Network News

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

David Stern advises Arenas, Wizards to be silent on gun incident

Wizards President Ernie Grunfeld will have a news conference this afternoon at Verizon Center to discuss the upcoming season. He likely will talk about the Wizards' rebuilding efforts around No. 1 overall pick John Wall, the opportunistic trades the team made last summer -- using its cap space to take advantage of teams in the hunt for LeBron James in free agency -- and the future of the organization.


Hey now, the NBA cares ... that you keep your mouth shut. (Getty Images)

But Grunfeld will not discuss the embarrassing gun incident involving three-time all-star Gilbert Arenas after NBA commissioner David Stern informed Arenas and the Wizards that he doesn't want them to address the situation any longer. Stern said yesterday that Arenas is in good standing with the league after serving his 50-game suspension and that he needs to put that situation behind him and "move on."

"I think he's entitled to do that," Stern said.

Stern's desire to keep Arenas and the Wizards from re-hashing that incident -- which derailed the season and led to the eventual breakup of the roster -- is understandable, with the franchise starting over with a new owner in Ted Leonsis and another star player in Wall. It is also not the first time that Stern stepped in to protect Arenas before his mouth or his antics worsened his predicament.

If you recall, Stern felt obligated to suspend Arenas indefinitely, before the league had concluded its own internal investigation, after Arenas mocked the controversy by forming his fingers into guns and playfully "shooting" his teammates before the Wizards played Philadelphia last January. When Stern announced the season-ending suspension three weeks later, he said, "I had to do something to keep Gilbert from doing further damage to himself."

On Wednesday, Stern felt that Arenas has served his punishment -- to the league and legal authorities -- and doesn't need to deal with it anymore. "We think it's time. Millions and millions of dollars later, and a new season later, I think it's time to move on," Stern said. "And that's what I told him."

But what do you think?

By Michael Lee  | September 23, 2010; 10:16 AM ET
Categories:  Gilbert Arenas  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: NBATV to televise Midnight Madness
Next: Grunfeld says Wizards are changing to red, white and blue

Comments

I think this would be fine, except that he's never really explained what happened. I'd like to see him do a long sit down with someone, preferably Michael Lee or maybe Wise since Gilbert seems trust him. After that, he's at liberty to say something along the lines of "I've said what I have to say about all that."

Posted by: rumbaugm | September 23, 2010 10:38 AM | Report abuse

I usually don't agree with Stern and his "hide your head in the sand" approach, but this time I will say its time to move on from the Gil incident. I can't imagine what more needs to be established or what good can come out of it.

Posted by: gmac78 | September 23, 2010 10:42 AM | Report abuse

I agree. Let's move on. What could possibly be gained by rehashing that incident in press conferences with the Team and Gilbert.

David Stern does well to send a message to the Wizards and to Gilbert. No need to go there. It puts everyone on message, the League, the Team, Gilbert and the press.

Good Move.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | September 23, 2010 10:43 AM | Report abuse

"I think this would be fine, except that he's never really explained what happened."

Didn't he already present his version in court? What else is there to say?

Posted by: sagaliba | September 23, 2010 10:44 AM | Report abuse

I agree as well, but we all know that the first questions out of the media's mouth will be about the incident...even though it is now common knowledge that they will not say anything about it. Let's get back to basketball

Posted by: CelticFCbhoys | September 23, 2010 10:46 AM | Report abuse

Finally they can move on and hopefully this will prevent the media from incessantly asking him the same stupid questions over and over and over again. He has served his time and the full explanations are in court documents which are obtainable if you just have to know. Let's just PLAY BALL!!

Posted by: ivyleague | September 23, 2010 10:54 AM | Report abuse

I can see nothing more awkward in a press conference than a reporter asking arenas if hes remorseful and arenas getting up and leaving the room.

Posted by: jefferu | September 23, 2010 10:54 AM | Report abuse

This is ridiculous. The league can't tell Arenas or anyone else not to discuss the "incident." I'm not that interested in what happened. But I am interested in how it has affected Arenas. How does he think it has changed him?

Posted by: ZardsFan1 | September 23, 2010 11:03 AM | Report abuse

Stern asking Arenas and the wiz to be silent about last year's debacle is silly. We all see how much of a distraction was caused at Redskins park by the coach "trying" not to make haynesworth a distraction. Does Stern control the media? Can he stop the questions from being asked. It's a long season and to think that members of the press are just gonna accept "No Comment" for almost 7-8 months is silly. All of the coaches, players, and even trainers are gonna be hounded for info about Gil, especially because of his abnormally low profile as of late. i know the players and folks can avoid answering the questions, but how can they avoid being questioned about the incident? If Gil made the All Star Team and ESPN Magazine or SI wanted to do a profile of Arenas, and his comeback, would Stern want to censor that interview? It would be appropriate to call Gil up to the L Offices in NY and talk to him about how THE L would like him to approach being questioned about the incident, maybe even suggest some modified media training for such occasions. But the full on censorship seems over the top.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | September 23, 2010 11:13 AM | Report abuse

It's interesting that Mr. Lee used the word "dictate." That's exactly what Stern is, a dictator. If Gilbert Arenas is not at an NBA facility or acting as a representative of the NBA then David Stern has no more authority to tell him what he can talk about than you or I. Stern is a joke. He's so out of touch with the players in his league and his, from the lack of a better term, "real" fan base. Trust me, it's not the CEOs in the expensive luxry boxes or the guys paying $1,000 a game to sit courtside at the Staples Center.

