Network News

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

When will the Wizards win another game?

The Wizards have yet to win a game in March, losing seven games in a row, with only three games decided by fewer than 10 points. They are about to the play their fourth game in five nights; thanks to a scheduling quirk created by the blizzard that postponed a game against the Atlanta Hawks in early February. But for the first time during this unmerciful run, the Wizards face an opponent that is almost as weary in Utah.


Want to get away? (Photo by Allen Einstein/NBAE via Getty Images)

The Jazz will be playing its fifth game, in five different cities, in seven days. Utah has lost two in a row and is coming off a 119-111 loss in Oklahoma City on Sunday. The previous three opponents for Washington all had the day off before getting the Wizards, who haven't been able to keep their motors running beyond the first 20 or so minutes. So the banged up and fatigued Jazz might be the Wizards' best chance of ending this season's longest slide. Notice, I said "best chance," not that it would happen.

Utah was limited to just nine healthy players because of injuries to starters Andrei Kirilenko (calf) and Mehmet Okur (back) and reserve point guard Ronnie Price (wrist) against the Thunder. Kirilenko, who moved around in a walking boot, and Price were set to have MRI exams today, and are questionable tonight. Kirilenko said he might be two or three days away. Okur is expected to get a pain-killing injection today, which might allow him to play.

If the Wizards don't beat the Jazz, they are set up perfectly for a major beatdown in Denver. Think about all of the factors that add up to a massacre for the Wizards.

First, the Wizards will be playing their fifth game in six nights, meaning that they won't have much energy in back-to-back nights. Secondly, they will be playing in Denver, where that altitude really is no joke. Teams usually find themselves gassed, while the Nuggets use that to their advantage with their uptempo playing style. And finally, you remember what happened on Feb. 19? Yeah, the night that the Wizards pulled out a surprising 107-97 victory over the Nuggets, as Al Thornton provided 21 points off the bench and held Carmelo Anthony without a field goal in the fourth quarter.

Of course, the Nuggets play Houston on Monday and will be on the second end of back-to-back games as well. This time of year, the NBA elite often take for granted the dregs of the league, but I doubt if the Nuggets will have to search for motivation against the Wizards.

With this road trip concluding against Portland and the Los Angeles Lakers, I have to wonder when this skid will end. The Wizards have only two more games against teams with losing records this month, in Indiana and New Orleans, and they are 0-3 against those teams.

The franchise record for most consecutive losses is 13, which has happened twice. The last time it occurred was from March 13, 1995 to April 13, 1995. That season was marred by Chris Webber's shoulder injury and the Bullets finished 21-61.

By Michael Lee  |  March 15, 2010; 2:47 PM ET
 
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: The Wizards' rough road ahead [Updated]
Next: Shaun Livingston starts in place of Randy Foye

Comments

Ask Grunfeld since he is the one who blew the team apart and traded away quality players in exchange for cash. Would not surprise me if they did now win again. Wouldn't upset me either. The current Wiz are what they are and right now that is not too good. Still love em though because they do try. You just play the hand you are dealt and the Wiz don't have too many face cards in their deck right now and for that I blame Grunfeld. Two season shot to hell.

Posted by: ivyleague | March 15, 2010 3:01 PM | Report abuse

Does it really matter? At this point in the season for the Wizs, it's about playing well and losing to satisfy two goals:

1. get some development for the young players
2. get more ping pong balls for the draft

Of course, knowing our luck, we'll somehow win enough games to have too little ping pong balls to get the #1 pick.

Posted by: tundey | March 15, 2010 3:04 PM | Report abuse

Or lose enough and still not get the #1 pick.

Posted by: thecomedian1 | March 15, 2010 3:09 PM | Report abuse

Be happy we improved from last year. At least we can start the rebuilding process now instead of waiting 2 years like boston.

Posted by: jefferu | March 15, 2010 3:14 PM | Report abuse

Didn't we somehow lose in the draft last year and ended up picking at the 5th spot even though we were one of the worst. Don't bet your paycheck on picking first in the draft. We all saw how that worked for us last year. That's all I'm saying.

