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Suns 121, Wizards 95


The schedule will show that the Washington Wizards played a game in Phoenix on Saturday, but for those who had to sit through all 48 agonizing minutes, it really appeared to be short three-hour layover on their return back home to the blizzard. Showing up for an actual game was optional. On the last night of their West Coast trip, the Wizards looked like a team that was ready to go home and make some snowmen.

They lost 121-95 to a Suns team that is really good at home, but the Wizards helped them look much better by hardly bothering to compete. As Flip Saunders said afterward, "It's almost as the though the last thing we wanted to do was be out there tonight. It's pretty much unacceptable."

The Wizards were on the second end of a back-to-back after surviving a track meet with the Golden State Warriors the night before and it was really predictable that they wouldn't have the legs to keep up with the Suns, who hadn't played since a frustrating loss in Portland on Thursday and entered the game a perfect 9-0 at home.

The Suns improved to 10-0 by consistently proving over the entire 48 minutes that they were hungrier and more determined to win. It's easy to look at the boxscore and see that the Suns shot 51.6 percent from the floor and credit them with being hot, but several other categories were highly troubling. They outrebounded the Wizards, 53-41. They destroyed them with points in the paint, 60-26. And, they had 19 second-chance points, compared to just nine for the Wizards.

The Wizards simply got manhandled. The Suns had scored at least 30 points in 15 of their first 36 quarters at home this season, just shy of two per game. They had three 30-point quarters against the Wizards on Saturday. It really was embarrassing.

And, they didn't do much to fight back. How else do you explain them falling behind by 33 points before the fourth quarter? Or letting Robin Lopez look as good as his twin brother on two dunks?

This was the second time the Wizards had faced the Suns this season, but the ball movement and efficient shot selection never seems to rub off. The Wizards try to attack every pick-and-roll and give-and-go with a pull-up jumper or a one-on-three drive to the basket. The Suns had 25 assists and the Wizards had 14 -- one fewer than Steve Nash. Nash has equaled or had more assists than his opponent six times, but it's happened twice against Washington.

Gilbert Arenas hadn't played in Phoenix since Dec. 22, 2006, when scored a US Airways Center opponent record with 54 points in a 144-139 overtime win. He had to wait 1,092 days to make a return, but he couldn't keep the Suns from winning their sixth consecutive game against the Wizards.

Arenas attempted to carry the Wizards as he did the night before in Oakland, where he became the first player in the NBA with a 40-point, 10 assist game. But somewhere between all those missed jumpers he took, Arenas had to realize that it wasn't his night, especially since he was playing with a right hip injury he had aggravated against the Warriors. He scored 22 points, but he missed 15 of his 21 shots, and his night never seemed to get better. Late in the third quarter, before he was pulled for the evening, Arenas hunched over and started grimacing. I asked him if his hip was hurting too much.

"I got hit in the [midsection]," Arenas said. "I couldn't do nothing about that."

Arenas wasn't the only Wizard who didn't seem to have it. Caron Butler, wearing a different pair of shoes to help the soreness in his left ankle, didn't seem to have any lift after a season-best performance against Golden State. He had just 10 points and a difficult time finishing near the hoop. Brendan Haywood had just 3 points and 6 rebounds, but he did add 3 blocked shots.

And, DeShawn Stevenson had another rough outing as starting shooting guard. He went 0 for 4, including a really bad airball to start the second half, and finished scoreless with just two fouls and one rebound. On this West Coast trip, Stevenson shot 1-of-13 and scored just five points in four games. That's not getting it done.

The only positive, perhaps, was that Nick Young and Randy Foye were able to make the most of their minutes. Young was incredibly efficient with 20 points on just nine field goal attempts. Foye played 19:20 -- the most action he's seen since since Nov. 21 in San Antonio -- and scored 13 points with a team-high four assists.

Afterward, Foye wasn't celebrating his play. "My first thing is being a team player. If my team ain't doing well, it don't matter what I do out there. We ain't doing well," he said. "Tough loss. As a group, you just got to take some steps back and just break down all the little things. I know it was a back-to-back, but we professional athletes. We got to bring it every night. no matter who you're playing against. And tonight, our effort, just wasn't there."

By Michael Lee  |  December 20, 2009; 2:21 AM ET
 
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Comments

I was at the game tonight, let me just say - the Wiz straight up stole some checks tonight, no heart, no effort.

Gil had some buckets but overall just no heart from the team.

The Wiz warmed up for the 2nd half close to where I was at (sec. 116) - the epitome of the crap I saw was Javele Mcgee...during the warmup for the 2nd half he was just throwing crap up....and it showed when he came in during the 3rd.

What a disgraceful performance by the Wiz.....simply disgraceful.

Posted by: IHateJLC | December 20, 2009 3:24 AM | Report abuse

That was embarrassing.

Can't believe I watched any of that. Guys just standing around, no teamwork.

Really just a bad team.