Posted by: largetony86 | September 23, 2010 11:16 AM | Report abuse


Once again Arenas is the little boy who gets protection and doesn't have to face the music.

Baby mama about to serve you with a paternity/child support suit? No worries. The Wizards orchestrate an elaborate scheme to keep her at bay.

Bring guns to VC, entice your dim-witted teammates into a "gun dance" at midcourt, become a felon and never give so much as a controlled interview to address the fans or media after being released from "jail" because he's a little boy who can't own up to his crime? No problem. Stern will make the booboo go away and mandate that you don't have to talk about the "incident".

Even baseball had enough sense not to keep players from talking to the media after their names were revealed as being part of the steroid scandal.

Make no mistake: Stern is not doing this for Arenas' own good. Stern clearly believes that Arenas is too dumb to navigate his way through a question and answer session without harming the NBA and its image. Arenas' welfare isn't even an afterthought.

Posted by: gtown85 | September 23, 2010 11:25 AM | Report abuse

"Gil, are you a better player because of what happened last season?"

"Yes."

$15,000 fine?

Posted by: divi3 | September 23, 2010 11:28 AM | Report abuse

Once again Arenas is the little boy who gets protection and doesn't have to face the music.

Baby mama about to serve you with a paternity/child support suit? No worries. The Wizards orchestrate an elaborate scheme to keep her at bay.

Bring guns to VC, entice your dim-witted teammates into a "gun dance" at midcourt, become a felon and never give so much as a controlled interview to address the fans or media after being released from "jail" because he's a little boy who can't own up to his crime? No problem. Stern will make the booboo go away and mandate that you don't have to talk about the "incident".

Even baseball had enough sense not to keep players from talking to the media after their names were revealed as being part of the steroid scandal.

Make no mistake: Stern is not doing this for Arenas' own good. Stern clearly believes that Arenas is too dumb to navigate his way through a question and answer session without harming the NBA and its image. Arenas' welfare isn't even an afterthought.

Posted by: gtown85

I'm sorry this bothers you so much

Posted by: gmac78 | September 23, 2010 11:34 AM | Report abuse

If only Stern could "gag" the press, so "the embarassing gun incident" is not always used in apposition to Gilbert Arenas's name.

Posted by: Fief1 | September 23, 2010 11:36 AM | Report abuse

What gun incident?

Posted by: classicskins | September 23, 2010 11:41 AM | Report abuse

Make no mistake: Stern is not doing this for Arenas' own good. Stern clearly believes that Arenas is too dumb to navigate his way through a question and answer session without harming the NBA and its image. Arenas' welfare isn't even an afterthought.

Posted by: gtown85

if that's how you sum up your statement, then how is it that....

Once again Arenas is the little boy who gets protection and doesn't have to face the music.

you say it yourself, it's about protecting the league. We all know Gil is more than capable of protecting himself.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | September 23, 2010 11:55 AM | Report abuse

While I agree that it would probably be best for all parties to put it behind them and move forward, the idea of Stern unilaterally mandating what players and coaches can and cannot say in interviews doesn't sit well.

"Once again Arenas is the little boy who gets protection and doesn't have to face the music."

How is pleading guilty in court, going to jail, and spending time in a halfway house not "facing the music"?

"Make no mistake: Stern is not doing this for Arenas' own good. Stern clearly believes that Arenas is too dumb to navigate his way through a question and answer session without harming the NBA and its image. Arenas' welfare isn't even an afterthought." Posted by: gtown85 | September 23, 2010 11:25 AM

If that's true (and it is) then on what are you basing your preceding claim? How is Arenas "the little boy who gets protection" if, by your own admission, Stern doesn't actually care about protecting Arenas? Bit of a contradiction, don't you think?

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 23, 2010 11:57 AM | Report abuse

Stern needs to get the his equally draconian brethren at NCAA to rule that Gil's bringing Guns rendered him ineligible, that way last season never happened.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | September 23, 2010 11:58 AM | Report abuse

Reporter (innocently enough): "So, Gil, what happened last year with bringing four guns to Verizon Center and what, exactly, were you thinking?"

Gil (sticking to his guns :-)): "Look, it was just a prank. I still don't understand why you guys are talking about this. It happened a long time ago and nobody got hurt. I'm a jokey-type guy." (smiling broadly)

Reporter (going for the kill): "So is it fair to say that you feel that Stern and law enforcement overreacted to something that was really just a joke?"

Gil (emboldened): Exactly! Much ado about nothing. I think everybody panicked or something.

[EXACTLY one hour later]...

Reporter (breathless): We have breaking news! Arenas has been once again indefinitely suspended by Commissioner David Stern! We have also learned that Arenas has been contacted by his probation officer and is in transit to his office as we speak. Wizards General Manager Ernie Grunfeld reportedly was seen weeping at a Greyhound bus terminal with several pieces of luggage in tow.

