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Knicks overwhelm Wizards

Wizards' morning brew

A game-ending 23-6 run by the Knicks put the finishing touches on another dispiriting loss for the Wizards. Michael Lee was in New York for the debacle. In his postgame blog post, Lee got some help from Brendan Haywood to pinpoint where the team went wrong.

Here's the New York Daily News's take on the game. Frank Isola points out that a few players Coach Mike D'antoni would like to get rid of (namely, Nate Robinson, Larry Hughes and Al Harrington) contributed quite a bit to last night's Knicks win.

On the trade rumor mill: Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports reports that the Mavericks have lost interest in Caron Butler because of his so-so season. And Ken Berger of CBSSports.com says LeBron James is the one driving Cleveland's pursuit of Antawn Jamison.

Next up for the Wizards: the Orlando Magic on Friday night, a game that will now be broadcast on CSN+ -- and you can blame those surging Capitals. According to Dan Steinberg's D.C. Sports Bog:

... the Caps' home game against the Thrashers on Friday has been moved off Comcast SportsNet + and onto Comcast SportsNet HD, with the Wizards game in Orlando shifting off CSN and onto CSN+ ... "The Capitals are on a remarkable winning streak, and due to overwhelming fan interest and the potential of Friday's game being very significant for the team, we moved the game to our primary channel so we can deliver it in HD," [a network] spokesman wrote me.

Around the League ...

There were 11 games on the schedule last night, including a win for Los Angeles that made Phil Jackson the all-time winningest Lakers coach. ESPN.com's J.A. Adande says that feat makes Pat Riley irrelevant.

And Kevin Durant continued his stellar play, scoring 30 points in the Thunder's win over the Hornets.

Highlights of this and more are below, courtesy of NBA.com's Daily Zap:

By Alexa Steele  |  February 4, 2010; 10:08 AM ET
Categories:  Morning brew  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Wizards "play selfishly" and lose to Knicks
Next: Wizards keeping an eye on the weather

Comments

So here's a trade for ya: Gilbert Arenas and Javaris Crittenton for Eddy Curry and Darko Milicic. Call it "Swap Your Inactives."

Al Harrington was supposedly questionable because of his left knee but I notice he sank his 71st and 72nd 3 pointers. What's Al Harrington doing out at the 3 point line, you might ask? Turns out he's 30% from there.

Posted by: Samson151 | February 4, 2010 10:26 AM | Report abuse

Knicks overwhelm Wizards

Didn't the Knicks have a fire sale during the off season to create cap room for the up coming free agent crop?

While the Wizards decided to go in the other direction to win now?

and the Wizards can't beat the Knicks?

Good decision Ernie...oh I'm sorry you were just following Abe's orders?

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | February 4, 2010 10:30 AM | Report abuse

why is coach hating on nick young? foye was WAY worse last night. heisting every time he touched the ball. and cuoldn't hit the broad side of a barn. awful.

Posted by: Matte | February 4, 2010 10:23 AM | Report abuse

Because YOUNG took the WIZARDS out of the offense FLIP set up pre-game. This caused a lot of standing around because the ball wasn't being distributed. But I agree with Matte in one respect. Young wasn't the only one doing the individual thing. Others took his lead.

Posted by: glawrence007 | February 4, 2010 10:30 AM | Report abuse

So are we in a shake-down period to see who responds favorably to accountability and who doesn't? I suppose that's what SAUNDERS wants, but with ownership rudderless, and ERNIE still here as GM, I can't see it happening with these players.

Posted by: glawrence007 | February 4, 2010 10:33 AM | Report abuse

Our core players or "best players" have limitted skill sets. They play selfishly because they probably feel ineffective if not scoring the ball the best way they know how. The appear like that player who has worked on his one on one game at the park but not that great at running 5 with a variety of different people. All teams have a guy or two like this, but I think it is our core.

The inconvenient truth is that the team is a reflection of its "best player"

They need to take a long hard look at AJ and determine if that's the direction they want to continue in. With him taking the most shots he is the catalyst for the offense that we all complain about.

I have said a hundred times he is a great guy and I don't think he intentionally is selfish. But we all know this is a business and having a great personality is only one part of the equation.

Posted by: millineumman | February 4, 2010 10:35 AM | Report abuse

I think we've reached the point where losses, no matter the opponent, have ceased being disappointing and are now expected. This team stinks, and no matter how desperate Flips' lineups and rotations appear, the blame has to rest directly at the feet of Ernie Grunfeld. His vision for this team has proven to be flawed. How can a GM expect a team to be successful that has a roster without a true point guard and no low post presence on either the offensive or defensive ends of the court? It's implausible.

