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Wizards (2-1) at Cavaliers (2-2)

Wizards starters: Gilbert Arenas, Mike Miller, Caron Butler, Fabricio Oberto, Brendan Haywood

Cavaliers: Mo Williams, Anthony Parker, LeBron James, Anderson Varejao, Shaquille O'Neal

Line: Cavaliers by 11.5.

The last time he was in Cleveland, Antawn Jamison left the Quicken Loans Arena wearing a sling after a collision with Cavaliers center Zydrunas Ilgauskas resulted in a right shoulder subluxation. Three weeks later, Jamison was on the court a few hours before tipoff shooting jumpers, keeping up with the routine he has established since he was given the clearance to start shooting again.

Coach Flip Saunders said Jamison may starting moving toward the next step of his progression, with Jamison participating in dummy offenses and other non-contact drills later this week. Saunders added that the team will remain cautious, although Jamison has been antsy about getting back.

"We don't want to do anything to where he's going to hurt that thing again," he said. "We want to make sure that thing is almost like new."

Before the game, LeBron James said he was thrilled to see Gilbert Arenas playing at a high level again. Arenas entered the game ranked fourth in the league in scoring at 28 points per game. James worked out in Chicago with Arenas for a few days this summer and said in August that he was about 90-95 percent of what he once was.

"I'm a big fan of Gil and the way he plays the game," James said. "To see him back healthy is good for the game. It's good for the NBA. It's good for the city of Washington."

Saunders said that Caron Butler is "ready to go" after a bruised left knee forced him to miss the Wizards win against the New Jersey Nets on Saturday. "I don't think he's feeling any ill effects from what happened in Atlanta," he said.

When asked if Butler would guard James, Saunders said. "He'll play LeBron." Then he cracked a smile. "So, you're questioning how smart he is to come back from his injury? [He's saying] 'I'm going to come back and guard LeBron.' "

With Andray Blatche averaging 21 points and six rebounds through the first three games, Saunders said he spoke with him about raised expectations. "As I told him, the way he's playing, you start setting the bar. People start expecting you to play at that bar all the time."

Saunders was asked if Blatche reminded him of Kevin Garnett. He's definitely wasn't ready to go there. "I would never want to put him in that catergory. He's a long way from getting there," Saunders said. "What I like is that they're both 6-11 -- although KG is 6-13 -- and they both have very good ball skills."

The Wizards have not won a regular season game in Cleveland since Feb. 24, 2006.

By Michael Lee  |  November 3, 2009; 6:50 PM ET
 
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Next: Cavaliers 102, Wizards 90 [UPDATED]

Comments

So far, so good. Wizards up 21-14 in the first quarter.

Looking good.

Posted by: JekyllnHyde | November 3, 2009 7:27 PM | Report abuse

So far looking very good...it's the little things...closing out on shooters, flashing on out on screens that are impressive to me. I haven't seen very many easy shots.

Posted by: SDMDTSU | November 3, 2009 7:39 PM | Report abuse

Talk about home court advantage -- phantom fouls on the Wiz bigs as well as no-call hacks by Cleveland. Plus, Shaq committed a flagrant 2 on DeShawn and no "cough" call. Wiz gotta play perfect to win this foolishness.

Posted by: dpclark | November 3, 2009 7:59 PM | Report abuse

Typical Wizards, so to speak, in the second quarter with limited aggressive scoring chances and poor rotation and awareness on defense. The last Wizards possession of the half was a prime example. Arenas dribbles the shot clock down and then tries to make a cross-court pass. Arenas has to shoot that ball. It's about awareness.

Posted by: CDon | November 3, 2009 8:17 PM | Report abuse

GREAT first quarter. Not so great 2nd. Very hard watching our 18 point lead diminish so quickly. They MUST make better decisions when they have an odd man rush. Butler's turnover was especially bad. And GOTTA make free throws, obviously.

Posted by: rachel216 | November 3, 2009 8:18 PM | Report abuse

Weird first half, the lead slipped away when the refs called about 10 fouls on our bigs in the 2nd quarter and put all of them on the bench. But even though the Wiz had 18 fouls called against them to the Cavs 11, the Wiz have 2 more free throw attempts. I don't know how that happened.

Also, in the first half Shaq was 4 for 6 from the line...and Gil was 3 for 7. Hopefully the law of averages will take care of that stat in the 2nd half.

Posted by: Hobes | November 3, 2009 8:23 PM | Report abuse

Atrocious refereeing. Should have known. NBA refs are a joke sometimes.

Open court. Miller takes an obvious charge on LeBron. Standing in his spot for a second or two, gets bulled over, and they call the foul on Miller. Shaq decapitates Stevenson and just gets called for a regular foul. Not to mention the 10 foul calls against Shaq with about 6 really fouls.

Yeah, that half court heave pass to McGee by Butler was absolutely moronic and really fed Cavs momentum. We probably have a 7/8 point lead if not for the really stupid pass.

Finally, since when is it to our advantage to have Butler go one on one against LeBron on the wing with no movement?

As good as we looked in the first, we played just as bad in the second. The 2nd foul on Haywood was an absolute joke. I think we lost our cool a little that quarter with the calls etc...

