Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity
On Twitter: MrMichaelLee and PostSports  |  Facebook  |  E-mail alerts: Redskins and Sports  |  RSS

Cavaliers 102, Wizards 90 [UPDATED]


The Washington Wizards had a number of places where they wanted to affix the blame after a disappointing loss in Cleveland. Brendan Haywood targeted the referees, who put the Wizards in a compromising position after they allowed Shaquille O'Neal to turn back the clock, clock the Wizards and send big man after big man to the bench in foul trouble. Gilbert Arenas pointed at a lack of ball movement and offensive continuity after the Wizards watched an early 18-point lead rapidly turn into a surprising 16-point deficit late in the fourth quarter.

But Mike Miller perhaps put placed the blame where it lied most: on the Wizards' own lack of composure and their quickness to surrender to adversity.

The Wizards had to know that they weren't going to just walk into the Quicken Loans Arena and stomp all over the Cavaliers. Not with so much history between these two teams. And especially not with O'Neal joining forces with league MVP LeBron James.

There aren't any cakewalks for road teams in this building, but the Wizards let down their guard after taking a 39-21 lead in the second quarter. Cleveland took advantage of the Wizards' lack of focus the rest of the way and responded with a few body blows (from Shaquille O'Neal) and a knockout punch (in the form of 11 three-pointers).

"They're going to make their runs," Miller said of Cleveland after the game. "A good team at home. They lost, what, two games at home last year? We got to be a good enough team to withstand those runs and stay composed."

This game played out almost like it did in Atlanta on Friday, when the Wizards jumped out to an early 10-point lead on the road against the Hawks and lost steam the rest of the way. Once the Hawks punched back, the Wizards didn't know how to counter. And when the Cavaliers fought back -- mainly with the crushing blow that O'Neal levied on DeShawn Stevenson that truly turned around the game -- the Wizards were dazed and confused.

Coach Flip Saunders told his team after the game that they have to learn to play the game for 48 minutes, not eight or 15. It's a tired cliché, but the Wizards are learning the hard way so far. Good teams always find a way to respond, especially at home. If you look at the Cavaliers, Lakers, Celtics and Spurs, they are really tough outs. They keep scrapping and clawing and even if you beat them, you feel worn down afterward.

So while it was startling just how the Wizards went from precision to poop in a manner or minutes, it was only a matter of time before James started asserting himself, O'Neal had a flashback game, or the Cavaliers hit some of those three-pointers that they were missing in the first half. And oh yeah, the Cavaliers are considered a championship contender because they really can defend. They held the Wizards to just nine field goals and 31 percent shooting in the second half.

"When you only get 29 shots in the whole second half and only make nine of them, you're not going to win that game," said Arenas, who matched Caron Butler with a team-high 22 points.

If there was anything encouraging to take from this game, it's that even though O'Neal got all of the Wizards' big men in foul trouble, the Wizards still managed to outrebound a much bigger Cavaliers front line -- which included O'Neal and 7-foot-3 Zydrunas Ilgauskas -- 48-42. Butler also didn't appear to be favoring his left knee after missing the previous game with bruised left kneecap. He scored 13 points in the first quarter and really did a number on James, limiting him to just four points in that stretch. Butler appeared to wear down as the game progressed, but he said afterward that he was fine."

"I wasn't fatigued at all," Butler said. "Actually, I was more energetic than anything. I was anxious to get out there."

It would be easy to look at the game and think that the Cavaliers dominated, but they really didn't. The Wizards just never seemed capable of doing the things that made them successful from the beginning. You could blame their lack of aggression (they only had 22 points in the paint, compared to 40 for Cleveland). You can blame complacency, as they settled for jumpers and one-on-one play. But the Wizards are going to have to figure out how to handle their opponents' retaliation in order to make the vast leaps that they want.

