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Training camp concerns Part I: What can the Wizards expect from Gilbert Arenas?


What am I going to do this time? (AP Photo)


It's unusual to go this long without a peep from Gilbert Arenas, but that's probably for the best since people really want to see whether or not the former all-star guard can still play, more than anything else. He's already shown that he can create suspense and hype around his comebacks, but after a series of flops, the time has come for him simply to produce.

Arenas will embark on his fourth comeback since Gerald Wallace fell onto his left knee in April 2007 and the results from the previous returns have left much to be desired. The anticipation has far exceeded the outcome. This time around, the anticipation is met with apathy.

His contract, with its $80 million remaining, is a toxic albatross and the past three lost seasons make Arenas immovable in
a trade, so the Wizards are stuck with him. New owner Ted Leonsis has already asked fans to "re-embrace" Arenas, mostly because the franchise has no other choice. He's not going anywhere.

Arenas has to come back from more than just a bum knee, but also a reputation tarnished from his terrible decision to bring guns into the Verizon Center locker room; a decision that added a felony to his record, led to him spending time in a halfway house, and has him wondering how fans will respond to the player who has had one of the most precipitous falls of any athlete in this town. From the face of the franchise, to a disgraceful stain on his legacy in Washington.

But don't let Arenas's silence make you think that he is not conscious of the narrative surrounding him. The man who came to personify the No. 0, rising from nothing to something, has changed to No. 9 -- and it wasn't a random selection. He originally picked the No. 6 to represent the day that he was suspended -- his birthday no less -- but, according to a former teammate, Arenas backed off that choice when LeBron James let it be known that he was switching to No. 6 from No. 23 out of respect for Michael Jordan (although now it seems that decision was made because No. 23 is retired in Miami).

Instead, Arenas went with a number with a more personal connection, especially considering that he lost his estranged mother, Mary Francis Robinson, last March. You see, as Mike Wise wrote more than three years ago, Robinson abandoned Arenas when he was just 3 ½ and left him at an apartment complex in Miami's rough Overtown neighborhood -- in apartment No. 9.

He's coming back against the odds once again.


Can you love me again? (AP Photo)

Many of those same feelings of rejection crept up in Arenas in the days and weeks after his indefinite suspension. His banner was yanked off the side of the building and the team distanced itself from marketing and promoting the three-time all-star. The hard feelings were palpable on both ends, and no doubt there still is some emotional residue. But an Arenas
confidant also told me that the reason Arenas went from 6 to 9 was to turn the frown upside down. Silly, I know. Again, this is Arenas.

Arenas is taking on a different role with the Wizards this season, with the arrival of John Wall forcing him to become a complementary star. How Arenas will respond to the attention Wall receives is still a concern to some within the organization, but but a team source says he genuinely respects the talents of the 20-year-old point guard. He also seems to have changed his attitude about playing for the Wizards after meeting with Leonsis and speaking with/playing with Wall in the past month.

Multiple league sources report that Arenas is back in much better shape than he was at this time last year, which makes sense because he is another year removed from his third knee surgery. He's slimmer after packing on a few pounds in the days leading up to his sentencing and he also had another summer working under Tim Grover in Chicago. From talking to people, that 50-game suspension was probably a blessing in disguise since it forced him to get the rest he needed since he was unnecessarily pushing his knee beyond the limits last season, according to sources, for the sole reason of trying to prove that he was back.

Seemingly taking a cue from Mike Shanahan and Albert Haynesworth, Flip Saunders is requiring every player to pass a conditioning exam before participating in training camp in two weeks. Saunders wants the Wizards to be a running team next season, so he is making his players run four sets of 10 full-court sprints, with 2 ½ minute breaks between each set. Guards have to complete each set in an average aggregate time of 57 seconds.

Arenas may have been less than enthusiastic about playing for the Wizards several months ago, but guess who was the first player to complete the conditioning exam? Yep, Arenas. According to a league source, he finished the first set in 42 seconds.

A few weeks ago, Leonsis wrote a blog post about well Arenas looked in a pickup game against an unnamed all-star guard (who turned out to be Chris Paul). But after last season, it's tough to get overly excited about how Arenas performs in a low pressure game with no spectators, since he had his moments in Chicago and at Barry Farm last summer and it led to him averaging 22 points and 7 assists for a team that was just 11-21 before that "mean" David Stern shut him down.

With Wall running the show, Arenas will be freed from the burden of balancing making decisions for the team and going for his. Now, Arenas can simply focus on scoring, which plays more into his natural instincts. With Arenas moving to shooting guard, he also won't have to worry about defending the quicker point guards in the league, ones like Tyreke Evans, who gave him so much trouble last season. Yes, the 6-foot-4 Arenas will have to contend with shooting guards who are much taller and stronger, but those bigger guards will also have to deal with him on the other end.

Saunders implemented a two-guard offense near the end of last season, and while he will use some of those plays, the plan is for Arenas to routinely spell Wall from ball-handing duties, especially if there comes a time when Wall gets overwhelmed. And, with a rookie point guard trying to handle Saunders's complicated offense and pressure from opposing teams looking to fluster him, you can bank on that happening a few times.

Arenas will be the highest paid player on the Wizards for the next four seasons, unless some team decides to take a chance on him in the interim, so he remains an important figure whose performance and behavior will always be heavily scrutinized. But as one team insider told me, Arenas doesn't have the "juice" he once had, having exhausted his good favor within the organization with that locker room incident.

There is the potential that Arenas will grow frustrated with a somewhat marginalized role. The team has several new pieces, but some of the holdovers are used to deferring to the veteran Arenas.

His fourth comeback will be underway in two weeks, but since the Wizards' fortunes no longer reside in Arenas's ability to play at an elite level, success will be measured mostly in his ability to conform. That still is a lot to expect of him.

Some fans may want Arenas to apologize or offer a better explanation -- because he still does have some 'splaining to do -- for that embarrassing gun escapade last season, but really, most just want to see that old magic again. Or at least something close, since there is reasonable doubt that those days will return.

By Michael Lee  | September 14, 2010; 10:37 AM ET
Categories:  Gilbert Arenas, Training camp concerns 2010-11  
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Next: Training camp concerns Part II: What will Andray Blatche do for an encore?

Comments

Gilbert makes more money than LeBron, expectations SHOULD be high.

Posted by: closg | September 14, 2010 10:45 AM | Report abuse

Not much mention in this article about defense. Guess that's not a topic to be discussed at length by someone who may want to interview Arenas now and then. It's not just PGs that Arenas can't guard -- he can't guard any NBA starter. Think zone if he's on the floor. The BIG topic of interest about him is when/if they can unload him and his cap-killing salary.

Posted by: dolph924 | September 14, 2010 10:52 AM | Report abuse

Wow! When are you beat writers going to let dude redeem himself. I have seen you on TV and it is obvious that Gilbert is not your favorite perosn. The bottom line is, no one knows what Gilbert is thinking,what he is feeling and how he will be on the team next year until that time comes or until he decides to speak. I believe in second chances and am not one to judge others. I hope and pray that he does well and maybe, just maybe, it will shut up his detractors. Until then, lets not speculate on his mindset on playing with Wall or his injury because none of knows what Gil is thinking or feeling since we can't read his mind and are not his doctors. I kind of wish that he would be realeased to play somewhere else. At least he would have a fresh start and not have to listen to this crap day after day after day. Get over it already! And yes, I was and still am a Gilbert and and yes, I am pulling for him.