Posted by: ZardsFan1 | February 4, 2010 10:55 AM | Report abuse

has anybody noticed how hard Buck and Phil C. hate on Ab and NY? On the NY 3pt play that galinari hacked him on, i believe phil's call was " Nick takes it to the basket and almost gets it blocked if not for the fortunate roll," The Official clearly got the call right by calling a foul on Danillo, but chenier kept harping on how NY almost had his shot blocked. Buck also feels the need to let us know when "Andray got away with a travel, but there's no call" or how difficult his layup attempts are. I dunno there doesn't seem to be this level of scrutiny from our commentators regarding guys like AJ and CB who routinely turn the ball over and take realy difficult shots. this isn't a real issue for me, i just wanted to see if anyone was starting to get annoyed with the veteran bias in the commentary.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | February 4, 2010 11:02 AM | Report abuse

Dear Flip/Ernie,

Will you please stop running Jamison, Haywood and Butler into the ground?

You are ruining whatever trade value they have. Butler had excuse himself from the Knicks game.

What's the point of playing players that won't be here next season?

Posted by: bozomoeman | February 4, 2010 11:05 AM | Report abuse

Butler "excusing" himself from the Knicks game had nothing to do with him being "run into the ground" and everything to do with the fact that Paul Pierce (all 230 lbs of him) fell on his knee.

Posted by: kalo_rama | February 4, 2010 11:12 AM | Report abuse

The inconvenient truth is that the team is a reflection of its "best player"

They need to take a long hard look at AJ and determine if that's the direction they want to continue in. With him taking the most shots he is the catalyst for the offense that we all complain about.

Posted by: millineumman | February 4, 2010 10:35 AM | Report abuse

great comment. i've been feeling that way for years. it amazes me that people wanna keep the fool's gold. having a nice guy and good player for 7 yrs means jack if you don't win; and by win i mean win it all. how can we as fans be satisfied with numbers and numbers alone? 19 wins last year, less than 30 this year it's time to start over. we haven't had a championship team and we don't now. there is no reason to think that 1 or 2 guys will turn this around next year. It's time to dump all the dumpable salary and work on rebuilding through the draft with youth. we as fans should brace ourselves for another 2-4 yrs of bad wizards basketball.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | February 4, 2010 11:13 AM | Report abuse

There is room for plenty of blame but I don't think Flip gets his share...if not for his prior success on paper i would say that he has been a disastrous coach. But for injuries, which everyone has, he has not been able to get players to buy into his system or play effectively in it. It's been pathetic. He even has fallen into playing Stevenson. I live in Ny and the commentators here couldn't remember seeing a worse looking shot in many years in the nba. Best line of the year was the houston color guy saying how ds was a threat from 3pt land and the play by play guy adding that he is only an 11% 3pt shooter (i know he is now 19%)....but sorry i digress...get rid of flip with the rest of them. The only one i would like to see back is Mike Miller.

Posted by: IZZY3 | February 4, 2010 11:21 AM | Report abuse

Butler "excusing" himself from the Knicks game had nothing to do with him being "run into the ground" and everything to do with the fact that Paul Pierce (all 230 lbs of him) fell on his knee.

Posted by: kalo_rama

___________________________________

My point is Butler is averaging nearly 40 a game. He is going to be moved. What's the purpose of playing him or Jamison any more than 20-25 minutes a game?

Posted by: bozomoeman | February 4, 2010 11:27 AM | Report abuse

Flip is a joke if he doesn't look right into the cameras and say that Butler (who didn't play last night) and Jamison are as guilty as anybody of taking bad shots and being selfish in a given game.
He should know by now that beating on the youngins to teach the vets a lesson doesn't work with this mule-headed bunch.
I dunno, maybe he's scared of Jamison and Butler.

Posted by: 2020doc | February 4, 2010 11:27 AM | Report abuse

At the start of season Flip said that old players vs. young players stuff was going to end. It's about team. So why does he only call out younger players on the team. First, he calls out Blatche and now he calls out Young. 4 young players get fined when everyone in the picture is seen laughing it up. AJ can shoot 20 times a game and the team is sharing the ball, but if he only get 10 shots the team isn't sharing. This is no different than last year. Why trade for draft picks and young players when the team is doing an awful job with the young talent they have.

Posted by: 33dgriffin | February 4, 2010 11:30 AM | Report abuse

"My point is Butler is averaging nearly 40 a game. He is going to be moved. What's the purpose of playing him or Jamison any more than 20-25 minutes a game?"