Posted by: Firuz1 | September 23, 2010 12:19 PM | Report abuse

Since when can David Stern start telling players what they can and can't talk about. It's one thing if he brags about the situation in a negative way but it's another thing to tell a person what he can and can'ttalk about. David Stern is never looking out for the player, he's only looking out for himself.

Posted by: Run-4st-Run | September 23, 2010 12:26 PM | Report abuse

Boy, didn't see this coming. Would the press be this bad to continue to wave this story?

Is Vick still being hounded? No pun.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | September 23, 2010 12:32 PM | Report abuse

Why do jerks want Gil to discuss it? What is it that THEY need to know that Gil has not already said before in court? Goes to my thought of them being "holier than thou". Gil don't owe yall muthafuc_as no explanation. He has the "RIGHT TO REMAIN SILENT". F--k y'all.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 23, 2010 12:36 PM | Report abuse

"Since when can David Stern start telling players what they can and can't talk about."

Since he became commissioner.

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 23, 2010 12:44 PM | Report abuse

Total Gil supporter here, but the headline on the front webpage of the Wapo Sports is super super super misleading. "I don't want to hear it" is not a summary of Stern's position. He also didn't say "Don't go there, girlfriend." "I don't want to hear it" implies that Gil is attempting to talk, but there's no evidence of that. It was a preemptive strike by Stern. I do hope that reporters see this and give Gil a break. But I would say that the Vick experience shows that people will forget anything soon enough. And as many have pointed out, the guy who called Gilbert a "little boy" is a "total fool."

Posted by: Urnesto | September 23, 2010 12:50 PM | Report abuse

Since when can David Stern start telling players what they can and can't talk about."

Since he became commissioner.

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 23, 2010 12:44 PM | Report abuse

Commissioner is clearly not the proper title, emperor or king is more befitting. Nonetheless, he clearly gives Gilbert cover from answering about the incident. The only problem is who arbitrates the line of what constitutes discussion or an inference to the incident. It clearly will be difficult not to be questioned or even slip and make some inference to the incident. This edit seems more reminiscent of Iran rather than America.

All in ALL it is a win if Gil can stick to the script.

Posted by: NewManagement | September 23, 2010 12:56 PM | Report abuse

Here,here Gman-11! My sentiments exactly.

Posted by: ivyleague | September 23, 2010 12:59 PM | Report abuse


Boy, didn't see this coming. Would the press be this bad to continue to wave this story?

Is Vick still being hounded? No pun.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | September 23, 2010 12:32 PM

No. They called the dogs off.

Posted by: tgif11 | September 23, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

I think this is a bit more than outright censorship by Stern. Stern has a responsibility as acommish to protect the integrity and the public image of the League.

The incident was a blight on the League, the Team, and Gilbert. Not only that, it was illegal.

So just because the League has punished Gill, it does not alleviate Stern as Commish to further handle this in the best interest of the League.

I think it is fair and proper that Stern is doing this.

But in expanding on certain events and situations, Lilhollywood10 has some very good points.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | September 23, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

Does Stern control the media? Can he stop the questions from being asked. It's a long season and to think that members of the press are just gonna accept "No Comment" for almost 7-8 months is silly.

Personally, I think Stern is attempting to do Gil, Ted, the Wizards, and the NBA a favor. The press will feel free to answer whatever questions they need to, but now Gil, Ted, and anyone else has the cover of the Stern's gag order not to answer. If Gil, Ted, and the rest stick to that line, eventually reporters will stop asking the questions.

To some of the other points raised, I don't think the gag-order would cover questions like "How has it changed you?". Certainly Gil could use it as cover for that if he wanted to, but I don't think Stern would have a problem with answering how the entire situation affected him. I think Stern was just trying to limit the repeated questions (which I would agree are still somewhat unanswered) about what happened that day and in the days that immediately followed.

He's doing what he's doing to help Gil and Ted and the Wizards, and, of course, also to try and get past the story and the negative connotations for the League.

Plus, given our experience with Gil, it's hard to imagine that if he was frequently having to talk about the incident that eventually he wouldn't say something that would be controversial about it, or could be twisted into being controversial, etc. It's probably best for everyone concerned to put it to rest and move on.

Posted by: ts35 | September 23, 2010 1:05 PM | Report abuse

NBA's actually had quite a bit of negative pub over the past couple years, not all of it associated with Arenas. Stern has no doubt noticed the decline in TV ratings and that cramps his expansionist message (he dreams of putting teams overseas). From his viewpoint, he's doing the NBA, the team and Arenas a big favor by taking them out of the glare.

Posted by: Samson151 | September 23, 2010 1:06 PM | Report abuse

The headline says "David Stern ADVISES Arenas, Wizards to be silent on gun incident" it does not say "David Stern TELLS Arenas, Wizards to be silent on gun incident" There is a difference between Advising someone Telling...But I think you guys are reading to deep into lines. JUST LET IT GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

Posted by: sainnis | September 23, 2010 1:07 PM | Report abuse

Um, sainnis, do you actually read the stories, or just the headlines?

"NBA Commissioner David Stern spoke with Arenas on Tuesday to express his excitement about having Arenas back in the league after the lengthy banishment, and he told Arenas he can talk about anything going forward - except the infamous dispute last December involving guns. Stern later called Wizards owner Ted Leonsis to inform him public comments from the organization about the situation are also off limits. "

Posted by: ts35 | September 23, 2010 1:23 PM | Report abuse

Who cares about the whys and whatfors...keep it moving and get back to ON THE COURT issues.