Posted by: ivyleague | September 14, 2010 10:57 AM | Report abuse

Wow! When are you beat writers going to let dude redeem himself. I have seen you on TV and it is obvious that Gilbert is not your favorite person. It shows. Trust me. The bottom line is, no one knows what Gilbert is thinking,what he is feeling or how he will be on the team next year until that time comes or until he decides to speak. I believe in second chances and am not one to judge others. I hope and pray that he does well and maybe, just maybe, it will shut up his detractors. Until then, lets not speculate on his mindset on playing with Wall or his injury because none of us knows what Gil is thinking or feeling since we can't read his mind and are not his doctors. I kind of wish that he would be realeased to play somewhere else. At least he would have a fresh start and not have to listen to this crap day after day after day. Get over it already! And yes, I was and still am a Gilbert and and yes, I am pulling for him.

Posted by: ivyleague | September 14, 2010 11:03 AM | Report abuse

If Gil is taking 19shots/night the team is in trouble. He's going to have to accept not being the primary scorer at all times or we're headed in the wrong direction. And AB is going to have to get past the days when he automatically deferred to Gil. That in particular may be hard for him and NY, but in Blatche's case it's critical he is past the "watch Gil do what he do" offense

Posted by: divi3 | September 14, 2010 11:05 AM | Report abuse

@ivyleague,

You appear to have a death-grip on Arenas' sack. It's okay for people (in this case, Mike Lee) to state the obvious about Arenas. Please note that at no point did Mr. Lee state that Arenas CAN'T redeem himself or rehabilitate his image. It's all on Gilbert Arenas at this point and nothing that is written or said will change that simple fact. For the sake of your tendons and muscles, relax your grip!

Posted by: gtown85 | September 14, 2010 11:23 AM | Report abuse

I actually think if Arenas isn't attempting 19 shots or somewhere in that neighborhood the Wizards are in trouble. NBA teams averaged about 80 attempts per game last year. The uptempo teams averaged around 85. In my opinion Arenas should be getting 15-20 attempts, Wall, 10-15, and Blatche 15-20. The remaining 25-40 attempts should all be spot-ups, dish-offs or garbage buckets. If Josh Howard can come back and be decent (big if) then Blatche and Arenas should rein in their attempts to around 15 to get Howard involved.

Posted by: DonnyB | September 14, 2010 11:57 AM | Report abuse

If Gil helps the Wizards win, people will embrace him again. I for one still like the guy. For his faults, he really helped to make the Wizards a fun team to watch again after many years of suffering. He has also done a lot for the community. I'd love to see him as a success at the 2, along with Wall and the rest of his younger teammates.

Posted by: gophercrow | September 14, 2010 12:01 PM | Report abuse

I don't care all that much about the gun play, the pooping in teammates' shoes and other antics. The main thing for me is his basketball value. If he can demonstrate value, he can be moved.

All I want is a steady performer for the whole season, injury free, with a good shooting percentage and ability/willingness to play defense. If he becomes a good team leader, so much the better. I don't think Gil can be any of the above, but I want to be wrong about that, for sure.

Posted by: EdDC | September 14, 2010 12:11 PM | Report abuse

It appears to me that you seem to have a death grip on his jock or whatever you said. It would just be nice to read a little positivity on this blog some time. For this to be a blog about the Wizards of which I am a fan, it is mostly put downs of the players, Gilbert included. So, you get a friggin grip and lightnen up! I have a right to my opinion as do anyone who posts on this blog. That was MY opionion and unless I am barred from this site, when I feel like giving it, I will! How about that!!??

Posted by: ivyleague | September 14, 2010 12:12 PM | Report abuse

"You appear to have a death-grip on Arenas' sack."

Lol, that's funny. :)

Personally, I'm past it. I just want the Wiz to win now. Gil has to realize he's not "the man" on this team anymore and I don't think he can do that. He will not be asked to run the show anymore.

Last year before the whole gun thing, Flip would tell Gil to do something and then Gil would just do his own thing anyway.

This is what I am most concerned about.

Sounds like another overpaid player in DC doesn't it??

We shall see....

- Ray

Posted by: rmcazz | September 14, 2010 12:22 PM | Report abuse

-Gil needs to issue a sincere public apology to the wiz organization, teamates, fans and the NBA and take 100% blame for his actions last year. Keep it short and simple and get Ted's blessings.

-Fans need to forgive and move on.

-Then Gil needs to go out on the court and strive to be the best 2 guard in the NBA DEFENSIVELY & offensively.

Posted by: Stevie-J | September 14, 2010 12:22 PM | Report abuse

This blog reads more like the
Enquirer than Sports Illustrated.

Posted by: bobilly1 | September 14, 2010 12:23 PM | Report abuse

Gilbert makes more money than LeBron, expectations SHOULD be high.

Posted by: closg | September 14, 2010 10:45 AM |
--------------------------------------
While this is true, What has lebroon delived in the last 4 years? I think any reference to Lebron so called greatnest should alway be cosidered in the light of his never taking a team to the finals. At this stage in his career, he is way too overated!(imo)

Posted by: bazteal | September 14, 2010 12:25 PM | Report abuse

"Posted by: ivyleague | September 14, 2010 12:12 PM"

Yeah, keep cajoling posters to "lets not speculate on his mindset or his health", yet YOU do it all the time when you talk about his wanting to prove himself, show that he can still play, etc. Further, you somehow magically wedge yourself into the heads and hearts of reporters and know that they don't like Arenas because "it's so obvious.... It shows. Trust me". We trust you. Lol.

It appears that the only "opinion" you want to hear or see is yours. Post away!

Posted by: gtown85 | September 14, 2010 12:43 PM | Report abuse

Dude,whatever! It is just not that serious! LMAO

Posted by: ivyleague | September 14, 2010 12:54 PM | Report abuse

I can't stand MeBron, but he did take his team to the finals and then they got roundly trounced and sent home.

Posted by: restonhoops | September 14, 2010 12:58 PM | Report abuse

Let me start with this, I don't think Gil will ever be a great defender.

What he lacked was desire or energy. In the past, he carried a lot of the offensive workload, so he could have been coasting some on dee.

I do think he will be better at staying in front of 2-guards than 1's because of the quickness factor. Running around screens is a different story, but still, he should be better defending 2's.

Which brings me back to his workload. He will not have to be the primary ball-handler. He will not have to play as many minutes either. His energy level on defense should pick up because the decrease in workload. He has no excuse.

Hopefully he will.

Will Gil play defense at the 2-spot.....to be continued.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 14, 2010 12:58 PM | Report abuse

gtown85

So if we arent negative about the dude we must be ridding his nutz. How about a little in between. I wish him well as well as the team and hopes he plays up to his old self. If thats hugging his nutz so be it.

Posted by: ged0386 | September 14, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

gtown85

You guys take yourselves way too seriously on these blogs. Get a real life.

Posted by: ged0386 | September 14, 2010 1:05 PM | Report abuse

"Posted by: ged0386 | September 14, 2010 1:04 PM"

Lol! In between would be nice. Ivyleague won't go for it though. LMAO.

Posted by: gtown85 | September 14, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

Mike, Just so I can get this straight, 22 points and 7 assists was a disappointment???

Of the big three, Arenas appeared to be the one that was working hard to conform to Flip's offense. He didn't display his past talent as a "finisher", but it didn't appear he had really regained his game legs yet.