Posted by: Wittan | December 20, 2009 5:08 AM | Report abuse

"Guys just standing around, no teamwork."

They mailed this one in, all right. You'd think it was the fourth game of a Wset Coast road trip or something.

Posted by: Samson151 | December 20, 2009 6:37 AM | Report abuse

I have been a Wiz fan ever since. But now
it is so painful to watch them. Question?
When are we going to have a decent game like before. All I can hear are the explanations after a defeat. Pain here, pain there, off nights, mea culpa, etc.,etc. Win guys, pls. win something.

Posted by: eacontyjr | December 20, 2009 7:19 AM | Report abuse

A win over "elite" team would be nice for
a change. Don't be satisfied of winning
against a losser team. Avoid one on one
play, it seldom work. Team play works, and
you have proven it. Let's see some winning
numbers in Jan., or else it will be the
same tune and dance as last year.

Posted by: eacontyjr | December 20, 2009 7:46 AM | Report abuse

BulletsFan78, O' Great One, I bow.

LarryInClintonMD.


Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | December 20, 2009 12:21 AM | Report abuse


LarryInClintonMD

Thanks, but I hate the fact that I am right about this organization because we will never win a championship till the Wizards rid themselves of Ernie!

By reading the post on here it looks like a few people are starting to realize I was right about Abe, Ernie and the players.

It's going to be a long season my friends and the only thing we get to look forward to come next draft day(if Ernie is the GM) is another trade of a promising young college player for another teams vets that suck !

Give Ernie a rasie?

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | December 20, 2009 7:56 AM | Report abuse

Foye said "We got to bring it every night. no matter who you're playing against. And tonight, our effort, just wasn't there."

Funny if this were AJ's comment he would have been blaming the young guys on the team.

Has anyone ever heard any of the Vet players say they are losing because they are not willing to hustle and refuse to play "D"?

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | December 20, 2009 8:01 AM | Report abuse

The young guys are so frustrated watching the same thing we see every night and not geting on the floor except for garbage time. It doesn't matter what's happening on the court or practice. Flip wants to play his vets and hope they make him look good because he has no clue. Did anyone notice Nash the smallest guy on the court had more rebounds than every Wizard. We are back to going to home games to watch the other teams players.

Posted by: rnbrown4 | December 20, 2009 8:42 AM | Report abuse

I think Ernie has made some solid individual moves. At least he's a seasoned, professional GM. He can be a good deal-maker. The problem is he made a huge bet on the so-called Big Three and this cast of role players. So, for him to undo this requires that he essentially admits that hundreds of millions of dollars and years of work have been all for naught. I like and respect the man from what I can tell just from "reading the newspaper" etc. What he's put together is not idiotic, although cleary the team chronically underperforms. But I don't know how Leonisis uses the same man who created the mess to clean it up. I don't see Ernie being here in a year.

As for the Wizards performance out West, did you notice how regularly they do not get back quickly to get into their defensive set? They not only don't play good D, they don't even get back to play D and have to scramble around and get stuck with mismatches. Yes, that's a lack of professionalism. And you've heard my theory on how that got started: Allowing or forcing the team two-three years ago to accomodate all the "Gilbertology" nonsense (and embarassing Eddie Jordan in the process). The message was clear: This is Gilbert's team and he can do whatever he wants. That contributes to a breakdown in discipline. Now that Gilbert has shown he isn't a leader and can't lead, what do you do?

Posted by: jweber1 | December 20, 2009 8:45 AM | Report abuse

GA,BH,AJ and CB had heavy minutes in the previous game. The coach has lost his sense on his rotation.I would expect JM,AF and NY to play very well against GS and save some energy to the starters. AJ was air balling and was just kept in the field for no clear reason.It is hard to play back to back fast break game but it should have been planed.the suns are not difficult team to score on them,How on earth they dominate on the board and paint? If these two were mached the out come would have been diffrent.

Posted by: gtefferra | December 20, 2009 8:58 AM | Report abuse

For all of you who don’t like my posts and refuse to learn anything move on….the rest of you let me try to explain what the real problem is with the Wizards.

Yes, the players have to play the game and the coaches have to try and get the players to play, but in the long run like any good or bad organization it starts at the top. That’s why only a hand full of teams ever wins a championship and it’s usually the same teams (with different players).

Was Abe loyal? Yes, to a fault. The first lesson in business is you need to be passionate about the business you are in, but you also need to remain detached from the business in order for you to see things clearly. Abe was too loyal to Wes and befriended him which made it hard for him to fire the guy once it was clear Wes wasn’t capable of doing the job.

Ernie? For all of you who blame Abe for the moves Ernie hasn’t made you are just crazy. Did Abe want to keep AJ? Sure, but it’s the job of a “GOOD” GM to explain the benefits of any move and let’s not forget Ernie was the guy who traded for a pf/sf who doesn’t want to play any “D” to play a long a guy pg/sg who doesn’t want to play any “D” either. Who did he think was going to play “D” on this team….oh wait I forgot lets sign a guy nobody else in the NBA wanted DeShawn who can’t play any “O”.