Time to regroup!

Posted by: rphilli721 | November 3, 2009 8:25 PM | Report abuse

Shaq is nowhere near athletic enough to warrant those calls. I am going to bull over my defender with no quickness anymore and get ALL the calls. BS!

And, sometimes they just got to give him a dunk. It's better than fouling out in the 3rd quarter!

Posted by: rphilli721 | November 3, 2009 8:28 PM | Report abuse

Not surprised it's a close game considering Cleveland is outstanding in their own gym. Wiz just need to keep their composure and STAY AGRESSIVE. Will not comment on the lousy officiating ;-).

Posted by: ArmChairQB | November 3, 2009 8:28 PM | Report abuse

CDon,

I disagree with you on the final Wizards possession.

I like what Arenas attempted to do; he just made his move a couple seconds too late. Passing it off early, sets the table for the second half -- it keeps defenders off balance. Miller, Foye, and Butler can all convert open looks around the perimeter too, so this isn't a case of Arenas being the only guy on the court at that time capable of hitting a jumper.

If Butler had enough time to convert and the Wizards had a repeat of the same situation at the game's close, the move would keep the Cavs D honest. It might have at least planted a seed in the defenders' mind to watch-out for the open shooter off the balance. In that instant a player like Arenas can nail an open look.

Arenas's move keeps the D a little off balance. That's the chess match. Right idea; the execution just needs work.

Some tough calls there in the 2nd half. The absence of Jamison too is a killer with the front court fouls. Hopefully the Wizards can close out strong and neutralize the home-town cooking.

Posted by: JPRS | November 3, 2009 8:36 PM | Report abuse

Anyone else feel uncomfortable with the way this game is being refed?

Posted by: gilbertarenasisgreat | November 3, 2009 8:44 PM | Report abuse

The refs loveeee lebron and the Cavs.

Posted by: rachel216 | November 3, 2009 8:45 PM | Report abuse

Oh, I know the history...

This is definitely another chapter in the making. My blood pressure is spiking. I mean, the very sight of Boobie Gibson's stupid face makes my blood boil, but it'd be too kind to say the refs are calling the ticky tack.

Did anybody see Brendan's fourth foul??

Posted by: gilbertarenasisgreat | November 3, 2009 8:49 PM | Report abuse

Fourth foul on Brendan was an absolute joke. The bogus calls have changed the whole tenor of the game.

Posted by: ArmChairQB | November 3, 2009 8:50 PM | Report abuse

these refs suck

Posted by: rachel216 | November 3, 2009 8:59 PM | Report abuse

I hate lebron's stupid face and that grin of his. ugh i hate cleveland and all their fans. screw you refs!! we all know you want lebron and shaq's team to win!!

Posted by: rachel216 | November 3, 2009 9:02 PM | Report abuse

is cleveland's d that good? they're making us look horrible.

Posted by: rachel216 | November 3, 2009 9:06 PM | Report abuse

They are getting blown out by a mediocre Cleveland team. I know some non-knowledgeable people on here will find excuses and tolerate this loss by stating that Cleveland had the best record last year and so on. The fact is Cleveland has regressed and will not contend this year.
Even washed up SHAQ is having a good game...

Posted by: Utilityman1 | November 3, 2009 9:12 PM | Report abuse

I am stuck with only radio coverage this evening. Obviously cannot see fouls or non-fouls but if this team is to compete with top tier teams they cannot fixate on the refs.

They were making shots early but now cannot make a bucket. I can't really guage much else without seeing the action but maybe that is a blessing tonight. Shame.

Hope nobody bet that $1000...still time but I am not feeling it.

Posted by: The_Shadow_Knows | November 3, 2009 9:18 PM | Report abuse

This was a pretty pitiful effort tonight. Defensively, they showed no better than the last few years. (Really? When one guy drives, all five collapse? Really?) And yes, the Cavs stepped up their defensive effort from the second quarter on, but you can't tell me that through 36 minutes you can't find a solution. When a team is that aggressive on D, there are always people who are open. Mostly, though, the Wizards lost their edge on offense when their shots stopped falling. The Cavs are certainly not mediocre as Utilityman1 suggests, but they are a team the Wizards can beat.

Posted by: CDon | November 3, 2009 9:18 PM | Report abuse

Physics don't apply to Cleveland.

Posted by: gilbertarenasisgreat | November 3, 2009 9:19 PM | Report abuse

Its called the refs screwed us with all those fake foul calls threw the wizards off balance I mean its so pathetic how much the league wants to promote Lebron to the point they have to cheat the game. This is why the NBA will never be anything like the NFL when it comes to real sports because everyone knows the NBA ref's are suspect and are a joke. Screw Cleveland, Cry baby Lebron and David Stern

Posted by: dcskins08 | November 3, 2009 9:23 PM | Report abuse

I don't blame the refs for losses. The Wizards needed to overcome whatever inconsistencies in calls they perceived. But the refs were bad tonight. Both ways, too. A lot of questionable calls. Pretty awful game from an officiating standpoint. That said, the Cavs whine more than any team I've seen. And Cleveland's announcing team is God awful. God awful.