He pulled one of the all time boneheaded mistakes that I've seen, then he laughed it off as a joke. It cost the guy a lot, and he's still paying in lost endorsement income. So for those that wonder if he "gets it", I'd imagine he does, it hit him squarely in the hip pocket.

Gil came into the league as a shut down defender, back in his GS days he was brought off the bench to shut guys down and he could do it. Then Eddie Jordan re-made Gil into a high scoring point guard.

We can preach defense all day long. Haven't ever seen a defender get a 100m + contract. Defense may win championships, offense puts the average fan in the seats. Owners pay for players that put those fannies in the seats. Can't blame Gil for concentrating on what gave him the big payday.

My quess is that Gil is the least of Flip's problems right now. J Wall maybe just the right guy at the right time for Gil. I'd look for Gil to flourish in his new role with his new running mate. For J Wall it's an ideal situation, he's going to rack up assists to Gil and it's going to be almost impossible overplay Wall with pressure.

Hinrich is Flip's big play card just sitting there in his hip pocket. He'll push both Gil and Wall in camp, he's an "in your shorts" defender that everybody hates to play and will compete at every opportunity. Guard's not where this team's questions are.

The questions about this team abound in the frontcourt. Can McGee make the move from seldom used reserve to fulltime starter? Can Blatche rebound from what for some has become a chronic problem and show that he can produce for a whole season?

Big men and stress fractures in feet can derail a career. With the Wiz's starstruck injury history, I'm holding my breath on Blatche.

Can Yi become the player everybody thought he'd be? Can Booker be productive as an undersized power foward? Or, can he make the slide over to the 3? As we saw with McGuire, it's not always an easy switch.
Is Hilton Armstrong a late bloomer? He was in college, does he repeat the feat in the pro's?

How quickly and completely does Howard recover? Can Al Thorton play with consistancy rather then dazzle with potential and then disappear for a week?
Can Nick Young ever be more then a streaky scorer?

And lastly the French Connection; Does N'Diaye even get a contract? Or do the Wizards plan to hold onto his rights while he "matures" overseas?

And Seraphin, the biggest question of all. The guy has shown huge potential and talent in little snipets of YouTube postings. But he's competed at a low level of European competition. Nobody knows how good he really is and how long it will take to develop him.
GM

Posted by: flohrtv | September 14, 2010 1:44 PM | Report abuse

Trade Arenas Trade Arenas Trade Arenas
Trade Arenas Trade Arenas Trade Arenas
Trade Arenas Trade Arenas Trade Arenas
Trade Arenas Trade Arenas Trade Arenas
Trade Arenas Trade Arenas Trade Arenas
Trade Arenas Trade Arenas Trade Arenas
Trade Arenas Trade Arenas Trade Arenas

Posted by: firemetalrat | September 14, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse

I kind of wish that he would be realeased to play somewhere else. At least he would have a fresh start and not have to listen to this crap day after day after day. Get over it already!
Posted by: ivyleague

It might be less in another town (probably would be less anywhere except maybe NY or Philly), but he'll hear the same crap anywhere until he proves otherwise. Same as any player does. Did the 'crap' about Terrell Owens stop once he left Philly? Or Dallas? It really didn't stop until his demeanor changed and he dropped off of the radar in Buffalo for a year. If Cincy starts having a lot of success (or failure) this year and he gets more spotlight, will the classic TO return?

Gil has definitely (so far) changed his demeanor this offseason (less blogging / tweeting, etc). Whether the underlying behavior has changed does remain to be seen.

Aside from that, Gil is already getting his second (third? fourth?) chance. And even if he goofs up again, he'll likely keep getting chances because he's talented and they owe him too much money to write off.

I do hope he's a changed person, both on the court and off, and I do hope for the best, but my empathy for his plight only goes so far because all of the damage done to him, with the exception of the original knee injury, is self-inflicted. Forgiving Gilbert is a totally reasonable and warranted response. But 'forgetting' isn't warranted and does no service to the Wizards community or to Gil himself.

Posted by: ts35 | September 14, 2010 1:50 PM | Report abuse

Than don't forget the good Gil has done either, for the team and community.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 14, 2010 1:55 PM | Report abuse

The good thing about Gilbert is no matter how bad he has been the past few seasons, you know he is going to come out shooting! Uh, I mean, he'll come out guns blazing! Uhh....uhh... well you know what I mean.

Posted by: Max_in_Missouri | September 14, 2010 1:59 PM | Report abuse

Gil came into the league as a shut down defender, back in his GS days he was brought off the bench to shut guys down and he could do it. Then Eddie Jordan re-made Gil into a high scoring point guard.
Posted by: flohrtv

I'm sorry, but there's no legit excuse for Gil's D. He's athletic, and as you said, capable. So there's no excuse for his lack of effort or attention on D. Kobe plays D, LeBron plays D, Durant has even begun to focus on D. MJ is one of the top defenders of all time. When you are a player as offensively capable as Arenas, you can get by playing average D and people will overlook it. Being one of the worst at your position, however, is not acceptable. Not giving appropriate effort is not acceptable.

To your point of getting paid....well, he's paid now. To having had to focus on running the offense....JWall is here.

I guess he's out of excuses.

Posted by: ts35 | September 14, 2010 2:02 PM | Report abuse

Given the fact Gil has eschewed defense for years and is now on a bum knee, perhaps it would be better to accept he is what he is in that regard.

Posted by: divi3 | September 14, 2010 2:04 PM | Report abuse

Than don't forget the good Gil has done either, for the team and community.

Posted by: G-Man11

I haven't. My opinion on Gil has remained largely unchanged for a long time now....that he's generally a ok guy who has judgement or boundary issues. That's why I say that forgiving him is totally warranted, and forgetting does him no service.

Posted by: ts35 | September 14, 2010 2:09 PM | Report abuse

Given the fact Gil has eschewed defense for years and is now on a bum knee, perhaps it would be better to accept he is what he is in that regard.

Posted by: divi3 | September 14, 2010 2:04 PM

If that 'bum knee' keeps him from getting his on offense, then yes, he is what he is. Conversely, if there are no signs of physical limitations, then Flip should absolutely hold his feet to the fire for not giving effort on defense.

Posted by: tgif11 | September 14, 2010 2:10 PM | Report abuse

This statement concerns me the most. "Arenas is taking on a different role with the Wizards this season, with the arrival of John Wall forcing him to become a complementary star. How Arenas will respond to the attention Wall receives is still a concern to some within the organization." It seems like the Wizards are in such a hurry to make Wall the face of the Wizards when nothing has been decided on the court. Let Gill and John work out how they play together on the court and who cares who the face of the Wizards is going to be as long as we win.

Posted by: 33dgriffin | September 14, 2010 2:14 PM | Report abuse

its been proven that Gil works best with another complimentary guard. see Larry Hughes and Antonio Daniels. defensively as well.
And I do agree with IvyLeaguer and some other folks that it does seem like Mike Lee has some against Gilbert. Maybe Gil blew off lunch at Clydes with Lee or something. He does ask fair questions but they seem a bit contrived.
The biggest question mark of the season is the swingman position. We really have no viable scorers outside of Gil and Wall, especially with Howard hurt.

Posted by: ryjufox3 | September 14, 2010 2:17 PM | Report abuse

its been proven that Gil works best with another complimentary guard. see Larry Hughes and Antonio Daniels. defensively as well.
And I do agree with IvyLeaguer and some other folks that it does seem like Mike Lee has some against Gilbert. Maybe Gil blew off lunch at Clydes with Lee or something. He does ask fair questions but they seem a bit contrived.
The biggest question mark of the season is the swingman position. We really have no viable scorers outside of Gil and Wall, especially with Howard hurt.

