long do u think Gil & Flip will be hunky dory before things deteriorate a la Flip in Bad Boys II?

Posted by: prescrunk | September 30, 2009 3:00 PM | Report abuse

Congratulations, prescrunk. You have officially overtaken all of the other annoying posters on this blog to claim the top spot.

What Gil has to say about the rotation means absolutely nothing.

Mike Lee must have overlooked McGee when he listed his rotation. There's no way in heck we go with AB and BTH as our only big men in the rotation. The fact is that DS is not among the best 9 on this team. If you want to support him and consider him starter material, feel free. The stats say otherwise.

Fact is, he is not and will never be as good as Mike Miller. He is not able to backup up Gil at the point so Foye gets the nod there. The only guy he could possible beat out is NY and we've all read the testimonials from the coach and others who say that NY is playing with confidence.

This year, I'm ignoring the bs from you and any other 'baiters' out there. Call me any name you want. You'll be met with silence.

Posted by: original_mark | September 30, 2009 3:04 PM | Report abuse

Gil gets in early foul trouble, or they're protecting him on the second night of a back to back, I'd say they're going to Foye at the point.

Normal night, I'm kind of quessing Flip's going to use Crittenton as a tempo changer. Pressure the ball, and force the tempo a little would make sense with some of the guys that will be on the 2nd unit.
GM

Posted by: flohrtv | September 30, 2009 3:04 PM | Report abuse

Agree with Original Mark... I suspect that DS will be in the rotation, and NY will have to show that he is serious (in effort and court-smarts) on D to unseat him.

DM fascinates me because of his athleticism. If he could develop a reliable mid-range he'd be a really interesting guy coming off of the bench. He did talk about working on it in the summer, but didn't he work on shooting the outside shot last year?? Didn't work very well for him.

Also I didn't see (maybe I just missed it) much commentary on Foye's having to guard 4s in college--and being able to hold his own in the post. THAT was interesting, and the NBA is obviously a different game than college, but that says a lot about his ability to play bigger than his measured height, I'd think....

Posted by: psdfx | September 30, 2009 3:13 PM | Report abuse

psdfx: "Also I didn't see (maybe I just missed it) much commentary on Foye's having to guard 4s in college--and being able to hold his own in the post. THAT was interesting, and the NBA is obviously a different game than college, but that says a lot about his ability to play bigger than his measured height, I'd think...."

It was an anomaly based on injuries, if I remember correctly. Foye is a strong guy but matching him up against guys the size of Josh Boone is hopeless.

His real flaw shows up when you put him on somebody a lot quicker than he is. That's also true of most NBA guards...

Posted by: Samson151 | September 30, 2009 3:20 PM | Report abuse

Also, whether DS is our best defender is debatable. Personally, I think DM has him beat by a mile in that category. CB also is probably better if he's not looking for his points.

Posted by: original_mark | September 30, 2009 3:24 PM | Report abuse

"The fact is that DS is not among the best 9 on this team."

In his chat this morning, Michael Lee made reference to Saunders saying something to the effect that the starters would be the 5 guys who played best together,not necessarily the 5 best players. Whatever his relative rank in the quality order, Stevenson has proven the ability to play will with the big 3 and Haywood.

Now, personally I don't see him starting, largely because I have doubts that his body will be healthy enough to allow him to do the things he was able to do a couple of years ago. He's not a big skill guy, so if his piling injuries cost him a significant amount of flexibility and lateral movement, bot his defense and shooting will be effected, and he doesn't have a big margin for error to begin with. But if he is 100% physically, there's no way to discount at least the possibility that Saunders will go with the proven veteran player.

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 30, 2009 3:34 PM | Report abuse

He is not able to backup up Gil at the point so Foye gets the nod there.
Posted by: original_mark | September 30, 2009 3:04 PM

yeah because Flip and EG have talked extensively about playing DeShawn at PG. lmao @ ur stupidity. do u even watch the Wizards? Eminem is not only slow and one-dimensional, but he is also washed up and a known defensive liability, just like every other guard/tweener on the team besides DeShawn. There is no question that Miller is a better 3pt career shooter than DeShawn (however they both shot 40% two years ago). Flip has stated that he intends to start the 5 guys who play the best together. And this team needs help with defense, not more clowns like NY who don't practice, don't pass, and jack up impossible fadeaways. crawl back into your refrigerator box and have another rock.

Posted by: prescrunk | September 30, 2009 3:40 PM | Report abuse

CB also is probably better if he's not looking for his points.
Posted by: original_mark | September 30, 2009 3:24 PM

did you sell your mom's black & white Zenith to get another rock? Caron is NOTORIOUS for playing out of position. From Draft Express:
Butler’s overall floor stats on the defensive side of the ball are rather pedestrian...The fact that wing counterpart DeShawn Stevenson typically takes the best opposing wing also feeds into this as Butler will sometimes range around more on defense as a help man
http://www.draftexpress.com/profile/Caron-Butler-1894/

(owned)

Posted by: prescrunk | September 30, 2009 3:51 PM | Report abuse

Contenders or Pretenders?
In order for the Wizards to win a championship they must play defense.

I like the Wizards because they have brought back winning to a city who needed it but getting to the playoffs is just not enough. They must get over the hump now!

I don't care how many points they score or whatever coach or players they bring in. If they don't play defense, they will lose in the first round of the playoffs.

Think about it the east is loaded. Ask yourself can they really beat Boston(addition of Sheed and Marquis Daniels), Cleveland (Shaq)and Orlando (Vince Carter)in a 7 game serious.
Think about with Shaq in Cleveland he will scare the Wizards alone just by looking at them. Haywood wants know part of that and he knows it. DeShawn will not say a word to LeBron while Shaq is on the court. Next, KG and Sheed will kill the no defensive playing Antawn Jamison. Boston is to deep. Orlando with Dwight and Vince spells trouble for Haywood and Jamison.

Jamison has been talking we are contending for a championship. The key word is contending. If you want to win a championship you must say we are going win the championship. Simple as that.

The Wizards don't have enough bigs. Defense wins championships. The Wizards are Pretenders.

Posted by: paulelucas2 | September 30, 2009 6:41 PM | Report abuse

"Kal how long do u think Gil & Flip will be hunky dory before things deteriorate a la Flip in Bad Boys II? "

I seen absolutely no reason to assume that a Saunders/Arenas conflict is inevitable or even highly likely, esp. since Saunders has clearly gone out of his way to take every step possible to make sure it doesn't happen. Whatever else you can say about him, Flip appears to be a guy who's not afraid to admit to and learn from his mistakes. That's a pretty rare trait in coaches, esp. ones who've been at it as long and had the level of success that Flip has.

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 30, 2009 7:16 PM | Report abuse

...I like McGee's potential, but what has he done to prove he belongs in the rotation so far? He got a lot of learning to do.
...until otherwise proven we most likely will see an 8 man rotation of AJ, AB, BTH, CB, MM, Foye, GA, and DSteve/DMac (depending who they need to matchup against defensively).

Posted by: oddjob1 | September 30, 2009 9:56 PM | Report abuse

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