Posted by: CDon | November 3, 2009 9:25 PM | Report abuse

damn. lost a G cause our boys couldnt cover a 11.5 point spread. thought it was a gift from above when they released the spread this morning.

Posted by: kman2 | November 3, 2009 9:27 PM | Report abuse

I also think Gilbert's unwillingness to take 3-pointers is going to hurt this team. They need his outside shooting, particularly late in games when the Wizards are down. If he's going to pass up shots, then that's going to be a problem for Washington.

Posted by: CDon | November 3, 2009 9:27 PM | Report abuse

I thought Anthony Parker was a good shooter? then again, I also thought Gil was a great shooter...

Posted by: Marine4Life51 | November 3, 2009 9:28 PM | Report abuse

Its called the refs screwed us with all those fake foul calls threw the wizards off balance I mean its so pathetic how much the league wants to promote Lebron to the point they have to cheat the game. This is why the NBA will never be anything like the NFL when it comes to real sports because everyone knows the NBA ref's are suspect and are a joke. Screw Cleveland, Cry baby Lebron and David Stern

_____________________________________

I do agree that the refs were a joke but this should blind us from the Wizards' poor play tonight. They played horrible defense, a very disorganized offense and made SHAQ look like the 2002 SHAQ. This totally reminded me of last year's team.
I will go ahead and file this game as a fluke and still hope for the best...

Posted by: Utilityman1 | November 3, 2009 9:29 PM | Report abuse

Pretty bad when you're outscored by 30 points over the course of three quarters. I would've like to have seen the Wizards make some kind of adjustment somewhere during the course of 36 minutes, but they seemed content heaving up long shots and collapsing into the lane on every single drive to the basket.

Posted by: CDon | November 3, 2009 9:30 PM | Report abuse

i can't believe the wiz blew an 18 point lead. booooooooooo!! probably won't beat miami at home tomorrow. this was a strange game. you could feel the cavs were going to win once they cut the 18 point lead into single digits. *sigh*

Posted by: rachel216 | November 3, 2009 9:30 PM | Report abuse

This game of basketball is such a joke! Until the referees are totally eliminated, I will never be able to watch another game and get the feeling that the outcome is already predetermined. Thank you Mike Donaghy for exposing this fraud of a league. I guess the Wizards did not pay the "protection money" for tonight's game to the refs in time.

Posted by: JohnWWW | November 3, 2009 9:31 PM | Report abuse

Its called the refs screwed us with all those fake foul calls threw the wizards off balance I mean its so pathetic how much the league wants to promote Lebron to the point they have to cheat the game. This is why the NBA will never be anything like the NFL when it comes to real sports because everyone knows the NBA ref's are suspect and are a joke. Screw Cleveland, Cry baby Lebron and David Stern

_____________________________________

I do agree that the refs were a joke but this should blind us from the Wizards' poor play tonight. They played horrible defense, a very disorganized offense and made SHAQ look like the 2002 SHAQ. This totally reminded me of last year's team.
I will go ahead and file this game as a fluke and still hope for the best...

___________________________________________
shouldn't, sorry.

Posted by: Utilityman1 | November 3, 2009 9:31 PM | Report abuse

well, the game was lost when the Wizards didn't change the tempo of the game while holding an 18 point lead.
clearly, they should have slowed the game down and let blatche/haywood get the ball in the post and use the shot clock and put up high percentage baskets.
a couple missed 3s by gil/caron/foye/miller, and a couple made baskets by cleveland, and ur 18 point lead turns into single digits, and there goes the momentum.
blatche is our highest percentage shooter, and BTH is pretty decent too, and the least they coulda done is get shaq/ilgauskas in foul trouble.
this game was lost when the pace favored cleveland, and when we just kept throwing up more long distance shots when our shooters were NOT hot.

Posted by: kman2 | November 3, 2009 9:32 PM | Report abuse

You have to give maximum effort to beat the Cavs from start to finish just like in the A-T-L the other night they started off like they were going to blow the Hawks out but could not sustain that level of play same thing here tonight, welcome Flip Saunders to the nightmare known as the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Posted by: dargregmag | November 3, 2009 9:33 PM | Report abuse

SON OF A BLEEP!!! if stupid nick young shot that ball at the end from behind the three point line i woulda won a G. goddamnit. stupid half a point spreads.
ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.

Posted by: kman2 | November 3, 2009 9:33 PM | Report abuse

A carbon copy of the Atlanta game.

Strong for the first 1 1/2 quarters, then the bad calls start, the other team gets some life and starts playing swarming defense (secure in the knowledge that they are HACKING and getting away with it), and the Wiz unravel with turnovers and cold shooting.

The dirty secret about officiating is it CAN affect the outcome of the game by utterly changing how each team plays.

The Cavs are not 14 points better than the Wiz. Anybody who saw the game knows that.

Posted by: ArmChairQB | November 3, 2009 9:36 PM | Report abuse

lol comcast postgame said "this is the first game wiz didn't score 100 points"....umm correct me if i'm wrong, but we lost 100-89 to the hawks???

Posted by: kman2 | November 3, 2009 9:36 PM | Report abuse

Painful. We came out with a good plan, but Cleveland made adjustments. Most disappointing is that in the end Mike Brown outcoached the Flipster by a country mile. That hurts.