"The indication of the score was how well we played at times, and the final indication of the score was how bad we played at times," Saunders said. "The good was that when we play how want to play: execute, trust each other and execute we do pretty good. When we try to do too much, we get stagnant. And if you're not scoring, it affects you defensively, kind of sucks the energy out of you some times. There were times when we played very well defensively, then there were times we had some struggles."

Haywood was right. The referees didn't do the Wizards many favors on Tuesday. There were a number of questionable calls, like when O'Neal shoved Haywood into Anderson Varejao and Haywood was called for an offensive foul, or when James ran to rebound his own missed free throw, tripped over his feet and Arenas was called for a foul. No doubt, not having a big man took out the screens that the created open looks and driving lanes. But the Wizards weren't out of the game until they checked out. There reached a point in the second half when their collective body language just screamed let's go home and get Miami.

The Wizards are tough to read right now, since they've won their first two games by double-digits and lost their first two games by double-digits. Eventually, they are going to have to play a game that comes down to the final possessions. In order to join the big boys, the Wizards, at some point, are going to have to learn that they have to keep swinging and swinging. Weak teams like New Jersey might drop on the first hard punch, but teams like Cleveland or Boston will always try to hit back harder.

By Michael Lee  |  November 4, 2009; 12:16 AM ET
 
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Wizards (2-1) at Cavaliers (2-2)
Next: Morning brew [Updated]

Comments

Dear Mr. Pollin:

I owe you an apology for every time I called you cheap. I now know there’s been a conspiracy to make sure the Wizards lose and if it weren’t for the Ref’s you would have won at least 20 championships over the last 30 years.


Posted by: bulletsfan78 | November 3, 2009 9:40 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | November 4, 2009 12:59 AM | Report abuse

Congratulations Cavs on a great win!

Love,
The Refs

Posted by: wiz_fan | November 4, 2009 1:21 AM | Report abuse

After reading online excerpts from that ref's book (forget his name right now) this game really made me sick.

The ref's made it clear they were going to call a foul on any Wizard who tried to defend the paint. After that the composure of the team fell apart.

Nights like this make me feel like I am watching professional wrestling.

Posted by: MeviousMan | November 4, 2009 1:35 AM | Report abuse

THE REFS? Wow, you guys are just as bad as our Beloved LeBron and his crab dribble cry. Honestly, the Cavs didn't get any calls the first half of the game. If your Wizards would learn how to close out quarters and halves then maybe, just maybe they could become a serious threat. AND TRUST ME, as a Cavs fan I speak out of experience watching a team blow 20 pt leads and lose games and series. Truth be told I was rather nervous and saw the Wizards winning this game before they even step foot in Cleveland! Oh and one more thing, get rid of that bum Stevenson, he's holding you guys back from evreything, and let him know that there isn't a rival. Oh yea by the way the Cavs are the least of your worries if you make it back to the postseason ( ORL BOS CHI ATL TOR PHI Agent Zero Injuries ). Great game though!!!!

Posted by: Wizardstink | November 4, 2009 2:13 AM | Report abuse

How many championships do the Cavs have loser??? Where is LeBron playing next year??? Toodaloo!

Posted by: rphilli721 | November 4, 2009 2:57 AM | Report abuse

We changed our identity to start playing a little D this year. Once the refs get used to our new style of play, they'll adjust. That said, right now we get NO calls especially against teams with 'stars'. We either have to reestablish our 'star' to even out the calls or just keep playing D til the refs adjust and get used to it.

Side note: My ROY pick (Brandon Jennings)is averaging 22 and 5 for Milwaukee.

Side note 2:

Pech is playing decently for Minny. Pech can play. PECH has been freed !

Posted by: original_mark | November 4, 2009 7:07 AM | Report abuse

Screw the refs. Every last one of our big men piled up fouis. Haywood got mauled a couple of times and never got the whistle.
And please Shaq, go away. When you could dunk you were okay. Now I have seen enough of you using your forearm to push and shove people out of the way. But he still gets the calls.