Some times when a building falls down people want to blame the builders, maybe they did a poor job who knows. Sometimes it’s the architecture fault for designing the building wrong and the builders built it to specs?

Ernie my friends was the architecture of this team. Yes, Abe got caught up into making the playoffs and then he wanted to keep those players because once he got too close to them he made decision based on friendship versus winning championships. Let’s face it he was blinded like a lot of fans who were happy with a first round loss?

Ernie hasn’t drafted one good player since he has been here and his track record (where we are this season and let’s not forget about last season) should speak for itself. That means look at where the team is now and forget about making the playoffs years ago.

In business you need to be able to keep one eye on what is happening day to day and the other eye needs to be looking into the future.

Is the solution an easy one? NO, the Wizards need to unload contracts for the sake of getting rid of players who can’t help this team win. They need to stock pile draft picks and find a GM who knows how to draft them. If you have to go out and over pay for another teams top scout and make him your GM, then do it. Face the facts if it’s left up to Ernie he will screw it up for another decade.

There will be a test and if you pass I will go onto Bus 102.

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | December 20, 2009 8:59 AM | Report abuse

Larry,

It's going to 72 and Sunny with a slight breeze coming off of the ocean; I think I'll go sit in a chair, put my toes in the sand, drink a glass of Oregon Pinot Noir and relax.

Have fun digging out my friend.

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | December 20, 2009 9:06 AM | Report abuse

Pathetic as usual.
No effort especially on D.
Time to get drastic and blow this sorry mess up.
It is not the coach. It is the individual interests of the vets.
They just play for stats, and defensive individual stats are not posted.
Until they replace the vets with serious plyers with intentions on D we will have only frustration.
And for those that think BH is a legitimate option at center, I have some deep discounted ducats for sale!!!!
Finally, we did win 4/5 with NY starting, why ds ever sees the light of day on this team is the perpetual question, especially with bh at the same time!!!!!!

Posted by: mricklen | December 20, 2009 9:16 AM | Report abuse

The other missing piece that I'm emphasizing is accountability. See the Jazz and the Spurs, and even Larry Brown's teams. You play right, you play D, or you sit. If you act in a way that is inconsistent with the team's interests (e.g., you announce to the press before the coach you are playing, or sitting, or shuting it down for the season), there are consequences. This has been a cult of personality team and franchise over the last few years.

Posted by: jweber1 | December 20, 2009 9:31 AM | Report abuse

I suffered through 2 1/2 quarters last night and THAT was some ugly basketball! This is just a ragged bunch of undisciplined (uninterested?) players. These guys LOOK like the same guys who took the Wiz to the playoffs a few years back, but something is plainly different this season...

I mean, the Wiz offense literally consists of a few dribbles (or a lot of dribbles), a pass (maybe), followed by a long contested jumper. All this happens within the first 7 seconds of the shot clock. Ball movement? Seems to be optional with this bunch. As much as I criticize Caron, his shot selection is no worse than anyone else on this team. They ALL take bad shots! Everytime Phoenix made a "3" I just KNEW the Wiz would jack up a three of their own. It's like they just can't help themselves! As a fan, I just wanna see some ball movement, more catch-n-shoots, and more disciplined shot selection. You know, what we saw in Dallas. Where is THAT team?

At this point, is there really that much of a difference between AJ or AB? JM and BTH? NY/Foye and Deshawn? (Wait, don't answer that last one!) My point is that at this point in the season, what does Flip have to lose by reducing the starters' minutes? This team just ain't right... It's hard to get behind the 09-10 Wizards.

Posted by: MEssex | December 20, 2009 9:42 AM | Report abuse

The ugliest Wiz game I have seen in years, and that includes last year's 19-win season. I can't believe those guys earned what I do in a year for 48 minutes of 'work' last night. I love going to Wiz games, but am finding it increasingly hard to justify giving my hard-earned cash to people who don't give a toss about their work. We need to start a fan's union. BTW, right on analysis, bulletsfan.

Posted by: SammyT1 | December 20, 2009 10:06 AM | Report abuse

"It's almost as the though the last thing we wanted to do was be out there tonight. It's pretty much unacceptable."

Not to be a smart aleck, but what can he do? Cut their minutes?

This is (mostly) a veteran team. They have to do it. No rah-rah from the coach will work.

No one thought they'd win this game; it's a perfect storm for the Suns. But combine the near-complete lack of effort here to the losses to LA, Sacramento and then Detroit previously (et cetera, et cetera) and a pattern has developed.

They're in big big trouble. No more, dare I say, bullets in the gun to use. Change a combination here or there but that's tinkering at the margins.

Decision time is approaching: muddle through or break things up? With the ownership in limbo, I wonder if they can do the latter?