Posted by: ArchieTambo | November 3, 2009 9:36 PM | Report abuse

If you think we should have relied on our bigs to maintain the 18 pt lead, then you were not watching. They were all on their way to fouling out by the end of the 2nd quarter. That means, if you've ever played basketball, that you have to play passive after that. Then the game's essentially over. Shaq should have been ejected in the 2nd after nearly decapitating DeShawn's head. Bet you won't see that play on Sportscenter.

Posted by: dpclark | November 3, 2009 9:37 PM | Report abuse

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

well, the game was lost when the Wizards didn't change the tempo of the game while holding an 18 point lead.
clearly, they should have slowed the game down and let blatche/haywood get the ball in the post and use the shot clock and put up high percentage baskets.
a couple missed 3s by gil/caron/foye/miller, and a couple made baskets by cleveland, and ur 18 point lead turns into single digits, and there goes the momentum.
blatche is our highest percentage shooter, and BTH is pretty decent too, and the least they coulda done is get shaq/ilgauskas in foul trouble.
this game was lost when the pace favored cleveland, and when we just kept throwing up more long distance shots when our shooters were NOT hot.

Posted by: kman2 | November 3, 2009 9:32 PM | Report abuse
______

What are you talking about? The last thing you want to do against the Cavs is slow it down and that is what happened.

We played poorly from the first quarter on particularly GA. He forced shots, there was no ball movement, and they lost their poise. GA stunk this game!

-4th foul on Haywood pathetic. Shaq actually grabbed his arm and he never did anything to AJ.
-The charge call on Blatche when we were gaining momentum was pathetic. Gibson was diagonal to the court and falling in front of Blatche and he got a ridiculous call. Take away a Haywood slam there.

I hate the NBA sometimes. The theme of the night though was the calls got in our heads and we lost our poise.

Was not very happy with the strategy and/or coaching this game either. Unless they were just lost, FS was unable to get them to execute and regain their poise. Very disappointing overall.

Don't leave out our pathetic foul shooting, which is becoming a running theme.

Posted by: rphilli721 | November 3, 2009 9:44 PM | Report abuse

It's hard for a team to win a game when they have more turnovers than assists.

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | November 3, 2009 9:44 PM | Report abuse

SON OF A BLEEP!!! if stupid nick young shot that ball at the end from behind the three point line i woulda won a G. goddamnit. stupid half a point spreads.
ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.

___________________________________________
I swear that sometimes I think NY has vision issues, his shots aren't even close. This is a beautiful country where someone this bad can make millions...

Posted by: Utilityman1 | November 3, 2009 9:48 PM | Report abuse

bullets78

Do you watch the games or just check the box score before you log on to torment us?

Posted by: gilbertarenasisgreat | November 3, 2009 9:49 PM | Report abuse

Painful. We came out with a good plan, but Cleveland made adjustments. Most disappointing is that in the end Mike Brown outcoached the Flipster by a country mile. That hurts.

_________________________________________

You know you are in trouble if Mike Brown outcoaches you...

Posted by: Utilityman1 | November 3, 2009 9:50 PM | Report abuse

First intelligent post I've seen from you bulletsfan. We stopped ball movement about the same time the Cavs turned up their D.

But the calls changed the game. Even the horrific voices that the Cavs call their announcers stated over and over that the foul trouble the Wiz were in changed the tenor of the game. Then obvious question is were those fouls warranted. NO! Haywood got two phantom calls on him.

The scary realization now is that although the Cavs have regressed IMO. The now have two players that are going to get any and every call, which makes playing the game nearly impossible for their opponents. Especially in their building.

Posted by: rphilli721 | November 3, 2009 9:53 PM | Report abuse

By the way, for those of you who think that McGee may be able to replace BH as soon as next season, I offer this game as Exhibit A. He was AWFUL!

Posted by: rphilli721 | November 3, 2009 9:57 PM | Report abuse

I think I am as frustrated right now as the team probably is, bc the refereeing was pathetic. Replaying some of the calls now and it's sickening.

Can't wait for the quotes from this one.

I am not a homer that expects all calls to go our way, but I can also see objectively when the calls are lopsided. GA got a couple of phantom calls, but other than that it was about 10 to 1 on the bad call ratio.

Posted by: rphilli721 | November 3, 2009 10:03 PM | Report abuse

Did anyone notice Arenas was wearing a knee brace tonight? He looked much less mobile from the start to me. Worries me. Especially cause I'm thinking about season tix. He hadn't worn it in the other games. Anyone else with me on this?

Posted by: songofroland | November 3, 2009 10:04 PM | Report abuse

Im not tripping over anything......


until AJ comes back. I just cant get upset by losing to good teams on the road without a key guy espicaly when his replacment is so different. The Hawks & the Cavs can put on the clamps so we are going to be inconsistent on O when you start guys like Wood, Oberto, and Miller. Teams dont guard Oberto it allows them to really key on Gil and trap him. With AJ back all that changes. Its not just adding a scorer but its adding a big time scorer. I also keep telling people that when AJ comes back we are really adding 2 new guys because Miller is going to look so different with AJ out there. Miller is going to then be open all the time so he can hit J after J or drive when people run out at him. Then when he does drive he can then kick it to all scorers. As of now he almost kicks it to Oberto every time because the D isnt guarding him and Oberto wont shoot it. Or he kicks it to Wood.