I believe evrything that Dounaghy alleges about the NBA!

Posted by: millineumman | November 4, 2009 7:15 AM | Report abuse

Yes, we lost and I accept that loss. Not making excuses but I didn't understand some of the calls made by the referee. It did seem to me that at times they were trying to help the Cavs cut into the lead we built. Now, with that being said, the Wiz need to and will learn to not let that affect their game plans. They were a little sloppy with their ball handling and a lot of shots seem rushed. But, it is only one game and there are more than 70 left to play. Let's just bounce back tonight and take care of Miami.

Posted by: ivyleague | November 4, 2009 7:25 AM | Report abuse

Cleveland and Shaq and Lebron put enough together to get off the ropes after the first quarter and beat a Wizard team that hasn't yet jelled and is still without Jamison. I suspect a more competitive game next time around.

Shaq may have brought enough to beat the Wizards last night but it's doubtful he's going to put Cleveland over the top against Boston, Orlando or LA.

Posted by: midlevex | November 4, 2009 7:32 AM | Report abuse

I want Caron to play better within the offense. A lot of times he seems like his game is strictly iso. Quit losing the ball!

Posted by: millineumman | November 4, 2009 7:49 AM | Report abuse

The wizards showed that they can't overcome adversity. Especially when it comes bearing a whistle. The refs were horrible in this match. I was frustrated just watching the game. Just goes to show that in the NBA, you can't win with just team alone. You need stars and you need name recognition to get calls. There was one instance where Haywood was getting mauled by 2 Cleveland players and he was called for an offensive foul. That's enough to frustrate anyone.

Posted by: tundey | November 4, 2009 8:00 AM | Report abuse

BTW, this game is also proof of how valuable Haywood (and the other big men) are to the Wizards' fortunes. Once they started picking up fouls like free candy on Halloween, it was all over for the Wizards.

Posted by: tundey | November 4, 2009 8:03 AM | Report abuse

THE REFS? Wow, you guys are just as bad as our Beloved LeBron and his crab dribble cry. Honestly, the Cavs didn't get any calls the first half of the game. If your Wizards would learn how to close out quarters and halves then maybe, just maybe they could become a serious threat. AND TRUST ME, as a Cavs fan I speak out of experience watching a team blow 20 pt leads and lose games and series. Truth be told I was rather nervous and saw the Wizards winning this game before they even step foot in Cleveland! Oh and one more thing, get rid of that bum Stevenson, he's holding you guys back from evreything, and let him know that there isn't a rival. Oh yea by the way the Cavs are the least of your worries if you make it back to the postseason ( ORL BOS CHI ATL TOR PHI Agent Zero Injuries ). Great game though!!!!

Posted by: Wizardstink | November 4, 2009 2:13 AM

'Stink',
(Just call you by your shorten post name since your obviously not a Wiz fan)We as Wizards fan can except a lost when your Cav's beat us for we know you can't win them all. But any person with an unbias view watching that game could tell the Refs did a poor job and favored the Cav's blatantly. We can except that, but rest assuered, we will see those 'pretenders'(the Cav's) again and the results will be diffrent!!!

Posted by: bazteal | November 4, 2009 8:10 AM | Report abuse

I understand the Refs killed the Wizards last night, but with that said the game was lost when the Cavs went to small ball and our coach went with two bigs on the court. Thats when the Cavs had there run. Why keep all of these Guards if you dont put them in when they are needed. This coach is good for about 5 losses a year and this is 1 of them.

Posted by: pikedawg | November 4, 2009 8:16 AM | Report abuse

Amazed that Arenas is still built like a college freshman. No wonder he is so frequently injured. Does he spend any time in the weight room at all?