Posted by: kahlua87 | September 23, 2010 1:25 PM | Report abuse

Gil paid his debt, handsomely. The only thing he owes anybody is like the saying goes "to stay black and die".

The thing about "paid" is that it is the past tense of the word "pay". And I don't agree with Stern often, but in this instance I do. Focus on the coming year, not the "past".

Y'all act like all this stuff is easy for Gil. He embarassed himself nationally. He lost a lot of money. He lost game time. He was ordered to a halfway house for a month. He was ordered to do 400 hours of community service which equals 5 weeks of working 5 days a week at 8 hours a day, FOR FREE. He did that. Now on the court, he lost his top dog status as a Wizard. He has to work on changing his persona somewhat, which ain't easy to do, and can lead to not being happy.

But y'all still want more. Y'all want him to answer questions from who? The Media? The Media!!! Those hypocritical sound-bite chasing, word-twisting MEDIA!! I wouldn't say nothing to the media.

Let that man play ball.

The thing about it is Gil has been colorful in the past, so Stern doesn't want Gil to be totally silent. He just don't want him to talk about his gun incident.

Again. Let that man play ball. If he wants to keep silent, like he has pretty much all summer, let him.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 23, 2010 1:25 PM | Report abuse

So will, say for example, beat reporter Michael Lee refrain from asking Gil about what happened?

Posted by: mugsybol | September 23, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Michael Lee ain't gonna ask Gil nothing about the gun incident. Cause at the end of the day, he wants Gil to talk to him, not ignore him.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 23, 2010 1:37 PM | Report abuse

It's hard to quantify just how poorly David Stern has handled this situation from the very beginning. From his not suspending Gilbert at the outset and saying he would wait for the judicial process to take its course first, to letting Al Sharpton mau-mau him into suspending Arenas indefinitely for a photograph of Gilbert using his index finger as an air gun in a joking manner, to suspending him for the entire season while he let players who had committed far more serious crimes continue to play, to now this: forbidding him to talk about it.

David Stern could use a refresher course on the First Amendment. And he really put his foot in his mouth yesterday by saying the Gilbert Arenas incident wasn't in the top 5 worst incidents since he took over as NBA commissioner. Well, if it wasn't in the top 5, then why did you give him the 3rd longest suspension in NBA history?

It's way past the time that David Stern stepped down as NBA commish. He has become a complete and utter joke.

Posted by: Barno1 | September 23, 2010 1:37 PM | Report abuse

G-Man 11: My thoughts exactly. Too bad.

Posted by: mugsybol | September 23, 2010 1:42 PM | Report abuse

So what are the top 5 bad incidents since Stern became commish?

Posted by: Samson151 | September 23, 2010 1:44 PM | Report abuse

http://www.nba.com/2010/news/09/23/stern-arenas.ap/index.html?ls=iref:nbahpt2

on the nba.com website it quotes stern saying
"You've paid your price, you're back in good standing, and don't feel obligated to talk about the past."

meaning he doesn't have to talk to the media about that topic if he doesn't want to. Which he probably won't.

However there are some contradicting remarks from Leonsis "Ted Leonsis was quoted in the story saying he would follow Stern's edict because "I don't want to get fined." so who knows. Reporters are definitely gonna stir something up just to test them

Posted by: jefferu | September 23, 2010 1:44 PM | Report abuse

David Stern could use a refresher course on the First Amendment. And he really put his foot in his mouth yesterday by saying the Gilbert Arenas incident wasn't in the top 5 worst incidents since he took over as NBA commissioner. Well, if it wasn't in the top 5, then why did you give him the 3rd longest suspension in NBA history?
Posted by: Barno1

The First Amendment doesn't really cover employee / employer relationships, except at the edges. Gil is still legally free to say whatever he wants. But under the terms of the collectively bargained contract he signed, there can be consequences from the League, just like any of us would face similar consequences from the companies we work for.

On some level, it is hard to conceive of the suspension that Gil got in relation to other instances, like the Malice at the Palace, etc. Or why Delonte West was allowed to play. But Leagues usually are wise (if not required) to wait until the legal process plays itself out before assigning League punishment.

Gil's suspension wasn't so much for the actual incident, as it was his continued behavior which demonstrated that he wasn't quite clued in to the seriousness of it the way he should have been. Because he was going to be allowed to play until the finger-guns at half-court. And probably because he pissed the Commish off too :)

Posted by: ts35 | September 23, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse

“The commissioner spoke to Gilbert,” NBA spokesman Tim Frank said Thursday. “His message was: ‘You’ve paid your price, you’re back in good standing, and don’t feel obligated to talk about the past.”’

Frank reiterated that Stern’s suggestion was not a gag order, but rather a gesture to let Arenas know he had the support of the commissioner if he didn’t want to talk about his conviction.

“Gilbert’s paid a huge price here,” Frank said. “The commissioner wanted him to know that we’re going to support him.”

Other than that, the story is a giant snooze.

