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Josh Howard deal a steal for Washington Wizards?


Here's hoping this deal works out for both of us, Josh. (Photo by Jonathan Newton /The Washington Post)


If not for his serious left knee injury last February, Josh Howard probably would've been one of the most sought after small forwards this summer. Arguably, it would've been LeBron James, Rudy Gay, Paul Pierce and then Howard. But with the former all-star recovering from a torn ACL at age 30, Howard had to wait until the final week of July to sign an incentive-laden deal in the neighborhood of $4 million.

Considering Howard's résumé and the contracts that some other small forwards signed this summer, the Wizards didn't necessarily pull off a coup. But they did get a solid, low-risk deal that could reap huge benefits should Howard return to anything resembling his three-year peak from 2005 to '08 when he averaged 18.3 points, helped the Dallas Mavericks reach the NBA Finals and made the 2007 all-star team.

Howard's production has declined in each of the past two seasons, with injuries contributing to him playing a career-low 35 games last season and putting up his lowest scoring average (12.7 points) since his second year in the league.

But that's how this deal works for both sides. The Wizards don't have to risk making a long-term commitment to Howard, while bringing back a player whose feistiness, intensity and leadership was immediately felt as he arrived in town talking about the playoffs. He immediately becomes the elder statesmen on the team, providing another veteran to a team that has eight players ages 25 or younger.

"We were impressed with Josh's versatility, how well he fit in with our team and his attitude and work ethic both before and after his unfortunate knee injury," Wizards president Ernie Grunfeld said in a statement announcing Howard's signing on Friday. "His experience playing in a winning situation makes him an ideal veteran presence for us as we develop our roster of young talent."

When he returns from his injury -- his agent, Derek Lafayette, says late October; the Wizards don't expect him to be ready before the start of the regular season -- Howard will have an opportunity to compete for the starting job at small forward, which is expected to be occupied by Al Thornton, with support from Nick Young and Yi Jianlian.

Howard will undoubtedly be motivated on two fronts: He only got to play four games after the Mavericks ended their more than six-year relationship, so he never got the chance to "stick it to the Mavs" the way he wanted. And, with the Wizards not picking up his $11.8 million option and making him an unrestricted free agent, Howard will no doubt be looking to make up for a nearly $8 million loss (two league sources said the base of the contract is closer to $3 million, with performance-based incentives adding an additional $750,000 or so).


Coming back just felt right. (UPI / Mark Goldman)

The Wizards expressed their interest in several free agent targets when the negotiating period began this month, but they had no intention of overpaying for an unproven. According to a source with knowledge of the talks, they made some early inquiries into the availability of Portland swingman Rudy Fernandez, whom they pursued before the trade deadline, but were never serious suitors.

With options dwindling for the Wizards and Howard, talks between the two sides intensified over the past two weeks. Although Howard reportedly spoke with Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, San Antonio, Sacramento and Miami, he still felt a connection with the Wizards. He continued to rehab with the Wizards training staff for the first few months after the season ended. Members of the staff have also visited Howard as he works out in Dallas, where he is running his All-Day Basketball camp this week

So, staying in Washington made the most sense and gives him a chance to finish what he started with a team much more talented than the one on which he last played. The Wizards have added No. 1 overall pick John Wall, Gilbert Arenas is expected to come back, Kirk Hinrich is another fierce competitor and Andray Blatche is a much more confident player than the one who was just tapping into his abilities at the time Howard was injured.

In order to sign Howard, the Wizards had to renounce the rights to free agent James Singleton, which is merely a formality. The Wizards remain interested bringing back Singleton, who arrived in Washington along with Howard, or Fabricio Oberto to fill out their frontcourt.

The downside to the deal is that the first year following a major knee injury is rarely the best one, because players spend so much time regaining confidence in their limbs and trying to adjust to limited lateral quickness. While Howard certainly uses his athleticism, he isn't overly athletic, relying mostly on his craftiness and skill to be effective.

Howard also has some baggage from his time in Dallas, where his last two seasons were clouded by controversy and some bizarre off-the-court incidents -- disparaging the national anthem, partying during the playoffs, admitting to smoking marijuana in the offseason. But he was positive throughout his short stint in Washington, even after his season-ending injury.

Howard visited his doctor in New York on Tuesday, and Lafayette said that he is "ahead of schedule." But the Wizards really want Howard to take his time in his return. They'll be pleased if Howard can return by the beginning of the season, but don't feel the need to rush him along because they would still like to evaluate Thornton, Young and Yi.

But the reason the Wizards remain pleased is that they were able to stay with their plan of signing or trading for players on short-term deals in an effort to find the complementary pieces to surround Wall. Wall already endorses the move for his fellow North Carolina native, and sources have said that Howard is excited about playing with the 19-year-old phenom.

So, are you excited to have Howard back?

By Michael Lee  |  July 30, 2010; 12:21 PM ET
Categories:  Josh Howard  
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Next: Wizards announce 2010 preseason schedule

Comments

Hell Yeah! He is a leader on the court and a hell of a player. I'd also be happy if we can lock him up once healthy cause he wants to win...

Posted by: 15600_sknfan | July 30, 2010 1:13 PM | Report abuse

I'm stoked. If we could get Singleton back, that would be sweet as well. Those two worked the hardest when they came over here

Posted by: BurgwithaU | July 30, 2010 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Howard continued to rehab with the Wizards training staff for the first few months after the season ended.

That can't be good...

Members of the staff have also visited Howard as he works out in Dallas.

Maybe the staff will learn something while in Dallas?

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | July 30, 2010 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Eh.

Posted by: kalo_rama | July 30, 2010 1:34 PM | Report abuse

"The Wizards remain interested bringing back Singleton, who arrived in Washington along with Howard, or Fabricio Oberto to fill out their frontcourt."

I'm not as down on Fab as others are.....but please make it Singleton.

Posted by: ts35 | July 30, 2010 1:36 PM | Report abuse

Very excited to have Howard back! Make it happen for Singleton as well. He deserves a spot on the team because of what he showed last year.
Finally, a team with depth at every position, maybe except the 5 spot but I do like what we have. It would have been nice to get Rudy Fernandez but, oh well..

Looking forward to an exciting season of hope.

Posted by: Doobie_Sparks | July 30, 2010 1:39 PM | Report abuse

Excited? Not really. I think it's a solid signing, and hopefully once he gets healthy, he'll bring that same intensity he brought to those 4 games. He'll find a team a little more willing and capable of responding to that than the one he left.

Posted by: ts35 | July 30, 2010 1:39 PM | Report abuse

I hope the schedule makers set both Wiz/Mavs games after January 1st.

It'll be interesting to see JHo vs. Tough Juice after a full 9 months post-ACL surgery.

Posted by: elfreako | July 30, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse

On the 4 games howard played with the wizards he was the only player on the court that was a true leader.

Posted by: jefferu | July 30, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse

I hope the schedule makers set both Wiz/Mavs games after January 1st.

It'll be interesting to see JHo vs. Tough Juice after a full 9 months post-ACL surgery.

Posted by: elfreako

You watch that. I'll be watching Wall vs Beaubois pt2. :)

Posted by: ts35 | July 30, 2010 1:49 PM | Report abuse

I have been begging for the Wizards to retain Howard. I am very happy and content.

Now there is nothing stopping us from making some noise in the league. And you can bet the other teams see what is transpiring in Washington.

Great job Ted and Ernie!

Wall is the envy of the league and with Gilbert, Kirk and the rest of the guys, I smell a dynasty. Championships are for women and childen.

What we have witnessed here is
"Divine Intervention". Somebody has been Praying for the Wiz "Big-Time" because they mentioned us to be better than Josh Howards old team; and the Mav's ain't no push-over.

See ya in the Play-offs Baby, Chef John

Posted by: upscalechef | July 30, 2010 1:55 PM | Report abuse

I find all of the hype about Beaubois a bit overblown. He's had a handful of nice games, but he's also gone long stretches being a noncontributor. He looks to me to be a 6' tall (haha) SG. There's generally a limited ceiling on those in the NBA.

Posted by: kalo_rama | July 30, 2010 1:57 PM | Report abuse

Great job Ted and Ernie!

Wall is the envy of the league and with Gilbert, Kirk and the rest of the guys, I smell a dynasty. Championships are for women and childen.


Posted by: upscalechef | July 30, 2010 1:55 PM | Report abuse

Chef John

What have you been cooking in your lab...Meth?

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | July 30, 2010 2:04 PM | Report abuse

Ernie Grunfeld is considering bringing-back Fabricio Oberto to round-out our front line LOL!! That tells you everything you need to know about Ernie Grunfeld's team-building abilities.

Posted by: closg | July 30, 2010 2:04 PM | Report abuse

"They'll be pleased if Howard can return by the beginning of the season, but don't feel the need to rush him along because they would still like to evaluate Thornton, Young and Yi."

This is the statement the I find strange. So if he's ready by December will that have been enough time to evaluate 3 guy at one position. If he's not ready until January what is the point in signing him.

I know people this board are down on Nick Young and feel like he's had a chance to prove himself. I disagree with that assumption. Nick has had three coaches so far, E. Jordan who no matter what Nick did was going to go with D. Stevenson. You had E. Tap who just couldn't coach and now Flip who proved last year that he's not very good with young players by putting Randy Foye in the doghouse after he got hurt and playing D. Stevenson while Wade was putting 40 on him and Flip was telling us he was in there because his defensive.

Give Nick a fair chance at the 3, I think he can beat out Al, Yi and Josh.

Posted by: 33dgriffin | July 30, 2010 2:10 PM | Report abuse

I find all of the hype about Beaubois a bit overblown. He's had a handful of nice games, but he's also gone long stretches being a noncontributor. He looks to me to be a 6' tall (haha) SG. There's generally a limited ceiling on those in the NBA.

Posted by: kalo_rama

He's definitely not a playmaking PG at this point. But he's definitely got something. Raw speed, quickness and athleticism for sure. Good ability to make shots. Right now he's basically the second coming of Ben Gordon. They'll either need him to become a bit more of a PG or pair him with a PG who's big enough to guard SGs. I'm expecting him to get a bump up in minutes this season.

If Rod and Dominique Jones both develop and can split the PG duties, they could be a dynamic back court in years to come.

For a team stocked with old guys pushing the envelope of their primes or well past it, the trio of Mahinmi, Beaubois, and Jones is a solid group of youngsters for the future.

Posted by: ts35 | July 30, 2010 2:21 PM | Report abuse

He seems to genuinly want to be hear. $4 million is cheap for a guy with a lot of upside, compared to some ridiculous deals summer (Howard @$4 mill for 1 year or Outlaw for $6 mill at multiple years? Dodged a bullet there). Only having him on a one year deal will make him hungry, and provides insurance where if he cannot recover the cap won't be affected long-term. Plus, with the money we had what else is out there right now in the FA market? I want Young and Thornton to get more minutes. But Thornton was the only other true SF on the team, and splitting time with Howard will help him develop. Young's development might hurt with BOTH Arenas and Hinrich as back-ups. That is another big reason why I want to trade Arenas, which might be possible if he comes out playing great as an SG.

With Howard we CAN make the playoffs in the East; though I would prefer one more year in the lottery, even if its a low-end lottery.

Posted by: mcgratsp | July 30, 2010 2:28 PM | Report abuse

Even though his production declined the last couple of years I still remember him as a fast starter in games for the Mavs. He usually scores most of his points in the first half.

Posted by: ged0386 | July 30, 2010 2:33 PM | Report abuse

By signing him to this contract... do we control his bird rights? Of course, after next year, there may not be anymore "Bird Rights".

Posted by: tony325 | July 30, 2010 2:55 PM | Report abuse

By signing him to this contract... do we control his bird rights? Of course, after next year, there may not be anymore "Bird Rights".

Posted by: tony325

Nope, we renounced his original deal. We only would get Bird Rights after three years on a new deal....and yeah, assuming such a thing still exists next year.

Posted by: ts35 | July 30, 2010 2:57 PM | Report abuse

If he plays well he'll make good trade bait after the all-star break.

Posted by: HanMy | July 30, 2010 3:06 PM | Report abuse

"He seems to genuinly want to be hear. $4 million is cheap for a guy with a lot of upside, compared to some ridiculous deals summer"

That's because none of those guys are coming off major knee surgery that may keep them off the court until after the start of the calendar year.

Posted by: kalo_rama | July 30, 2010 3:15 PM | Report abuse

Look at it this way: we got him for $1M cheaper than Darko Milicic!

Posted by: Cossackathon | July 30, 2010 3:28 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: kalo_rama | July 30, 2010 3:15 PM | Report abuse

real talk kal. it's hard to be excited about a guy whose injury timetable can fluctuate by the month depending on his current rehab. if he has a set back during one rehab session, he could be out til 2011. Or what if he comes back and bangs it up in practice, we could lose him for the year.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | July 30, 2010 3:28 PM | Report abuse

"...I would prefer one more year in the lottery, even if its a low-end lottery.
Posted by: mcgratsp"

Call me crazy, but I think you might get your wish. About the lottery, that is.

Posted by: Samson151 | July 30, 2010 3:38 PM | Report abuse

What's there to complain about? $4M for just 1 season, including a bunch of incentives, is a very modest contract. On the other hand, other teams weren't exactly hot in pursuit of Howard. He's not gonna lead them to the promised land, but he'll give them solid play and veteran leadership.

Posted by: randysbailin | July 30, 2010 3:47 PM | Report abuse

"What's there to complain about? "

Not much. Of course, we all know that won't stop anyone.

Posted by: Samson151 | July 30, 2010 3:38 PM"

Posted by: kalo_rama | July 30, 2010 4:17 PM | Report abuse

Ignore the "posted by Samson151" part at the end of the previous post. Unfortunate cut and paste mishap.

Posted by: kalo_rama | July 30, 2010 4:20 PM | Report abuse

Reporting you now for cut-and-paste abuse.

Posted by: ts35 | July 30, 2010 4:29 PM | Report abuse

with N'Diaye set to push Mcgee for minutes, why would we need to resign Fab? ;)

Posted by: divi3 | July 30, 2010 4:38 PM | Report abuse

after those two foul-out, someone has to play the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th quarters.....

Posted by: ts35 | July 30, 2010 4:41 PM | Report abuse

Howard continued to rehab with the Wizards training staff for the first few months after the season ended.

That can't be good...

Members of the staff have also visited Howard as he works out in Dallas.

Maybe the staff will learn something while in Dallas?

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | July 30, 2010 1:15 PM | Report abuse

I have to admit I read this and thought the exact same thing.

As for your earlier remarks to me, I have been saying this is a 32 win team. With a healthy Howard, we can maybe win a couple more.

I also said a while back that having the 3 mouseketeers in Miami is better than scaterring them around the conference.

Miami is greatly improved
Orlando has slid a bit but is still pretty much a lock for a playoff spot
Boston is - we'll see. That group is geting old so who knows how they'll hold up, but lets call them a playoff team.
Atlanta is the same
Chicago is about the same, they'll win some games with inside toughness now that they didn't win lat year and lose a couple by having fewer outside options. Still a playoff team.
Charlotte is worse
Nets are still bad
Knicks are a bit better but still not good
Sixers aren't any better
Cavs are way worse
Is Indiana still in the league?
Detroit is worse
Raptors are worse
Milwaukee is better, but still unproven - probably a playoff team, though.