Posted by: FrancoNiell | November 4, 2009 8:18 AM | Report abuse

I totally agree about the reffing. Perhaps we were able to notice it more watching it on tv than mike lee. It really seemed the refs wanted to give the cavs a chance to come back after the first quarter which made the wiz lose their flow and composure and I can't blame them. If I was being called for fouls while I'm consistently getting hammered myself, what's the point? To me that is totally biased and unprofessional. You might as well have a cavs fan reffing at that point. I hope the NBA reffering is put under more scrutiny after the recent allegations. They need to call the game they see with their eyes and stop influencing the outcome. The players should determine the outcome otherwise what's the point?

Posted by: rock77music | November 4, 2009 8:20 AM | Report abuse

There's a reason that the Cavs are virtually unbeatable at home. Other than the final game of the season where they rested their starters, they lost a grand total of one home game all year. I'm not absolutely certain this is true but I've heard that the primary reason for their success is that in contrast to the rest of the NBA which employs a shared pool of referees, the Cavaliers actually supply their own referees for home games! The "Cav Referees" are indoctrinated, among other instructions, to not require either Varejao or Ilgauskas to ever get from one location on the court to another by dribbling. That "no dribbling" provision was actually first instituted two years ago on a trial basis and, at that time, applied only to Lebron. Also, there is to be no such thing as a Cav flagrant foul. That rule extends to even allowing facial takedowns, especially of those opponents who have prior trash-talking offenses against the beloved home team. I've heard that the Cavs will soon be instituting a new regulation for their staff of referees. When adopted, Varejao will no longer have to actually "flop" to get his quota of charging calls; he will simply have to supply a hand signal to the referees when he wants a charge called. By the way, there's a rumor that the Lakers have either already or are in the process of adopting the Cavalier "private referee squad" policy.

Posted by: phil27 | November 4, 2009 8:20 AM | Report abuse

At this point, it is hard to say what the Wizards are just yet. They are obviously capable of playing some pretty good basketball at times and sometimes they can do it for whole games.

This season we have new coach, a new system, new players, and old players back from injury. Perhaps we can better evaluate the Wiz after a few months of playing together to better see what this team can be.

Posted by: cannontl | November 4, 2009 8:30 AM | Report abuse

I knew we were done when Shaq hit his first FOUR free throws :)

Should be called the Cleveland Crybabies. I have never seen a team where everybody including the coach cries/complains on EVERY call. Unbelievable.

Go Wizards.

Posted by: fearturtle44 | November 4, 2009 8:50 AM | Report abuse

The consensus here is that there was a string of about five or six blatantly incorrect calls in the second quarter that blew the lead for the zards and made it clear they were not going to be allowed to operate in the paint without a whistle going against them.

I have never seen a more blatantly thrown game by the refs.

Is there something we can do about it? That's the frustrating thing. When it's obvious to everybody, on the replay, that not just one bad call but five or six in a row are being called against your team, who is held accountable? Did the refs for that game get punished for their lousy performance, or do they get a bonus for handing a win to the cavs on their home floor?

Is it too much to ask for the game to be called fairly?

Posted by: zonkerbrainless | November 4, 2009 8:55 AM | Report abuse

Why not put the ball inside more to create foul troubles for the Cav's big guys? Eventually the refs will call them. Putting the two stars together (Caron & Gilbert) messed up the flow. Jacked up so many missed shots and messes up rythmm of the other players. It's too much of them instead of the whole team play. Just look at their shooting percentage during this game.

Posted by: bdunkadunk | November 4, 2009 8:55 AM | Report abuse

FYI, Andray Blatche has the highest PER on the team. Top 15 in the league through 4 games.

It's early but this is an indication of how well he's playing.

http://insider.espn.go.com/nba/hollinger/statistics

Posted by: original_mark | November 4, 2009 8:57 AM | Report abuse

The Wiz are playing much better than could be reasonably expected.

They are 2-2 without having a star player, and having played 3 on the road against play-off teams (including the two toughest road palaces).

They have 5 more games without Jamison.

Given the schedule, I'd be satisfied with a 5-4 record by the time of AJ's return as long as the team chemistry was building (as it has been).