Posted by: midlevex_ | September 23, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Samson, depending I guess on what you want to categorize as a bad incident, here's a few I think would rank higher....in no particular order

Kobe's alleged rape
The Malice at the Palace
Sprewell choking Carlesimo
Len Bias (though not sure this falls into the same category), but at least as it relates to the drug use problems they had in the 80s.
Tim Donaghy

That's five off the top of my head that I would think are worse.

Posted by: ts35 | September 23, 2010 1:51 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: midlevex_ | September 23, 2010 1:54 PM | Report abuse

Frank reiterated that Stern’s suggestion was not a gag order, but rather a gesture to let Arenas know he had the support of the commissioner if he didn’t want to talk about his conviction.

“Gilbert’s paid a huge price here,” Frank said. “The commissioner wanted him to know that we’re going to support him.”

Other than that, the story is a giant snooze.

Posted by: midlevex_ | September 23, 2010 1:47 PM

That may be true or it may be that Stern is in full spin mode. Either way, I don't for one second hesitate to believe that he told Leonsis and Arenas, in no uncertain terms, not to talk about it.

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 23, 2010 2:01 PM | Report abuse

I would think the '99 lockout would make the list.

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 23, 2010 2:03 PM | Report abuse

If Arenas did feel obliged to talk about it, somehow I feel like Stern might issue a "Code Red".

Posted by: ts35 | September 23, 2010 2:06 PM | Report abuse

"Blatche, like other young Wizards, had shown promise in his first four seasons but was never a consistent performer until those final 32 games. Seemingly overnight, he went from role player to the main man. His repertoire expanded to include a reliable jumper as well as solid post moves, and he became much better finishing on the break. Plus, Blatche was in good condition, unlike in previous seasons when questions were raised about his fitness and his level of commitment."


http://www.csnwashington.com/09/21/10/Wizards-Front-Court-is-Wet-Behind-the-Ea/landing.html?blockID=315659&feedID=7433

Posted by: tgif11 | September 23, 2010 2:11 PM | Report abuse

So what is really more likely:

(A) The night Jamison got traded Blatche suddenly had an epiphany in his sleep and awoke blessed with a full array of offensive moves?

or

(B) He could have done it at any point in the season (or, possibly, previous ones) but was perfectly content to half-ass it because he he was all pissed and mopey that he wasn't getting enough attention?

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 23, 2010 2:18 PM | Report abuse

I wouldnt be surprised if Emperor Stern consulted with Leonsis before issuing his edict. As much as I generally do not like Stern, providing Gil and the whole franchise with the ability to simply say "I cant talk about that" is going to make the season go much more smoothly.

And allow for Wall to get the maximum exposure the franchise and league are trying to create for him.

Posted by: divi3 | September 23, 2010 2:21 PM | Report abuse

I don't for one second hesitate to believe that he told Leonsis and Arenas, in no uncertain terms, not to talk about it.

Believe what you want, the story cited clarifies the misperception that Stern issued a gag order punishable by a fine. Probably superfluous, as Leonsis has no motivation or desire to spend time on the subject. Neither does Arenas, though in Arenas' case that may not preclude his doing so. An actual gag order would have given Arenas a nice dodge to any related questions. Hard to imagine this will be of any relevance once the season begins.

Posted by: midlevex_ | September 23, 2010 2:30 PM | Report abuse

(A) The night Jamison got traded Blatche suddenly had an epiphany in his sleep and awoke blessed with a full array of offensive moves?

or

(B) He could have done it at any point in the season (or, possibly, previous ones) but was perfectly content to half-ass it because he he was all pissed and mopey that he wasn't getting enough attention?

Posted by: kalo_rama

I would say a solid 75% (B) with the remaining, somewhat related 25% about being given all the shots he could handle and the time to make his moves, instead of rushing to shoot for fear the big 3 might not give him the ball again.

Posted by: ts35 | September 23, 2010 2:45 PM | Report abuse

AB busted AJs butt everyday for 2yrs and still had to wait for the team to get blown up to get a real chance. Whole dynamic of the team was lousy...the Supposed3 and their giant egos, immature knuckleheads, coach not chosen by GM, and on and on.

Any other team in the league would have experimented with moving AJ to 3 for stretches alongside AB at 4. Or something. But here AJ had a direct line to Abe and that was that.

Plenty of blame to go around.

Posted by: divi3 | September 23, 2010 2:54 PM | Report abuse

and AB has been shooting 47% for 3yrs now, so it's hardly as if his shots magically started to fall after the trades.

I was always a big AJ fan too, but in hindsight it's ridiculous just how poorly the whole thing was held together on many levels with many people to share blame.

Posted by: divi3 | September 23, 2010 3:01 PM | Report abuse

"Believe what you want, the story cited clarifies the misperception that Stern issued a gag order punishable by a fine. "

No, it really doesn't. It quotes someone as saying, well after the fact, that the original story was off the mark. But the fact that someone said that (or that it was quoted in a news story) does not automatically make it true. Leonsis is no idiot. He has nothing to gain by getting on Stern's bad side. That holds true with regard to violating a gag order (if there was one) and/or giving an interview in which he paints Stern as a controlling dictator (even if that's what he is).