That leaves us in the running for 2 playoff spots.

I certainly don't think we will be champs this season, but it won't take a whole lot to go right for us to make the playoffs. My guess is it will be like the 80's when you only had to win 36 games to make a playoff spot.

We have Wall - he alone should be worth a 6 game improvement over last year.
McGee is playing better and will continue to improve through out the season - a vast improvement over haywood
Booker will have some hero games - and some goats, too
Hinrich will be Hinrich...solid contibutor and smooth presence on the floor
IF AB comes back and plays 90% of how he did at the end of last season
and
IF Arenas can play his game well with Wall
and
IF ONE (or more)of our 4 guys at the 3 (who are all playing for a contract) can have a breakout year that gets them PAID next year.
and
We don't have any guns or too many new injuries

This team COULD win 45 games.

I doubt we could be that lucky, that is why I am saying 32 with a chance at 38.

Posted by: Blurred | July 30, 2010 4:46 PM | Report abuse

This team is on a beeline back to the lottery, and I'm sure Uncle Ted wouldn't have it any other way.

Posted by: kalo_rama | July 30, 2010 4:50 PM | Report abuse

after those two foul-out, someone has to play the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th quarters.....

Posted by: ts35

best post of the day.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | July 30, 2010 4:57 PM | Report abuse

the truth is, no one here knows how this team will play this season. no one knows who will get injured. No one knows who will step up. No one knows who (blatche cough cough, Howard cough, arenas cough cough cough) will get arrested.

No one knows if Seraphin will be any good or will sit on the bench.

That is what makes the season at least mildly exciting. If we all knew for sure that we are "on a beeline back to the lottery" or that we had the 7th seed locked up, there would be no point in having the season.

This is the kind of team that is fun to watch. Some games, they will be "on" and look like world beaters. Other games, they will get blown out by 25+. Most games they will be in it and probably come up a few pts short.

Thats the kind of team that if a few things go your way - guys stay healthy and out of jail - guys play hard every night - guys come in shape and healthy - one or two players advance faster than you think they will - or most likely, WALL is the real deal...a true franchise player, then your team wins a lot more than you thought they would.

Conversely, Wall gets injured, none of our three starters that were out at the end of last year can come back from their injuries and the rest of the guys play like its summer league...and this could be a 17 win season.

Posted by: Blurred | July 30, 2010 5:08 PM | Report abuse

Like i said. I htink it is lottery, but it wouldn't take a lot of luck to get the 8th seed.

Either way, I don't care, as long as they play hard and fight for the wins.

Posted by: Blurred | July 30, 2010 5:11 PM | Report abuse

veteren presence to his younger teammates..what is he going to do , show them how to roll a blunt and skirt a drug test. another waste of talent and money, I don't care how good we think he was in Dallas.

Posted by: klangley69 | July 30, 2010 5:27 PM | Report abuse

"Howard continued to rehab with the Wizards training staff for the first few months after the season ended. That can't be good..."

You just KNEW that was coming . . .

Posted by: rufus_t_firefly | July 30, 2010 5:29 PM | Report abuse

Like i said. I htink it is lottery, but it wouldn't take a lot of luck to get the 8th seed.

Either way, I don't care, as long as they play hard and fight for the wins.

Posted by: Blurred

I definitely agree with the second statement. As you say, we'll have to see about the first.

I still think it will take 39-40 wins to have a chance at the 8th seed in the East. And I think that's probably a little bit past the ability of this team. If only because there are so many disparate pieces they are trying to work together. It's a huge amount of question marks.

You have to expect Wall to hit, well, the wall, at some point, along with the rest of the rooks. At this point, I don't think McGee is a huge improvement over Haywood. He will be eventually, but not yet. He will be better than last year, but he still has a ways to go. And who knows where Gil's knee and head are at?

One of my complaints with Flip from last year (certainly not just my complaint), was that he shuffled his lineups and rotations too much, at least on the edges. If anything, he has more pieces to shuffle this year, especially if they are concerned about "getting looks" at all of these players. Based just on last year, Flip's preference was to lean on the vets more. Will he do that again this year? Or will he make sure the pups get solid minutes?

With the 12-man roster they have, there are no players that they don't want to try out at all. No Q-Rosses they can just leave on the bench. But you can't really have a 12-man rotation. AB's and especially Howard's injuries will allow them some opportunity to begin the season, but once everyone is healthy, Young likely gets squeezed, Seraphin or Armstrong get squeezed (I'm fine with Armstrong's minutes getting squeezed), and Booker's or Thornton's time gets squeezed.

With all of that going on, with all of the individual things going on, I don't think they'll get to 40 wins. I do agree though that they will look like world beaters some nights and absolute dregs the next.

Posted by: ts35 | July 30, 2010 5:32 PM | Report abuse

great deal and it a real chance to win the championship this year. Howard can heal and when making run to the playoff, howard come back and this team can play with ANYONE. GO WIZARD, GO BULLET

Posted by: lostdogrwd1011 | July 30, 2010 6:03 PM | Report abuse

Could we please sign Hamady N'diaye now please

Posted by: monsince1977 | July 30, 2010 6:12 PM | Report abuse

Assuming everyone has been signed, this is the roster with 13 players:

Gilbert Arenas #9
Hilton Armstrong N/A
Andray Blatche #7
Trevor Booker #35
Kirk Hinrich #12
Josh Howard #5
JaVale McGee #34
Hamady Ndiaye #55
Kevin Seraphin N/A
Al Thornton #14
John Wall #2
Yi Jianlian #31
Nick Young #1

Has Wall even signed a contract yet? It could be Booker, Ndiaye and Wall are still negotiating.

Lester Hudson and Cedric Martin will probably be added to the summer camp along with maybe 3 more.

Posted by: rickgonz | July 30, 2010 6:27 PM | Report abuse

I mean Cartier Martin, not Cedric Jackson. LOL

Posted by: rickgonz | July 30, 2010 6:27 PM | Report abuse

Anyone else check out this awesome James Singleton mix on youtube? dude can fly!! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JYpAY33SXV8

Posted by: chinatown | July 30, 2010 6:48 PM | Report abuse

agree with Blurred

Posted by: divi3 | July 30, 2010 6:58 PM | Report abuse

and the lottery is for suckers. Get in and get out. We won the damn thing and landed an absolute phenom, no reason to rely on more ping-pong balls bouncing our way.

Posted by: divi3 | July 30, 2010 7:07 PM | Report abuse

Big deal.

They signed someone at a cut rate price when no one else wanted him. He gets a one year contract, and if he shows something, he'll be gone. Basically, EG gets to rent a dude with a bad wheel for 2/3 season. This is about as un-newsworthy as Les BouleS signing Seraphin, who was cut from the French national team and also has a bad wheel.

Seems like you either have to be a lottery bust or someone with a bad wheel in order to attract EG's interest.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | July 30, 2010 7:22 PM | Report abuse

and the lottery is for suckers. Get in and get out. We won the damn thing and landed an absolute phenom, no reason to rely on more ping-pong balls bouncing our way.

Posted by: divi3 | July 30, 2010 7:07 PM | Report abuse

I don't think Ted or OKC would agree with you.

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | July 30, 2010 7:52 PM | Report abuse

What we have witnessed here is
"Divine Intervention". Somebody has been Praying for the Wiz "Big-Time" because they mentioned us to be better than Josh Howards old team; and the Mav's ain't no push-over.

You're welcome. Me and the Big Guy are pretty tight, and the Wiz were so pathetic, I figured I'd put in a word or two. Remember, it's not what you know, but Who you know.

Posted by: DrWho2 | July 30, 2010 8:16 PM | Report abuse

Josh was talking playoffs when it seemed "almost" impossible, and that is the type of player we want. Since that was his word, if he talked it, he intended to make it happen if at all possible. A winner.

Let me comment on anyone wanting one more year of lottery. You'll learn after a few more years of watching sports. That's like wishing to go to hell just for a little while, so you can warm up.

Losing is for losers. Losers more often than not stay losers. Losing breeds unhappiness and discontent. It leads to trades, firings, and hopelessness and lethargy in otherwise good players. Lottery draft picks can easily become losers. You can't hope for a losing mentality in 12 of your players to get one more player, and then hope for a winning mentality to come. One year of hopelessness and lottery play is enough to get Wall thinking of his next destination. Even in rebuilding, shoot for the playoffs. You can be secretly happy with a 2011 lottery pick, but please don't talk about it.

Posted by: ragtop4spd | July 30, 2010 8:28 PM | Report abuse

great deal and it a real chance to win the championship this year. Howard can heal and when making run to the playoff, howard come back and this team can play with ANYONE. GO WIZARD, GO BULLET

Posted by: lostdogrwd1011 | July 30, 2010 6:03 PM | Report abuse

I think we may have found Josh's dope supplier...

Posted by: randysbailin | July 30, 2010 9:23 PM | Report abuse

"Losing is for losers. Losers more often than not stay losers. Losing unhappiness and discontent. It leads to trades, firings, and hopelessness and lethargy in otherwise good players. Lottery draft picks can easily become losers. You can't hope for a losing mentality in 12 of your players to get one more player, and then hope for a winning mentality to come. One year of hopelessness and lottery play is enough to get Wall thinking of his next destination. Even in rebuilding, shoot for the playoffs. You can be secretly happy with a 2011 lottery pick, but please don't talk about it.Posted by: ragtop4spd"

Wow. Nobody ever explained it like that before. I guess then winning is for winners, right?

Maybe if we get all 50 or so regular posters to agree to stop talking about losing, and instead talk only about how the club is going to win, and win big, it'll create a massive, like, brain tital wave that'll seep over into the minds of those Wiz players while they're playing Madden '11 with their homies and ignite, I dunno, winning?

It could happen.

OK, everybody, think positive thoughts...

Posted by: Samson151 | July 30, 2010 9:32 PM | Report abuse

Why are people excited that we are paying up to $4 million bucks for Josh Howard's to rehab with us? With Howard's injury, he would have been lucky to get the vet minimum this year.

Posted by: closg | July 30, 2010 9:32 PM | Report abuse

Losing breeds unhappiness and discontent. It leads to trades, firings, and hopelessness and lethargy in otherwise good players. Lot

Posted by: ragtop4spd | July 30, 2010 8:28 PM | Report abuse

ragtop4spd

If that were true Ernie wouldn't have a job.

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | July 30, 2010 9:36 PM | Report abuse

great deal and it a real chance to win the championship this year. Howard can heal and when making run to the playoff, howard come back and this team can play with ANYONE. GO WIZARD, GO BULLET

Posted by: lostdogrwd1011 | July 30, 2010 6:03 PM | Report abuse

I think we may have found Josh's dope supplier...

Posted by: randysbailin | July 30, 2010 9:23 PM | Report abuse
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ROTFLMAO

Posted by: closg | July 30, 2010 10:01 PM | Report abuse

Name one player who did NOT make it back from an ACL in the past 10 years. In fact, just look at Shaun Livingston and what HE came back from (far worse than an ACL!). Fact is, ACL injuries, with today's technology, are no longer career-threatening. I, for one, am not surprised he is "ahead of schedule." Howard's signing is a great move by Ernie.

I also agree with Rag on the loser's mentality. I don't want to hear about playing for anybody's lottery. I'm looking UP, UP, UP. If we hit the lottery, we'll try to make it work, but it should NOT be a goal. I'd rather they play out of their minds and exceed everybody's expectations, rather than tank for the express purpose of gaining a lottery pick while our players learn how to develop a LOSER'S mentality, which is just what that scenario would create. That's just plain silly.

Posted by: bpybay | July 30, 2010 10:21 PM | Report abuse

Love the resigning. Now, let's get Singleton back in the fold. I'm not gonna mention Mike Miller (too late) since he defected to the Heat. Ok, it wasn't his fault we didn't act earlier but that's Grunfeld waiting things out and obviously he felt Josh was a better resigning over MM. I'd agree if it wasn't for the knee injury. JH has a better upside. MM's gonna flourish in Miami and we'll be regretting it. Sorry, I know I'm hurting from the loss of MM. Go Wizards and Wall!

Posted by: RedCherokee | July 30, 2010 10:33 PM | Report abuse

"I don't want to hear about playing for anybody's lottery. I'm looking UP, UP, UP. If we hit the lottery, we'll try to make it work, but it should NOT be a goal."

OK, that just plain makes no sense. Why would a team set out to be in the lottery? However, it's where a bunch of teams wind up -- every single season. And it's entirely possible one of those teams this coming season will be -- well, you know.

"I'd rather they play out of their minds and exceed everybody's expectations, rather than tank for the express purpose of gaining a lottery pick while our players learn how to develop a LOSER'S mentality, which is just what that scenario would create."

Which nobody suggested they do. It's a straw man you created so you could win an imaginary argument with yourself.

Posted by: Samson151 | July 30, 2010 11:52 PM | Report abuse

"Name one player who did NOT make it back from an ACL in the past 10 years. In fact, just look at Shaun Livingston and what HE came back from (far worse than an ACL!). Fact is, ACL injuries, with today's technology, are no longer career-threatening."

I think you're exaggerating a bit. The basic problem for pro basketball players is the unusual stress imposed on the knee by the nature of the game and the intensity of the schedule (this obviously applies more to players who play a lot of minutes during the season). Certainly a number of NBA stars have had their careers shortened significantly by knee injuries. There's also increased vulnerability to future knee injuries. And players who came back from injury often fail to approach their level of performance from past years.

There's a very definite risk in signing a player like Josh Howard. The Wiz' 'deal' looks good because they didn't overpay the way some teams have. But it's unlikely that Howard will reach the level of performance he achieved during that three year period in Dallas. And the downside risk, of course, is that if he sustains another season-ending injury, they'll have gotten nothing for their investment.

Posted by: Samson151 | July 31, 2010 6:42 AM | Report abuse

GETTING HOWARD AT THAT PRICE IS A GOOD MOVE.
IT WORKS FOR BOTH TEAM AND PLAYER.
SMALL FORWARD...I DON`T CARE IF NICK YOUNG HAS HAD THREE COACHES OR A HALF-DOZEN.
I DO NOT SEE HIM AS PLAYING MUCH DEFENSE.

HOW MANY GAMES DID THE WIZARDS LOOSE, WHEN THEY COULD NOT HANG ONTO A LEAD IN THE FOURTH
QUARTER, OR WOULD GET SO FAR BEHIND EARLY IN A GAME..IT TOOK ALL THE GAS THEY HAD TO TRY TO GET THE SCORE CLOSE.

DEFENSE WINS IN THE NBA..LAST YEAR..BASICALLY NONE OF THE WIZARDS PLAYED IT. STEVENSON CAME TO THIS TEAM WITH A REP. AS A GOOD DEFENSIVE PLAYER..I NEVER SAW THAT HAPPENING. THORNTON OR HOWARD
SHOULD VIE FOR STARTING AT THE 3 SPOT.

Posted by: blazerguy234 | July 31, 2010 7:46 AM | Report abuse

Which nobody suggested they do. It's a straw man you created so you could win an imaginary argument with yourself.