Everything will look so different by the addition of AJ. As Ive said before, it still wouldnt be a big change now if Flip started Blatche because he gives us some things similar to what AJ does but Flip starts Oberto so it throws things off with Oberto & Wood up front. The bottom line is when AJ comes back then the O will be unstoppable and every guy will be producing. It will totally change the way teams guard Gil. No more will they be able to trap him off the screens or they will be lit up. People keep thinking that with AJ out Miller will or has to be more offensive but thats actually backwards. He will be more Offensive when AJ is there and he is then open alot more or has all scorers to drive & pass to

Posted by: dlts20 | November 3, 2009 10:09 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, he was, but I saw no difference in his mobility. He just forced things all night to the detriment of the team.

Posted by: rphilli721 | November 3, 2009 10:10 PM | Report abuse

"The dirty secret about officiating is it CAN affect the outcome of the game by utterly changing how each team plays."

I think this is 100% true.

Not to take anything away from the Cavs, but the Wiz were still up by 10 points before the half and the officals started making some crappy calls for Cleveland.

It totally changed the entire flow of the game. Instead of an up tempo game the Wiz had to play scared going into the half, and it continued into the 3rd quarter.

I get really tired of the officials giving the benfit of the doubt to the Lebrons of the league.

Shaq was a no show, the officals get involved, then he was a regular at the line. I mean Shaq can't even jump anymore.

I didn't get mad at all, I just said to myself "Here we go again." I mean this is getting rediculous. The Wiz will never win these kind of games because the the league wants to promote Lebron so bad.

Again, the Wiz did not help themselves with some of those shots but that last couple minutes of the first half changed the entire game.

If I'm Shaq and I know the officials aren't going to call stuff against me I'd go to the hole everytime also. Instead of an attacking offense the Wiz had to play scared the rest of the game.

Example: Miller was knocked on his arse at the end of the first half and the official just looked at him with his one good eye and said he didn't see anything.

It's rediculous. See, this is why people didn't care if the NBA officials ever came back. They can control the entire outcome of a game.

Ask Tim Donaghy.

- Ray

Posted by: rmcazz | November 3, 2009 10:12 PM | Report abuse

That game was just terrible. I blame the loss on Gilbert's & Caron's bad shots and bad decisions, and on Flip Saunders' terrible substitutions. Stevenson did nothing, and Foye with Gilbert should have had the minutes at guard.
Ecchhh.
Oh sure, there's the terrible officiating. I sincerely wish that the referees had been locked out entirely for the whole season.
These guys are blind and I will say, ruled by the Las Vegas mob.

Posted by: rickgonz | November 3, 2009 10:17 PM | Report abuse

I'll give you another one....

Since when is the ball allowed to hit the glass, Lebron block it, and it NOT called goal tending?

When it's Lebron James.

Again, rediculous.

- Ray

Posted by: rmcazz | November 3, 2009 10:19 PM | Report abuse

"Example: Miller was knocked on his arse at the end of the first half and the official just looked at him with his one good eye and said he didn't see anything."

Posted by: rmcazz

LMAO.

Posted by: ArmChairQB | November 3, 2009 10:23 PM | Report abuse

"I blame the loss on Gilbert's & Caron's bad shots and bad decisions, and on Flip Saunders' terrible substitutions."

Sure they did all that stuff.

But to me the whole entire game changed at the end of the first half and officiating had a huge part in it.

I mean come on, Shaq won't get 21 points in a game the rest of the season...until they play the Wiz next time and the officials help him out.

David Stern can say what he wants, he has a thing for Lebron and you'll never convince me otherwise.

- Ray

Posted by: rmcazz | November 3, 2009 10:25 PM | Report abuse

Caron has got to be more decisive. Either make a move and shoot or keep the ball moving. He and Gil forced too many shots, and it just seems to me that the ball doesn't make it to Mike Miller when he's spotted up for 3. He's a weapon, so use him.

I thought gil looked fine physically tonight. He was taking it to the hole pretty regularly, so I wouldn't sweat the compression sleeve.

Posted by: ZardsFan1 | November 3, 2009 10:35 PM | Report abuse

Call it what you will, Les BouleS got thrashed by a championship contender.

Sure, Les BouleS were up big early on, but it's not how your start, it's how you finish.

The team looked totally fragmented. Caron's return may have made the other guys more passive.

Gilby didn't lead the team or bring the team together.

I didn't see any on the court coaching.

I think Les BouleS were star struck and were swallowed up by the atmosphere.

AB was totally not involved because there was too much one on one and individual play. That's why there was a -13 assist discrepancy. When that happens, AB shuts down because he's not a one on one player.

I know people will blame some blown calls, but there's absolutely no excuse for giving up a 15 pt. lead.