Posted by: ivyleague | March 15, 2010 3:23 PM | Report abuse

Didn't we somehow lose in the draft last year and ended up picking at the 5th spot even though we were one of the worst. Don't bet your paycheck on picking first in the draft. We all saw how that worked for us last year. That's all I'm saying.

Posted by: ivyleague

Agreed. Even if we had the worst record in the NBA, the ping pong balls would not fall our way.

So once again, Grunfield will trade away our draft pick(s) for cash. Appears to be his "thing."

Posted by: Lisa_R | March 15, 2010 3:57 PM | Report abuse

Before the trades, we had a bunch of talented productive players who couldn't jump and run, they were getting slowed by age particularly Arenas and Jamison. Now we have a team that runs and jumps, but can't hardly shoot. What's the point of rebounding when no one can put the ball in the bucket except for Blatche. He is now the first, second and third offensive option. Pass the all around till it gets to Blatche, if he passes off, pass around again till it goes back to Blatche! McGee would be the 4th option unfortunately he fumbles the ball every other time he has it in his hands.

Posted by: rickgonz | March 15, 2010 4:03 PM | Report abuse

This draft looks stronger than last year's (although last year turned out stronger than most of us expected). Wall, Turner, Wes Johnson, Cousins, and Favors look to me like legit candidates to start on a lot of clubs. There are a few other potential regular reserve types like Aldrich, Greg Monroe, and Aminu, plus some potential stars in Xavier Henry, et al.

So much as it makes me sound like a traitor, lose away, Wiz. We need all the help we can get.

Posted by: Samson151 | March 15, 2010 4:03 PM | Report abuse

I don't see where Grunfeld will even be around in June to make that pick

Posted by: BruinSteve | March 15, 2010 4:06 PM | Report abuse

>>I don't see where Grunfeld will even be around in June to make that pick. Posted by: BruinSteve


From your mouth to Gods ears.

Posted by: dovelevine | March 15, 2010 4:13 PM | Report abuse

we're gonna end up with the 3rd worst record (i think), would seem probable we can get Turner, Evans, or Wes Johnson...all 3 of whom look better to me than the guards we passed on with the traded #5 pick

Posted by: divi3 | March 15, 2010 4:18 PM | Report abuse

I wouldn't start writing Grunfeld's obit just yet.

Posted by: kalo_rama | March 15, 2010 4:24 PM | Report abuse

Just was checking the Wizards website and counted only 14 happy faces on the roster. They've taken Alonze Gee off. Is he even making the trip to Utah?

If not, who is joining the team out there?

Posted by: PostSubscriber | March 15, 2010 5:25 PM | Report abuse

"Be happy we improved from last year."

The Wiz may have won more games this season, but I'd be hard pressed to call this season an improvement.

Posted by: kalo_rama | March 15, 2010 5:34 PM | Report abuse

"I wouldn't start writing Grunfeld's obit just yet." - kalo_rama

Neither would I. He did some of his best dealing back when the team had nothing. It was only have we started winning that he became afraid to take any chances.

He let the outspoken vets have too big a voice. "No young players in the draft, just vets. Trade anything but the first pick."

Posted by: segastyle | March 15, 2010 5:35 PM | Report abuse

Grunfeld is done here.

Once the new ownership is in place there will be a new GM.

The Wizards efforts in the 2000's came to naught because they mis-identified Gilbert Arenas as a franchise player that you could build around.

Arenas proved through his selfish play that he wasn't that guy and yet Grunfeld and Pollin continued to live the fantasy until the gun incident bared all, signing him to a max deal that would make him all but untradeable.

No, Grunfeld needs to answer for this decision. He also needs to answer for the fact he got absolutely nothing out of the draft. Pecherov was a zero. Nick Young is proving to be a zero. The #5 pick for Randy Foye and Mike Miller? Both of these guys are gone in 2011 and the team has no 21 or 22 year old player to build with.

The Wizards will win again when they put together a front office that shows some sense.

Just like the Redskins it's a painful process to get these owners and GMs to admit they have failed doing things they way they have been and that things need to change.