Posted by: SteveMG | December 20, 2009 10:57 AM | Report abuse

BF78
I agree with your post except for Ernie signing Deshawn. His first year here he was considered by every NBA analyst a monster steal for Ernie.
I am not a Deshawn fan and can not see any reason for him to be on the floor. I was shocked to see him start again last night. What is Flip thinking?

After last nights game it's obvious that all this team will ever amount to this season is cannon fodder for the other teams.
Until "every" player is held accountable it won't change.
There is no hustle.
No one gets back on "D" and then they walk the ball up on "O" and let the other team get set defensively then run the clock down and hurry a shot off and repeat getting beat back on "D" and giving up an easy shot.
Very disappointing.

Posted by: VBFan | December 20, 2009 11:15 AM | Report abuse

deshawn starting provides exactly that for which you people have been asking - accountability! the man can't shoot a lick anymore but he plays hard and good d. message sent to NY, RF et. al. that if you play D you start. unfortunately that hasn't never will apply to gil and antawn.

Posted by: thickman22 | December 20, 2009 11:22 AM | Report abuse

i am tired of all the excuses. we have the players to be a playoff threat but none of them are playing with any pride. they blame the injuries, the new offense, the pressure to perform at home...come on. how long is it gonna take gilbert to realize he is not a point guard. start boykins at point and let gilbert play shooting guard. even let foye run the point...looks more comfortable there than gilbert. deshawn is terrible...we should just buy his contract out. he shouldn't be a starter in the d-league...why is he starting in the nba? he has no basketball IQ at all. nick young, blatche,and dominic have all taken a step backwards this year...please blow this team up...trade someone, anyone. we need players who take pride in what they do...these wizards do not.

Posted by: ianc117 | December 20, 2009 11:30 AM | Report abuse

The old guys are beat up and tired. This team cannot play three decent games in four nights on the road.

The blame game is fun for the blamer, but not helpful. If the nicks improve and the legs get some rest, they'll by very good, but the NBA isn't very forgiving.

Changes will come before the trade deadline. Guards will go, inside muscle will come, and the Big Three may change or drop to Two.

Posted by: joe2chase | December 20, 2009 11:50 AM | Report abuse

Interesting to see a few folks have mentioned the opening night Dallas game. In hindsight that feels more and more like a twilight zone episode. Everyone shared the ball, moved without the ball, played defense...it was as if the light had come on. Apparently though it was just some crazy opening night aberration. Still at least we have Dallas...

Flip is clearly frustrated with the lack of effort and we all know this is not a new problem for this group. They consistently show up without being mentally prepared to play professional basketball. If it comes easy they will take it but if it is not on a silver platter they are not willing to work for it. This creates the oh so negative dynamic of folks not wanting to contribute anything more than what they see others giving and nobody seeks to cover for anyone else.

Not sure what Flip or EG can do to shake things up, if you sit folks then you hurt trade value, product value, egos. Just seems these things are rarely done in the world of high paid professional athletes. However, staying the course does not seem sustainable either.

Flip is clearly not blameless either, starting Stevenson is inexcusable. While NY is still too much of a goofball the team was more effective with him in the starting line-up. Javale has rare talent and needs to be allowed to play through mistakes to grow as a player. Foye showed lots of positives early on but now plays behind Boykins who clearly does not have a future with the club. We should be determining if Foye does. All very frustrating…but at least there was Dallas

Posted by: The_Shadow_Knows | December 20, 2009 11:51 AM | Report abuse

Man what is the deal with Miller ??! I thought he had a sore calf. I figured he was out a couple games weeks!!

Posted by: Darnell1 | December 20, 2009 12:00 PM | Report abuse

not weeks i meant

Posted by: Darnell1 | December 20, 2009 12:00 PM | Report abuse

My rally cry for 2009-2010: "At least we have Dallas!"

Posted by: MEssex | December 20, 2009 12:02 PM | Report abuse

I read in an earlier blog that EJ and Tapscott tenure was similar......WHAT? EJ won when he was in DC it was Ernie's stupidity that has this franchise in basic chaos; had he let EJ ride out last year then there would be no question about the results but bringing in Tapcsott was just plain stupid and it showed Grunfeld ain't got a clue.Eddie Jordan won when he was here Flip has had a HOF player to work with(Garnett)when he was in Minn. and he had a playoff caliber lineup in Det. here in DC he's got three very good players who worked well together when Jordan coached them, but now? Flip has more depth to work with than Jordan had during his tenure here but so far it's a clusterf__k and with all criticism Jordan received from some of you Flip's not playing the youngins either. Ernie needs to be shown the door and it can't come soon enough for me and when he leaves he can take Flip with him.

Posted by: dargregmag | December 20, 2009 12:16 PM | Report abuse

On this West Coast trip, Stevenson shot 1-of-13 and scored just five points in four games. That's not getting it done.

Now there's the understatement of the year. And it's December too.

Those really are unbelievable numbers. And he's starting too.

No team in the league - even the Lakers or Celtics - can survive with one of their starters providing that. He's not even a threat. Teams can play 5-on-4.