Posted by: Samson151 | July 30, 2010 11:52 PM | Report abuse

Wasn't having an argument, imaginary or otherwise, with anyone; just making a point, as more than one poster here seems to be pining for another lottery. Sounds like you are the owner of the imaginary argument???

With that said, fans can have a loser's mentality, as well. I guess we've seen so many lotteries that some of us just can't get enough. I'd rather go 40-42 and luck into the eighth seed than go back to the lottery. That would be progress and show that we're learning how to win, which is really the point of it all.

Posted by: bpybay | July 31, 2010 7:56 AM | Report abuse

"I DON`T CARE IF NICK YOUNG HAS HAD THREE COACHES OR A HALF-DOZEN.
I DO NOT SEE HIM AS PLAYING MUCH DEFENSE."

Posted by: blazerguy234 | July 31, 2010 7:46 AM | Report abuse

Nick is a very talented defensive player. Of course, talent alone won't win you much. The real question is, will he commit to actually playing defensive. If he will do that, he will be a very valuable player for us.

I am also on the same page as those who want to see Singleton come back.

Posted by: bpybay | July 31, 2010 8:15 AM | Report abuse

more than one poster here seems to be pining for another lottery.
I'm pining for the fjords and another lottery pick. I can't rap my limited basketball intelligence round this roster. Too many ifs, ands and buts. They could be terrible, at best they may be fun to watch if they're coachable, another big if. Probably won't win much. Last season Butler, Jamison, Arenas, Blatche and McGee never figured out how to adhere to Flip's or any playbook, which is why Butler and Jamison are gone.

Posted by: midlevex_ | July 31, 2010 8:52 AM | Report abuse

Only an idiot would look to sign Fab. Oh we are talking about Flip and Erie. Has the Wiz gotten a big man coach to help with the young bigs they have? NO, how stupid is that. Josh was a good signing. The guy can play.

Posted by: rnbrown4 | July 31, 2010 9:02 AM | Report abuse

Only an organization like ours would have Nick Young popping of and back on the bench. There are at least 11 players on that semi-NBA team that should be watching that NBA stud play. And at guard. Oh well Nick there is nothing that can be done about it.

Posted by: CTaylor42 | July 31, 2010 9:31 AM | Report abuse

"Wasn't having an argument, imaginary or otherwise, with anyone; just making a point, as more than one poster here seems to be pining for another lottery.posted by bpybay"

You were making an argument that some fans were 'pining' for another appearance in the lottery. I just pointed out how silly your argument was. Nobody 'pines' for a lottery choice before the season, but folks recognize that a whole bunch of teams are going to wind up getting one anyway. Near season's end, when it becomes inevitable, some fans will begin rooting for the team to lose so as to increase their share of the ping-pong balls. Not that that works that well, either.

The big flaw in your argument (for high expectations and insistence on a playoff berth) is that for the fans on a Washington Post blog, it's a form of magical thinking. The people whose desire to win makes a difference are the players, coaches, and management -- because they're the ones whose actions can actually make a difference in a game or a season. Fans at the arena can cheer and buck up morale, but they generally do that anyway.

You know what breeds a winning attitude? Winning.

Posted by: Samson151 | July 31, 2010 10:49 AM | Report abuse

You know what breeds a winning attitude? Winning.

Posted by: Samson151 | July 31, 2010 10:49 AM | Report abuse

I think that is why we are making a half-hearted effort to field a team that is somewhat competative. But rest assured that this team is lottery bound.

Posted by: MeviousMan | July 31, 2010 11:01 AM | Report abuse

Nobody 'pines' for a lottery choice before the season,

Posted by: Samson151 | July 31, 2010 10:49 AM | Report abuse

Samson151

Ted does he told us he wants to rebuild the Wizards the way OKC was rebuilt...which was by getting 4 lottery picks in 3 years.

That sounds like he hopes the Wizards play well enough to get fans in the seats while praying to get lucky in the lottery again.

By looking at the man he seems to be the type of guy who like to have his cake and eat it too...

I know all of the fat people out there are now going to accuse me of being prejudice?

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | July 31, 2010 12:29 PM | Report abuse

"Ted does he told us he wants to rebuild the Wizards the way OKC was rebuilt...which was by getting 4 lottery picks in 3 years."

That's not exactly what I would call 'pining'.

Posted by: Samson151 | July 31, 2010 12:32 PM | Report abuse

I think if I had to characterize Ted Leonsis as an owner, it would be 'realist'. He started by getting someone to put together a report on how the best franchises were built. Conclusion: with some notable exceptions, through the draft. Then he told the fans that was the path the team was going to follow. They'd avoid quick-fix veteran FAs and seek to assemble a core of strong young talent. He even gave us his model: Oklahoma City.

He suggested it would be difficult to find a trading partner for Gil so they were going to make the best of the situation.

He's apparently not a 'blamer' or a 'meddler', inferring that he didn't think Grunfeld was to blame for the Wiz' current dilemma and that he was going to give him a chance at a do-over. If it doesn't work... well, the next step is obvious.

Maybe we're just not accustomed to reality here in the most important city (in its own mind, at least) in the world.

Posted by: Samson151 | July 31, 2010 12:42 PM | Report abuse

hey larry, a lil bit of this mighta kept your boy livingston in a wizards uni. I mean, they offered him 3 mil over market, while injured to come back and play less than a full season.


http://bit.ly/claAy7

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | July 31, 2010 12:56 PM | Report abuse

Oklahoma's "model" was in realty Seattle's model and it cost that city their franchise. Getting 3 top5 picks and hitting on all 3 is not a model other teams can follow. The model is lucking into Kevin Durant who looks like a transcendent player...after that, you can build a team around him. Doesnt have to be Jeff Green and Russel Westbrook specifically and through the draft.

We won the lottery!! John Wall may be a transcendent player (who knows) and getting guys around him doesnt have to come through 20 win seasons over the next 2-3 years. In fact, that would almost guarantee he's gone.

Wall is 19 and looks every bit the part of a #1 pick, AB is 23 and we know the man can straight ball no matter how much some people hate on him. Avg age of the team is probably 25 or under. The plan needs to be try and start winning right now and develop all these young players we have. Then draft wherever we end up, makes some trades, look at FAs, whatever. A 23 win season demoralizes everyone and only moreso when you end up with the 6th pick anyway.

Winning breeds a winning attitude and losing breeds a loser mentality. You have a team accustomed to consistently losing 4-5 games in a row, and you're digging your own grave no matter where the ping-pong bounces.

Posted by: divi3 | July 31, 2010 12:59 PM | Report abuse

"The plan needs to be try and start winning right now and develop all these young players we have. Then draft wherever we end up, makes some trades, look at FAs, whatever. A 23 win season demoralizes everyone and only moreso when you end up with the 6th pick anyway."

I think the plan is to try and start winning right now. The question is whether this particular team can execute the plan. I suspect they may struggle. But we'll see.

As far as being demoralized: you're a grownup, right? Suck it up.

Posted by: Samson151 | July 31, 2010 1:29 PM | Report abuse

I'm not talking about me, thanks. I'm talking about the players, coach, and organization in general. Losing breeds losing just as much as winning does winning. Teams in every sport get demoralized and it shows in their play/effort all the time.

Of course people up on their high horse will always make remarks about how it shouldnt matter, they are pros getting paid and there should be 100% effort and great attitude at all times. But that's not how it works in the real world.

Posted by: divi3 | July 31, 2010 1:57 PM | Report abuse

The goals for the next season should be clear:
#1 - Change the culture of the team to hard-working, running, defensive-minded, team-oriented play, winning attitudes. This especially points to the Gilbert factor: Where is his head? If he has truly matured some of these things will be resolved instantly.

#2 - Get experience for the key young players and see which are keepers and what their role should be (Wall, Blatche, McGee, Booker) Important decisions about others such as Young, Thornton, Howard, Seraphin need to be made also.

#3 - Make playoff run if at all possible. Though you want to create a culture of winning this should not come before the first 2 priorities. To me this will be goal number one a year from now, not for the upcoming season.


BmoreRev

Posted by: stanlong23 | July 31, 2010 2:00 PM | Report abuse

I think the wiz will surprise us this season. Every body seems to have some thing to prove.
AB is looking for multiyear contract, NY will fight for life in NBA, AT will work for a contract season, GA to convince all that he is still an all star.KH and JH have also their issues.JW need to show that he is a future star. KS will work for future contract in NBA.All these are going to be proved by playing together with energy and passion.Out come is allways good with such a drive.

Posted by: gtefferra | July 31, 2010 2:01 PM | Report abuse

"Of course people up on their high horse will always make remarks about how it shouldnt matter, they are pros getting paid and there should be 100% effort and great attitude at all times. But that's not how it works in the real world.Posted by: divi3"

Speaking of high horses, how's the weather up there?

Posted by: Samson151 | July 31, 2010 2:48 PM | Report abuse

no, he not a steal but its fair to him and the team. he get paid to rehab and by the 2nd half of the season if ready The Wizard have one of the best small forwards in the NBA. its a great deal for both.

Posted by: lostdogrwd1011 | July 31, 2010 2:54 PM | Report abuse

People talk about Ted as though he's one of the great owners in sports history. They'll mention his 'model' for building the Caps. His model for building the Caps was that they were so bad that they were able to draft Ovie, a move that every other team would've made in the same position. Same w/ Backstrom, picked at 4 because the team was awful. The Caps have impressed in regular season play, but fizzled in the playoffs. Meanwhile, Ted's fretting over the ketchup, places to rest your beer in the men's room and the duties of the custodians among his first acts as Wizards owner.

Ted may turn out to be an outstanding owner, but IMO he gets more kudos than he deserves in his tenure as a professional sports owner.

Posted by: randysbailin | July 31, 2010 3:46 PM | Report abuse

Only an idiot would look to sign Fab. Oh we are talking about Flip and Erie. Has the Wiz gotten a big man coach to help with the young bigs they have? NO, how stupid is that. Josh was a good signing. The guy can play.

Posted by: rnbrown4 | July 31, 2010 9:02 AM | Report abuse

I'd have to agree about Oberto. He's an unathletic, very marginal NBA talent. I'd also agree about the big man coach. McGee and Blatche are gonna get worked on a lot of nights by the Dwight Howards, Amare Stoudamires, Tim Duncans, Chris Boshes, etc. of the league.

I'd characterize Flip as a solid NBA coach and EG's made what appear to be some pretty good moves from the draft and in the offseason. We'll see how they pan out.

Posted by: randysbailin | July 31, 2010 3:57 PM | Report abuse

"They'll mention his 'model' for building the Caps. His model for building the Caps was that they were so bad that they were able to draft Ovie, a move that every other team would've made in the same position. Same w/ Backstrom, picked at 4 because the team was awful."

Basically the same model OKC has followed.

Posted by: Samson151 | July 31, 2010 5:32 PM | Report abuse

I think Ted is one of the great owners in professional sports. But, the proof is in the pudding.

I like the signing of Josh Howard. I was going to predict on here that by the end of this coming season, either Ji or Josh or both are traded for draft picks. But after reading Ted's post on his blog about signing Josh, I'm not too sure about Josh being traded.

Posted by: PostSubscriber | July 31, 2010 6:20 PM | Report abuse

Trading Arenas would be monumentally stupid. His minuses do not outweigh his pluses. The boy can score and can also get truly HOT. I think he'll be a better player this year now that all that "Big Three" crap is (hopefully) over with. I'd much rather rely on a "Steady Five" cuz (i believe) "star time" is rarely a reliable commodity when you really need it.

Posted by: dcjazzman | July 31, 2010 7:10 PM | Report abuse

"The boy can score and can also get truly HOT. I think he'll be a better player this year now that all that "Big Three" crap is (hopefully) over with. I'd much rather rely on a "Steady Five" cuz (i believe) "star time" is rarely a reliable commodity when you really need it.

Posted by: dcjazzman | July 31, 2010 7:10 PM | Report abuse "

Stop living in the past. Only time will tell what kind of player Gilby is, moving forward.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | July 31, 2010 8:40 PM | Report abuse

Poor Flip, in the OKC "model" he plays PJ which means his days are numbered.

Posted by: divi3 | July 31, 2010 10:02 PM | Report abuse

I know EG wanted this guy, but settled for Oberto. I haven't followed his career, but is he any good?

http://www.sportando.net/eng/europe/greece/12020/olympiacos_close_to_rasho_nesterovic.html

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | July 31, 2010 10:30 PM | Report abuse

Ted may turn out to be an outstanding owner, but IMO he gets more kudos than he deserves in his tenure as a professional sports owner.

Posted by: randysbailin

IMO all you do is post negative bs most of which is wrong and boring!

Posted by: rphilli721 | July 31, 2010 11:27 PM | Report abuse

living in the past the kid avg 23-7-4...last year after missing 2 years...caron and antwan wish they had those number,,if caron avg 23-7-4..he would be a god to us..but when gilby do it.hes washed up ....he had the top 3 best numbers in any guard this year..do ur research before talking

Posted by: MrNoOne | July 31, 2010 11:30 PM | Report abuse

he had the top 3 best numbers in any guard this year..do ur research before talking

Posted by: MrNoOne

Huh? You mean on the Wizards? Certainly not "any guard this year" overall.

Posted by: nmik | August 1, 2010 12:06 AM | Report abuse

The model is lucking into Kevin Durant who looks like a transcendent player...after that, you can build a team around him.

We won the lottery!! John Wall may be a transcendent player (who knows) and getting guys around him doesnt have to come through 20 win seasons over the next 2-3 years. In fact, that would almost guarantee he's gone.

I'm sure you meant to add "Despite Durant re-upping with OKC after two 20-win seasons to start his career"

I'm going to disagree with Samson a little bit in that I do think there are some people who pine for the lottery. Some people have already looked at the 2011 Mock Drafts to see which players the Wiz should target. Fortunately, I don't think Ted is one of those people. I think he's less concerned with the win total in these first couple of years as he is with how the roster is built and building a sustainable salary structure.

If they come out of the gate playing well, I don't think he's going to pull a "Major League" and start taking away things to make sure they get back to the lottery.

Once the ball goes up to start the season, the 10/11 Wizards are going to try to win, make the playoffs, etc. But saying that they are unlikely to make the playoffs is not fostering a losing attitude. Ending up in the lottery again next year is not the end of the world. If this was still the AJ, Caron, Arenas Wizards, then yes, it would be a problem. But this is a different team that is essentially 6 months old.

The owner put a premium this season on acquiring young talent and that's what EG has done, we'll see how it shakes out. I doubt Yi or Armstrong end up proving they're worth keeping. We'll see what we have in the draft picks. And hopefully we'll see progress from Blatche, McGee, and Young. Hopefully we'll see a better overall style of play than we've seen the past few years, where the players embrace playing good basketball on both ends of the floor.

Those things are more important to me this year than whether they win 25, 35, or 45....although 45 would be nice.