We're on the road to 50. A few bumps are to be expected.

Posted by: Izman | November 4, 2009 9:11 AM | Report abuse

Don't know how we can blame the refs when the Wiz shot 9 more FTs than Cleveland. So there were bad homer calls near the end. Happens in every arena. The real problem: the Cavs hit 9 more FGs and had 13 more assists.

Have to remember this team was heavily favored to play LA in the finals before they were taken apart by Dwight Howard and Orlando. And now they have Shaq in the middle, along with Ilgauskas, and Anthony Parker out at the big guard spot.

Overall, a stronger club than last season.

I would have liked to see the Wiz play together in the second half, instead of beginning to free-lance.

Posted by: Samson151 | November 4, 2009 9:15 AM | Report abuse

Guys...Seriously. Fouls were 27-25 Washington. Come on! You guys have an excuse every time you lose to the Cavs. Gilbert was hurt, Caron was hurt, Jamison was hurt, the refs, LeBron traveled...the list goes on. And the Cavs are the Crybabies??? WOW! The Wizards were up big in the first quarter, and couldn't keep it up. I was at the game, and sure there were some questionable calls on both sides, but what game doesn't have questionable calls. Why won't you ever admit that you just got beat by a better team? This maybe shocking to you, but the Cavs are better than the Wizards.

Posted by: ClevelandCrybaby | November 4, 2009 9:19 AM | Report abuse

Yeah, there were a bunch of calls in a row in the 2nd quarter that basically signaled in a very straight forward manner that indeed Haywood would not ever get a foul call on offense no matter how hard he was hacked and on the other end, if Shaq bumps into a Wizard, it's a foul on the Wizards. Not to mention Mike Miller getting hammered at the end of the quarter or Blatche getting called for charge that was not real. At that point you just have to hope your jump shots are falling (which they obviously weren't) or you have no shot at winning.

I have watched thousands of NBA games, been to probably 100 Bullets/Wizards games in person and at no point do I recall the referees disrupting the flow of one team so directly and in such an obvious manner.

I am one of the biggest die hard fans of the Wizards but this game makes me think it's not even worth watching the NBA if the refs are going to dictate who wins.

The refs were literally the in-house equivalent of some Physical Education coach who is reffing a game and trying to help one team catch up by ganging up on the team that is winning.

At what point does the NBA do something about this type of reffing? It appears it's all about creating a fun product for the home team to watch and the star players and going out of their way to make the scores more even rather than being an actual fairly judged competition. I"m soooooo pissed! This kind of crap make me tired of defending the NBA to college bball purists.

Reminds of the time the Bullets lost on a Barkely mystery foul at the end of a game years ago. I wish there was some more ramifications on these guys. At the least they should be forced to watch the game on replay and be forced to see where they messed up so it doesn't happen again.

Just pathetic!

GO WIZARDS!!!!

Posted by: rock77music | November 4, 2009 9:28 AM | Report abuse

After watching last night's game, I'm going to try very hard to stop watching the NBA, forever, even though I've enjoyed the Bullets all my life. The game is fixed, period -- I believe every word Donaughy said. Why? Just try to watch the game with objective eyes, which is admittedly hard to do as a fan. The phantom fouls picked up by the Zards bigs in the second quarter put an end the game, because you can't play without your bigs. And really, for all you folks you think the Wiz should "stay focused," let's get real: I would lose my enthusiasm, too, if I knew the game was stacked against me and I have to play perfect and hit all of my 40-foot 3's in order to win. Why bother? As a fan, I don't want to any more.

Posted by: dpclark | November 4, 2009 9:30 AM | Report abuse

I think we can all agree the Wizards offense in the 2nd half sucked and they deserved to lose, they couldn't shoot.

The larger point is that the Reffs flagrantly changed the flow of the game. A lot of sports is about momentum and by making several ridiculous calls in a row the wizards lost all momentum and cleveland gained confidence and the reffs bogus calls had a massive inpact on the flow of the game.

