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Lester Hudson hoping his jumper gives him a shot to make Wizards

After practice concluded on Wednesday night, Gilbert Arenas and Lester Hudson started shooting three-pointers, then Arenas challenged the shooting star of the evening scrimmages to a contest. Best out of 20, from 35 feet. Hudson accepted but probably thought about reconsidering when Arenas calmly drained nine of his first 14 shots from extremely long distance.


It looks so pretty when it drops. (AP Photo)

Feeling a little bored, Arenas started yapping with Hudson, got distracted, and missed his next five. Then Arenas made sure he knocked down his last shot to finish 10-for-20. Arenas walked away, possibly believing that he had the competition wrapped up. Hudson earned a free dinner, as he hit 12 of 20 from the same spot, but he felt that Arenas let him win.

"He was messing around," Hudson said about Arenas's 0-for-5 streak. "He's a great shooter, he challenged me to a game, so I couldn't turn it down."

Hudson definitely could turn it down following a dazzling shooting display that had Coach Flip Saunders and his coaching staff exchanging approving looks after each made a jumper. He made two three-pointers in one game, then crossed up Kevin Palmer to bury a jumper in his face.

"Lester's been playing well," Saunders said. "He had a great camp for us in the summer, and played very well in the summer league, and he kind of carried it through. One, I think with some of the guys that we have, a guy like John, a guy like Hinrich and you know Gil has an ability to draw coverage. If you have another guy that you can put out there, that can make shots like he can, that can be beneficial."

A training camp invite on a non-guaranteed contract, Hudson faces an uphill battle, with the Wizards' backcourt depth being a strength at this point. But the 2009 second-round pick from Boston is used to taking the hard road. The Celtics had him split time with the team and its NBA Development League affiliate Maine Red Claws before waiving him. The Memphis Grizzlies claimed him, but shipped him to their D-League affiliate, the Dakota Wizards (the Wizards are also affiliated with the team).

"I definitely got to go out there and make plays. I definitely got a lot of guys in front of me, I just want to go out and play as hard as I can," Hudson said. "Guys root for me, everybody is with me. I just want to go out there and show my talent off and hopefully, I make it."

Wizards being patient with Blatche
Andray Blatche remains a spectator through the contact drills and scrimmages, but Saunders said the team will bring him along slowly. "If we were playing a game, could he play? Yeah, he probably could play. But I think just because he hasn't done much over the course of the summer because of his leg, we want to get him in the right amount of shape so nothing else breaks down."

Saunders said Blatche still needs to pass the conditioning test before he's allowed to participate in full practices. "We gave him the mini-test on the treadmill and he passed the mini-part of that. When we think he's ready, he'll take that test before he does that competitive, actual competition."

By Michael Lee  | September 30, 2010; 12:15 PM ET
 
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Next: Weigh in on the Wizards' season

Comments

How ya like me now SDMDTSU??

just kidding :)

Posted by: divi3 | September 30, 2010 12:28 PM | Report abuse

LOL...like I've been saying...he's a personal favorite of mine going back. I hope he makes it.

Posted by: SDMDTSU | September 30, 2010 12:31 PM | Report abuse

+1 SDMDTSU, I really really hope we sign Lester. Lester would be a nice spark-plug off the bench and he's a good 3-point shooter.

Posted by: closg | September 30, 2010 12:51 PM | Report abuse

I'm sort of hoping Cartier Martin gets a seat on the bench. Be nice to have somebody who can play defense at the 3 spot until Howard is ready (which could be a while).

Posted by: Samson151 | September 30, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

Would you say that Lester is a better version of Juan Dixon?

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | September 30, 2010 1:27 PM | Report abuse

LH has way more handles, a better, more NBA ready body, and you heard he was drillin'em from AgetnZero territory downtown. Yeah if Juan Dixon is your standard, he's better than that dude.


ps.
Juan ever accomplish the elusive quadruple dub cuz Lester's got all of that for you

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | September 30, 2010 1:46 PM | Report abuse

I do not know about Morison But Lester should be part of the team.He play defense, much faster and stronger than Dixon, Plus he does not gamble,he follow fandamentals.I am not sure why the two are in this picture.Even if we think we have too many gards,we had 7 last year but end up with the little man.

Posted by: gtefferra | September 30, 2010 1:58 PM | Report abuse

Juan ever accomplish the elusive quadruple dub cuz Lester's got all of that for you

Posted by: lilhollywood10

Lester ever the best player on a team that won an NCAA title? Just sayin'. UT Martin ain't in the ACC, and Central Baptist (the team he went for the quad-dub against) ain't exactly Duke or UNC.

All of that being said, I'm on board with Hudson making the team. It does give us a few too many guards who are the same size, but he plays hard, generally plays smart, can shoot and plays D. I'll take that for now over 'measurables'.

Posted by: ts35 | September 30, 2010 2:11 PM | Report abuse

Draft Express has Lester at 6'1 w/ shoes. That makes him a niche player; a 1 on D and more of a 2 on O. I'm not opposed to adding him to the roster, but someone like Martin with the ability to play the 2 and 3 brings more value to the team.

Posted by: djnnnou | September 30, 2010 2:33 PM | Report abuse

Juan ever accomplish the elusive quadruple dub cuz Lester's got all of that for you

Posted by: lilhollywood10

Lester ever the best player on a team that won an NCAA title? Just sayin'. UT Martin ain't in the ACC, and Central Baptist (the team he went for the quad-dub against) ain't exactly Duke or UNC.

All of that being said, I'm on board with Hudson making the team. It does give us a few too many guards who are the same size, but he plays hard, generally plays smart, can shoot and plays D. I'll take that for now over 'measurables'.