Yeah, he's way down on the list of problems for this team but c'mon.

Posted by: SteveMG | December 20, 2009 12:32 PM | Report abuse

I was looking through some of the newspapers online and saw this about the wizards in the cleveland plains dealer paper so i thought i would share it. Wizards: Right now Washington, says a league executive, is not ready to do anything with its roster despite a poor start. One of the reasons is that because of injuries, the Wizards are without key off-season addition Mike Miller. But there's another factor at play that may decide what happens with the Wizards' future.

Team owner Abe Pollin's death was a huge blow to the franchise. Washington Capitals owner Ted Leonsis, whose company owns 44 percent of the Wizards and the Verizon Center, has the right to buy the rest of the team and the arena. Leonsis has said he intends to do just that.

The question is when Leonsis will finalize the purchase and just what changes he'd want to make. With an $80 million payroll, a losing record and new management, the Wizards could be ripe for cost-cutting and rebuilding. Jamison is having a great year, but has $28 million and two years left on his contract after this season. If the Wizards get to the point where they have to make a move, trading Jamison for expiring contracts could get them around $10 million under the salary cap next summer.

The Cavs have made trade proposals in the past for Jamison and will do so again. If Jamison is ever traded, expect the Cavs to push hard to be the team. He fits in nearly perfectly with the type of player the Cavs want both on the floor and off. Like Murphy, he's not a great defender. But unlike Murphy, Jamison can create his own shot offensively

Posted by: rnorris6 | December 20, 2009 1:04 PM | Report abuse

"Lordy, if I hear one more complaint about Saunders my head will explode.

First it was Eddie Jordan. Then Tapscott. Now Saunders.

Geez, maybe it's the players they have?

Posted by: SteveMG | December 19, 2009 10:44 PM | Report abuse "

Maybe it's everything.....

And who does that fall on? Yes, EG.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | December 20, 2009 1:27 PM | Report abuse

Mike, can you get something that shows how many "layups" the Wiz have allowed this year????

It's unacceptable...it's just horrible.

"The question is when Leonsis will finalize the purchase and just what changes he'd want to make."

He did with the Caps, I have no doubts he will with the Wiz. Ted Leonsis is a wonderful owner, the thing is "when" and that can't be soon enough.

Even if they make no moves this season, I would expect them to be a player in the off-season. They have to be or they will field this same team next year.

It might be time to break up the team, personally I have seen enough. I was wrong about the Wiz this year. I really thought they would finally make some noise. :(

Even if you're mad at Flip,you can't coach heart and the Wiz just don't have any right now.

Two moves I would make: start NY/deeply bench Stevenson, play McGee more. Even the boners on ESPN said that NY was playing good D this year, and he scores points. McGee scares people under the basket. Instead of bringing Blatche in at center play them both at the same time with Blatche playing the 4. They did this at the beginning of the year when Jamison was hurt and Blatche had some of his best games.

Caron, stop. You take too many just plain dumb shots and you turn the ball over 4-5 times per game. If you don't have the shot pass it, stop being a ball hog. YOu're not helping anything.

Gil, make some free throws for once in your life. Nobody is putting a hand in your face on those. It's all you, stop crying about how people are being mean to you because you make so much money. Be a man for once in your life. You don't even want to lead your own team, but when things are going good you sure like to talk a lot.

Brendan, go lift some weights. You're getting chumped out by smaller dudes and it's so frustrating to watch.

I'm so sad as a fan right now, I expected so much more.

- Ray

Posted by: rmcazz | December 20, 2009 1:31 PM | Report abuse

My rally cry for 2009-2010: "At least we have Dallas!"

Posted by: MEssex | December 20, 2009 12:02 PM | Report abuse

MEssex

If Susan O'Malley were still here she would be using that slogan tomorrow!

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | December 20, 2009 1:32 PM | Report abuse

I agree with Charles Barkley when he says "the team needs a change". By now i think we can say the wizards STINK. What i disagree with is breaking the team up just yet. I think one of the big three need to come off the bench.

My lineup would be

Randy Foye
Gilbert Arenas
Antawn Jamison
Andre Blatch
Brendan Haywood

I know you think im crazy but i think Blatch's effort at the beginning of the seasons merits a start. He rebounds, passes, defends, and can score, plus you cant teach size 6"11. Randy Foye i cant really build a case to start only to bring some size and get Gill off the ball alot more so he can remember how to attack. When Miller gets back he should take Foyes spot.
I love Caron but he should score 15-20 points a night off the bench with good minutes. Right now Blatch is the First Peg into the Wizards Future and should be respected as such.

Posted by: joe_eg98 | December 20, 2009 2:01 PM | Report abuse

They play 15 games in Dec, how many wins will they have come New Years Day?

@ Tor win = win
vs Mil loss BB game = win
vs Tor loss = Loss
@ Det win = Loss
vs Bos loss = Loss
vs Ind win = Loss
@ LAC win = Loss
@ Sac loss = Loss
@ GS win = Win
@ Pho loss BB game = Loss
vs Phi win
@ Mil loss BB game
@ Min win
@ Mem loss
vs Olk loss BB game

I had them going 7-8 since nobody knows when Miller is coming back.