During any given game there will be a call or two that are bogus and can play an important role. But to have like 5-6 calls like we had in this game? Crazy. Might as well have the players call their own fouls at that point like they do in a pickup game.

On the bright side, the Wiz can learn from this experience that no matter how much the reffs are working against you, you gotta laugh and keep plugging away and stick to the game plan (particularly if you can't hit an outside shot for your life!)

Posted by: rock77music | November 4, 2009 9:35 AM | Report abuse

That's pretty funny. I didn't really get a chance to watch the game, but I was leaving the gym around the end of Q1, and caught the update on Foxsports Radio: "Wizards with a double-digit lead over the Cavaliers," I literally said out loud to no one "Uh-Oh, it's about time for the whistles to come out."

I didn't catch the game again until about halfway through the 3rd, when the score was like 58-62 Cavs, and thought "There it is."

It stinks, but it's the nature of the beast in the NBA. It's almost silly to be outraged or even suprised by it at this point. I think as Wizards fans, we need to accept that if the team wants to be successful, they'll need to beat the other team *and* the refs.

Posted by: VTDuffman | November 4, 2009 9:39 AM | Report abuse

NBA = Professional Wrestling. Screw it. Unless you want to admit that you're basically watching an orchestrated circus, not a real competitive match, sit down and enjoy your popcorn. Me, I'd rather watch serious competition. It's becoming clear to me now that Stern made the decision a long time ago to make sure the home teams stay competitive in order to keep fans in the seats. With weak teams, fans are simply not going to pay $40 or more per seat if the home team product looks horribly uncompetitive. So you "fix" that. In the end, these players make outrageous money so they will just play along. But after a while, it must wear on them emotionally, if they are truly honest with themselves.

Posted by: dpclark | November 4, 2009 10:00 AM | Report abuse

It is amazing how the Refs called so many fouls on our big men trying to defend Shaq. Shaq gets to plow thru people and the foul is on the defender. LeBron gets to lower his head to the basket and the foul is on the defender. I truly believe that Donaghy isn't half wrong with his allegations about SuperStar treatment and the foul count. A foul is a foul is a foul no matter who it may be. That's what makes the NBA Refs the worst officiating in sports...

Posted by: htnba2003 | November 4, 2009 10:12 AM | Report abuse


Guys...Seriously. Fouls were 27-25 Washington. Come on! You guys have an excuse every time you lose to the Cavs. Gilbert was hurt, Caron was hurt, Jamison was hurt, the refs, LeBron traveled...the list goes on. And the Cavs are the Crybabies??? WOW! The Wizards were up big in the first quarter, and couldn't keep it up. I was at the game, and sure there were some questionable calls on both sides, but what game doesn't have questionable calls. Why won't you ever admit that you just got beat by a better team? This maybe shocking to you, but the Cavs are better than the Wizards.

Posted by: ClevelandCrybaby | November 4, 2009 9:19 AM


Now if you have any clue about basketball you should know. Its not the tally of fouls in the end but when are the fouls called. After the Wizards went up 18 in the second period check the play by play NBA.com Wizards 15 fouls Cavs 6. Thats were the game changed, you don't have to like it, but it is what it is. The Refs put them back it in and the Wizard folded after that..

Posted by: pikedawg | November 4, 2009 10:20 AM | Report abuse

Funny, those last 2 comment are literally what I wrote in emails I just sent to a couple friends.

That 2nd quarter was pure 'Sports Entertainment'. The Refs seemed to worry about people leaving the arena rather than the reality of the game.

If I hadn't invested the last 20 years in following the Wizards, I'd just punt the entire NBA to the curb and take my UFC fascination to the next level.

Posted by: rock77music | November 4, 2009 10:22 AM | Report abuse

"The wizards folded after that"

That is totally unfair. The wizards played as well as they could be expected after the refs made it clear they could not step foot in the paint without having a whistle blown against them.