Posted by: ts35 | September 30, 2010 2:11 PM | Report abuse

you got it boss Juan's better

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | September 30, 2010 2:34 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: ts35 | September 30, 2010 2:11 PM | Report abuse

you got it boss Juan's better.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | September 30, 2010 2:56 PM | Report abuse

Draft Express has Lester at 6'1 w/ shoes. That makes him a niche player; a 1 on D and more of a 2 on O. I'm not opposed to adding him to the roster, but someone like Martin with the ability to play the 2 and 3 brings more value to the team.

Posted by: djnnnou

Given what's in front of him, I wouldn't expect Hudson to see the court much, unless there are injuries. But he seems like a guy who's hungry to play and will push in practices. They need that.

I'm fine with keeping Martin (or someone like him) as well, and they likely have to, until Howard is ready to go. Hudson, Martin and Marks (or the random 'big' of your choice) to start the season. Swap any or all of them out if they find better players. Once (if) Howard is healthy, Martin becomes expendable unless he's lightin' it up.

Posted by: ts35 | September 30, 2010 3:06 PM | Report abuse

Hudson would probably be an all-star in the D-League. He's a well-rounded player without any flagrant weaknesses (a little turnover prone perhaps).

Plus he's a JuCo kid who is used to grinding and scrapping for everything he gets.

I think he makes the squad by forcing the guards in front of him to work harder every day in practice.

Posted by: elfreako | September 30, 2010 4:10 PM | Report abuse

I'm not opposed to adding him to the roster, but someone like Martin with the ability to play the 2 and 3 brings more value to the team.

Posted by: djnnnou

Looking at the roster I can see CMartin not making it. Thornton, Yi, and NY are eyeballing the 3, plus EG seems bent on forcefeeding KH mins there as well. And that's before JH is back.

Then there's the possibility EG will be forced to allot a space for N'Diaye or risk losing him altogether.

It's gonna come down to which guy on the bubble can rain Js.

Posted by: divi3 | September 30, 2010 4:14 PM | Report abuse

It's gonna come down to which guy on the bubble can rain Js.

Posted by: divi3

Personally, I'm not super-concerned with which end-of-bench player shoots the best from 35 feet :)

Posted by: ts35 | September 30, 2010 4:52 PM | Report abuse

"Once (if) Howard is healthy, Martin becomes expendable unless he's lightin' it up.Posted by: ts35"

I think so. Howard could be the defensive stalwart along with Hinrich, if he's healthy. Which hasn't been all that often: 35 games last year, 52 the season before. Has to be somebody who defends the opponent's 3.

Posted by: Samson151 | September 30, 2010 5:07 PM | Report abuse

Cartier's already got one strike against him though in my book from naming his son Cartier II.

Posted by: ts35 | September 30, 2010 5:16 PM | Report abuse

Sometimes a guy coming in just trying to make a club can work his way into a rotation spot. I think Roger Mason could possibly be better to compare Hudson to then Dixon.

Hudson is shorter then Mason and a better defensive point guard. But both are built far more ruggedly then Dixon, have a purer jumper, and have had to learn to multi task to make it to an NBA camp.

Juan is one of my all time Maryland favorites, but he should have never left the Wizards when he was here the first time, he was in an ideal situation for his skills. Dixon was a great scorer in college, but I beleive Mason was a better 3 pt threat off the bench in the NBA. Not everybody can get up off the bench and nail a 3.

Mason is a great example of a guy that made it in the NBA because he could fill a need off the bench. And he was able to adapt to what a coach needed him to do. Dixon had a great niche here with the Wizards and wanted more. Sometimes the grass isn't greener somewhere else...
GM

Posted by: flohrtv | September 30, 2010 5:25 PM | Report abuse

Personally, I'm not super-concerned with which end-of-bench player shoots the best from 35 feet :)

Posted by: ts35 | September 30, 2010 4:52 PM

You never know, KH and Gil are pretty streaky 3pt shooters, there could be some situational opportunities available for someone who is more consistent. Or at least the ability to hit it may be a deciding factor at final cuts

Posted by: divi3 | September 30, 2010 5:33 PM | Report abuse

You never know, KH and Gil are pretty streaky 3pt shooters, there could be some situational opportunities available for someone who is more consistent. Or at least the ability to hit it may be a deciding factor at final cuts

Posted by: divi3

Then perhaps we should bring Pech back, it was his favorite shot.

Posted by: ts35 | September 30, 2010 5:35 PM | Report abuse

Looking at the roster I can see CMartin not making it. Thornton, Yi, and NY are eyeballing the 3, plus EG seems bent on forcefeeding KH mins there as well. And that's before JH is back.

Yi and Kirk playing SF sounds like BS to me. 4 of the 6 players invited into camp, Martin, Morrison, Collins and Palmer, are 3s or can play it.

Then there's the possibility EG will be forced to allot a space for N'Diaye or risk losing him altogether.

This is about money isn't it? The Wizards must have someone on their payroll with enough juice to get the kid a job in Europe if he really wants it. But he won't be making anything close to the NBA rookie minimum.

It's gonna come down to which guy on the bubble can rain Js.
Posted by: divi3

And defense. Hudson is probably worth paying just to see how he defends Chris Paul.

Posted by: djnnnou | September 30, 2010 6:37 PM | Report abuse

"Yi and Kirk playing SF sounds like BS to me."

As much as I hope you're right, here's what Flip said yesterday:

'But even if he decides to go with one of them, Saunders said he might also rely mostly on a three-guard set featuring John Wall, Gilbert Arenas and Kirk Hinrich.'

please Flip, not the small ball!

Posted by: divi3 | October 1, 2010 8:01 AM | Report abuse

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