Les BouleS were outhustled, outscrapped, and pretty much overwhelmed.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | November 3, 2009 10:43 PM | Report abuse

Officials called all they could against our bigs and that was the entire story of the ball-game. I wish for once, the refs called it both ways - straight up, instead of betting on the games. Oh, I forgot. Those refs got a reprimand, fines and were banned for life from the NBA, right?

Posted by: glawrence007 | November 3, 2009 10:52 PM | Report abuse

"By the way, for those of you who think that McGee may be able to replace BH as soon as next season, I offer this game as Exhibit A. He was AWFUL!"

It's not like Haywood walked off the floor dripping in glory, either.

McGee did a nice job on the boards (5 in only 11 minutes). He didn't do anything to slow down Shaq or Varajao, but neither did Haywood, Blatche, or Oberto.

Posted by: kalo_rama | November 3, 2009 11:03 PM | Report abuse

Cavs played outstanding D last 3 Q's.
Refs missed some calls.
Cavs (specially LBJ) cried about every foul called on them.

Bottom line Cavs played better D & O last 3 Q's.
Wizzies took off strong but just couldn't maintain.

BUMMER

Posted by: VBFan | November 3, 2009 11:07 PM | Report abuse

Call it what you will, Les BouleS got thrashed by a championship contender.

Sure, Les BouleS were up big early on, but it's not how your start, it's how you finish.

The team looked totally fragmented. Caron's return may have made the other guys more passive.

Gilby didn't lead the team or bring the team together.

I didn't see any on the court coaching.

I think Les BouleS were star struck and were swallowed up by the atmosphere.

AB was totally not involved because there was too much one on one and individual play. That's why there was a -13 assist discrepancy. When that happens, AB shuts down because he's not a one on one player.

I know people will blame some blown calls, but there's absolutely no excuse for giving up a 15 pt. lead.

Les BouleS were outhustled, outscrapped, and pretty much overwhelmed.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | November 3, 2009 10:43 PM | Report abuse

__________________________________________
Stop calling them LEsboules, it's such an annoying term that doesn't mean anything and you are the only one using it.
No, Cleveland isn't a championship contender, they were last year, but they regressed this year. I can assure you they won't compete with Boston and Cleveland.
As for the Wizards, stop tolerating mediocrity...otherwise all you will get is mediocrity...

Posted by: Utilityman1 | November 3, 2009 11:10 PM | Report abuse

It would appear that the rumors of the Cavs demise were premature. I think Flip made some tactical errors by in his Shaq coverage.

He should have matched Haywood's minutes to O'Neal's, taking him off the floor when Shaq sat down, bringing him back when Shaq was in. No one was going to stop Shaq, but Haywood was the closest thing they had to someone with a shot at it. They couldn't afford to put him in a position where he was expending energy or picking up fouls doing anything other than guarding Shaq.

The other mistake was, if he was going to have Blatche in there, he should have run more pick and roll with Blatche and Arenas or Foye. Shaq is notorious for being unwilling to leave the lane to guard out on the floor, and Blatche had been shooting lights out from 18-20 feet the last few games. Flip should have made a concerted effort to force Shaq to either step out and guard Blatche, which would create openings in the lane, or to camp down low and give Blatche wide open looks.

Posted by: kalo_rama | November 3, 2009 11:11 PM | Report abuse

Boston and Orlando.

Posted by: Utilityman1 | November 3, 2009 11:14 PM | Report abuse

Clearly Shaq got the star treatment, but in no way did JaTravel show anything that would lend anyone to believe that he could start as a 5 or 4 right now.

He's just a hustle guy that you bring off the bench to get a board, a block, a dunk, or a foul. That's about it.

With BTH, at least he could attempt to hold his position against a guy who was probably 100 lbs. heavier than him.

In this kind of game, you don't lose because your bench warmer didn't step up. You lose because your superstars didn't play like superstars.

All the interviews before the game of the players were basically all deferential...I don't want to offend type of responses....

The only guy willing to talk some smack was the guy least able to back it up.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | November 3, 2009 11:17 PM | Report abuse

It would appear that the rumors of the Cavs demise were premature. I think Flip made some tactical errors by in his Shaq coverage.

He should have matched Haywood's minutes to O'Neal's, taking him off the floor when Shaq sat down, bringing him back when Shaq was in. No one was going to stop Shaq, but Haywood was the closest thing they had to someone with a shot at it. They couldn't afford to put him in a position where he was expending energy or picking up fouls doing anything other than guarding Shaq.

The other mistake was, if he was going to have Blatche in there, he should have run more pick and roll with Blatche and Arenas or Foye. Shaq is notorious for being unwilling to leave the lane to guard out on the floor, and Blatche had been shooting lights out from 18-20 feet the last few games. Flip should have made a concerted effort to force Shaq to either step out and guard Blatche, which would create openings in the lane, or to camp down low and give Blatche wide open looks.

Posted by: kalo_rama | November 3, 2009 11:11 PM | Report abuse

________________________________________

No one was going to stop SHAQ?? LMAO!!!
You do realize this is 2009 and not 2002, right?

Posted by: Utilityman1 | November 3, 2009 11:20 PM | Report abuse

O'Neal scored 21 points in only 29 minutes, shot 7-9 from the field and 7-10 from the line. Didn't look to me like anyone stopped him, but maybe it looked different in HD.