Posted by: ts35 | August 1, 2010 12:06 AM | Report abuse

I know EG wanted this guy, but settled for Oberto. I haven't followed his career, but is he any good?

http://www.sportando.net/eng/europe/greece/12020/olympiacos_close_to_rasho_nesterovic.html

Posted by: DC_MAN88

Imo, essentially he's the same player as Oberto at this point in his career, he's just a legit 7-footer for whatever that's worth, as opposed to Fab being 6'10"

Posted by: ts35 | August 1, 2010 12:19 AM | Report abuse

"I'm going to disagree with Samson a little bit"

careful, dont get dis-invited to your mahjong games at kal's.

just kidding of course...

in all seriousness, i'd hate to win 20something games for 2 years then count on a 50win season to entice Wall into staying as happened in OkC with Durant.

The team is already crazy young. And there's already some serious talent on the roster. Rather than looking for picks to materialize over the next few years, I contend we've got a bunch of the pieces potentially in place and Flip just needs to develop them.

Javale has 33 starts in his career. AB a mere 100 starts in 5yrs. NY? 30 starts in his career. Contrast to Yi who has already started 152 games and pretty much shown nothing.

Let's give the guys we already have a shot with real minutes before assuming we need years of lottery picks for the franchise to get anywhere.

Posted by: divi3 | August 1, 2010 12:43 AM | Report abuse

careful, dont get dis-invited to your mahjong games at kal's.

Sounds like someone is bitter they didn't get an invite..... ;)

in all seriousness, i'd hate to win 20something games for 2 years then count on a 50win season to entice Wall into staying as happened in OkC with Durant.

You said that 20-win seasons all but guarantee Wall leaving, just pointing out that it's more complicated than that.

Aside from that, you can win 40 and still end up in the lottery. So saying they're going to be in the lottery this year isn't the same as saying they're going to win 20.

Rather than looking for picks to materialize over the next few years, I contend we've got a bunch of the pieces potentially in place and Flip just needs to develop them.

Those two things aren't mutually exclusive and all indications are they intend to do both. Especially considering that how their current players develop will influence what they choose to do in the draft.

I'm not sure why people are tripping out about what they're going to do next year when they haven't even played this year yet.

Posted by: ts35 | August 1, 2010 1:15 AM | Report abuse

The wild card in any season is injuries. Not just the big, season-ending ones, but the more minor kind that sap games along the way. Injuries are why the Mavs traded Josh Howard to the Wiz, and their timing couldn't have been better, could it? Four games later he was down for the count.

Last year the questions were naturally about Arenas. He was the key to the roster, and his uncertain status was a big reason for the Foye acquisition. If I recall correctly, he did pretty well through the first 30 games, although there were rumors he was experiencing some soreness/tightness near the end. Now his health is barely discussed, although given his medical history, that's probably not wise. He's had another half-season off, so maybe that will be a positive. Hard to tell.

As far as his performance on the court, the numbers were pretty extraordinary -- right about his career pace, in spite of the layoff. It was also clear that he wasn't able to do some of the things he once did on offense, particularly going to the basket. He seemed aware of the fall-off. Playing alongside Wall, he could probably be most productive simply by taking more open outside shots and getting his 3 point FG percentage up to around 40%. He's never done that -- highest previous is 37.5%, and career is only 35.7% -- but nobody would argue he isn't capable of becoming a better shooter.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 1, 2010 11:31 AM | Report abuse

A lot of older players adapt as their body ages, many seem to be convinced that Gil's been locked up in a time capsule and he has no ability to adjust his game to his present ability.

Every successful pro in any sport has to learn to adjust to be successful. In baseball if you can't hit a curveball, that's all you'll see until you hit the thing, or find a day job.

All really good offensive players have to adapt their game to the ravages of time. Kobe isn't the same player today that he was 3 years ago, a player's skills aren't frozen in time. You lose one, or it diminishes, you have to develop another to stay competitive. Kobe maybe better now then he ever was, but he's also had to adapt to the limitations of age.

MJ in the second 3 Championship run was almost a retooled player from the first 3. Remember the midseason comeback when they came up short? People were declaring MJ had lost it, he wasn't the same player as before. He didn't lose IT, he just had to retool his game to what he could still excell at. A lot more midrange game, and less flying above the rim.

Nobody in the game has ever had more IT ten MJ, except for maybe Russell.

Gil's game is the least of Flip's problems, blending into an offense is going to be the trick that will take a lot of work from Gil, Wall, and Flip.

I think they're all smart enough and motivated enough to make it work.
Gil knows he's got a lot on the line, Suanders' job is at stake, and Wall knows he needs a scorer to pass to.
GM

Posted by: flohrtv | August 1, 2010 12:26 PM | Report abuse

"Gil's game is the least of Flip's problems, blending into an offense is going to be the trick that will take a lot of work from Gil, Wall, and Flip."

Posted by: flohrtv | August 1, 2010 12:26 PM | Report abuse

I was a Knick fan (native New Yorker) when we made the trade for Pearl. All you heard back then was "they (Pearl and Clyde) could never work together, they will need two basketballs." Of course, they became one of the greatest backcourts in the history of the game.

For me, with that backdrop, I am actually excited at the potential of the Arenas/Wall backcourt. I think that if you are the owner, with that kind of talent, we absolutely HAVE to give it a shot. If it doesn't work, we simply go in a different direction.

For now, I say give it a shot. One thing is for sure; we will be unrivaled in the entire league in backcourt quickness. If you remember early last season, Gil's problem wasn't getting to the rim, it was finishing (very uncharacteristic for him), but with another season to strengthen the knee, I personally don't think he will have that problem anymore. I guess only time will tell.

Posted by: bpybay | August 1, 2010 12:47 PM | Report abuse

One thing is for sure; we will be unrivaled in the entire league in backcourt quickness. If you remember early last season, Gil's problem wasn't getting to the rim, it was finishing..."

Getting to the basket is ultimately about finishing. Gil wasn't able to do it as effectively as in the past. That's the knee -- its condition, and his natural hesitation about the possibility of reinjuring it.

I think Gilbert's days of blowing by people to score are fading. And the club has to worry about him being overmatched on defense. In Chicago, Hinrich usually took the opposition SG so Rose didn't have to. Now it will be Ronnie Brewer, another formidable athlete who'll play alongside Rose.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 1, 2010 2:33 PM | Report abuse

was a Knick fan (native New Yorker) when we made the trade for Pearl. All you heard back then was "they (Pearl and Clyde) could never work together, they will need two basketballs." Of course, they became one of the greatest backcourts in the history of the game.

Posted by: bpybay

Along the exact same lines, aren't Wade and his riders down in Miami going to have to sacrifice their games for the "teams" sake? People act like that doesn't happen and Gil is not willing to sacrifice his game.

I guess it comes from them labeling him a "chucker". I guess he was so much a chucker that Larry, Caron, and Antawn didn't get theirs. They would rather him setup Etan, Jeffries, Ruffin, Kwame, and Haywood(who looked like he shot the ball with his eyes-closed back then). Gil giving the ball to anybody other than his Big 3 mates back then was doing the opponent a favor. Gil knew it too. Why don't "they" realize it. I still wouldn't want Gil throwing alley-oops to Haywood like Wall can with JaVale. When Gil would pout because Jordan wanted him to pass the ball, and come out in "pass-only" mode a couple of times, who the fu-k did Jordan want him to set up outside of the Big 3?

The thing about it is this, the offense under Gil was never "the problem". They scored. The real problem with the Wizards with Gil at the helm was that they had no interior offensive threat. NONE!

Gil is a baller. I guess now that he will be playing the 2, they will still not want him to shoot. What they don't realize is that Gil was/is one of the top 5 pure scorers in the NBA. LeBron, Wade, Kobe, Durant, Dirk,....

They thing about it is also that he averaged 23 and 7 recovering while rusty. DC_Man wants to act like he can't do it no more. What a non-ball-playing hater like DC_Man doesn't realize is that will have to respect Gil's 4pt range. He can't beat his man off the dribble from out that far in a wheel-chair, so yes he will be able to adjust his game with age.

The other thing with a Gil/Wall backcourt is that Gil's range and Walls athletic penetration/speed/quickness will create tremendous penetration lanes for both. You remember how Gil would have to "spit the double team" and Wall tries to, you can't use a guard to double, you better use, never mind, you'd better not double nobody now. You can't double with Blatche's man. You can't double with Josh's man. Let's see them leave JaVale open for the lob.

Defensively, well that is another topic.

Posted by: G-Man11 | August 1, 2010 2:45 PM | Report abuse

One thing is for sure; we will be unrivaled in the entire league in backcourt quickness. If you remember early last season, Gil's problem wasn't getting to the rim, it was finishing..."

Getting to the basket is ultimately about finishing. Gil wasn't able to do it as effectively as in the past. That's the knee -- its condition, and his natural hesitation about the possibility of reinjuring it.

I think Gilbert's days of blowing by people to score are fading. And the club has to worry about him being overmatched on defense. In Chicago, Hinrich usually took the opposition SG so Rose didn't have to. Now it will be Ronnie Brewer, another formidable athlete who'll play alongside Rose.

Posted by: Samson151

I agree Samson and I am a baller who tore up my knee. Gil can still penetrate, that will never be a problem. What the problem was, and you saw it with Jordan as a Wizard too. Gil hesitates to go airborne after he beats his man because "what goes up, must come down". That is where the hesitation is. He is afraid to go up and not have a place to land without bumping into people while landing.

But, they still will have to respect his range.

Posted by: G-Man11 | August 1, 2010 2:53 PM | Report abuse

Gil is a baller. I guess now that he will be playing the 2, they will still not want him to shoot.


Posted by: G-Man11 | August 1, 2010 2:45 PM | Report abuse

G-Man11

That's exactly what I want him to do is shoot the ball...

Considering Wall is the kind of point who likes to drive I would love to see him pass the ball out to someone who can knock down the open jump shot.

The question is will Gil shoot the jump shot or will he want to drive the ball instead?

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | August 1, 2010 3:09 PM | Report abuse

I still contend none of the players will decide this season. Flips lack of ability to know how to use his players is the problem. Instead of looking at what he has and making it work which is what a good coach does. Flip has no plan but thinks he has a system. He will try and force players to play his whack system then say it's everyone elses fault for not learning his stupid system. THIS IS WHO FLIP IS. Look at how Nick, McGee, and Blatche have regressed under him.

Posted by: rnbrown4 | August 1, 2010 3:37 PM | Report abuse

The question is will Gil shoot the jump shot or will he want to drive the ball instead?

Posted by: bulletsfan78

You want him to both shoot and drive. Making him just a shooter is not fair to him or the team. At this point in Wall's career, you don't want to pass to Gil and he only shoot, not penetrate or pass the ball around. What happens if Wall ends up with the ball 20ft away from the rim, late in the shot clock becuase he is the one who will be left open after he gets rid of the ball.

Gil should have other options besides just shooting the ball.

Posted by: G-Man11 | August 1, 2010 3:56 PM | Report abuse

THIS IS WHO FLIP IS. Look at how Nick, McGee, and Blatche have regressed under him.

Posted by: rnbrown4

Regressed? If you say so.

Posted by: ts35 | August 1, 2010 4:35 PM | Report abuse

Look at how Nick, McGee, and Blatche have regressed under [Flip].

Posted by: rnbrown4 | August 1, 2010 3:37 PM

I get that credit can be given more to circumstance than to Flip's coaching, but post all-star break (aka the big trades) last year, Blatche and McGee kinda flourished. McGee put up something like 11 and 7 in roughly 25-30 minutes, and Blatche as we all know put up 23, 8 and 4. I wouldn't go so far as to say they "regressed" during the beginning of last year, when we were still playoff hopefuls, though I will agree with you in saying that they took a slight step back from the year before if only for a minute, in the early games. As brutal as last season was, we were a much better basketball team than the year before, even if the W/L difference didn't show it. So it comes as no surprise to me that on a competitive team (which we liked to think we were), extremely inconsistent albeit talented players such as Nick Young and Javale McGee didn't play much. Blatche had his ups and downs, as he has had every season since he cracked the rotation.

So I don't think much of NY, JM & AB's play last year can be credited towards Flip, whether it was their good or bad moments. I don't think Flip properly utilized their talents, though I was very happy that Blatche and McGee were able to play the roles that they did as last year started to wind down. Though I would've liked to have seen Nick and Mcgee get more PT consistently throughout all of last season, they will for sure get more this one.

Posted by: TDAV | August 1, 2010 4:51 PM | Report abuse

1. When did Nick ever PROGRESS?
2. Blatche regressed under Flip? Sure. I guarantee if he puts up all-star numbers Flip won't get the credit...it'll just be that he was given the opportunity.

All the blame...none of the credit. You gotta love it.

Posted by: SDMDTSU | August 1, 2010 4:57 PM | Report abuse

What Gil will need to develop is a really solid midrange game. He needs to drive and pullup and shoot or dish well. And learn to create room for a money shot from midrange.

You don't want him standing on the perimeter either chucking up a three or passing the ball off as fast as he can. We could have resigned MM to do that.

And that doesn't lead to wins unless that player is a secondary scorer, i.e. 3rd, 4th or 5th option on the floor. That ain't Gil, if he's not one of the primary options he's not worth putting on the floor. A team doesn't pay out 20m dollars a year for Mike Miller type players.

On most teams your wings are your primary scorers. Gil will need to score while still moving the ball as part of the offense. But he will be the primary scorer most of the time. As good as Wall looked in summer league, he's not ready to carry the playmaking and scorer's role. Howard in his best year didn't put up the 23 points a game that Gil did last year.

But the one thing that most are missing about a Gil/Wall backcourt. If the Wiz are in a game in the 4th quarter it will be one of the few times that Gil has played with another guy that can really create his own shot or get to the line off the dribble.

Having two guys on the floor at the same time that can break a man down off the dribble is huge in the NBA.

Wall and Arenas will learn to play together because it's in both of their best interests to do so. The fairy tale about Gil sulking and being surly that has been repeated on this site is pretty much baseless to this point.

Until I see different, I beleive that Gil's going to come out balling this year...
GM

Posted by: flohrtv | August 1, 2010 5:00 PM | Report abuse

"You don't want him standing on the perimeter either chucking up a three or passing the ball off as fast as he can. We could have resigned MM to do that.
And that doesn't lead to wins unless that player is a secondary scorer, i.e. 3rd, 4th or 5th option on the floor. That ain't Gil, if he's not one of the primary options he's not worth putting on the floor. A team doesn't pay out 20m dollars a year for Mike Miller type players."

Couple issues with the above. First, the complaint about Miller was his reluctance to shoot - nobody's ever had that complaint about Gilbert. Second, the team shouldn't be paying 20 mil for Arenas, either. That's a mistake of Albert Haynesworth proportions (ever notice that the current object lessons in overpayment are both right here in DC?)

Posted by: Samson151 | August 1, 2010 5:47 PM | Report abuse

We should probably take a few minutes to remember that over the past two seasons, the Wizards have won only 26.8% of their games. That's the forest we're hoping John Wall can lead us out of. Let's be patient with the process, huh?

Posted by: Samson151 | August 1, 2010 5:54 PM | Report abuse

"The fairy tale about Gil sulking and being surly that has been repeated on this site is pretty much baseless to this point."

Yeah, what has Gilbert ever done to make us believe he might have an attitude problem?