They're the team's best players (like it or not, it's true) and coaches play their best players the most minutes because that's usually the best way to win games. Worrying about their trade value is not the coach's job. And unless Grunfeld tells him to ease off, then he will (and should) continue doing what he can to try and eke some wins out of this sorry lot.

Posted by: kalo_rama | February 4, 2010 11:36 AM | Report abuse

and Jamison got away without a fine for his appearance in "the photo"

Posted by: G-Man11 | February 4, 2010 11:37 AM | Report abuse

I didnt realize Young's assignment was to come in off the bench and rack up assists.

And now Flip's spooked him again, probably wont play him much at all for 3-4 games, then he'll come in and what? Pass up open looks because he hears Saunders whispering in his ear? That should really help.

Posted by: divi3 | February 4, 2010 11:39 AM | Report abuse

Oh, and Butler's declining trade value has nothing to do with his PT or fatigue. He was playing poorly when the season started, and if anything he's actually gotten a little better since the early season. His game has clearly taken a step back, but it appears to be more mental than physical.

Posted by: kalo_rama | February 4, 2010 11:40 AM | Report abuse

Flip Sux (see my comment above)!

Posted by: IZZY3 | February 4, 2010 11:43 AM | Report abuse

and how many times does Haywood have to produce NOTHING over the last 5-6mins of the game before Flip either

1)plays him the whole 4th quarter
2)or doesnt play him at all in the 4th

the rotations are pathetic. BTH having his best game of the season, so he plays 23mins. AB has a 7-10 night, but gets 21mins....while AJ looks like fred sanford running around out there for 40mins

Posted by: divi3 | February 4, 2010 11:44 AM | Report abuse

debrick goes 0-4 with 0 assists but Nick Young is killing the offense

Posted by: divi3 | February 4, 2010 11:45 AM | Report abuse


I didnt realize Young's assignment was to come in off the bench and rack up assists.

And now Flip's spooked him again, probably wont play him much at all for 3-4 games, then he'll come in and what? Pass up open looks because he hears Saunders whispering in his ear? That should really help.

Posted by: divi3 | February 4, 2010 11:39 AM

Amen, bro.
Flip is lost at sea.
Did anyone hear him call Butler selfish for not running the play that he called for Foye at the end of the game a few games back? Butler outright decided he was going to win the game HIS way, with HIM shooting and being the hero. Instead he found himself nestled comfortably into his increasingly common role of GOAT.
Flip Saunders is pathetic and his vets/young bucks know it.

Posted by: artiesliver | February 4, 2010 12:02 PM | Report abuse

debrick goes 0-4 with 0 assists but Nick Young is killing the offense

Posted by: divi3 | February 4, 2010 11:45 AM | Report abuse

debrick starts the game and the team starts slow.
debrick starts the 3rd q the Knicks cut into the wiz lead and take the momentum.


i dunno i looked at the second half play by play, NY took and missed 5 shots in the second half. That doesn't sound like the disruptive force Flip was refering to in his quote. And since when did the team start following NY's lead? Flip let's my man play 28 mins contributing nicely at first, but slowing down towards the end. Then he throws him under the bus, when he knows he was trying to ride the wave when NY was 10 pts in 11 mins.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | February 4, 2010 12:07 PM | Report abuse

Nate Robinson attempted 5 layups last night. Can somebody deliver a forearm shimmy to the 5'9" guy making layups please? Is that too much to ask?

Posted by: divi3 | February 4, 2010 12:10 PM | Report abuse

Butler ignores the coach's game plan, breaks the designed play, takes a horrible shot that gets blocked back into his face and costs the team a shot to win the game. What did you want Saunders to do, send him a fruit basket? Saunders called him selfish because he was selfish, and it wasn't the first time.

It's pretty silly to criticize the coach's game plan when, game after game, the players--by their own admission--don't follow the game plan that he gives them, resulting in ugly lopsided losses.

Posted by: kalo_rama | February 4, 2010 12:11 PM | Report abuse

remember when Gil was averaging 7.6 assists in December the "problem" was his ballhogging? That was pretty funny

Posted by: divi3 | February 4, 2010 12:17 PM | Report abuse

Butler ignores the coach's game plan, breaks the designed play, takes a horrible shot that gets blocked back into his face and costs the team a shot to win the game. What did you want Saunders to do, send him a fruit basket? Saunders called him selfish because he was selfish, and it wasn't the first time.

Posted by: kalo_rama | February 4, 2010 12:11 P

I, for one, have never heard or read Saunders call out Butler as being selfish. Ever. So, in not calling him selfish, he did the equivalent of sending him a fruit basket. No?