Posted by: leopard09 | March 15, 2010 5:46 PM | Report abuse

sounds like AJ sega

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | March 15, 2010 5:47 PM | Report abuse

We can't forget this team was gutted mid-year (and rightfully so), then lost the most talented player they got back 3 games later. So of course they're going to lose a ton of games. Still, there's some things you gotta like with this group. What worries me is not using these games to develop some of the young guys as best as possible. I just don't get the feeling that Flip is the best coach for that kind of task. Here's the guys you give a lot of playing time for building around next year:

A.B. - blossoming nicely w/pt.

Al Thorton - significant talent, good attitude, big upside, lots of structured pt will help.

Javale - incredible physical talent, needs pt and good coaching to become a basketball player, not just a big athlete.

Singleton - the perfect bench player, brings hustle, energy, rebounding and defense every time out.

Livingston - if this guy's knee holds up, he could be an unbelievable steal - a real point guard w/height who can score, too.

Foye - could be a nice 6th or 7th man off the bench; not starter material.


The rest:
N.Y.- still too many holes in his game.

Boykins - might be nice to have as a change of pace player, but Flip plays him way too much. Holds on to the ball too long.

Gonzo: MM -turnover machine who can't score unless he's wide open.
Oberto - gotta believe you can do better.

And of course, Gilbert: if you have to bring him back, it's got to be as a 2 guard, only. Get him used to playing D or sitting on the pine a lot.

Posted by: clfrdj | March 15, 2010 5:58 PM | Report abuse

Or lose enough and still not get the #1 pick.

Posted by: thecomedian1 | March 15, 2010 3:09 PM | Report abuse

Or sell or trade the pick?

Posted by: Utilityman1 | March 15, 2010 6:13 PM | Report abuse

So once again, Grunfield will trade away our draft pick(s) for cash. Appears to be his "thing."


Posted by: Lisa_R | March 15, 2010 3:57 PM | Report abuse

To which I would say, he's just doing what he's told. No one in charge is going to open a pocketbook until the banner has been passed to new ownership.

Posted by: glawrence007 | March 15, 2010 6:18 PM | Report abuse

losing seven games in a row, with only three games decided by fewer than 10 points...

The Wizards that had AJ, Caron, BTH and Gil didn't have a better record than this group.

What's the one common denominator?

Flip as the head coach!

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | March 15, 2010 6:25 PM | Report abuse

maybe there wont be a new owner. the plan in place says how the team must be sold, not that it has to be sold right?

Posted by: divi3 | March 15, 2010 6:35 PM | Report abuse

"Grunfeld is done here.

Once the new ownership is in place there will be a new GM."

Posted by: leopard09 |

If you think that Leonsis and company will be the new owners, you might want to check out the first few years of their ownership of the Caps.

Posted by: fansincebullets | March 15, 2010 6:38 PM | Report abuse

divi3:

Well if it isn't, God help the WIZARDS fan.

Posted by: glawrence007 | March 15, 2010 6:39 PM | Report abuse

losing seven games in a row, with only three games decided by fewer than 10 points...

The Wizards that had AJ, Caron, BTH and Gil didn't have a better record than this group.

What's the one common denominator?

Flip as the head coach!

Posted by: bulletsfan78

Or is it the Pollin family as Owners...

Posted by: bozomoeman | March 15, 2010 6:39 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | March 15, 2010 6:40 PM | Report abuse

If you think that Leonsis and company will be the new owners, you might want to check out the first few years of their ownership of the Caps.

Posted by: fansincebullets | March 15, 2010 6:38 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, it took them what....eight years to get it right? I can't wait that long. I'm a dead man before then.

Posted by: glawrence007 | March 15, 2010 6:41 PM | Report abuse

Grunfeld's report card
FA signings: Fail
Trades: Pass
Draft: Fail

2006: 1st round: Pecherov over Rajon Rondo
2nd round: vladimir over Leon Powe
2007: 1st round: Nick Young over Rudy Fernandez
2nd round: Dominic McGuire over Marc Gasol.