Posted by: kalo_rama | November 3, 2009 11:25 PM | Report abuse

,i>"Clearly Shaq got the star treatment, but in no way did JaTravel show anything that would lend anyone to believe that he could start as a 5 or 4 right now."

And, as usual, in no way did anyone say he did.

Posted by: kalo_rama | November 3, 2009 11:28 PM | Report abuse

"Clearly Shaq got the star treatment, but in no way did JaTravel show anything that would lend anyone to believe that he could start as a 5 or 4 right now."

And, as usual, in no way did anyone say he did.

Posted by: kalo_rama | November 3, 2009 11:28 PM | Report abuse

Nevermind the fact that no one was going to stop Shaq, especially with the refs help, but no one on the team could outhustle Varejao and no one could guard Big Z either because of his size, despite his meager output.

Also, the Gilby/Foye/Eminem/MeShawn perimeter defense sucked as both Danny Gibson and Mo Williams were connecting on open bombs even though Anthony Parker sucked.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | November 3, 2009 11:30 PM | Report abuse

@DC,

Agreed.

@Kal,

I don't know about demise, but the only thing this game showed me was that they got the star treatment at home. Before the foul trouble, we were winning by what 19. I agree the strategy I did not get and we did nothing to counter their defensive strategy. Nothing. Also, McGee should have never seen the floor against a big veteran team as the Cavs. I would rather see Oberto on him bc at least he makes him make a shot away from the rim.

Gil is playing well, but he is not quite right yet. Too much helter skelter in his game at this point.

Posted by: rphilli721 | November 3, 2009 11:34 PM | Report abuse

",i>"Clearly Shaq got the star treatment, but in no way did JaTravel show anything that would lend anyone to believe that he could start as a 5 or 4 right now."

And, as usual, in no way did anyone say he did.

Posted by: kalo_rama | November 3, 2009 11:28 PM | Report abuse "

I don't care if anyone said he did or didn't.

I made an accurate statement about JaTravel's progress....err, status to date which is completely true.

No need to be defensive when no one is responding to anything you said about JaTravel.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | November 3, 2009 11:34 PM | Report abuse

"Stop calling them LEsboules, it's such an annoying term that doesn't mean anything and you are the only one using it.
No, Cleveland isn't a championship contender, they were last year, but they regressed this year. I can assure you they won't compete with Boston and Cleveland.
As for the Wizards, stop tolerating mediocrity...otherwise all you will get is mediocrity...

Posted by: Utilityman1 | November 3, 2009 11:10 PM | Report abuse "

Les BouleS lost to a better team tonight.

Also, don't count on Cleveland remaining status quo if LeBron even thinks that they can improve.

Management/ownership will do whatever it takes to make a trade to bring someone in to appease him, especially if Delonte West leaves the team during the season because of his personal issues.

Les BouleS though..count on him riding his 3 horses into the ground. As he stated before, he's happy with this team.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | November 3, 2009 11:39 PM | Report abuse

I've read plenty of people in here ruminating about whether McGee can start as soon as next year. Usually comes up when Haywood's contract situation is discussed.

Is it written in Butler's contract that he has to commit 3-4 stupid turnovers a game???

Posted by: rphilli721 | November 3, 2009 11:41 PM | Report abuse

An 18 point first half lead against a good NBA team is the definition of meaningless. There was never any doubt that the Cavs would come back. The only question was how the Wiz would respond when they did. The answer was they didn't.

As for McGee . . . someone had to play C, and everyone else was racking up fouls. McGee only played 11 minutes, so it's not like his brief cameo cost them the game.

Posted by: kalo_rama | November 3, 2009 11:41 PM | Report abuse

"I've read plenty of people in here ruminating about whether McGee can start as soon as next year. "

There's a difference between "as soon as next year" and "right now" esp. when right now is the 4th game of the year.

Posted by: kalo_rama | November 3, 2009 11:43 PM | Report abuse

The refereeing sucked badly, but the Wizards should have strategized better.

Still, the refs determined how the game flowed to a great degree.

I predict that officiating if unchecked by the league will become a huge problem for the NBA this year.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | November 3, 2009 11:44 PM | Report abuse

"Is it written in Butler's contract that he has to commit 3-4 stupid turnovers a game???

Posted by: rphilli721 | November 3, 2009 11:41 PM | Report abuse "

Caron actually committed 2 TO's...Gilby 3. The loss against Atlanta, Gilby actually gave up 7 TO's...one of them happened on the first possession.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | November 3, 2009 11:46 PM | Report abuse

"As for McGee . . . someone had to play C, and everyone else was racking up fouls. McGee only played 11 minutes, so it's not like his brief cameo cost them the game.

Posted by: kalo_rama | November 3, 2009 11:41 PM | Report abuse "

No, but 4 fouls in 11 minutes...not so good.

He's not going to last in this league when his youthful aggressiveness causes him to sit on the bench due to fouls.