Posted by: ryjufox3 | September 14, 2010 2:17 PM | Report abuse

Given the fact Gil has eschewed defense for years and is now on a bum knee, perhaps it would be better to accept he is what he is in that regard.

Posted by: divi3

Why? If he's not as capable of being a good defender because of his knee, that's one thing, but why should anyone accept a lack of effort?

More so than offense, good defense is ultimately about teamwork. Every one doing what they're supposed to and trusting their teammates to do the same. I can accept that someone isn't physically capable, I can't abide someone not giving the effort. Especially for someone who will still be a team leader or example.

Posted by: ts35 | September 14, 2010 2:18 PM | Report abuse

Arenas didn't do the necessary PR work over the summer. He should of had at least one of those powderpuff interviews, with follow ups by a local reporter or two. Right now there are people waiting to drop, "Do you still think you're owed an apology?"

Posted by: djnnnou | September 14, 2010 2:19 PM | Report abuse

Lateral movement is key to defense and it seems unlikely those are the stresses Gil is going to now want to put on his 3x repaired knee. Personally i dont care that much how he plays D if he comes back as an efficient scorer that gives the opposition fits....not every guy on the floor has to be a good defender

Posted by: divi3 | September 14, 2010 2:22 PM | Report abuse

...not every guy on the floor has to be a good defender

Posted by: divi3 | September 14, 2010 2:22 PM

Does everyone have to at least try?

Posted by: tgif11 | September 14, 2010 2:24 PM | Report abuse

I haven't. My opinion on Gil has remained largely unchanged for a long time now....that he's generally a ok guy who has judgement or boundary issues. That's why I say that forgiving him is totally warranted, and forgetting does him no service.

Posted by: ts35

For the most part, we all have those issues. I don't think none of us obey the letter of the law in all aspects of the law, all the time. I think Gil's issues go beyond that. I really think he has rejection issues(Mary Francis Robinson related)that drive him to crave attention. If my mother abandoned me in room #9, it may have affected me too.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 14, 2010 2:25 PM | Report abuse

Gilbert makes more money than LeBron, expectations SHOULD be high.

Posted by: closg | September 14, 2010 10:45 AM | Report abuse

No he does not.

Gilbert signed for 111 and lebron signed for 110. True. But seriously, are you kidding me, LeBron is on his way to becoming the first Billionare Athlete. He signed 100 mil contract with nike like 7 years ago. either way they both make waaay more than I do so whatever.

Posted by: 15600_sknfan | September 14, 2010 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Gilbert makes more money than LeBron, expectations SHOULD be high.

Posted by: closg | September 14, 2010 10:45 AM | Report abuse

No he does not.

Gilbert signed for 111 and lebron signed for 110. True. But seriously, are you kidding me, LeBron is on his way to becoming the first Billionare Athlete. He signed 100 mil contract with nike like 7 years ago. either way they both make waaay more than I do so whatever.

Posted by: 15600_sknfan | September 14, 2010 2:30 PM | Report abuse

Lateral movement is key to defense and it seems unlikely those are the stresses Gil is going to now want to put on his 3x repaired knee. Personally i dont care that much how he plays D if he comes back as an efficient scorer that gives the opposition fits....not every guy on the floor has to be a good defender

Posted by: divi3

You don't play a doctor on TV, but you did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night? He needs pretty much that same kind of lateral movement to give defenders fits on the offensive end. If his knee is stable enough to play great offense, it's stable enough to play good defense.

Not every guy has to be a good defender, but every guy has to give effort on D. Otherwise it doesn't work....as it hasn't here for years.

Posted by: ts35 | September 14, 2010 2:33 PM | Report abuse

If they could I'm sure they would've traded him. That is honestly what is best for the Wiz and Arenas... And personally I would love it as well..

But since that seems unlikely, at least not now, I am interested in seeing how well he conforms to this being Wall's team. I for one don't think Gilbert can be effective @ the 2. I think he has essentially and officially put himself in the "tweener" position. Too small to be a 2(that combined that he just doesnt and will not play D) and now much too slow to be the 1. He went from being a top 3 PG to well in the MAYBE bottom half of the top 10.

Just a mess of a situation. We are rebuilding and the main block that needed to be removed from the foundation can't be moved. Maybe if he has an excellent 1st half some team will need his services and we can get about with our rebuild effort.

In the meantime, can we get a name change back to the Bullets...

Posted by: kevenjones | September 14, 2010 2:44 PM | Report abuse

For the most part, we all have those issues
Posted by: G-Man11

Ummmm, maybe? But somewhere along the way, we all figure out what's acceptable and what isn't. Up until now, GA hasn't quite demonstrated that yet. Not unless someone established "Bring A Gun To Work" Day and forgot to tell me.

And I'm not trying to psychoanalyze Gil or whatever issues he may have, mommy or otherwise. We all have things in life we go through, but it doesn't excuse us from how we behave.

He's done his time for the court and the NBA, and deserves to come back and resume his career. But his behavior over the course of his career has earned him the increased scrutiny he will receive.

Posted by: ts35 | September 14, 2010 2:46 PM | Report abuse

Hog Wash Michael,

Lucy has some 'splaining to do. Arenas is a basketball player and a man, a human being.

He does not deserve the ridicule from mean-spirited fans. And raise up of "IVY League" too.

Gilbert didn't shoot anybody. He laid the guns out and said if you are going to shoot me; pick one, and he had his own. In Texas everybody (little kids even) carry weapons (fire arms).

This was simply Gilbert's way of saying I am not afraid of you. Our as "we" say it, "I ain't no punk.

What he did wasn't that wrong and he does not owe me or anyone else and apology.
Be a man!

Gilbert Arenas is one of the best players in the whole league and he is well rested and ready to lead "His" team to the play-offs.

Whether you like it or not, Wall is a kid and he needs Gilbert moreso than anyone else in the whole world to help him develop into a star.

Gilbert can protect him from the Bully's (Rough-play) because nobody can check Gilbert. They can't hack Wall if Gil's got the ball and because Gilbert ain't no punk.

Mr. Arenas is the kind of man that I would want on my team. We are talking Pro-Ball here; not selling girlscout cookies.

And since ya'll like to call names, all of you "Player-Hater's" are a bunch of babies. You act like little children fighting and arguing.

We just got of work, let's relax and enjoy life and be good to each other. The Wiz is going to be "HOT" this year, enjoy it.

I Love all ya'll!

Peace & Blessing, Chef John

Posted by: upscalechef | September 14, 2010 2:49 PM | Report abuse

@15600_sknfan

Gil makes like 17.7 a year. LeBron 14.5

Posted by: kevenjones | September 14, 2010 2:51 PM | Report abuse

My guess is Wall and Gilbert will jell just fine. Not only is there the positive Larry Hughes experience, Gilbert liked it when Randy Foye was being aggressive and taking some of the load off. They had it going there for a little while. I think the challenge is keeping the Blatche momentum going--getting him involved early and keeping him at the 4.

Posted by: jweber1 | September 14, 2010 2:51 PM | Report abuse

actually you are wrong about that, maybe you should stay at a Holiday Inn. Reacting to another player's movement causes more stress than initiating movements of your own. You dont break your own ankles attempting a crossover move, you break someone else's. Also you can be a great offensive player with marginal lateral movement but not a good defender (see: Steve Nash).