Posted by: Samson151 | August 1, 2010 5:56 PM | Report abuse

"in all seriousness, i'd hate to win 20something games for 2 years then count on a 50win season to entice Wall into staying as happened in OkC with Durant."

Which presumes that if OKC hadn't won 50 last season that Durant wouldn't have re-signed. Got any evidence to back that up? Rhetorical question, of course; we already know the answer.)

Posted by: kalo_rama | August 1, 2010 6:32 PM | Report abuse

Imo, essentially he's the same player as Oberto at this point in his career, he's just a legit 7-footer for whatever that's worth, as opposed to Fab being 6'10"

Posted by: ts35 | August 1, 2010 12:19 AM

Not quite. Nesterovic can actually score, unlike Oberto. He's not going to put up big numbers or take a lot of shots, but he's a guy who can make teams pay for ignoring him defensively, which Oberto can't do.

Posted by: kalo_rama | August 1, 2010 6:40 PM | Report abuse

Starting 5

Wall PG
Gil SG
Thoeton SF
Blatche PF
McGee C

Other then Blatche they all want to take the ball to the hoop the team needed a guy who can hit an open jump shot.

I guess the guy is Yi?

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | August 1, 2010 6:51 PM | Report abuse

Other then Blatche they all want to take the ball to the hoop the team needed a guy who can hit an open jump shot.

I guess the guy is Yi?

Posted by: bulletsfan78

Arenas, Young, Hinrich can all hit open jumpers

Posted by: ts35 | August 1, 2010 7:20 PM | Report abuse

Not quite. Nesterovic can actually score, unlike Oberto. He's not going to put up big numbers or take a lot of shots, but he's a guy who can make teams pay for ignoring him defensively, which Oberto can't do.

Posted by: kalo_rama

And I would call Oberto a bit better defensively. But considering the minutes and roles both play at this point in their careers, they are distinctions without much of a difference.

Posted by: ts35 | August 1, 2010 7:47 PM | Report abuse

And I would call Oberto a bit better defensively. But considering the minutes and roles both play at this point in their careers, they are distinctions without much of a difference.

Posted by: ts35 | August 1, 2010 7:47 PM

Not much difference in impact, sure. But saying they have similar impact is a totally different thing than saying they're "essentially the same player."

In their primes, both Shaq and Isiah Thomas had similar impact in their ability to dominate opponents and make teammates better. But no one would ever say they were "essentially the same player." They were different players with similar impact.

Posted by: kalo_rama | August 1, 2010 8:40 PM | Report abuse

Random question: Does anyone know what the roster consequences are if the Wizards sign N'Diaye and ship him off to D-League? Would N'Diaye still cost the Wizards a roster spot if he's assigned to D-League for the season?

Posted by: JPRS | August 1, 2010 9:39 PM | Report abuse

Hell no, we already got an aging, returning q-mark, and injured vet in ARENAS. Just another big q-mark in an undistinguished rebuild of this moribund franchise.....Two years from now we may have enough lottery picks to be decent, but now it's just q-marks.

For god's sake get SINGLETON now, and end this travesty. At least we know what we're getting with him. Plays hard, and has a will to win even if not an all-star.

Posted by: glawrence007 | August 1, 2010 10:09 PM | Report abuse

^ If he's signed, he counts against our salary cap and takes up a roster spot.

Posted by: tdavelfresco | August 1, 2010 10:10 PM | Report abuse

Why are people excited that we are paying up to $4 million bucks for Josh Howard's to rehab with us? With Howard's injury, he would have been lucky to get the vet minimum this year.

Posted by: closg | July 30, 2010 9:32 PM | Report abuse


Have you ever paid attention to these contracts? Seriously? Josh Howard on one leg can outplay Darko and you can see what his contract is like. This is a pretty good deal all around. This isn't like hiring guys at your office, where there are 7526 people that can do the same job and they all live in the area. There are fewer that 400 people in the world that get to play in the NBA in any season. There are only like 40 people in the world that get to start as a SF in the NBA in any year.

And meanwhile, 12,000 - 20,000 fans pay $35-$750 41 times a year, and CSN pays ???? to show the games and most of those 750,000 people who paid all that cash spend an extra $30 a night on refreshments. And how many thousands of folks will be paying $85 for Wall, Blatche, McGee and Yi jerseys.

All that said, what do you care how much we pay for Howard. It's not your money. And "Uncle" Ted ain't giving you a deal if he doesn't pay the full salary cap amount.

Posted by: Blurred | August 1, 2010 11:00 PM | Report abuse

Arenas, Young, Hinrich can all hit open jumpers

Posted by: ts35 | August 1, 2010 7:20 PM | Report abuse

So out of the starting 5 Gil is our jump shooter?

I guess we'll see how well that works out.

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | August 1, 2010 11:05 PM | Report abuse

In their primes, both Shaq and Isiah Thomas had similar impact in their ability to dominate opponents and make teammates better. But no one would ever say they were "essentially the same player." They were different players with similar impact.

Posted by: kalo_rama

Sure, that makes sense. Oberto and Nesterovic are exactly as different as Shaq and Zeke. I understand what you're attempting to say, but did you get into 78's medicinal marijuana stash?

Are they exactly the same player? Nope. Are they both aging, relatively smart, more or less reliable big men good for about 10-15 mins a night max? Yep.

If we're at the point in the offseason where we start debating the various merits of 34-5 year old backup centers who don't currently play for the Wiz, I'm gonna bounce over to the Redskins Insider for a while and check on Haynesworth's 300 yd shuttle results.

Posted by: ts35 | August 2, 2010 1:32 AM | Report abuse

So out of the starting 5 Gil is our jump shooter?

I guess we'll see how well that works out.

Posted by: bulletsfan78

Well, part of the rest of it depends on who's playing the 3. Thornton shot the 3 fairly well last year, though he didn't shoot very often. Howard is a ok 3 pt shooter for his career, Nick Young is a solid 3 pt shooter.

I would definitely not call perimeter scoring a strength for this team, but hopefully they'll be able to make up for it in other areas. Needless to say, the offense is going to be an experiment for a while.

Posted by: ts35 | August 2, 2010 1:44 AM | Report abuse

Here's a blog post by a Spurs fan, complaining that the Spurs are having trouble hoarding players in the D-League:
http://www.48minutesofhell.com/2010/07/29/austin-toros-malik-hairston-san-antonio-spurs/

Seems like the strategy of stockpiling players in the D League depends on giving them large signing bonuses for training camp, and keeping them off the market until other teams have either filled their rosters or used up all their cap space. Then the Spurs sign them to their D-League team. So the Wizards should save a roster space and cap space for an opportunistic signing after training camp.

Posted by: PostSubscriber | August 2, 2010 6:57 AM | Report abuse

So the Wizards should save a roster space and cap space for an opportunistic signing after training camp.

I like it. Sign SINGLETON and wait on the #15 until we can tap the D-league

Posted by: glawrence007 | August 2, 2010 7:55 AM | Report abuse

Build a team:

Centers:

JAVALE McGEE - 1,601,040
HILTON ARMSTRONG - 992,680
HAMADY N'DIAYE - unsigned

Power Forwards:

ANDRAY BLATCHE - 3,260,331
KEVIN SERAPHIN - 1,563, 120

Combo Forward:

YI JIALIAN - 4,050,500
TREVOR BOOKER - 1,240,560

Small Forwards:

AL THORNTON - 2,814,196
JOSH HOWARD - signed, still not reported

Two Guard:

NICK YOUNG - 2,630,503

Combo Guards:

GILBERT ARENAS - 17,730,694
KIRK HINRICH - 9,000,000

Point Guard:

JOHN WALL - 5,144,280

Suspects:

JAMES SINGLETON - 1,750,000
Best guard in D-league once training camp is over.

Posted by: glawrence007 | August 2, 2010 8:26 AM | Report abuse

If they bring Singleton back...someone between Cartier Martin and Lester Hudson is going to get squeezed out. They're going to need a 5th guard too...so it's gonna come down to Martin or Singleton.

Posted by: SDMDTSU | August 2, 2010 9:01 AM | Report abuse

I read somewhere that Hudson got an invitation to Training Camp. I do like his competetive nature.

I would have thought that bringing back Singleton was a no brainer. He was the only physical presence on this team last season, and knew how to give a "hard foul".

He was a great locker room guy.

Posted by: bozomoeman | August 2, 2010 9:54 AM | Report abuse

"Josh Howard on one leg can outplay Darko..."

LOL problem is, he might have to. Play on one leg, that is.

We got Josh Howard for $4 mil because of his injury (actually, his injuries over the past couple seasons), and because of the fall-off in productivity on the offensive end. He's a high-risk player, so a lot depends on what the docs told Grunfeld about his recovery time. The prognosis must have been pretty decent. But it's still a prognosis, or as one doc put it: "I was wrong? Hell, I'm a doctor. I'm wrong all the damn time."

If he averages say, 25 minutes, and shows he can shoot and rebound and (most important) still play defense, he'll be getting a lot more down the road. If he flounders, or goes down for the count, it's probably a bad signing.

But that's biz as usual in the NBA when it comes to veteran FAs.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 2, 2010 10:19 AM | Report abuse

"Arenas, Young, Hinrich can all hit open jumpers.Posted by: ts35"

LOL yes but Nick will also have to head- fake and fall backwards first...

Posted by: Samson151 | August 2, 2010 10:23 AM | Report abuse

I like Singleton too, particularly given the injuries to Blatche and Seraphin and Booker's lack of size. He could help in the first half of the year. But there are probably half a dozen players out there who can contribute in the same way.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 2, 2010 10:27 AM | Report abuse

IMO we can't really overstate the value of defense for somebody who plays that SF position. So much of an NBA team's scoring comes from the 3 spot. If you can hold up your end on offense and also prevent the other team's SF from dominating the game, you're gold in a GM's eyes.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 2, 2010 10:37 AM | Report abuse

Here's a blog post by a Spurs fan, complaining that the Spurs are having trouble hoarding players in the D-League:
http://www.48minutesofhell.com/2010/07/29/austin-toros-malik-hairston-san-antonio-spurs/

Posted by: PostSubscriber

I guess it just goes to show that especially to fans, all problems are relative. We spent a lot of time complaining about losing Gee. And the fans with possibly the best run D-League team in the league complain about losing Malik Hairston.

I do agree though that they need to revise the D-league set-up a bit, to make it friendlier to the NBA as a true developmental league.

Posted by: ts35 | August 2, 2010 11:16 AM | Report abuse

N'Diaye can remain unsigned and his rights still retained. He could either go to D-League or sign a contract overseas. Some teams steer guys where they want them to go. Other leave it totally up to their agents.

I'd quess the Wizards management is weighing signing him against bringing in another vet upfront. It sure would seem like a stretch to find minutes for both Seraphin and N'Diaye at the same time.

N'Diaye might get the most consistant minutes on a D League roster. In Europe he could get buried on a bench somewhere. If the Wiz sign him and assign him they would be holding the 15th roster spot open for him.

I think the Howard signing improves both the Wizards perimeter defense and offense.
Healthy, this could be a very solid team down the stretch.

Singleton did a solid job here and could be relied on to give solid play off the bench. But this team could really use another veteran center.

Grunfeld's delay in signing Singleton and N'Diaye would seem to indicate that he's still looking to see what's still out there at center.
GM

Posted by: flohrtv | August 2, 2010 11:21 AM | Report abuse

"Arenas, Young, Hinrich can all hit open jumpers.Posted by: ts35"

LOL yes but Nick will also have to head- fake and fall backwards first...

Posted by: Samson151

Lol, yes, I know. But even with that, he did shoot .400 from behind the arc last year.

Posted by: ts35 | August 2, 2010 11:40 AM | Report abuse

Grunfeld's delay in signing Singleton
Posted by: flohrtv

....may have nothing to do with Grunfeld at all. Singleton may be weighing his options, much like Livingston did. With all of the young bigs coming to the Wiz, Singleton may be looking for a place with a more defined role, or like Miller, looking for a chance to be on a definite playoff team.

But from EG's side, there's no particular rush. I don't think Singleton is a must-sign guy.

I do think they should try to hold on to NDiaye this year. He likely should go to the D-League, but I think he's worth the roster spot this year to see what he shows.

Posted by: ts35 | August 2, 2010 11:51 AM | Report abuse

Apologies if someone already posted this, but an interesting breakdown of Serpahin (including more video), from nbaplaybook.com vis Bullets Forever.

http://nbaplaybook.com/2010/08/02/overseas-scouting-report-kevin-seraphin/

Posted by: ts35 | August 2, 2010 11:54 AM | Report abuse

@flohrtv

I agree with you, but i would even underscore how important "Health" is throughout the league. Teams fortunes really hang in large part on injuries. That more than just about anything else tends to dictate who is in and who is out come playoff time.

Posted by: gconrads | August 2, 2010 12:34 PM | Report abuse

"Apologies if someone already posted this, but an interesting breakdown of Serpahin (including more video), from nbaplaybook.com vis Bullets Forever.Posted by: ts35"

No, I hadn't seen it, and I thought it was a very fair eval. The author recommends a year in the Ds, so that means divi3 will declare him a bust and demand EG be fired for having drafted him. But a player with that sort of physical talent is a player I'd be willing to wait for.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 2, 2010 12:51 PM | Report abuse

To me, a guy who can hold position on the blocks the way Seraphin did in the clip titled 'Post D', and also hit that short right-handed jump-hook, is a keeper. And somebody who can run the floor like her did is tailor-made to play with John Wall and Trevor Booker.

I'd be happy to see Ndiaye in the Ds all season. I've never seen him make any offensive move of any kind other than a dunk, so that'd be the place to work on it.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 2, 2010 12:56 PM | Report abuse

I'd be happy to see Ndiaye in the Ds all season. I've never seen him make any offensive move of any kind other than a dunk, so that'd be the place to work on it.

Posted by: Samson151

If the idea is to have Seraphin and NDiaye spend good parts (if not all) of this season in the D-League, they definitely need to sign one more front court player.

If they do plan to make more use of the D-League, they should look at (revisit?) the idea of gaining more control of their affiliate and moving it closer to home. It doesn't have to be moving it to Fairfax and playing at the Patriot Center, even moving it some place like Baltimore, Richmond or Norfolk would make some sense.

Posted by: ts35 | August 2, 2010 1:14 PM | Report abuse

so it's gonna come down to Martin or Singleton.

Posted by: SDMDTSU | August 2, 2010 9:01 AM | Report abuse

Righto. I saw MARTIAN........oops,I mean MARTIN in the summer games. SINGLETON hands down.

Posted by: glawrence007 | August 2, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse

Richmond or Norfolk would make some sense.

Posted by: ts35 | August 2, 2010 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Only fair since they took training camp away from RICHMOND. Cuts operating costs as well as improving efficiency of operations.

Posted by: glawrence007 | August 2, 2010 1:41 PM | Report abuse

read somewhere that Hudson got an invitation to Training Camp. I do like his competetive nature.

I would have thought that bringing back Singleton was a no brainer. He was the only physical presence on this team last season, and knew how to give a "hard foul".

He was a great locker room guy.