He needs to learn that he shouldn't try to block every shot and to develop a go to shot not named a dunk.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | November 3, 2009 11:50 PM | Report abuse

I am sure McGee is going to morph into a quality starting season by the end of the season. Give me a break! As someone said, he is good for spells of hustle, dunks, and a block or two. And, that is not going to change in time for next season unless he has the fastest learning curve of any raw big man in the history of the NBA.

Posted by: rphilli721 | November 3, 2009 11:52 PM | Report abuse

This one looked a little like the Atlanta game -- although the Wizards played better for a longer stretches in this one (at the beginning)

The turning point came with those early fouls -- the entire front court looked like it was in danger of fouling out before half-time. There was some hometown cooking, but on balance Cleveland locked down the Wizards in the second half. The calls too weren't as one-sided as they were in Atlanta. Arenas got his All-Star looks too.

Flip talked about the Wizards being a counter-puncher. In this case, like the Atlanta game, it seemed more like a case of a pretty good Wizards team landing a solid punch at the outset and catching an over-confident opponent off-guard. In the end though, Cleveland found its footing and did the counter-punching. Some of the phantom calls definitely helped the Cavs resurgence in the 2nd quarter, but the Cavs also capitalized on those opportunities. Hopefully when Jamison gets back the Wizards can tilt the balance. On the home court, the Wizards will likely do much better.

Tough loss against a quality opponent.

Posted by: JPRS | November 3, 2009 11:57 PM | Report abuse

It's only been two games and AJ hasn't been off the bench yet. I expect to see more games like this one and more games like the one against the Nets. The Wizards should beat lotterty teams and lose to playoff teams on the road...so it all comes down to how well they play playoff teams at home?

Gil needs to be the coach on the floor, Foye needs to start to see if that combo can gel together. Cb and AJ need to score 37 every night since they will give up the same amount and BTH needs to be able to stay on the court and not foul out. MM needs to provide some "O" when he comes in and AB needs to fill in for AJ and Oberto needs to fill in for BTH. I think with Oberto you get what you see and that must be the reason SA let him walk.

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | November 4, 2009 12:05 AM | Report abuse

I am sure McGee is going to morph into a quality starting season by the end of the season. Give me a break! As someone said, he is good for spells of hustle, dunks, and a block or two. And, that is not going to change in time for next season unless he has the fastest learning curve of any raw big man in the history of the NBA.

Posted by: rphilli721 |

///////////////////////////////

Agreed. The conditioning still isn't there. The bulk isn't there either yet. The grasp of the Pro game is still a work in progress. The commitment doesn't seem to be 100 percent yet either -- it doesn't seem like the switch has flip on yet as has happened with Blatche this year.

The only way Haywood loses his starting position is through injury -- he's the clear-cut starter.

It took Haywood 4 years as a Pro after 4 years in a quality college program to really develop into a reliable starting NBA center.

McGee has more long-term upside than Haywood, but he's still raw. There aren't any playoff caliber teams that would trust him as a starting center at this stage in his development. In a best case scenario, he's still probably two or three years away from earning a starting spot with a quality team.

Posted by: JPRS | November 4, 2009 12:16 AM | Report abuse

Assuming no one else gets injured, I don't see how the young guys can develop or get consistent PT on this team.

AB, if he's not at least the 2nd or 3rd option, tends to fade.

NY won't get off the bench with Foye and Eminem in the lineup.

MeShawn gets some PT, but not enough to get him going. He's getting $3.9 mil for 18 min, 3 FTs, and 2 fouls?

JaTravel won't be doing much besides spot duty and foul relief. Players only really develop shots or a game during the offseason.

Mike James is getting $6.5 mil to ride the bench.

I haven't even mentioned Critter yet. When he heals up, he'll be riding the pine too.

Did anyone see Gilby strap on a huge ice bag on his knee once the game was determined?

When does the trading season start?

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | November 4, 2009 12:19 AM | Report abuse

"I am sure McGee is going to morph into a quality starting season by the end of the season."

Then you'd be the only person in the world sure of that.

Of course, the discussion was always whether he could develop into someone the front office thinks can start next season. Which means that what they need to see during the course of this season is progress that suggests he'll be capable coming into next season, not necessarily a finished, polished product on the last day of this season. Will they see that progress? Who knows? My crystal ball is in the shop. But it's a sure bet they won't make any decisions based on 11 minutes against Shaq, 4 games into the season.

Posted by: kalo_rama | November 4, 2009 12:24 AM | Report abuse

This team will never compete with the big boys with BTH as the center. He remains immobile, no offensive gameand not very savvy on the court.

Also you can not play three players with no game at the same time...BTH Oberto and DS...impossible to compete.

For those AJ bashers, this is what you get against all but mediocre teams as a result of his absence.

We do need to develop athletic and skilled players in the hole, and JMc is a start.
Yes he is raw, everyone knows that, but he does afford athleticism which is essential in the modern game.

Posted by: mricklen | November 4, 2009 12:33 AM | Report abuse

@mricklen,

And he gets abused by real men and real centers.

@Kal,

lol...no crystal ball. Just going by years of experience of watching raw players particularly big men take 3/4/5 years to develop into consistent players. Hmmm, kind of reminds me of a certain other player on our roster.

Posted by: rphilli721 | November 4, 2009 2:04 AM | Report abuse

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