There's just no other way to interpret it. The refs threw the game.

Posted by: zonkerbrainless | November 4, 2009 10:23 AM | Report abuse

The Refs played there part in the loss, but the Wizards stop running there Offense started taking bad shots. The coach played his part ( when Cavs went small he stayed big with 5 guards on the bench ) yes they folded when things started going against them.

Posted by: pikedawg | November 4, 2009 10:30 AM | Report abuse

"It's becoming clear to me now that Stern made the decision a long time ago to make sure the home teams stay competitive in order to keep fans in the seats. With weak teams, fans are simply not going to pay $40 or more per seat if the home team product looks horribly uncompetitive. So you "fix" that."

Posted by: dpclark

Have felt that way for years. If Mavs owner Mark Cuban weren't so outspoken about bad officiating in the NBA and would just keep his head down and plod along, the Wiz might be looking at a record of 1-3 right now.

Posted by: ArmChairQB | November 4, 2009 10:31 AM | Report abuse

"I truly believe that Donaghy isn't half wrong with his allegations about SuperStar treatment and the foul count."

---

"Allegations" about the SuperStar treatment?

I thought it was common knowledge to everyone that "Stars" get more calls for / fewer against than normal players. Is there anyone out there who actualyl believes differently?

Posted by: VTDuffman | November 4, 2009 10:31 AM | Report abuse

Yes the Wiz have to learn how to withstand adversity.
However just wondering, what other player in the entire league last night-- in any game-- who was involved enough to play 36 minutes score 27 points, and pull down 8 rebounds and yet didnt have 1-- not 1--thats ONE foul called against him.
just show me 1 player. after awhile it gets a little ridiculous. the refs really should be ashamed.

Posted by: dovelevine | November 4, 2009 10:44 AM | Report abuse

You can also look at it from a business standpoint, in favor of both the players and the owners: if refs were not allowed to fix games, then many of the teams would have horrible attendance which would affect overall revenue, which in turn would prevent the outrageously high player salaries from developing. Arguably, if you are a player, you look at it as a beneficial conspiracy between the Association, the owners, and the players to put the maximum amount of dollars in everyones pockets. Then, over the course of the entire season, you could convince yourself as a player that the better teams will still have the best records. HOWEVER, that doesn't cure the problem on the back end, in the playoffs, when the more popular teams are given an edge and usually win. So, in the end, there's no way around the fact that the entire thing is just an expensive show -- not true competition.

Posted by: dpclark | November 4, 2009 10:48 AM | Report abuse

Wow. You guys really sound like Cleveland Fans, honestly this is something that we debate as a whole the entire NBA season. It isn't just your team this happens to, it happens to everybody. I'm not justifying anything that the refs do, me personally I feel that all pro sports are fake! But there are plenty of times when the Cavs are playing other teams I see LeBron get every call while other players who drive to the basket get nothing. I see the same for you guys so far as the whistle protecting the star player and nobody else.

"How many championships do the Cavs have loser??? Where is LeBron playing next year??? Toodaloo!"

RPHILL721, I never said the Cavs won anything, I'm not even a Cavs fan, I've never had a favorite team in all 25 years of my life . However, I've always had favorite players so when idiots like you laugh because LeBron is leaving, I agree and I don't get angry because where ever he goes I go. And truth be told you can ALL agree that Gilbert Arenas hasn't earned that stimulus package that he hustled out of the Wizards ( Notice I respected his game enough to not call him overrated ). And Stevenson is still a bum, seriously not trying to make this a cleveland - washington argument, but why the hell have this BUM on your roster when you guys deserve a guy like mmmm Antonio Daniels. You can also pick up big man Chris Mihm, I know he's not the end all be all player but he would look good coming off you guys bench. Look tell Pappa Arenas to take a pay cut.