Posted by: bozomoeman | August 2, 2010 9:54 AM | Report abuse

I'm down with that. SINGLETON and HUDSON and lets get it on.

Posted by: glawrence007 | August 2, 2010 1:43 PM | Report abuse

Richmond or Norfolk would make some sense.

Posted by: ts35 | August 2, 2010 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Only fair since they took training camp away from RICHMOND. Cuts operating costs as well as improving efficiency of operations.

Posted by: glawrence007

Or if we still want to share with Memphis, some place like Knoxville or Roanoke makes more sense for both teams than the Dakotas do.

Norfolk probably makes sense for another reason in that the whole Tidewater area is definitely a bed of athletic talent.

Posted by: ts35 | August 2, 2010 1:49 PM | Report abuse

But a player with that sort of physical talent is a player I'd be willing to wait for.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 2, 2010 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Me too. Meanwhile, we stockpile lottery picks, and in 2013-14, we lock and load.

The win now at all costs theme has run its course. There's a new sheriff in town, and his name is accountability, something distinctly lacking with the previous ownership. Something I railed against from the cheap seats ever since ARENAS convinced the owner to cave regarding JAMISON's contract. I said then, and continually to this spring that would come to no good end. You just can't let the inmates run the asylum.

Don't be surprised to see multiple front-office, and coaching changes down the road in a couple too. If these boys can't cut it, TED will get someone who can.

Posted by: glawrence007 | August 2, 2010 1:56 PM | Report abuse

Howard coming back in December or January gives the team more time to evaluate Thornton and Young as potential starters or as trade bait since they will both be FA's at the end of the year. Yi was brought in to play the 4 and will get PT until Blatche is back and can paly 30+ minutes. No downside to have a veteran with some leadership presence in the locker room.

Posted by: wizfan89 | August 2, 2010 2:56 PM | Report abuse

I hope the Wiz can bring back Singleton. This guy is the real deal. I would much prefer him over Fab.

Posted by: wiz_fan | August 2, 2010 3:14 PM | Report abuse

Norfolk probably makes sense for another reason in that the whole Tidewater area is definitely a bed of athletic talent.

Posted by: ts35

Bring em on down.

Posted by: VBFan | August 2, 2010 3:30 PM | Report abuse

"The fairy tale about Gil sulking and being surly that has been repeated on this site is pretty much baseless to this point."


What??? Fairy tale??? He refused to shoot for a half during one game bc of his "surliness". There have been a half dozen other such instances of his surliness, quirkiness, or sulking or whatever you want to call it. It's definitely doesn't fit into the fairy tale category though.

Posted by: rphilli721 | August 2, 2010 4:24 PM | Report abuse

I'm not for Seraphin going to the D-league.

You send players to play in the D-league because they don't deserve minutes in the NBA or you have someone else playing in front of them that is going to take the majority of the minutes.

Even with Thabeet...Memphis was in a possible playoff run and they had Gasol to eat the minutes. Thabeet could've been buried on the bench because they were looking to win.

The Wizards are not. They can afford to let him develop here. Honestly...with people saying JaVale is gonna be dominant and he can be a 20/10 guy...Seraphin does things that JaVale can't even do. Especially the basics.

He needs to be here.

Posted by: SDMDTSU | August 2, 2010 5:20 PM | Report abuse

Besides, he's 20. Been playing for 5 years. The mental stuff (as long as he has the capacity) can come with reps. I see enough good in the assesment to think he can be a good physical presence for us.

Posted by: SDMDTSU | August 2, 2010 5:24 PM | Report abuse

He needs to be here.

Posted by: SDMDTSU

I think it depends on how quickly he picks stuff up. If he seems like a reasonably quick learner, they should keep him up with the big club. If he's a little slower, some time in the D would probably be a good thing.

Posted by: ts35 | August 2, 2010 5:26 PM | Report abuse

I think it depends on how quickly he picks stuff up. If he seems like a reasonably quick learner, they should keep him up with the big club. If he's a little slower, some time in the D would probably be a good thing.

Posted by: ts35 | August 2, 2010 5:26 PM | Report abuse

Thing is...there is no reason NOT to have him here. Who is supposed to play. McGee is about as clueless as well. For all of that...they might as well have left him in France. I'm not sure of the level of competition but from what I read...the French league he came from was very competitive.

Posted by: SDMDTSU | August 2, 2010 5:32 PM | Report abuse

Thing is...there is no reason NOT to have him here. Who is supposed to play. McGee is about as clueless as well. For all of that...they might as well have left him in France. I'm not sure of the level of competition but from what I read...the French league he came from was very competitive.

Posted by: SDMDTSU

Yeah, but once the season starts, practice time diminishes. So if he's not getting it coming out of training camp, there's nothing wrong with having him spending some time in the D working on some of those things, then bringing him up later once he has a better understanding.

They could have left him overseas, but then they are leaving him at the mercy of coaches who they have no say over. Plus, as a 20 year old, Seraphin is not guaranteed to get extended minutes in France. Some of their rotations are based on age / experience as much as or more than ability.

But aside from that, I agree, he's certainly not much more raw than McGee was his rookie year. That doesn't mean they should play him though. They have a very young team, and they need to get them on the same page wrt schemes, etc, so you can only play so many guys at a time who don't know where to be.

Posted by: ts35 | August 2, 2010 5:42 PM | Report abuse

Apologies if someone already posted this, but an interesting breakdown of Serpahin (including more video), from nbaplaybook.com vis Bullets Forever.

http://nbaplaybook.com/2010/08/02/overseas-scouting-report-kevin-seraphin/

Posted by: ts35 | August 2, 2010 11:54 AM | Report abuse

No offence ts35 but these kind of video breakdowns are pure sophistry. It's like watching a highlight reel of any player, e.g., Hilton Armstrong. In this case the critiques are more even handed, but are they correct? We would have to see the game tapes to determine that for ourselves. A big man getting blown by a little point guard does not indicate to me that he is a poor team defensive player. I would have to see the whole tape of the game to even begin to make that determination. That is why this type of an analysis is sophistry in my opinion.

Besides, until the man is on the NBA floor we have no idea what he can do. I have seen the footage from the Nike Hoop Summit and he looked very promising playing against Favor's, Wall, and company. If his knee is recovered he has potential to play this year.

Posted by: MeviousMan | August 2, 2010 6:34 PM | Report abuse

soph·ist·ry   [sof-uh-stree] Show IPA
–noun, plural -ries.

a subtle, tricky, superficially plausible, but generally fallacious method of reasoning.

Posted by: VBFan | August 2, 2010 7:15 PM | Report abuse

Booker already seems to be a fan favorite, but I think Booker also might spend some substantial time in the D-League, especially if they resign Singleton. After all, at pf Booker is going to be playing behind Blatche and Ji, and may find it hard to get minutes. I'd rather have him getting coached up and playing time as a starter than have him sitting on the bench watching Blatche.

Posted by: PostSubscriber | August 2, 2010 7:25 PM | Report abuse

"Honestly...with people saying JaVale is gonna be dominant and he can be a 20/10 guy"

What? Who said that? Stand up and let us get a look at you!

Posted by: Samson151 | August 2, 2010 8:16 PM | Report abuse

"No offence ts35 but these kind of video breakdowns are pure sophistry. posted by MeviousMan"

Think you're misusing term sophistry. The author isn't using argument or rhetoric to deceive. He's simply stating his opinion and providing evidence to support it. The clips may distort some aspects of the player's skill, but that's the nature of editing. You can do the same thing -- that is, state your opinion and support it with different clips, showing why you believe the way you do.

I think you just disagreed with the evaluation.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 2, 2010 8:26 PM | Report abuse

"Yeah, but once the season starts, practice time diminishes.posted by ts35"

That's the dilemma. Too many games and not enough time between them. I think Stern's intent is to have the D-League reach a point where it's more than it is currently -- a real farm system for the NBA. But right now I don't think it's that effective at developing players, either.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 2, 2010 9:08 PM | Report abuse

Where the heck is Mike at???

Yi's hurt, what a surprise.

He's a whimp.

- Ray

Posted by: rmcazz | August 2, 2010 10:09 PM | Report abuse

I think you just disagreed with the evaluation.

Posted by: Samson151

I think he really just wanted to use the word sophistry.

Posted by: ts35 | August 2, 2010 11:12 PM | Report abuse

No offence ts35 but these kind of video breakdowns are pure sophistry.
Posted by: MeviousMan

No offense taken. I saw an article I thought was interesting and posted it here for those who don't make their way over to Bullets Forever. Make of it what you will.

Posted by: ts35 | August 2, 2010 11:15 PM | Report abuse

"But aside from that, I agree, he's certainly not much more raw than McGee was his rookie year. That doesn't mean they should play him though. They have a very young team, and they need to get them on the same page wrt schemes, etc, so you can only play so many guys at a time who don't know where to be."

Posted by: ts35 | August 2, 2010 5:42 PM

Depends on the team's goals. Going forward, part of the Wizards' mandate has to be figuring out which of these guys are keepers. They need to be able to work with him and see them perform in order to do that. And I think some head-to-head competition in practice, with guys gunning for their minutes, could possibly also help toughen up/focus McGee and Blatche.

Posted by: kalo_rama | August 2, 2010 11:55 PM | Report abuse

Depends on the team's goals. Going forward, part of the Wizards' mandate has to be figuring out which of these guys are keepers. They need to be able to work with him and see them perform in order to do that. And I think some head-to-head competition in practice, with guys gunning for their minutes, could possibly also help toughen up/focus McGee and Blatche.

Posted by: kalo_rama

It's unlikely they decide he's not a keeper just based on this year. There's no particular rush, especially given his relative inexperience. I'm sure the generic goals for the season are two-fold (at least). One, see what they have in the pups, and two, try to establish their offensive and defensive systems.

If it looks like Seraphin (or any of the rooks) is clueless about the sets and rotations early on, it might make more sense to send him to the D-league where he could learn and still play. And at the same time, not make it harder for Flip to install and run his systems.

Posted by: ts35 | August 3, 2010 1:14 AM | Report abuse

Of course he's clueless about the sets and rotations. He hasn't had an opportunity to learn them yet. That's what training camp is for. (Not sure what McGee and Young's excuses are.) Besides, if it's just an issue of not knowing Flip's system, the D-league isn't going to help because they won't be running Flip's system. Now, if it's an issue of him not grasping the fundamentals of the game from an NBA perspective, that may be a different issue, but "we" won't know that until he actually gets into camp. There's nothing right now to suggest he'd be better off in the D-League because there's not enough known to be able to meaningfully gauge his level of understanding or the steep ness of his learning curve.

Posted by: kalo_rama | August 3, 2010 1:39 AM | Report abuse

very, very active on the blog today even though the season is a few months away...shows how excited we fans are about the upcoming season-new owner, no.1 pick, younger scrappier team and overall exciement about the events that have ocurred league wide set things up for a nba season to look forward to. can't wait but we have football EVERY weekend from now to Feb. GO SKINS and GO WIZ!!! no matter how it turns out for the wiz (and I think it will be more positives than negs.) i'll be watching and attending as many games as possible...as for all the E.G. haters don't worry Ted will keep one eye on him (that's why we are much younger than we have been since E.G. has arrived) don't sleep on the Wiz...Wall will have a major impact! He will infuse a youthful exuberance and his tenacity will be infectipous-how many wins that will bring time will tell. One thing for sure this team will be exciting to watch and they will be competitive when they are out there!!!

Posted by: ronniecope106 | August 3, 2010 2:12 AM | Report abuse

McGee and Young's excuse would be a revolving door of coaches. EJ's final full season, he cut the rotation and went with vets only, next year under EJ/Tapscott was a coaching disaster. Last year, whole new system, that apparently the team leaders(Jamison & Butler) resisted.

That would be the excuse, I'm not saying they should use it, rather they should just buckle down in year two under Suanders. Ernie seemed to make it clear that the team's going forward under Suanders, so these guys need to realize it's sink or swim with Flip now.

Young has one of the more fragile psyches that I've seen for a guy that's made it all the way to the NBA. You can just see it in the guy, if his shot falls everything clicks, he misses a couple and his game goes to peices. He's going to be in a tight sqeeze for minutes now, and he's going to have to fight for everything he gets. I'm beginning to question if he's got the self confidence to do it.

McGee played wing in HS when he was 6'6" tall. In someways that maybe worse then not playing at all, he's a 7'+ guy with the instincts of a wing. I do see progress in him, but he's still got a ways to go to learn basic post footwork.

Seraphin is ahead of McGee in some ways, from the variety of clips I've seen, his footwork isn't really too bad. Even when he over commits, or doesn't quite make to where he's supposed to be, he's useally got his feet under him and he's seldom appears to be off balance.

Center of gravity is hugely important for young bigs to learn. Seraphin does seem to be well balanced most of the time.

What you can also see is a huge amount of talent, as a Terps fan I'd rather see him enrolled at Maryland then trying to learn in the NBA on the fly. But it is, what it is, I'd rather see him spend some D League time then get buried as a 13-15 guy wearing a suit.

I'd agree with the notion that the Wiz need to take more interest in D League development. I would think that Leonsis would want to steer some money and resources in that direction since he's talking about drafting and developing his own stars.

If any of these guys get sent down, as a fan you would hope that the Wiz would have made sure there's coaching there to develop them...
GM

Posted by: flohrtv | August 3, 2010 8:31 AM | Report abuse

Has a team ever sent 2 1st round picks to the DLeague? I feel like there isnt that much development going on there and who knows what kind of coaching a guy will get.

Remember Mohamed Sene? French speaking, 7ft freak athlete from a Belgian league who had a great Nike Hoops Summit and was drafted 10th by Sonics. 2yrs strong stints in DLeague, but couldnt get off the bench in the nba, and is now the leading rebounder in seraphan's FrenchProA league. Cautionary tale about hoping to develop raw players in Dleague?

My impression of the clips is that Seraphan is severely limited and wont be able to do much at all right now. However I'd like to think he may be better off getting coached up by the big team while banging Mcgee/AB/Yi/Booker in practice.

Posted by: divi3 | August 3, 2010 8:58 AM | Report abuse

"[Seraphin's] useally got his feet under him and he's seldom appears to be off balance."

The exception is when he goes to his left with the ball. Couple of those clips seemed to show a tendency to lunge.

"...as a Terps fan I'd rather see him enrolled at Maryland then trying to learn in the NBA on the fly."

LOL so would Gary Williams.

"If any of these guys get sent down, as a fan you would hope that the Wiz would have made sure there's coaching there to develop them..."

You notice they're not leaving him in Europe the way they did Oly and Veremeenko. I imagine they weren't too pleased with the results. But Seraphin, once he's healthy, could see a fair number of minutes for the Wiz in relief of McGee. Armstrong is powerfully built but he's more of a defender than a rebounder. Kevin (apparently pronounced Keh-VEEN)is really the only power inside player on the roster.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 3, 2010 9:08 AM | Report abuse

"Remember Mohamed Sene? French speaking, 7ft freak athlete from a Belgian league who had a great Nike Hoops Summit and was drafted 10th by Sonics. 2yrs strong stints in DLeague, but couldnt get off the bench in the nba, and is now the leading rebounder in seraphan's FrenchProA league. Cautionary tale about hoping to develop raw players in Dleague?"