That puts them at 12-18 with 52 games left.

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | November 30, 2009 11:03 AM | Report abuse

They will be lucky if they have 12 wins by New Years Day.

Instead of 12-18 it will more likely be
10-20 and that sucks!

Give Ernie a raise?

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | December 20, 2009 2:07 PM | Report abuse

The Wizards' new slogan could be "Come See the Worst Starting Shooting Guard in the League".

Posted by: and_1 | December 20, 2009 2:15 PM | Report abuse

The next 5 games are against teams that the Wizzies are better than on paper.
How many will they win?
Something's gotta change or it will be lottery time again next draft.
The new owner needs to take over soon and try to right this sinking ship.

Posted by: The_Shadow_Knows ---
They consistently show up without being mentally prepared to play professional basketball. If it comes easy they will take it but if it is not on a silver platter they are not willing to work for it.

True words.

Posted by: VBFan | December 20, 2009 2:23 PM | Report abuse

The Wizards' new slogan could be "Come See the Worst Starting Shooting Guard in the League".

Posted by: and_1 | December 20, 2009 2:15 PM | Report abuse


and_1

and a sg who plays the point a pf who plays no "D" a sf who should be a sg but can't hit a jump shot and a C who is soft unless he is playing a 20 year old 210 lbs C?

The real new slogan should be "Why would you want to come and watch this crap"

or maybe...

Give Ernie a raise?

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | December 20, 2009 2:44 PM | Report abuse

With all those close losses to the lousy teams, we forgot how bad this team is when playing against a good team.

How many blownouts this season already?

Posted by: sagaliba | December 20, 2009 2:59 PM | Report abuse

Don't take your eyes off this season's prize, people.
The goal this year is to start anew after breaking up the Mediocre Three. Since Ernie Grunfeld's mother didn't raise a fool, he knows what we know - they are a pathetic bunch of losers who have no toughness. They are fragile and are not fond of hard work.
Two of the three will be traded and will more than likely prosper since they will be utilized on other teams as they should be - as complementary role players, not players who you build your franchise around.
Arenas stays, but that's the price you have to pay for appeasing the late owner.
Do not grow listless, faithful.

Posted by: melodious_thunk | December 20, 2009 3:10 PM | Report abuse

Ernie Grunfeld's mother didn't raise a fool, he knows what we know - they are a pathetic bunch of losers who have no toughness.

Arenas stays, but that's the price you have to pay for appeasing the late owner.


Posted by: melodious_thunk | December 20, 2009 3:10 PM | Report abuse

June 30th 2003 was when Ernie was named President and took over this club

Ernie signed Gil
Ernie traded for AJ
Ernie traded for CB
Ernie signed Deshawn
Ernie signed Oberto
Ernie signed Boykins
Ernie traded for Critt
Ernie traded for MM
Ernie traded for Foye
Ernie traded for MJ
Ernie drafted NY
Ernie drafted AB
Ernie drafted Dom
Ernie drafted JM

The only player on this team that Ernie had no hand in was BTH and don't you find it strange that he is the only player that plays a position?

Blame it all you want on trying to keep the old man happy, but the reality is he was just trying to save his job.

So why in the world does anyone think if he went out and got thses players that he can go out and find players that can play.

I didn't even mention the players who are not on the team anymore but give him credit that he got rid of them for other team crap?

Give Ernie a raise?

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | December 20, 2009 3:41 PM | Report abuse

Hello everybody, does sorry a_ _ Stevenson actually get paid millions of dollars? we are all in the wrong business.I would bet my house that there are at least 10 D league players better than sorry a_ _ Stevenson. How can you win or call yourself a playoff team when your shooting guard can't shoot and has the worst looking shot in basketball, all of basketball, high school and college.

Posted by: ellis125 | December 20, 2009 4:24 PM | Report abuse

It would be nice if the Wizards make the playoffs. However, making the playoffs will be a difficult task since they play like a lottery team. The bright side is that they beat another lottery team the other day when they played the Warriors. Unfortunately, when they played a playoff team, they got drilled. I hope that after this season's experiment with the mythical big three former allstars, they move in another direction. Afterall, it is starting to get somewhat boring watching unmotivated basketball players just going through the motions.

Posted by: Theone9 | December 20, 2009 4:39 PM | Report abuse

"The only player on this team that Ernie had no hand in was BTH and don't you find it strange that he is the only player that plays a position?"

That made me laugh. :)

- Ray

Posted by: rmcazz | December 20, 2009 5:22 PM | Report abuse

Oh, but wait a minute....

BTH thinks he's a PG at heart the way he tries to handle the ball. ;)

- Ray

Posted by: rmcazz | December 20, 2009 5:23 PM | Report abuse

did anybody notice McGee at the end.... he was either completely uninterested in playing or completely exhausted after 10 minutes. the only thing he's interested in is blocking shots into the stands and dunking. pathetic.