Is it possible that the original piece misconstrued his meaning? Sure. Is it equally possible that the first interview got it right and that, upon seeing how it came off, Leonsis decided to do a little spin to stay on the commish's good side? Of course.

Either way, we don't really know. But given Stern's history, anyone who discounts the possibility that he flat out told Arenas and Leonsis to "zip it" is fooling themselves.

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 23, 2010 3:03 PM | Report abuse

Who ever said AB busted AJ's butt for 2 years? You in practices now divi?

Posted by: SDMDTSU | September 23, 2010 3:05 PM | Report abuse

"I would say a solid 75% (B) with the remaining, somewhat related 25% about being given all the shots he could handle and the time to make his moves, instead of rushing to shoot for fear the big 3 might not give him the ball again.

Posted by: ts35 | September 23, 2010 2:45 PM

Number of shots has nothing to do with effort. He didn't just play more minutes and get more shots after the trade. He played harder. There wasn't a thing in the world preventing him from doing that pre-trade other than his own lack of interest in doing so.

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 23, 2010 3:07 PM | Report abuse

Number of shots has nothing to do with effort. He didn't just play more minutes and get more shots after the trade. He played harder. There wasn't a thing in the world preventing him from doing that pre-trade other than his own lack of interest in doing so.

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 23, 2010 3:07 PM

In case you forgot, Blatche went for 30 early in the season with AJ out. Flip started Fab, and AB came off the bench and went 15-18 in the win. How do you determine there wasnt sufficient effort in that? By the fact Yi was guarding him? ;)

Posted by: divi3 | September 23, 2010 3:18 PM | Report abuse

"In case you forgot, Blatche went for 30 early in the season with AJ out. Flip started Fab, and AB came off the bench and went 15-18 in the win."

That might prove some kind of point if I was talking specifically about that game. But just like the season didn't start the day after the trade, there were 49 other games besides that one prior to the trade.

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 23, 2010 3:24 PM | Report abuse

and btw way kal, another example of Flip's genius was the very next game. Saunders stuck with the Haywood-Fab frontcourt in a loss to Cleveland....way to ride the hot hand! Seriously, how do start Fab with Haywood after a 6'11"PF just went 15-18 the night before? How can a Fab-BTH lineup score points?

Anyways, water under the bridge, looking for much better out of everyone this season

Posted by: divi3 | September 23, 2010 3:26 PM | Report abuse

Number of shots has nothing to do with effort. He didn't just play more minutes and get more shots after the trade. He played harder. There wasn't a thing in the world preventing him from doing that pre-trade other than his own lack of interest in doing so.

Posted by: kalo_rama

Well, first of all, I would say his increased effort for the season was more due to his mom telling him to get off his butt.

But as for the rest of it, of course the number of shots affects effort for some players. Most players play harder if they know they're going to get the ball. He went from being the fourth option on the offense to the first option. Which plays into the second thing I mentioned which was that his play and his decision-making improved because he didn't feel compelled to get up the first shot that came his way, and as quickly as he could, for fear he wouldn't get another chance. He could take his time. He not only played harder, but he played a bit smarter after the trade too.

AB also had the luxury of knowing he wasn't going to get a quick hook for a mistake, because, well they didn't have a lot of other options.

Posted by: ts35 | September 23, 2010 3:28 PM | Report abuse

"depending I guess on what you want to categorize as a bad incident, here's a few I think would rank higher....in no particular order.."

those are good. But how about that private jet going down in the Atlantic with the entire roster of the Nets, and they had to be replaced on short notice by those animatronics guys at Disney?

Oh wait... forget I said that, David.

Posted by: Samson151 | September 23, 2010 3:30 PM | Report abuse

oh, no doubt there have been no shortage of inexcusable clunkers. I just think the #1 difference pre/post-trade was consistent volume of shots. Pretty tough to produce with Gil, CB, and AJ doing their thing.

Posted by: divi3 | September 23, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

those are good. But how about that private jet going down in the Atlantic with the entire roster of the Nets, and they had to be replaced on short notice by those animatronics guys at Disney?

Oh wait... forget I said that, David.

Posted by: Samson151

Don't you think it's more likely that Disney just took over the NBA in the 80s and installed an animatronic Stern as Commish?

Posted by: ts35 | September 23, 2010 3:39 PM | Report abuse

Blatche played 28 minutes in the Jersey game and took 18 shots. The next night against Cleveland he played 25 minutes and took 7. So implying that Saunders somehow shortchanged him on floor time or didn't give him enough run to heat up is pure bunk. Saunders did what every other coach tries to do, field a regular starting lineup. Oberto was the starter, Blatche was the first big off the bench. If Blatche could heat up off the bench against Jersey, there's no reason he couldn't have done so against Cleveland. If his hand had been hot in Cleveland he probably would have gotten more run. But it wasn't, so he didn't. Moreover, if Saunders had gotten in the habit of yanking guys in and out of the lineup based on how well they played in the previous game, we all know damn well that you'd have been leading the charge to denounce him for jerking guys around and having no idea how to establish a rotation.

(And, for the record, I absolutely think being guarded by Yi had something to do with it.)

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 23, 2010 3:46 PM | Report abuse

"Pretty tough to produce with Gil, CB, and AJ doing their thing."

But yet, it's not tough at all to play hard regardless of what anyone else does.