Yeah he should put forth effort on defense, I'm just not expecting much in that dept and am much more concerned with him becoming an efficient scorer and playmaker. Sure the true greats like Kobe and Lebron play great O and D....but we are years past the point of hoping Gil gets to their level so there isnt much need to reference them (or MJ etc) when evaluating Arenas.

Posted by: divi3 | September 14, 2010 2:55 PM | Report abuse

Ideally, Gil comes off the bench as a premium 6th man and plays 25-30 minutes a game as I much prefer Hinrich's defensive intensity as a way to set the tone for this team. That way Gil can see if he has it going and partially avoid defending the other team's starting 2 guard. However, 80 million $$ is a lot for a 6th man, and if we are ever going to send him away, he's going to need major minutes to prove he's still worth something. Oh, and there's his ego thing as well...

Posted by: mugsybol | September 14, 2010 2:55 PM | Report abuse

Michael Lee your are my favorite sports writer, but you are going to have to raise-up off of Gilbert Arenas.

As a matter of fact from now on; I only want to hear negative comments from people whom can beat Gilbert in a game of one-on-one. That ought to shut ya'll up. I love everybody but I am just tired of hearing everyone talk about Arenas as if:

1. They never did anything wrong. I am a devout Christian and I sin so I nooooo...
some of you guys are doing crazy stuff.

...and

2. Your acting like he can't smoke the "draws" off aanybody who tries to check him. The boy is an assasin with a basketball. Remember that.

Thanks Mike for the opportunity the blog and vent.

Peace-out, John

Posted by: upscalechef | September 14, 2010 3:00 PM | Report abuse

@Chef John,

You really believe Gil is one of the best player's in the league? Seriously. He ain't even one of the best players in the East and for that matter every team in the souteast outside of Charoltte has 3 players I would take over Gil...

But if you mean he is one of the highest paid players in the league, yeah then you're correct.

I think Gil can still score but that' all you're gonna get from him, and his contract number is too big just to be a scorer. He can't teach Wall a damn thing about being a professional because he has NEVER conducted himself as a professional.

Hopefully, Wall can look at him and see what not to do. That was one of my initial concerns. I don't want Wall learning anything except what not to do (which is important) from Gil.

Posted by: kevenjones | September 14, 2010 3:03 PM | Report abuse

Ummmm, maybe? But somewhere along the way, we all figure out what's acceptable and what isn't. Up until now, GA hasn't quite demonstrated that yet. Not unless someone established "Bring A Gun To Work" Day and forgot to tell me.

And I'm not trying to psychoanalyze Gil or whatever issues he may have, mommy or otherwise. We all have things in life we go through, but it doesn't excuse us from how we behave.

He's done his time for the court and the NBA, and deserves to come back and resume his career. But his behavior over the course of his career has earned him the increased scrutiny he will receive.

Posted by: ts35

But he brought the guns to work as a joke. Period. The judge came up to the same conclusion too. I never heard of any bullets in his guns. Was it a bad joke, sure, but those things happen. Things go on in the lockerroom all the time. Outrageous stuff. Gil ain't the only person in the NBA to dump in somebody's shoe. They are a lot alike. There are a lot of millionaire boys in the NBA. Gil is a millionaire boy with issues. It still was a joke.

It may not be you cause I don't know, but the #1 reason people are hating on Gil is that they wanted him locked up and him to lose his contract over a joke. They need to get over it.

If you took a poll when Gil was a free agent, most of the wizards fans would vote to have resigned Gil, while injured. They did. Wiz fans for years have complained about the Wiz medical staff. Yet when Gil doesn't trust the staff, and rehab's his knee, not your knee, not my knee, his own knee with advise from his doctor's, people find fault. Why aren't they complaining that Gil was working out in Chicago with Grover? Grover aint paid by the Wiz.

The real thing is people around here gonna complain about Gil no matter what, and the main reason is that joke.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 14, 2010 3:17 PM | Report abuse

In the meantime, can we get a name change back to the Bullets...

Posted by: kevenjones | September 14, 2010 2:44 PM


Can't do that as long as Arenas is with the team. Would 'Washington Unloadeds' appease you?

Posted by: roscoepcalhounbrownjriii | September 14, 2010 3:20 PM | Report abuse

KevenJones

He can't teach him to practice either, I guess.

Name those 3 players from each team in the east that you would take over Gil, salary aside.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 14, 2010 3:20 PM | Report abuse

gil can still ball at an elite offensive level and this team will be fun to watch, but winning will be hard without any bulk inside, we will be able to run teams out of the building on some nights but those 65-70 other games will be tough

Posted by: bford1kb | September 14, 2010 3:26 PM | Report abuse

actually you are wrong about that, maybe you should stay at a Holiday Inn. Reacting to another player's movement causes more stress than initiating movements of your own. You dont break your own ankles attempting a crossover move, you break someone else's. Also you can be a great offensive player with marginal lateral movement but not a good defender (see: Steve Nash).

Ahh, supporting your science with the "Allen Iverson Ankle-Breaking Study" well done, well done. By the way, I don't think they mean that literally. But also, that specific comment was directed more towards the idea that personally I don't know how much lateral ability GA has lost, since I'm not a doctor, more specifically his doctor, or even trainer, but clearly you do.

My general issue with pretty much all of your assessments of 'defenders' is that they are predicated on one-on-one defense and athleticism and don't really factor in team responsibilities, team defense or technique. Like, for example, if I know I can't stay in front of a guy, can I at least direct him the right way for help? Do I know a guy's tendencies? If he likes to go right, can I at least try to make him go left? If the defensive game plan calls for me to try to make him go left, can my teammates count on that, so they know what they need to do and don't get left hanging out to dry when I let him go right? All of those would fall under the 'effort' column and really don't play into what shape his knee is in. Because if he's healthy enough to play offense, he's healthy enough to play defense.


Posted by: ts35 | September 14, 2010 3:27 PM | Report abuse

Because he's young and trying to say and do all the right things right now, what are you all going to do when Walls has a transgression somewhere in the future while a Wizard? Are you going to throw him under the bus too? These are human beings and subject to the same "failures and faults" that we all have. Gil was not malicious, does not owe an apology, has served his suspension and time and paid enormously. Get over it. I'll take 22 pts and 7 asst. Gil is the least of our concerns. Whenever he steps on the court I never have to question his heart or his competitive juices. I never have to question his work ethic in the offseason. Even after the initial knee injury he over-rehabbed to make it back sooner rather that later. Prior to the gun prank the worst that could be said about Arenas was that he was a prankster. We have just forgotton how good he was because he has not played in a while. Forget about his salary. You aren't paying it!!

Posted by: garrybrown | September 14, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

@G-Man11
Orlando
Dwight Howard
Jameer Nelson
Rashard Lewis

Miami (obvious)

Atlanta
Joe Johnson
Josh Smith
Jamal Crawford
Marvin Williams (maybe)

You telling me (like you said salary aside) you wouldn't trade Gil for any of these players. If You were picking a team you would select Gil ahead of who on this list?

But in reality it ain't salary aside. The salary is one of the main problems. Gil is a role player. Not an elite player. And role player's don't make 100 mil

Posted by: kevenjones | September 14, 2010 3:38 PM | Report abuse

G-Man11,

Don't forget the part where he blamed the Wizards medical staff for 'letting him' come back too soon. Including the part where he told the media he was starting before talking to his coach. I don't think Gil is a bad human being, but let's not whitewash it either.