Posted by: artiesliver | February 4, 2010 12:19 PM | Report abuse

I don't know who is worse Mike Lee or Flip Saunders. Both are becoming jokes. Saunders calling out Nick Young? Yea that's the problem coach. What a freakin joke. And Lee not reporting anything worthwhile or writing anything beyond the generic the entire season is absurd. These 2 guys deserve each other.

Posted by: dovelevine | February 4, 2010 12:20 PM | Report abuse

We shouldn't forget all the pre-grunfield years.......

i think it time for grunfield to give saunders the go ahead to give the kids, McGee and Young, extended playing time, knowing more losses are inevitable. Might as well see if they can show something. the answer seems to be no, but might as well make sure, at least get something out of the rest of the year.

Posted by: stevie2 | February 4, 2010 12:24 PM | Report abuse

So here's a poll fans. If only one change could be made within this org before next season what would it be?

1- New and stable ownership.
2- New GM.
3- New HC.
4- New players.

I know the answerI'd pick above all others, and I'm betting you will too.

Posted by: glawrence007 | February 4, 2010 12:26 PM | Report abuse

The babcats brown is looking to cell D.j augustin for a big man, do we have one in case we need a gard like d.J, what do you think?

Posted by: gtefferra | February 4, 2010 12:40 PM | Report abuse

isn't D.J. Augustine another shoot first PG ?

Posted by: millineumman | February 4, 2010 12:46 PM | Report abuse

The Wizards players are not as good as almost all of the other NBA teams now. How many NBA teams don't have one starter that they drafted? This is as hopeless as it gets. Management, not coaching, is the problem. Our only hope is new management that knows how to draft and acquire players that can play, want to play, and want to win. Players that can play defense, rebound the basketball, be physical, and pass the ball are needed. Ernie was good at trades. It is very evident that Ernie was not and is not good in the draft.

Posted by: JoeC2 | February 4, 2010 12:49 PM | Report abuse

They're the team's best players (like it or not, it's true) and coaches play their best players the most minutes because that's usually the best way to win games.

Posted by: kalo_rama | February 4, 2010 11:36 AM | Report abuse

Kal,

The problem with your logic is…
A)You have none
B)The Wizards aren’t winning games by playing their best players


Posted by: bulletsfan78 | February 4, 2010 1:00 PM | Report abuse

(A) It's not my logic, it's the coach's logic, and it's the same for every coach in every sport: the goal is to win games. Everything else is secondary.

(B) And playing their 3rd and 4th best players will improve their chances of winning games how exactly?.

Posted by: kalo_rama | February 4, 2010 1:16 PM | Report abuse

Actually, since people are getting their panties in a knot over McGee and Young, that should be their 7th and 8th best players.

Posted by: kalo_rama | February 4, 2010 1:18 PM | Report abuse

"Actually, since people are getting their panties in a knot over McGee and Young, that should be their 7th and 8th best players.

Posted by: kalo_rama"


the problem with your logic is that it doesnt match up with the results on the court.

zards are 5-2 when Young plays 30+ mins

when debrick sees 15+ minutes the team is 7-14

when Young gets 15+ minutes, team is 11-12

So really "best chance to win" doesnt appear to be Flip's motivation

Posted by: divi3 | February 4, 2010 1:31 PM | Report abuse

"the problem with your logic is that it doesnt match up with the results on the court."

(A) It's still not my logic (B) I didn't say playing your best players would win games, I said it gave the team the best chance to win games (C) the Young/Stevenson comparison has bupkis to do with anything because neither of them comes anywhere close to qualifying as the team's "best players." That would be Jamison and Butler, and my original comment was in response to someone wondering why they played so many minutes.

Posted by: kalo_rama | February 4, 2010 1:36 PM | Report abuse

Just for the record I'd like to say:

JERRY SLOAN IS A GOD!!

When is this guy gonna be recognized as one of the greatest coaches ever in the game and definitely the best in the game today. Dude does more with less every year. He is truly a coaching genius.

Posted by: dovelevine | February 4, 2010 1:37 PM | Report abuse

Also did anyone else notice that the Pistons died after they traded Chauncey and conversely the Nuggets exploded when he arrived. What a playa.

Posted by: dovelevine | February 4, 2010 1:42 PM | Report abuse

"Also did anyone else notice that the Pistons died after they traded Chauncey and conversely the Nuggets exploded when he arrived."

It was hard to miss. But I think George Karl deserves some credit for Denver's turnaround.

Posted by: Samson151 | February 4, 2010 6:09 PM | Report abuse

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