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 23, 2010 3:47 PM | Report abuse

"No, it really doesn't. It quotes someone as saying, well after the fact, that the original story was off the mark. But the fact that someone said that (or that it was quoted in a news story) does not automatically make it true."

Your argument is with the accuracy of the AP story; the version it suggests does however clarify the posts that a gag order was issued. What actually occurred is debatable, tiresome and hardly worth scrutinizing, but debatable. I prefer the simpler explanation, that is to believe the NBA's and Wizard's spokesperson's clarification regarding Stern's conversations with Leonsis and Arenas and that no gag order was issued.

Posted by: midlevex_ | September 23, 2010 3:48 PM | Report abuse

BTW, I'm pretty sure we all (divi3 included) know full well that # of shots taken or FG% is not any kind of inherent indicator of effort, so the 15-18 thing is ultimately irrelevant to my point anyhow.

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 23, 2010 3:49 PM | Report abuse

Any coach that sees Fab/BTH as a viable starting frontcourt needs their head examined.

And Fab went 3pt/1reb that night, though I'm sure there were a raft load of intangibles that didnt show up in the stats.

Posted by: divi3 | September 23, 2010 4:01 PM | Report abuse

BTW, I'm pretty sure we all (divi3 included) know full well that # of shots taken or FG% is not any kind of inherent indicator of effort, so the 15-18 thing is ultimately irrelevant to my point anyhow.

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 23, 2010 3:49 PM

I'm pretty sure everyone also knows full well that the point you're trying to make is nothing more than your personal opinion.

Posted by: divi3 | September 23, 2010 4:08 PM | Report abuse

Although, since we're on the topic, I certainly think an argument could be made that the fact that Blatche took 18 shots and played 28 minutes against Jersey without getting to the line one, single time could, perhaps, be some kind of effort indicator.

(To say nothing of the fact that he grabbed the same number of rebounds (6) as Deshawn Stevenson in the same amount of time, or barely more than half of what Mike Miller grabbed (11) in only 6 minutes more of PT.)

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 23, 2010 4:10 PM | Report abuse

"Any coach that sees Fab/BTH as a viable starting frontcourt needs their head examined."

Weren't they the starting frontcourt in the Jersey game? Yes, I believe they were.

"I'm pretty sure everyone also knows full well that the point you're trying to make is nothing more than your personal opinion."

Which would only make your attempts to dispute it using ultimately irrelevant stats (stats which, by the way, fail to support your point, which is nothing more than your personal opinion) even more Quixotic.

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 23, 2010 4:15 PM | Report abuse

oh i get it, stats only count for something when you mention them.

Posted by: divi3 | September 23, 2010 4:18 PM | Report abuse

dirk only had 9rebs in 39mins in 1st game of season, meanwhile 5'11" PG jose barrera had 6rebs in 23mins.

Clearly Dirk wasn't giving enough effort.

Posted by: divi3 | September 23, 2010 4:20 PM | Report abuse

"oh i get it, stats only count for something when you mention them."

They only count for something when they're relevant to the topic at hand. The topic at hand is effort/hard play. A 15-18 shooting stat, in and of itself, counts for nothing as an indicator of how hard a guy plays. Taking 18 shots without getting to the line once, or a 6' 11" "power" forward nearly getting doubled up on the boards by a 6' 7" SG who can barely get off the floor does.

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 23, 2010 4:23 PM | Report abuse

I certainly think an argument could be made that the fact that Blatche took 18 shots and played 28 minutes against Jersey without getting to the line one, single time could, perhaps, be some kind of effort indicator.

Or just an indicator that Yi was not even close enough to foul him :)

Posted by: ts35 | September 23, 2010 4:24 PM | Report abuse

"dirk only had 9rebs in 39mins in 1st game of season, meanwhile 5'11" PG jose barrera had 6rebs in 23mins.

Clearly Dirk wasn't giving enough effort.

Posted by: divi3 | September 23, 2010 4:20 PM

Given that the Mavs lost that game (a game that, in retrospect, they had no business losing) I would bet money that Dirk would agree with that assessment.

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 23, 2010 4:30 PM | Report abuse

They only count for something when they're relevant to the topic at hand. The topic at hand is effort/hard play. A 15-18 shooting stat, in and of itself, counts for nothing as an indicator of how hard a guy plays. Taking 18 shots without getting to the line once, or a 6' 11" "power" forward nearly getting doubled up on the boards by a 6' 7" SG who can barely get off the floor does.

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 23, 2010 4:23 PM

AJ had 20pts and 0 FT attempts to go with 4rebs against the Suns last season, in a game where Nash grabbed 7 boards.

By your logic, that proves AJ was not giving enough effort.

In fact he went for 0 FT attempts 7x last season, so perhaps we see where ABs lack of effort originated. According to your parameters anyway

Posted by: divi3 | September 23, 2010 4:31 PM | Report abuse


Don't forget the Charlotte game last season in which our starting PF Jamison snared zero rebounds.