To be fair, we should point out some of the differences. First, Saer-Sene is the lanky shotblocker type: a legit 7' in his sneakers, plays at around 230lbs, with a vast 7'8.5" wingspan that I believe is still a Combine record. A decent rebounder, but you would never call him a power inside player. Although he went tenth, which was way too high, he was actually the 5th big man drafted in that odd year(one slot after Patrick O'Bryant, two picks before Armstrong, five picks before Oly Pecherov). He had a good stint in the D-League, starting 6 of 28 games and earning Honorable Mention All-D. But he could never get off the bench in Seattle and was cut after one game by the Knicks. He went back to France.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 3, 2010 9:41 AM | Report abuse

Sorry, Oly went 17th, five picks after Armstrong.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 3, 2010 9:47 AM | Report abuse

one of the combine quotes re: Saer Sene

"He might be the longest person on Earth"

Posted by: divi3 | August 3, 2010 10:12 AM | Report abuse

Where the heck is Mike at???


DAMMED good question. Probably trying to get his ugly mug on t.v. somewhere. Hey MIKIE, give this job to somebody who cares at the WAPO will ya'. We want leadership here, not somebody who wants to be elsewhere.

Posted by: glawrence007 | August 3, 2010 10:23 AM | Report abuse

There's nothing right now to suggest he'd be better off in the D-League because there's not enough known to be able to meaningfully gauge his level of understanding or the steep ness of his learning curve.

Posted by: kalo_rama

Which is good, because I wasn't suggesting he go to the D-League right now. If you go back to my original post on this issue, I made it pretty clear that I was talking about if he was still clueless after training camp.

And I'm glad you know what system the Dakota Wizards are running, because I haven't been able to find anything specific on it.

Posted by: ts35 | August 3, 2010 10:33 AM | Report abuse


My impression of the clips is that Seraphan is severely limited and wont be able to do much at all right now. However I'd like to think he may be better off getting coached up by the big team while banging Mcgee/AB/Yi/Booker in practice.

Posted by: divi3 | August 3, 2010 8:58 AM

Seraphin actually looks more offensively polished than JaVale, imo. Certainly more under control and heading toward the basket at all times. He might surprise.

Posted by: ArmChairQB | August 3, 2010 11:02 AM | Report abuse

Cautionary tale about hoping to develop raw players in Dleague?
Posted by: divi3

Or just a cautionary tale about Mouhamed Sene. Or just another reminder that draft position doesn't guarantee anything.

All of that being said, to use your favorite excuse with Blatche and McGee, Sene is only 24. Don't be surprised to see some team like the Spurs bring him back in a few years as a productive back-up C, if Sene is interested in coming back and working towards it.

Has a team ever sent 2 1st round picks to the DLeague? I feel like there isnt that much development going on there and who knows what kind of coaching a guy will get.

Not sure, but I really doubt Booker is going to the D-League. He's a 4-year college player, and they're not asking him to change positions or the way he plays.

But aside from that, I think (and I think most of us do) that if they are going to rely more on the D-League for helping to develop their young players, they need to make sure they invest resources in it.

Posted by: ts35 | August 3, 2010 11:11 AM | Report abuse

"Sene is only 24. Don't be surprised to see some team like the Spurs bring him back in a few years as a productive back-up C"

Heck, he's long, and a former lottery pick who hasn't fulfilled his potential.....don't be surprised if Ernie brings him back :)

Posted by: ts35 | August 3, 2010 11:37 AM | Report abuse

I think it's unlikely any of these guys ends up in the D-League, really. There's room for them on the roster and it's not like they'll be battling entrenched vets for minutes. The benefits of developing familiarity (both with Flip's playbook and each other) likely outweighs the benefits of them getting confidence-padding regular minutes against inferior competition under a different coach and system.

Booker and N'Daiye are both 4-year Big East players and the limited intel we have on Seraphim suggests some decent fundamentals. Now none of that means they'll make it in the NBA or that it won't take a while for them to ripen, but it does suggest that they'll likely have enough fundamental understanding to not need remedial instruction.

Posted by: kalo_rama | August 3, 2010 11:56 AM | Report abuse

I don't know Kal. I would say there's not enough known to be able to meaningfully gauge his level of understanding or the steep ness of his learning curve.

Oh wait, I don't have to say that, someone already did ;-)

Obviously they'll have to wait and see what they have with the kid in training camp. They at least have already had a preview of Booker and Ndiaye through Summer League. Ndiaye I think could go either way. I don't think they need to send him to the D-League, but they could just based on the numbers game and allowing him to at least play, which he might not do with the main team. On the other hand, if they are going to keep Seraphin up with the main team -- I kind of think they will too, I just don't think it's the end of the world if they don't -- it's not a bad idea to have another player around who speaks French.

Posted by: ts35 | August 3, 2010 12:21 PM | Report abuse

N'Diaye is headed to the D-League for sure (imho), and that's assuming he gets signed. Seraphin and Booker will be on the big club, getting schooled by AB everyday at practice ;)

which in all seriousness will do them more good than defending DLeague players

Posted by: divi3 | August 3, 2010 1:22 PM | Report abuse

Samson151, Superman can't go to his left with the ball either.

Seraphin's closing speed and his ability to get up really fast impressed me. If he can get out and run with Wall he's going to get plenty of chances from lobs, put backs, and layups. If he's got one go to move, that's a start, not many of these young bigs are coming into the league with even one.

I'd agree, I don't think any of these guys HAVE to go to D League. I just wonder about a guy like N'Diaye, if he gets caught in that 13-15 roster slot,wear a nice suit tonight gig, would he be better to be logging PT in the D League instead?

I think Ernie still might be considering leaving him unsigned and use the slot for a more veteran big. But Kal could be right, in the end it may be he gets carried to help ease Seraphin's transition.

I'm surprised that Sene hasn't been brought into Golden State and taught a two handed set shot. Nellie got some production out Bol that way. But he had 4 guys that could almost go 4 on 5 on offense playing with him.
GM

Posted by: flohrtv | August 3, 2010 3:05 PM | Report abuse

...I mean seriously...when is the last time you saw JaVale take two dribbles and do a jump hook? =\

Posted by: SDMDTSU | August 3, 2010 3:21 PM | Report abuse

Even if a player's not in the regular rotation, I still think getting practice reps against NBA quality players and developing a familiarity with his teammates and the system is more beneficial in the long run that extended minutes against the JV squad.

Posted by: kalo_rama | August 3, 2010 3:28 PM | Report abuse

Somebody was proposing the Wiz sign Shaq recently:

"ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) -- Shaquille O'Neal believes he will be playing in the NBA next season but says he would retire if a contending team does not make him an offer.

"O'Neal said Tuesday that he would not play internationally and would only return to the NBA on a contending team. He said if the time has come for him to retire, he will do so "very graciously" and "have a big party."

Shaq is in Orlando with his new BFF Justin Bieber recording a new episode of his reality show, 'Shaq Versus'.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 3, 2010 3:50 PM | Report abuse

Wiz To Open New Arena In Orlando


just a rumor as of now since out comes a different story every day. One day they say Miami will open in Orlando, then they say Miami will open in Cleveland, now they say Miami will open in Boston, Chicago in Utah, and so on. You just dont know what is true but these are the latest one's from Yahoos Marc Spears:

LeBron-Heat open @ BOS Oct 26, sources tell Y! Wiz Wall debuts Oct 27 @ ORL. Rumor is Lakers open versus Rockets in Yao's possible return. Anyways, the NBA unveils the marquee games tonight so we will know for sure. We should have atleast 1 since we have the #1 pick and will be entertaining to watch if nothing else

Posted by: dlts2041 | August 3, 2010 4:37 PM | Report abuse

Even if a player's not in the regular rotation, I still think getting practice reps against NBA quality players and developing a familiarity with his teammates and the system is more beneficial in the long run that extended minutes against the JV squad.

Posted by: kalo_rama

For where I think Seraphin is, I don't disagree. But it does come down to where a player is at and how many practice reps they might actually get. And what taking the time to get that player up to speed does to the rest of the team.

Flip pretty much has 4 and a half players who have played his system -- AB, McGee, Young, Thornton, with Arenas being the half. Of those guys, it's reasonable to expect that Young and McGee at least still have things they need to learn. On top of that, they're trying to integrate 3, eventually 4 veterans in Hinrich, Armstrong, Yi and Howard. Then beyond that, trying to work in their most important player Wall, who's a rookie. How much time do they have available to spend now on Seraphin if his curve is steeper than they (we) thought? And if they do take the time, does it slow down the curve of everyone else?

They are in no immediate hurry with Seraphin, so if he's behind the curve, it might make sense to leave him in over his head and let him pick it up as he can and be able to get spot minutes whenever he can. Or, depending on the situation in Bismarck, it might make sense for him to go there for the first month or two of the season to work on some things, then bring him up.

I have no idea of whether this is the case with the Wizards, but ideally their D-League affiliate runs at least some of the basic sets as the parent club. Obviously that's how San Antonio runs their affiliate, but the Wizards share an affiliate with Memphis. Regardless, there has to be some value for some players to having more playing time, but also more practice time and more reps to drill the fundamentals, even if it's with the JV.

Again, it's all moot until we see where everyone is come training camp.

Posted by: ts35 | August 3, 2010 5:08 PM | Report abuse

"Regardless, there has to be some value for some players to having more playing time . . . ."

Without addressing whether there actually is more value to it, I don't see anything that says there absolutely has to be more value to it, at least not under the circumstances being discussed. Maybe there is, maybe there isn't (and I believe we've had that discussion already). But given the resistance of many/most NBA coaches to assign players under contract to the D-League, there's certainly reason to think that they don't believe it's as inevitably useful as you seem to.

Posted by: kalo_rama | August 3, 2010 5:19 PM | Report abuse

"I have no idea of whether this is the case.."

We should probably make this the required opening for all posts...

Posted by: Samson151 | August 3, 2010 5:48 PM | Report abuse

Without addressing whether there actually is more value to it, I don't see anything that says there absolutely has to be more value to it, at least not under the circumstances being discussed.
Posted by: kalo_rama

Pretty sure I didn't say there absolutely has to be more value to it. I said there has to be some value to it. Whether that time in D would be more valuable than riding the bench with the big team is unknowable to us because there are too many factors we basically don't know anything about.

But given the resistance of many/most NBA coaches to assign players under contract to the D-League, there's certainly reason to think that they don't believe it's as inevitably useful as you seem to.

Isn't that kind of like me saying because teams do assign players to the D-league, there's certainly reason to think that they don't believe it's as inevitably useless as you seem to? As in, using a statement I never made to make your case?

Part of the reason teams are reluctant to send players under contract to the D is because they still occupy roster / cap space on the parent club, which reduces roster and cap flexibility. Even with the rookie scale, from an economics standpoint, it's tough to justify sending a player guaranteed $2-3M to the D.

All I'm saying is that there is sometimes a conflict between preparing / practicing for the current season you're in and developing for the future. It's entirely possible Seraphin is not prepared to contribute much this season. If that's the case, given the number of other young players they also need to work with, it's conceivable that Seraphin would be better served getting more practice time and play time in the D.

It's also conceivable that while sending players to the Dakota Wizards may not have value right now, it could have value if the Wizards used them better.

Posted by: ts35 | August 3, 2010 6:12 PM | Report abuse

"Pretty sure I didn't say there absolutely has to be more value to it. I said there has to be some value to it. Whether that time in D would be more valuable than riding the bench with the big team is unknowable to us because there are too many factors we basically don't know anything about."

Yes, but since the entire crux of the discussion is the relative merit of sending an under contract player to the D-Leage to get floor time vs. keeping him close to home even though he's not in the rotation, any argument in favor of the D-League (which is the argument you're making) inherently assumes that the D-League provides more benefit. If that weren't the case, then you'd be arguing that teams take the option that would provide less benefit. And that wouldn't make much sense, would it?

And everything that happens away from the actual playing floor in pro basketball is unknowable to fans, but that's never stopped any of them from arguing about it, now has it? (Nice try though.)

"Isn't that kind of like me saying because teams do assign players to the D-league, there's certainly reason to think that they don't believe it's as inevitably useless as you seem to? As in, using a statement I never made to make your case?"

No because, as you stated, I've never said that the D-League was inevitably useless. You, however, most definitely and undeniably, did say this, in support of your argument in favor of the D-League:

"Regardless, there has to be some value for some players to having more playing time . . . ."
Posted by: kalo_rama | August 3, 2010 5:19 PM

I look forward to your attempts at parsing out a qualitative difference between saying something "has to have value" and saying that is "inevitably useful." That should be quite entertaining.

"Part of the reason teams are reluctant to send players under contract to the D is because they still occupy roster / cap space on the parent club, which reduces roster and cap flexibility. Even with the rookie scale, from an economics standpoint, it's tough to justify sending a player guaranteed $2-3M to the D."

Sure that's part of the reason. But we both know it's not the whole reason. I've seen quotes from several coaches and team execs about why they don't make more use of the D-Leauge for under-contract players. I can't recall cost ever being the first thing they cite.

"All I'm saying is that there is sometimes a conflict between preparing / practicing for the current season you're in and developing for the future. It's entirely possible Seraphin is not prepared to contribute much this season. If that's the case, given the number of other young players they also need to work with, it's conceivable that Seraphin would be better served getting more practice time and play time in the D."

Thanks for the recap, but I've never been the least bit unclear on what you're saying, so saying it again doesn't really sway me. I simply disagree.

Posted by: kalo_rama | August 3, 2010 7:06 PM | Report abuse

"All I'm saying is that there is sometimes a conflict between preparing / practicing for the current season you're in and developing for the future. It's entirely possible Seraphin is not prepared to contribute much this season. If that's the case, given the number of other young players they also need to work with, it's conceivable that Seraphin would be better served getting more practice time and play time in the D."

Aaaand . . . so much for you not saying the "D league provides more value" huh?

Posted by: kalo_rama | August 3, 2010 7:08 PM | Report abuse

Mea culpa. That should read:

You, however, most definitely and undeniably, did say this, in support of your argument in favor of the D-League:


"Regardless, there has to be some value for some players to having more playing time . . . ."
Posted by: ts35 | August 3, 2010 5:08 PM

Posted by: kalo_rama | August 3, 2010 7:13 PM | Report abuse

Sigh. You can patronize and miscast my argument all you like. All I said was that it's possible there are circumstances that would make it more valuable for Seraphin to spend some time in the D league, especially with the number of other young players on the roster, all of whom need practice reps.

If you want to disagree or argue against it, that's fine. But misconstruing what I'm saying into absolute statements instead of expressing a possibility is not arguing.

For example, taking the statement "it's conceivable that Seraphin would be better served getting more practice time and play time in the D." and then just bolding "Seraphin would be better served getting more practice time and play time in the D." is not an argument, it's changing the nature of what I'm saying.

I can do the same...
No because, as you stated, I've never said that the D-League was inevitably useless. You, however, most definitely and undeniably, did say this, in support of your argument in favor of the D-League:

"Regardless, there has to be some value for some players to having more playing time . . . ."