The guns may have been, mostly like were, an inappropriate joke, but that's my point. He hasn't seemed to have that internal mechanism that clicks in all (most) of our heads that says "Hmmm, maybe this isn't a good idea." Some people have that inherently, some have to learn it. The way you learn it is by consequences and feedback from other people. That's what he's going through now. He probably should have gotten more of it sooner from the organization, at least I think so. But, regardless, as someone who sought the spotlight, the feedback is equally magnified. It's his due for the life that he chose. He didn't back away from the over-the-top adulation that was showered upon him, and so he has to just accept the reciprocal level of negativity that comes with that.

Posted by: ts35 | September 14, 2010 3:42 PM | Report abuse

What he did wasn't that wrong and he does not owe me or anyone else and apology.

What Arenas did was a felony. That certainly makes it "wrong" in my book, although I do have to say that I personally don't care whether he "apologizes" to his fans or not.

I do, however, care very much whether or not he attempts to play defense. As many here have pointed out, there is really no physical reason why he shouldn't at least make an effort in that direction.

Posted by: nmik | September 14, 2010 3:43 PM | Report abuse

so I guess you're saying Steve Nash is a bad defender due to lack of effort and a poor attitude about it? Because he's considered amongst the league's worst, and since according to you it's just as much about attitude and effort as physical ability...he's must be ignoring his responsibilities right?

Posted by: divi3 | September 14, 2010 3:46 PM | Report abuse

I qestion Mike Lee's basketball analysis and his character as a reporter. The easy method is to trash a perceived unpopular guy with untrue statements. He did not flop in multiple comebaks, he only had one legitimate comeback and that was last year. If you objectively watched the games, you saw consistent improvement in Arenas's play as the season progressed. Even the game before his suspension, he had a 19 point, 14 assist effort in the win at Philadelphia. Get real, 22 and 7 at the NBA level after a 2 year hiatus ain't bad. The record that the team had was not all his fault as you had a washed up undersized 4, a role player at the 2 and a 3 man who was all about himself.

This team will need Arenas because irrespective of John Wall's skill/athleticism, inexperience and an unpolished offensive game will dictate that Arenas is the go to guy in the fourth quarter, where it becomes a half court game in the NBA. All reports on Arenas are that he is in better shape than last year and that his knee is stronger. Put all of this in the context of a guy coming off a 22/7 season after a 2-3 year layoff and the most biased anti-Arenas fan would have to be optimistic.

On the personal side, Gilbert does not need to apologize to me. I am of the belief that he has paid handsomely as others have alluded to in this blog. He has been conspicuosly quiet and has kept the proper low profile.

We got something here that could be good and to tinker with this again would be stupid. With help in th post and at the 3 spot we should be compettitive on a nightly basis. The playoffs are clearely in reach.

Posted by: NewManagement | September 14, 2010 3:51 PM | Report abuse

garrybrown,

If Wall brings four guns to the locker room and plays the "prank" that Gil did with them, the fans would be upset with Wall too.

Gil is a knucklehead. If not for his enormous contract, he'd be out of here. You know it. I know it. The best we can hope is that things work out from this point forward.

Posted by: roscoepcalhounbrownjriii | September 14, 2010 3:56 PM | Report abuse

Steve Nash is a poor defender due to physical limitations. He's not quick, he has a slight build and he can't jump. None of those attributes describe Arenas. Those no reason for Arenas to be a bad defender. Nice try, divi3.

Posted by: roscoepcalhounbrownjriii | September 14, 2010 4:04 PM | Report abuse

With Flippy the clown as head coach, and Ernie 'the Nose' as GM, Wiz fans can expect about 30 wins and nice comfortable seat (at home) for the playoffs.

Posted by: guisher | September 14, 2010 4:04 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: NewManagement | September 14, 2010 3:51 PM

Way to pick and choose your 'facts', dude. Whether you like it or not, Arenas has had multiple comebacks, with each ending in failure due to reasons both in and outside of his control. Even the most biased Arenas fan would have to admit that he had an uneven season last year. Good games, bad games, mediocre games, etc. Personally, it looked like he had issues with his ballhandling and finishing at the rim ALL of his abbreviated season.

At his very best, Arenas is a second- or third-tier all star. Nothing wrong with that.

Posted by: bobabuie | September 14, 2010 4:13 PM | Report abuse

@guisher,

I'm with you. I think Flip is a really nice guyt but this team needs a Shanahan type no nonsense coach. That BS Blatche pulled then started the next game is Bogus and a major part of the other stuff that is wrong with this team. Too much horesplay and clowning around. Think that goes on in Utah, Lakers, Boston,etc..?

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

But with LeBron going to Miami, Cleveland is lottery bound so the east is weak enough that this team could get the 8th spot. I doubt it but it is possible.

My playoff teams for upcoming season are:

Boston (Will win the East)
Orlando
Miami
Chicago
Atlanta
Milwaukee
New York
New Jersey (but wiz could get this spot)

Posted by: kevenjones | September 14, 2010 4:21 PM | Report abuse

so I guess you're saying Steve Nash is a bad defender due to lack of effort and a poor attitude about it? Because he's considered amongst the league's worst, and since according to you it's just as much about attitude and effort as physical ability...he's must be ignoring his responsibilities right?

Posted by: divi3

Steve Nash is a bad defender among a group of bad defenders for a team that has never been terribly focused on defense (kinda like the Wiz). So it really wouldn't matter if Nash executed any or all of his responsibilities because it's not like Amare was executing his. But I would hope that even among that, Nash is attempting to execute his part of the defensive game plan.

Since I'm sure you would agree that pre-injury, Arenas was athletically superior to Nash, it's kind of telling that even then they both were rated among the worst at their position. So Arenas was taller, stronger, at least as quick, with apparently better lateral movement than Nash, and was still just as crappy a defender. What does that tell you?

What I am saying is the following:

1) If Gil is healthy enough to play offense, he's healthy enough to play defense. Period.

2) I don't care if Gil is capable of being a good individual defender as long as he gives good effort on defense and pays attention to his team defensive responsibilities. Something he has failed to do imo over most of his time in DC. Though Lord knows, he was not alone in that regard. Imo, AJ was worse. Because good defense is more about the team than the individual.

Pick any great defensive team and I can pick out guys who were not great individual defenders. But the defense works because they did what they were asked to do within the team defensive concept. That's all I'm asking Gil to do. Given where this team is right now, and what they are trying to accomplish in terms of establishing a winning culture, that's the standard they should hold all players to.

Posted by: ts35 | September 14, 2010 4:26 PM | Report abuse

Michael Lee your are my favorite sports writer, but you are going to have to raise-up off of Gilbert Arenas.

As a matter of fact from now on; I only want to hear negative comments from people whom can beat Gilbert in a game of one-on-one. That ought to shut ya'll up. I love everybody but I am just tired of hearing everyone talk about Arenas as if:

1. They never did anything wrong. I am a devout Christian and I sin so I nooooo...
some of you guys are doing crazy stuff.

...and

2. Your acting like he can't smoke the "draws" off aanybody who tries to check him. The boy is an assasin with a basketball. Remember that.

Thanks Mike for the opportunity the blog and vent.

Peace-out, John

Posted by: upscalechef | September 14, 2010 4:32 PM | Report abuse

Michael Lee your are my favorite sports writer, but you are going to have to raise-up off of Gilbert Arenas.

As a matter of fact from now on; I only want to hear negative comments from people whom can beat Gilbert in a game of one-on-one. That ought to shut ya'll up. I love everybody but I am just tired of hearing everyone talk about Arenas as if:

1. They never did anything wrong. I am a devout Christian and I sin so I nooooo...
some of you guys are doing crazy stuff.