Posted by: harrybalz | September 23, 2010 4:46 PM | Report abuse

I agree with Stern, but who knew he was a DC hardcore fan?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D-bZKQeRJXE

Posted by: minorthread | September 23, 2010 4:49 PM | Report abuse

Some of you who are taking issue with Stern's actions are posting as if what he did is totally unprecedented, when, in fact, it happens all the time. Players in ANY professional sport who criticize the officiating in the media are likely to get heavily fined and/or suspended. The Arizona Cardinals once had, and still may have, a standard provision in all of their contracts barring players from criticizing the organization in the media, with heavy financial penalties for non-compliance. Professional franchises are routinely prohibited from expressing an interest in players who are under contract to other teams, or from commenting on labor negotiations during talks about new CBAs with their respective unions. And it's not just in professional sports. Businesses will often instruct their employees to refer all media inquiries to a public relations person or office. Maybe that's not an explicit content-based restriction on comments like the one Stern imposed on Arenas, but it's designed at least in part to ensure that an employee doesn't go "off the reservation," and say something that management doesn't like.

Posted by: rufus_t_firefly | September 23, 2010 5:00 PM | Report abuse

"Don't you think it's more likely that Disney just took over the NBA in the 80s and installed an animatronic Stern as Commish?
Posted by: ts35"

Well, what did you expect? you can't have the league commissioner running off to San Francisco to tie the knot with LeBron... OK, forget that one, too.

Posted by: Samson151 | September 23, 2010 5:17 PM | Report abuse

They only count for something when they're relevant to the topic at hand. The topic at hand is effort/hard play. A 15-18 shooting stat, in and of itself, counts for nothing as an indicator of how hard a guy plays. Taking 18 shots without getting to the line once, or a 6' 11" "power" forward nearly getting doubled up on the boards by a 6' 7" SG who can barely get off the floor does.

Posted by: kalo_rama

Actually AB getting doubled up on the boards by Miller in a game isn't particularly relevant either, as the topic under discussion was AB's effort pre-trade versus post, not his effort compared to others. After the trade, for example, on March 31st versus the Hornets, AB was outrebounded by Miller 7 to 1.

The part where AB's rebound / min rate before and after the trade stayed essentially the same is more indicative, though still incomplete.

Posted by: ts35 | September 23, 2010 5:35 PM | Report abuse

(B) He could have done it at any point in the season (or, possibly, previous ones) but was perfectly content to half-ass it because he he was all pissed and mopey that he wasn't getting enough attention?

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 23, 2010 2:18 PM

Of course (b) is only the right answer from your question as put and the question was posed that way for obvious reasons.

But lets go with it as you have framed it. Lets even go so far as to say that (b) is the correct assessment of Andray Blatche, though anyone knows that it isn't, the question the coach needs to ask himself is why. Why?

Is Andray such a spoiled arse loaf and he has been dogging it for two years and really doesn't give a rat' arse as indicated?

Why, as coach, I must ask myself?

For Mr. Kalo_rama in your brilliantly posed questioned to point out your disdain and low opinion of Mr. Blatche, you unwittingly failed to realize that if Mr. Blatche was really doing what you claim he was, he would not and couldn't change those unseemly traits overnight with the trading of AJ.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | September 23, 2010 6:13 PM | Report abuse

I for one am sick and tired of hearing about Arenas period.

For a guy that really hasn't made a contribution for 2.5 years to this team, all we hear about is the guns and then before that his bizarre behavior in the locker room with past and present teammates.

Posted by: RoyHobbs4 | September 23, 2010 6:28 PM | Report abuse

The dynamics of the trade changed the whole team, including the steady play of one Andray Blatche.

Of course from this man' perspective, we could have had some of that play all along had the coach had the nerve and the wisdom to move Antwann Jamison to the three.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | September 23, 2010 6:31 PM | Report abuse

The play of Andray Blatche for the last 32 games had nothing to do with him being mopey and not playing hard because he wasn't getting attention. Nothing. It had everything to do with him getting an honest fair chance to just play.

And I might add, circumstances beyond the control of the coach dictated it.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | September 23, 2010 6:35 PM | Report abuse

But as for the rest of it, of course the number of shots affects effort for some players. Most players play harder if they know they're going to get the ball. He went from being the fourth option on the offense to the first option. Which plays into the second thing I mentioned which was that his play and his decision-making improved because he didn't feel compelled to get up the first shot that came his way, and as quickly as he could, for fear he wouldn't get another chance. He could take his time. He not only played harder, but he played a bit smarter after the trade too.

AB also had the luxury of knowing he wasn't going to get a quick hook for a mistake, because, well they didn't have a lot of other options.

Posted by: ts35 | September 23, 2010 3:28 PM | Report abuse

Did Nick Young contribute to this post?????????????

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | September 24, 2010 9:53 AM | Report abuse

Did Nick Young contribute to this post?????????????

Posted by: lilhollywood10

Nope, just regular listening to Coach Thompson's show :)

It goes along with his one of my other favorites of his observations which is that players rarely limp on offense, only on defense.

Posted by: ts35 | September 24, 2010 11:19 AM | Report abuse

Post a Comment

We encourage users to analyze, comment on and even challenge washingtonpost.com's articles, blogs, reviews and multimedia features.

User reviews and comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be removed from the site. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed. Finally, we will take steps to block users who violate any of our posting standards, terms of use or privacy policies or any other policies governing this site. Please review the full rules governing commentaries and discussions.




characters remaining

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company