I'll give him credit for Blatche but every year after that failed to produce

Posted by: jefferu | March 15, 2010 7:06 PM | Report abuse

It is fact. The worst team overall rarely gets the number 1 pick. The Wizards odds are actually better for the number 1 pick if they finish as the 3rd-6th worst team. If they try and win some games it should add to good karma.

The Wizards have reached bottom. Its undeniable. It's all upside from here.

Posted by: Chocolate_City | March 15, 2010 7:14 PM | Report abuse

"Grunfeld's report card
FA signings: Fail
Trades: Pass
Draft: Fail
2006: 1st round: Pecherov over Rajon Rondo
2nd round: vladimir over Leon Powe
2007: 1st round: Nick Young over Rudy Fernandez
2nd round: Dominic McGuire over Marc Gasol.
I'll give him credit for Blatche but every year after that failed to produce
Posted by: jefferu"

LOL here's my report card on jefferu:

Logic: fail
Fairness: fail
Memory: incomplete (where's Javale McGee?)

Posted by: Samson151 | March 15, 2010 7:22 PM | Report abuse

I can't see the Wizzies winning more than 3 the rest of the season.
That should get them a couple of extra balls at least.
BUT a lot of good it did them last year.

Posted by: VBFan | March 15, 2010 7:25 PM | Report abuse

"The Wizards odds are actually better for the number 1 pick if they finish as the 3rd-6th worst team."

Wait a minute. You're comparing slots 3-6 to slot 1. Also, isn't it true that the odds of slot 3 getting the top pick have to be lower than the odds of slot one getting it, since it's based on an allotment of ping pong balls? In other words, isn't your statement inaccurate and misleading?

Posted by: Samson151 | March 15, 2010 7:56 PM | Report abuse

c'mon, the basketball lottery is just like trying to pick the winning combo for powerball...you can retospect previous ways the balls fall and that is still not a good way to pick the winner. it's all about luck, as most gambling is. some are luckier than others. here we talk wizards...need i say more? difference this year should be to use the pick in the draft for a good young player. either a big strong guy or a point guard. both are needed.

Posted by: joerutgens72 | March 15, 2010 9:17 PM | Report abuse

"Turner, Evans, or Wes Johnson...all 3 of whom look better to me than the guards we passed on with the traded #5 pick"

Who's Evans?

Posted by: Samson151 | March 15, 2010 9:30 PM | Report abuse

Sampson, in theory obviously the worst team has the best "odds" ... Im just saying historically the worst team has won the lottery maybe 8% of the time. Off the top of my head only the Cavaliers when they got Lebron... And they might have been the 2nd worst team, i dont remember. Either way i feel more comfortable as the 3rd-6th worst team going into the lottery and i believe history will back me up

Posted by: Chocolate_City | March 15, 2010 9:44 PM | Report abuse

From Wiki

Since the weighted lottery system introduced in 1990, only three teams with the worst record went on to win the lottery while only four teams with the second-worst record have won the lottery.

Posted by: Chocolate_City | March 15, 2010 9:52 PM | Report abuse

truth be told, the first pick in the draft only guarantees that team will definitly get the player they want. you still have to scout and be prepared to make the correct pick of all the players available. being the #1 doesn't guarantee anything except in rare no miss instances, which is what was said about Oden. look at him now. how many guys picked between 10 and 20 went on to become stars in the league? it's a crap shoot, some teams have scouts that can see unpolished talent, some have scouts that can only see the bling. some teams never figure it out(LA Clippers).

Posted by: joerutgens72 | March 15, 2010 10:28 PM | Report abuse

The 5th pick in the draft last year could have been Steph Curry, 16.2pts & 5.4ast. A solid building bock for the future, but no we end with Foye and Miller.

Posted by: wbjking | March 15, 2010 10:44 PM | Report abuse

The 5th pick in the draft last year could have been Steph Curry, 16.2pts & 5.4ast. A solid building bock for the future, but no we end with Foye and Miller.

Posted by: wbjking | March 15, 2010 10:44 PM | Report abuse

The 5th pick in the draft last year could have been Steph Curry, 16.2pts & 5.4ast. A solid building bock for the future, but no we end with Foye and Miller.

Posted by: wbjking | March 15, 2010 10:44 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company