Posted by: stevie2 | December 20, 2009 5:53 PM | Report abuse

Well, whatever one thinks about the causes of this mess, we all agree it's unsustainable. Something needs to be changed. Yeah, stop the internet with that alert.

I originally thought the all-star break would be the make-or-break point but it's clearly coming much faster than I had imageind.

The next five games are, on paper, winnable games: Philly, Milwaukee, Minnesota and Memphis.

I think after that quartet - if they don't win at least three and play competitively in all five - will be decision time.

My hunch is this team doesn't have "it" and needs to be torn apart.

Posted by: SteveMG | December 20, 2009 6:04 PM | Report abuse

I still don't think we'll see any major deals made until the ownership situation is definitively resolved. Yeah, everything is supposedly in place for Leonsis to take over, but wasn't everything supposedly in place for John Kent Cooke to take over the Redskins after his dad died? How'd that work out?

Posted by: kalo_rama | December 20, 2009 6:23 PM | Report abuse

Okay, quintet not quartet.

Had to try and be smart, didn't I? Just say five dummy.

Posted by: SteveMG | December 20, 2009 6:24 PM | Report abuse

SteveMG,
I think you said quartet because you listed four games. In any event, I agree about the next five games. They stink up the joint and they might as well start making their April vacation plans.

Posted by: 2020doc | December 20, 2009 6:29 PM | Report abuse

Those of us who are trying to give this team a chance to turn around the season should stop our fantasy. The season is over, noting is going to save it.It is sad to have it before new year. may be it is our new year gift. I am so sad to the season ticket holders.

Posted by: gtefferra | December 20, 2009 6:57 PM | Report abuse

"For all of you who don’t like my posts and refuse to learn anything move on….the rest of you let me try to explain what the real problem is with the Wizards.."

I confess that usually after the first couple lines I'm pretty sure I already know what you're going to say. So I skip the rest. I mean, if I already know what you're going to say -- because you've said it a hundred times -- why read it?

That's probably true for a lot of us here.

Posted by: Samson151 | December 20, 2009 7:18 PM | Report abuse

I'm not ready to write the Wiz off yet. Still a lot of games left... The $64,000 question is whether the team as currently constructed will be the same team that finishes out the season. Stay tuned!

That said, can't see myself actually paying money to see the Wiz live at the Phone Booth until they get their collective act together...

Posted by: MEssex | December 20, 2009 7:29 PM | Report abuse

Trade Caron and AJ and start AB and Mike Miller. You will notice better ball movement immediately and better team play.This team sucks and I have been on this bandwagon for five years. Its tim for ernie to make a move and not wait on old veyts they don't have it anymore. Gil,caron,AB and Brendan all wear knee braces and are on the backend of their careers. Gil has no lateral movement to stay with the younger guards. Caron dribbles to much when he is trying to get his J off. AJ jacks up to many 3's and has no defense. And Brendan has some trade value so send him to the clippers for Camby or Kaman. Youg players who have become very good always point to the veterans that taught them how to become profesionals and I don't recall any of the young players ever mentioning that about any of the current vets except AB talking about Deshawn on how he has helt hom some. this team sucks I need to see a trad Ernie! Please stop the bleeding! PLEASE Ernie PLEASE!

Posted by: TheGodFather | December 20, 2009 7:47 PM | Report abuse

"did anybody notice McGee at the end.... he was either completely uninterested in playing or completely exhausted after 10 minutes. the only thing he's interested in is blocking shots into the stands and dunking. pathetic.

Posted by: stevie2 | December 20, 2009 5:53 PM | Report abuse "

Nothing new there...I figured that out the first few games I saw him.

I also figured out that Gilby is not max money and full of BS the first time he started up with his antics.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | December 20, 2009 8:48 PM | Report abuse

"For all of you who don’t like my posts and refuse to learn anything move on….the rest of you let me try to explain what the real problem is with the Wizards.."

I confess that usually after the first couple lines I'm pretty sure I already know what you're going to say. So I skip the rest. I mean, if I already know what you're going to say -- because you've said it a hundred times -- why read it?

That's probably true for a lot of us here.
Posted by: Samson151 | December 20, 2009 7:18 PM | "

I'm with you Samson 151. The comments here are pretty predictable, although I do notice a certain desperation setting in even among the faithful. I guess I'm in that group.

My pet peeve is that the Wizards are not really a team right now, just a set of individual performers all looking to shake and bake their way to 20-10, or better. That's why I've given Flip the benefit of the doubt when he starts D-Steve because he's not interested in those stats. But I agree with the consensus here that he's pitiful right now, hardly even playing at a D League level. If we're looking to stop the opponents' 2 guard, Dom is a much better solution, even though he's not a scorer/shooter either.