...and

2. Your acting like he can't smoke the "draws" off aanybody who tries to check him. The boy is an assasin with a basketball. Remember that.

Thanks Mike for the opportunity the blog and vent.

Peace-out, John

Posted by: upscalechef | September 14, 2010 4:32 PM | Report abuse

@divi3

And furthermore, defensive effort is contagious, especially if your best players are the ones leading the effort.

Posted by: ts35 | September 14, 2010 4:37 PM | Report abuse

@upscalechef,

Your post was silly the first time you posted it. Arenas is an assasin with the basketball? I guess that's why he had all those turnovers last year and got stuffed so many times at the rim. He's a real killer. The Agent Zero days are over. Most of us would settle for him being a nice 6th man since he only plays at one end of the court. Jeez.

Posted by: bobabuie | September 14, 2010 4:40 PM | Report abuse

"If they could I'm sure they would've traded him."

100% correct, and that could still happen.

- Ray

Posted by: rmcazz | September 14, 2010 5:18 PM | Report abuse


I'm hopeful Gilbert will start out well. But if the team goes into a slump then we'll see how he handles things. For Gilbert's sake, if he wants to be traded, he HAS to play well regardless of the teams performance if he wants to be traded to another team. So that is why I'm hopeful Gilbert will do well this season..lol

Posted by: rcnasa | September 14, 2010 5:28 PM | Report abuse

"Get real, 22 and 7 at the NBA level after a 2 year hiatus ain't bad. The record that the team had was not all his fault as you had a washed up undersized 4, a role player at the 2 and a 3 man who was all about himself. posted by NewManagement"

I thought Gilbert's performance was exceptional in that he approached his career numbers after a two year layoff. That's hard to do. He clearly wasn't the dominant offensive player he had been before the injury, however.

But don't forget, Gil only played 32 games. That's less than half the season. The team's record didn't improve substantially as a result of his presence, either. And we can't ignore that he involved himself in a major scandal that embarrassed his team and the NBA as a whole. Put that altogether, and you've got a year worth forgetting.

Personally, I believe that Leonsis would take any reasonably worthy trade offer. Ted has pointed out that most GMs aren't willing to deal with Gil's contract, and the discussions don't go much farther than that. So the Wiz are prepared to make the best of it, at least for another year.

It's just a bad contract situation and there's no easy solution. If Gil plays well, we're lucky. If he gets hurt again, or decides to dog it on the court, we're not. It's vaguely similar to what the Skins are dealing with in terms of Haynesworth -- not quite as acrimonious, yet.

Posted by: Samson151 | September 14, 2010 6:18 PM | Report abuse


kevenjones,

I don't see how you can have the Magic over the Heat. Last yr the Magic had tons of trouble with the Celtics big 3 but your implying they can handle the Heat's big three? The heat will be the number 1 seed, the Celtics into the 3 or 4 seed.

You seem to be drinking the kool-aid... so teams like the 76er's, Pacers, Bobcats will be out played by the Knicks, Nets, and Wizards??

Posted by: rcnasa | September 14, 2010 6:22 PM | Report abuse

" Gilbert didn't shoot anybody. He laid the guns out and said if you are going to shoot me; pick one, and he had his own. In Texas everybody (little kids even) carry weapons (fire arms).This was simply Gilbert's way of saying I am not afraid of you. Our as "we" say it, "I ain't no punk.What he did wasn't that wrong and he does not owe me or anyone else and apology.Be a man!"

See, this is what they mean by enabler. Here's a guy who's so far into being a fan he's completely lost perspective. If Gilbert had shot somebody, he'd be talking about the guy probably deserved it.

Ever see that film, "Big Fan"? About a Giants fan who discovers what his hero is really like. For this poster it should be required viewing.

This ain't 'The Wire', fella. This is the NBA. There are kids watching.

Posted by: Samson151 | September 14, 2010 6:25 PM | Report abuse

Link to film 'Big Fan' --

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big_Fan

Posted by: Samson151 | September 14, 2010 6:25 PM | Report abuse

It's just a bad contract situation and there's no easy solution. If Gil plays well, we're lucky. If he gets hurt again, or decides to dog it on the court, we're not. It's vaguely similar to what the Skins are dealing with in terms of Haynesworth -- not quite as acrimonious, yet.

Posted by: Samson151 | September 14, 2010 6:18 PM | Report abuse

Come on Samson, the Arenas
and Haynesworth situations are polar opposites. Forget the dumb move that Arenas has already paid for, he has never been accused or proven to be lazy or not dedicated to his craft. His aborted comebacks were mpre likely caused by overwork than laziness. Haynesworth is clearly lazy, not dedicated and a problem in the locker room. If this reporters facts are correct, Gibert has already exceeded the teams conditioning standard by 15 seconds. We still don't know whether Haynesworth has raelly passed his test yet.

Posted by: NewManagement | September 14, 2010 6:30 PM | Report abuse

Yeah Samson151, you of all folks know that Gilbert and Big Al are not in any way the same.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | September 14, 2010 7:08 PM | Report abuse

"Yeah Samson151, you of all folks know that Gilbert and Big Al are not in any way the same.LarryInClintonMD"

Similarities:
1) big contracts that make them difficult (if not impossible) to trade
2) team GMs whose jobs are gone or endangered for having signed them in the first place (Cerrato already kaput)
3) arguably the worst contracts in their respective leagues, in terms of return on investment (Gilbert less than 40 games in 3 seasons; Albert already looking to get out of Washington after one year).

Interesting that both situations are in DC...

Posted by: Samson151 | September 14, 2010 7:49 PM | Report abuse

"Come on Samson, the Arenas
and Haynesworth situations are polar opposites...Haynesworth is clearly lazy, not dedicated and a problem in the locker room."

You don't think Gilbert was a problem in the locker room? I think you could argue that he's about the biggest problem the locker room has ever seen.

Posted by: Samson151 | September 14, 2010 7:52 PM | Report abuse

"Put all of this in the context of a guy coming off a 22/7 season..."

Well, a 22 and 7 stint of some 32 games before he got suspended for the remainder of the year...

"On the personal side, Gilbert does not need to apologize to me. I am of the belief that he has paid handsomely..."

Did you mean to say "has been paid handsomely...?"

Posted by: Samson151 | September 14, 2010 7:55 PM | Report abuse

Gilbert .. plain and simple he is the man .. still I blieve he is going to be one of NBA's best scorers part of it because we have John Wall who can penetrate and dish off to him but also he is a true warrior .. I am happy to have him on our side .. Complete faith in you GILL

Posted by: svafai2000 | September 14, 2010 8:36 PM | Report abuse

KEVIN JONES you are joking right ..
GIl is a lot better than many of these players you mentioned above . infact I would take Gilbert over cry baby, Bosh, and Joe Johnson (WADE and HOWARD) are an exception but cry baby and bosh have no respect for and don't think are true warriors that is why they joined forces with Wade .. and the rest of the names you mentioned just a joke to me not even compared in the same league as GIL .. what did you do .. quickly hop on nba.com and come up with names .. LOL ..

Posted by: svafai2000 | September 14, 2010 9:14 PM | Report abuse

svafai2000,

Your respect for LeBron and Bosh has nothing to do with whether or not they are better than Gil. That said, there isn't a GM in the league who would take Gilbert over James or Bosh. Not one. In the future, you might want to avoid drinking heavily prior to posting. Good Day.