Posted by: Wizardstink | November 4, 2009 11:02 AM | Report abuse

And one more thing, all sarcasm set aside; the Wizards are a good team, but they have to learn how to close out a game. Honestly the Cavs got to the finals on a easy record (more home games), just like Boston, and now Lakers. So really just do like we do in Cleveland HOPE FOR THE BEST AND RELIVE THE WORST. You guys have been great, I thank you all for welcoming into your home, I hope to see you guys later this month.

Sincerely,

F@#k BOSTON, DETROIT, L.A., MICHIGAN, USC, and the Yankees


Posted by: Wizardstink | November 4, 2009 11:08 AM | Report abuse

I only watched the last couple of minutes of the third quarter. Not sure how the refs called it, but when Mike Miller didn't get the foul on his putback before the buzzer, I knew something was wrong. Even the refs in my rec league (who swallow their whistles on 75% of the fouls committed just to keep games flowing, calling only the most egregious) would have called that one. Probably wouldn't have mattered in the long run, but that was truly pathetic officiating.

Posted by: grounder | November 4, 2009 11:32 AM | Report abuse

I think we all understand and openly observe the star treatment the refs give every game and have been doing for years. And the amount of contact allowed differs from game to game and player to player and even moment to moment, reffing is pretty subjective in the NBA for sure. Shaq has made a career of bumping into people and then hitting a layup and getting the foul call as well.

But on the whole, I can't remember seeing the refs completely change the tone of a game in such a short amount of time thus killing the Wiz game plan in an effort to allow the home team to play catch up. It was like playing a video game where the computer makes it easier for the losing party to catch up.

I typically blow off bad calls, even those that come at key situations such as that Barkley call years ago in the final seconds or the non call on Lebron against the Wiz. That stuff just happens, part of the star treament. But to dismantle an entire teams offense and defense via the whistle and turn the game around was just crazy. It's not like Lebron was on fire and getting a bunch of 'star' calls. It was more like the refs decided "for the next 5 minutes in the 2nd quarter, no fouls will be called down low for the wiz and all fouls will be called down low for the cavs until the score is more even". Crazy stuff.

Posted by: rock77music | November 4, 2009 11:57 AM | Report abuse

I blamed for Flip. You know why?
When Gilbert and some starters sit just before 2nd quater, we are about 16 to 18 lead. Then Foye and DS came in until about 5 or 6mis before half time and we can see that Cavaliers try to run. I prey infront of my TV to put Gilbert back. But Flip was so stubborn and the lead reduce all the way to 4.

Posted by: skinsMill | November 4, 2009 12:11 PM | Report abuse

I think Haywood's quote from the Washington Times about sums it up, "We had something going. You look out there, and JaVale had four fouls in the first half. I had three. Andray had three. Fab had two. That's 12 fouls for our big men alone. You read in between the lines the way you want to. The game was played a certain way until a certain point. ... It's a tough situation because you don't want to talk bad about the referees, but you feel one way with how the game was called. I was just frustrated the way the game was called."

Posted by: rock77music | November 4, 2009 1:47 PM | Report abuse

If the Wizards see this situation again against LeBomba and the Cavs, they should just force the situation and foul at will! Force the referees to toss out all the players, including the bench. Then we will see if Commissioner Stern will have a say in all of this. Imagine if the Refs foul out all the starters but refuse to call another foul on the bench players because of the obviousness of the situation, then the Wizards can just play "Hack-a-Shaq-N-Mates" all the way to the end. If that is the case, I would definitely stick around to see flagrant fouls applied to LeBomba and friends! What? The refs will just call the foul anyway...or will they if there are only 5 players left on the team?

Posted by: JohnWWW | November 4, 2009 1:56 PM | Report abuse

To the Cleveland Fan saying we cry about injuries:

I would love to see your team go .500 without Lebron. I hope Lebron blows his knee out this year so the Cleveland fans can feel our pain of having your BEST player knocked out for an extended period of time.

Posted by: dominic10464 | November 4, 2009 2:21 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company