So if you are arguing against this, does that mean you are saying there is no value in D-League playing time and practice time? If that's the case, isn't that the same as saying it's inevitably useless?

I look forward to your attempts at parsing out a qualitative difference between saying something "has to have value" and saying that is "inevitably useful." That should be quite entertaining.

Don't hold your breath. I don't bother 'parsing' the way you do, which is to strip statements of their contextual meaning.

And everything that happens away from the actual playing floor in pro basketball is unknowable to fans, but that's never stopped any of them from arguing about it, now has it? (Nice try though.)

Yes, except in this case we're arguing relative value of things we have no ability to assess the relative value of. Your argument is that practice reps for Seraphin with the pro team are more valuable than D-League reps. What if Serpahin gets zero reps in the pro team practices? Are they still more valuable? It's unlikely he'll get zero reps, but what's the over / under on reps that make it more valuable? 5 per practice? 10? Is sitting on the bench watching the pro games with a coach in his ear more valuable than playing against the Austin Toros? Quite possibly. But certainly not definitively.

Part of your value argument is also predicated on the Dakota Wizards not playing the same offense and defense as the pro team. Do you know that to be true or is it an assumption? If the Dakota Wizards do play the same offense and defense as the pro Wizards, would that increase the value of D-League practices?

So if you'd like to argue the merits, fine, but spare me your half-truth parsing.

Posted by: ts35 | August 3, 2010 9:28 PM | Report abuse

Here's an article about Charles Barkley comments about the D-League, and a rebuttal to some of Barkley's points:
http://nba.fanhouse.com/2010/05/16/nba-d-league-charles-barkley-should-get-his-facts-straight/

When Thabeet was assigned to the D-League, there was a flurry of bad press for him and the team to the effect that "this proves that he is a bust." To me that gives some insight on some reasons why a team wouldn't want to assign a player to the D League. It could open a can of worms publicity-wise, and leave the player, his family, his agent, his teammates, and the fans all disgruntled. Plus there is always a risk of serious injury playing more minutes in the D-League. Seems to me that any team that is going to utilize the D League for player development would want to take total control of the D-League affiliate's basketball operations, to make sure the benefits outweighed the risks.

Posted by: PostSubscriber | August 3, 2010 11:14 PM | Report abuse

Right off the bat we all know Wall won't ever venture down to the D-League in his career. And imho, I don't think Booker will see a minute of playing time in the D-League barring an injury that really sets him back. Which isn't out of the question when talking about our team. But I do think the best idea regarding the big man out of Rutgers is to sign N'Diaye, slot him somehwere towards the end of the roster, and put him in the D-League for a little while. He should, unless he really surpasses expectations, be slotted as the 3rd true center in the rotation behind McGee and Armstrong. With Blatche, Seraphin and maybe another big seeing very seldom minutes at center as well, I doubt N'Diaye will be able to do much this year. However, injuries are inevitable and he is an interesting option to throw in for some minutes here and there if he can play physically in the paint, hit the glass hard and alter some shots. Stash him in the D-League for a month or two if he doesn't strike the staff as a necessity in the rotation during camp.

I don't think we should send Seraphin down, however. I'm not 100% positive but I am pretty sure that Serge Ibaka didn't go down to OKC's DL affiliate..and look how he was performing by years end, against the likes of Pau Gasol, Lamar Odom and Andrew Bynum. Their playing styles aren't similar but both Seraphin and Ibaka are similarly athletic, young, foreign big men with potential. Ibaka rode the pine for a while to start the year off and eventually solidied his place in the rotation as a role player (defender, shot blocker, rebounder, etc) - exactly what I'm optimistically thinking Seraphin will do this year.

The only rookie of ours who I'd like to see get some minutes with the Dakota 'Zards would be N'Diaye

Posted by: TDAV | August 3, 2010 11:59 PM | Report abuse

I tells you what, looking through the DLeague stats there are definitely some Cs out there who could probably give Seraphin everything he could handle at this point in his development. Guy like Marcus Campbell is 7ft 280 pounds and avgs 11/7. Or Brian Butch at 6'11" 240 and 17/12. Greg Stietsma is 6'11" 260 and 15/11. These are all grown ass men older than Kevin and also bigger. From what I've seen of him in clips, getting past dudes like that wouldn't be a bad initial proving ground if management wants to take it slow.

Of course, I think his future is at C not PF and the litmus test will be proving effectiveness against players he cant overpower.

Posted by: divi3 | August 4, 2010 12:14 AM | Report abuse

"The boy can score and can also get truly HOT. I think he'll be a better player this year now that all that "Big Three" crap is (hopefully) over with. I'd much rather rely on a "Steady Five" cuz (i believe) "star time" is rarely a reliable commodity when you really need it.
Posted by: dcjazzman"

"Stop living in the past. Only time will tell what kind of player Gilby is, moving forward. Posted by: DC_MAN88"

i said "i THINK" he'll be a better player. don't be stepping on my dream, brutha! at worst, barring injury, he'll be 3rd high scorer (but i think he'll be 1st or 2nd). and since this IS my dream, given the competition outside our division, i think the team could be last in the conference and still, possibly, be in the playoffs.

Posted by: dcjazzman | August 4, 2010 3:13 AM | Report abuse

"I'm not 100% positive but I am pretty sure that Serge Ibaka didn't go down to OKC's DL affiliate."

No, they left him in Europe for a year instead. Ibaka is probably a good role model for the team that drafted Seraphin. He came into the league with not much more skillwise than Kevin seems to have.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 4, 2010 9:41 AM | Report abuse

Where is our friend, Michael Lee? Have not heard much recently (granted not much going on with the Wiz), but I like the NBA updates as well. Thoughts on our opener? Shaq to the Celts, that's quite a story? Read something about a couple of D-leaguers who are big and could be worth a look in training camp? Anything else..

Thanks, and if you're vacationing, hope you're having a great time, having an adult beverage or two and thinking of all the creative posts and stories that you are going to hit us with upon your return.

Ron

Posted by: faninAlex | August 4, 2010 10:04 AM | Report abuse

You would think that the NBA would have scheduled John Wall's opener to be played in DC. After all we've only had one home opener in the last friggin ten years!
Ridiculous.

2010 at Orlando
2009 at Dallas
2008 vs. NJ Nets
2007 at Indiana
2006 at Cleveland
2005 at Toronto
2004 at Memphis
2003 at Chicago
2002 at Toronto
2001 at NY Knicks
2000 at Orlando

Posted by: bozomoeman | August 4, 2010 11:23 AM | Report abuse

Jameer Nelson seems like the perfect pg for Wall to face in his debut. Nelson has a well deserved rep as a solid-to-very-good player in the league...but given his size, there's a chance Wall may do a number on him and be all over Sportscenter. Gotta love the opportunity there, though yeah would be much better at VC

Posted by: divi3 | August 4, 2010 11:34 AM | Report abuse

"No, they left him in Europe for a year instead. Ibaka is probably a good role model for the team that drafted Seraphin. He came into the league with not much more skillwise than Kevin seems to have."

I knew they let him play in Europe for a year, but I think that was because he was drafted as an 19 year old, not as a 20 year old like Seraphin. If Ibaka was 20 at the time of the '09 draft when he was picked up, and in a similar stage of development as Seraphin (hypothetically speaking) is now, would they have still stashed him in Europe for a year? I mean it's hard to judge exactly where Seraphin is now because we have yet to see him play in a game, but Ibaka started off the season slowly (around 3ppg/3rpg in 10 mins) for the first few months of his career.. which I can certainly see Seraphin getting at the least.

Posted by: TDAV | August 4, 2010 11:45 AM | Report abuse

Jameer Nelson seems like the perfect pg for Wall to face in his debut. Nelson has a well deserved rep as a solid-to-very-good player in the league...but given his size, there's a chance Wall may do a number on him and be all over Sportscenter. Gotta love the opportunity there, though yeah would be much better at VC

Posted by: divi3

Depending on who's starting next to Nelson in the Magic backcourt, they may have the 2-guard take Wall and have Nelson take Gil. Tough call. Either one is a tough matchup for Nelson.

Posted by: ts35 | August 4, 2010 11:48 AM | Report abuse

Isn't the three inactives 13-15 on the roster just really symbolic?

If a team wanted too those three could change from game to game.

That being the case, I am inclined not to assign a player to the D-League. I kinda agree as stated that being on the 15 with the team and the environment may have just as much value than getting PT in the D-League.

IMO there should be an extenuating circumstance to assign a player that you have drafted, signed, or traded for to the D-League.

I mean, this team has eight coaches and these coaches should be earning their keep at this level with all 15 players and not having 1 or 2 in the D-League.

The D-League should help fill vacant roster spots and not to create them.

For me, it is just that simple.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | August 4, 2010 11:48 AM | Report abuse

Where is our friend, Michael Lee? Have not heard much recently (granted not much going on with the Wiz), but I like the NBA updates as well. Thoughts on our opener? Shaq to the Celts, that's quite a story? Read something about a couple of D-leaguers who are big and could be worth a look in training camp? Anything else..

Thanks, and if you're vacationing, hope you're having a great time, having an adult beverage or two and thinking of all the creative posts and stories that you are going to hit us with upon your return.

Ron

Posted by: faninAlex | August 4, 2010 10:04 AM | Report abuse
dunno about nothing going on, truthaboutit scooped him on the Yi injury.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | August 4, 2010 12:05 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: divi3 | August 4, 2010 12:16 PM | Report abuse

"Nets center Brook Lopez pulls out of world championships as he recovers from mono. Washington's JaVale McGee named to US team."
8 minutes ago via web

AP, Brian Mahoney

(via Bullets Forever)

Posted by: ts35 | August 4, 2010 12:24 PM | Report abuse

It was from Brain Mahoney's Twitter entry, so take that for what it's worth.

Posted by: ts35 | August 4, 2010 12:28 PM | Report abuse

*Brian*

Posted by: ts35 | August 4, 2010 12:34 PM | Report abuse

The coverage on MSNBC.com ends with:

"McGee practiced in Las Vegas but hadn't officially been added to the roster."

Posted by: kalo_rama | August 4, 2010 12:34 PM | Report abuse

More "coach'em up" for javale, can only be a good thing

Posted by: divi3 | August 4, 2010 12:44 PM | Report abuse

The coverage on MSNBC.com ends with:

"McGee practiced in Las Vegas but hadn't officially been added to the roster."

Posted by: kalo_rama

They still have to cut down to 12, so maybe they brought him in to be part of the 15 for now, but already know he's not going to Turkey?

Good for him, though. I agree with div, getting to practice with that team is a good thing for him.

Posted by: ts35 | August 4, 2010 12:48 PM | Report abuse

They still have to cut down to 12, so maybe they brought him in to be part of the 15 for now, but already know he's not going to Turkey?

Good for him, though. I agree with div, getting to practice with that team is a good thing for him.

Posted by: ts35 | August 4, 2010 12:48 PM

Yeah, great experience for McGee, but maybe this increases his chance of going to Turkey though.

You would think the US Team would want to have two centers as a minimum, even though one has to be McGee.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | August 4, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

They still have to cut down to 12, so maybe they brought him in to be part of the 15 for now, but already know he's not going to Turkey?

Good for him, though. I agree with div, getting to practice with that team is a good thing for him.

Posted by: ts35 | August 4, 2010 12:48 PM

Yeah, great experience for McGee, but maybe this increases his chance of going to Turkey though.

You would think the US Team would want to have two centers as a minimum, even though one has to be McGee.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | August 4, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

"If you want to disagree or argue against it, that's fine. But misconstruing what I'm saying into absolute statements instead of expressing a possibility is not arguing."

Yawn. You're so full of crap the whites of your eyes are brown. Saying that something "must have value" is an absolute statement. Period. It's simple, grade school linguistics. You can dance the semantic jig all you want, but you can't run away from your own words (although I can certainly see why you'd try).

Posted by: kalo_rama | August 4, 2010 1:15 PM | Report abuse

"You would think the US Team would want to have two centers as a minimum, even though one has to be McGee."

Except Cs in international ball aren't necessarily the same as Cs in the NBA. The style of play is different and the requirements of the position can be as well. Execution and team play is more important in international ball than one-on-one explosiveness, which may marginalize McGee's value. They can probably get away with smaller guys as long as they're strong/physical enough to offer resistance, and fundamentally solid enough not to make mistakes that will hurt the team. McGee is questionable on both counts.

Posted by: kalo_rama | August 4, 2010 1:19 PM | Report abuse

Yawn. You're so full of crap the whites of your eyes are brown. Saying that something "must have value" is an absolute statement. Period. It's simple, grade school linguistics. You can dance the semantic jig all you want, but you can't run away from your own words (although I can certainly see why you'd try).

Posted by: kalo_rama

And saying something "must have some value" is not the same as saying "Absolutely has more value" no matter how you try to parse, slice, dice, or puree it. I guess you must have failed grade school.

Posted by: ts35 | August 4, 2010 1:30 PM | Report abuse

Best sports betting tips only on professionaltipsters.com

Posted by: cioliani | August 4, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse

I don't care how this will impact the national team as long as McGee learns from the best. coach K, nate mcmillan and continues to develop.

Posted by: jefferu | August 4, 2010 1:40 PM | Report abuse

The stupid rhombus paint constitutes 50% of post-defense in international play, that should help Mcgee as being backed down by heavier players was one of his biggest weaknesses

Posted by: divi3 | August 4, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Trapezoid, and I think he could definitely be useful, I just don't know what kind of numbers crunch they are looking at for other positions.

Posted by: ts35 | August 4, 2010 2:45 PM | Report abuse

According to Colangelo, the US strategy is to run on offense and pressure on defense, which means McGee will mostly stay back and seek to alter or block shots. I guess it makes sense, since the international game doesn't ordinarily emphasize pressure defense. And the US certainly has the horses to pressure the ball.

I dunno, the European clubs seem to have had success against NBA types in these competitions. Mostly by slowing it down and hitting from outside.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 4, 2010 5:04 PM | Report abuse

the pressure defense is pretty fun to watch, the US team was able to completely shutdown even the likes of Spain in Bejing. And you have to think Rondo will be an absolute nightmare for opposing guards as will Rose.

Of course, Rondo/Rose will likley go 3-15 in stretches making the games tight and fun to watch.

I worry a guy like Iggy will consistently under-perform.

Durant on the other hand could have some almost single-handed wins when his shot is falling

Posted by: divi3 | August 4, 2010 5:25 PM | Report abuse

I don't see any reasoning behind inviting McGee, only to cut him a week or two later. If I were a betting man I'd put my money on McGee heading to Turkey for FIBA..

Posted by: TDAV | August 4, 2010 6:13 PM | Report abuse

It's entirely possible they are interested in taking him to Turkey, but sometimes they bring in extra guys to even our practice rotations, etc.

Posted by: ts35 | August 4, 2010 7:36 PM | Report abuse

I hope Team USA discourages McGee from saluting every time he scores.

Posted by: PostSubscriber | August 4, 2010 7:42 PM | Report abuse

I guess I did a top kill of this thread. Here's a bottom kill: Anybody who would criticize Javale McGee is a Nazi.

Posted by: PostSubscriber | August 6, 2010 8:24 PM | Report abuse

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