I'm holding out hope that Mike Miller will return and give us the boost we need - a playmaker who looks to involve his teammates. I'm sick of Gil and Caron coming down and launching jump shots. We need to get the ball going toward the basket, and Miller was doing his damnedest to make that happen when he was playing.

And yes, Foye is better at that game than the many-dribbled Earl Boykins, who is so easy to love and so hard to take in this offense.

But it's the defense that really galls me. We have no one committed to defense, except for Haywood and a couple of our scrubs. If we can't stop the other teams, we'll never win. And, no, McGee is not the answer, even though I'd like to see him get more time.

Is it time to blow up this team? I'm getting closer and closer to that feeling. And I DO believe Ernie will pull the trigger when the time comes, and I'm sure he's talking with some teams. Not sure I want him to deal Jamison to the Cavaliers, though. That would ensure a Cleveland championship. Do we want that?

I'd make sure Gil is not making the key decisions on offense, unless he's moving toward the basket in transition. This team seriously needs be get up and down the floor and not rely on the half-court sets that are strictly one-on-one opportunities for guys who never look for their teammates.

Miller will pass the ball. Anyone else who will do the same gets the playing time, in my book.


Posted by: zinger1 | December 20, 2009 9:11 PM | Report abuse

Jamison plays no defense! His legs are broken!

Posted by: paulelucas2 | December 21, 2009 1:40 AM | Report abuse

if the wiz make the playoffs it will be a miracle because these guys are truly stealing paychecks. from the "best" player to the end of the bench. i believe they are really soft. it's like since abe past they believe they can just p/u their checks and not be respectful of what this man was trying to do before he died...i hate to write this because i'm a bullets/wizards supporter but these are not professional attitudes being displayed. this is a bunch of:

excuse-laden
effort-lacking
immature
soft
competition-fearing
nba "status" perpetrating
always crying to the ref
defense lacking
below-average
junior high-school caliber team

don't pay to see these guys...make them play in front of EMPTY seats and maybe the organization will realize we are not paying for this mess anymore! that we are more discretionary about what we spend dollars on and this ain't it! if the org wants to spend "superstar" dollars on bargain basement players then that's on them but when they see that "homey" don't play that with todays dollar, dollar bill... then maybe they will think before they make multi-million dollar "penny stock" investments...if we all (BOYCOTT THE WIZ!!) maybe the players will realize that we see how they are "tankin' and "jackin' this city and organization.

Posted by: ronniecope106 | December 21, 2009 1:51 AM | Report abuse

Past Wizards references:

The Clippers of the East.
The Phoenix Suns of the East.

Now I think people will start a new reference for bad teams in the West:

The Wizards of the West.

Posted by: original2cents | December 21, 2009 2:03 AM | Report abuse

In three weeks time, we will know definitively whether it is time to blow up the team or make a shrewd deal or two to push for the playoffs.

It is interesting that there are a lot of vultures out there hoping that the Wizzies wind up holding a fire sale. Cleveland is banging the drum for Antawn again. Portland I am sure would covet Caron.

The question, of course, is what do you get in return? Or more bluntly, do you really want to drink the bitter juice of watching one of your discards help another team go deep into the playoffs, or even all the way?

It is a shame that Miller went down and that Foye suffered a nagging injury after a promising start. Grunfeld rolled the dice on these guys big time, and if they cannot be a part of a legitimate playoff push now, then the spectre of what could have been -- particularly Jennings or even Curry -- will haunt the Wizzies for years to come.

None of this is going to ruin my holidays, but I sure hope Santa is kind to this team.

Posted by: khrabb | December 21, 2009 8:47 AM | Report abuse

"Despite their 1-3 record, the Wizards (8-17) still believe they made progress on the trip, with Coach Flip Saunders and several of his players commenting on how the team could've easily won two more games if a few more breaks had gone their way. "

"We're taking steps forward," Jamison said. "I still think something is going to click and things are going to start happening for us."


WHATEVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | December 21, 2009 8:59 AM | Report abuse

Ernie is as good as he is allowed to be. When Abe Pollin was alive, he was only allowed to acquire "character" players instead of "needed" talents. Currently, the ownership is in limbo and Ernie may not make any moves until he gets a better direction based on the new Management (Ted, Inc.) at the end of the season. Long story short, this is as good as it will get this year.

Posted by: JohnWWW | December 21, 2009 9:00 AM | Report abuse

"Ernie is as good as he is allowed to be. When Abe Pollin was alive, he was only allowed to acquire "character" players instead of "needed" talents. Currently, the ownership is in limbo and Ernie may not make any moves until he gets a better direction based on the new Management (Ted, Inc.) at the end of the season. Long story short, this is as good as it will get this year.

Posted by: JohnWWW | December 21, 2009 9:00 AM | Report abuse "

So AB was a character player when he was re-signed after his John arrest?

Gilby was a character player after he lambasted the organization for being cheap with the facilities?

MeShawn is a character player?

Whatever.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | December 21, 2009 9:33 AM | Report abuse

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