Posted by: 2020doc | September 14, 2010 9:26 PM | Report abuse

NOTE: my shortest post ever.
Gil, prove the dipweeds wrong. Play excellent ball. Win. Playoff time!
I got your back, fan-wise.

Posted by: ragtop4spd | September 14, 2010 9:37 PM | Report abuse

I think Gilbert will be fine and he will work well with John Wall. People love to see controversy and it sells papers and gets viewers, but lets sit back and see how this goes before we all rush to judgement!

Posted by: Beltwayboy7 | September 14, 2010 9:39 PM | Report abuse

I was hoping I would not have to blow Michael Lee's cover, but for those that do not understand- Lee's position is this: As an African-American writer he feels compelled to degrade Arenas to keep his Caucasian collegues happy. Believe me, I understand the dynamics of human behavior and it is disgraceful that Lee will not forgive for a man who has done so much for the DC area, especially schools. I do not at all condone what Arenas did, but at the same time once a person has paid their debt to society and in his return is embraced by team ownership it is time to move to other areas of writing. Additionally, I guarantee you Lee is tight-lipped about Ben R. being charged with raping two women and the discovery Phelps smoking dope from a bong. Of course both are now treated like the incidents never happened. Why, because some people are forgiven almost immediately, but writers like Lee (who I have lost all respect for in the last few months) continues to keep fresh bullseye paint on the back of Arenas. Lastly, 22.7 ppg and 7.2 apg from a man returning three knee surgeries is phenominal for anybody, including superstars like James, Wade and Kobe. Call it the "race-card" if you like, but this is not a matter of race, but of truth. Needless to say I am ashamed and disappointed in Lee and his lack of coverage on the positives the Wizards will bring to NBA basketball in 2010-2011.

Posted by: esmith4 | September 14, 2010 10:25 PM | Report abuse

"Yeah Samson151, you of all folks know that Gilbert and Big Al are not in any way the same.LarryInClintonMD"

Similarities:
1) big contracts that make them difficult (if not impossible) to trade
2) team GMs whose jobs are gone or endangered for having signed them in the first place (Cerrato already kaput)
3) arguably the worst contracts in their respective leagues, in terms of return on investment (Gilbert less than 40 games in 3 seasons; Albert already looking to get out of Washington after one year).

Interesting that both situations are in DC...


Posted by: Samson151 | September 14, 2010 7:49 PM

Awe shucks Samson151. I'm gonna take your Big Dog Card away. Apples and Oranges are similar in that they are fruits, but they are not the same.

Gilbert and Big Al are not the same. Stop it. Just stop it.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | September 14, 2010 10:34 PM | Report abuse

Esmith4,

I must admit, I was a bit surprised by the flavor of Mike's synopsis of Gilbert. Was he writing for the Post? Certainly, he wasn't giving the flavor of the new owner, Leonsis.

He does give some objective points about Gilbert, but their is an underlying flavor that he disapproves of Gilbert.

His predecessor, Ivan Carter, I won't watch anymore every since he called TO and Ocho, clowns as his serious opinion of them as men.

Granted TO and Ocho have done outlandish things but as a professional media person you cannot call them clowns. It is petty and disrepects them. Regardless of what you think of them personally, you have to show more personal respect than that in the media.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | September 14, 2010 10:44 PM | Report abuse

"Awe shucks Samson151. I'm gonna take your Big Dog Card away. Apples and Oranges are similar in that they are fruits, but they are not the same.Gilbert and Big Al are not the same. Stop it. Just stop it. LarryInClintonMD."

I guess my hope is that one day you'll read a post before you respond. What I said was: "It's vaguely similar to what the Skins are dealing with in terms of Haynesworth -- not quite as acrimonious, yet." That's a true statement, by the way.

Once again, I think it's time for me to stop it -- bothering to read Larry posts, that is.

Posted by: Samson151 | September 14, 2010 11:30 PM | Report abuse

This team will run other teams into the ground. After forty games we may be 15-25 then the final games we will be 29-13. Howard, Heinrich, Booker and Jianlin will make big differences down the homestretch. Wall will have his first season jitters and learning curve under control. McGee, Blatche, and Arenas will excel next to Wall. I feel Arenas cost the Wizards 70 million dollars last year, for he destroyed the whole season. The team was reconstructed and is ready to go. I wanted him gone. ---- Now I feel he will be the best player on the team again if he adjusts to the role of scorer. Wall will run the team and control the pace. Arenas is a beast and is comparable to Kobe, Wade, and LeBron. If we are going to have him on the team, give him some slack and let him be the player that he can be. All the negative now is an example of writers not doing the right thing. Get on him if he blows his second chance, but leave him alone if he does his best. If Wall, enhances those around him, this will be the best Wizards team since Hayes, Unseld days. esmith4 - you are a moron. Lee is wrong and you are playing the race card. You're trying to back up Lee by calling him an Uncle Tom!

Posted by: 1bmffwb | September 15, 2010 12:38 AM | Report abuse

Flohr,

Outstanding post there sir way back towards the top of the thread. Nicely done!

And, I like that you pointed out that GA was a SHUT DOWN defender his first two years in the league. He absolutely would be brought into games for the sole purpose of shutting another guard down. I remember watching him do it on a couple of occasions and thinking - "this dude's got a future as a premier defender if nothing else." How far we have come since those days? He has the strength, quickness, and height (against other PG's) to do it. He simply abandoned his defensive effort once the second contract was signed and he became more of a scorer. Period. End of story.

Comparing him to Steve Nash or another member of the pathetic defender list is hogwash and nothing more than a diversionary debating tactic bc there is no real excuse for GA. AJ, by the way, does fit into the category of having the physical limitations to be a good defender, but most of the time his effort was there. Most of the time. He fell asleep on important plays a little too often for my liking as did the rest of the team though aka LeBron going baseline etc....

Posted by: rphilli721 | September 15, 2010 1:12 AM | Report abuse

Have those who say Gilbert can play defense seen him play any in the past four years? Just asking. They will be a LOT better off once they tire of watching his man take it to the hole and replace him as a starter with Hinrich.

Posted by: dolph924 | September 15, 2010 1:29 AM | Report abuse

esmith4,

you get my personal post of the day award. When I saw a white woman wearing Big Ben's jersey in Safeway this past Sunday afternoon, I couldn't help but wonder if she would have still worn that jersey if Ben was black...and accused of raping two white females...

Posted by: eyekey416 | September 15, 2010 1:59 AM | Report abuse

Hey guys, I found this post that touches on this article. It's pretty interesting and argues basically that maybe Gilbert's knee was much bigger factor than anything else in the gun incident. If Gilbert is healthy, he should be happy --> good for us!

http://3gotgame.com/kshiz/archives/951

Posted by: kp916 | September 15, 2010 3:29 AM | Report abuse

We all better hope that John Wall will be what Gilbert Arenas once was or still is. Let's see if he has the same drive and dedication to put in the work to become a top player like Gilbert has done.

As for Gilbert, he is not a bad person. Immature and stupid yes, but has done nothing malicious. The dude got hurt playing basketball in a Wizard uniform after three straight years of being an allstar and people are blaming him for it. He's got a bum knee and carrying all this salary and he is no more good to the team. Trade him.

Jonh Wall you better take notes, don't ever think you are indipensable.

Posted by: spades72 | September 15, 2010 5:27 AM | Report abuse

9 Gillimeter will only have half a year to prove his worth. He hasn't played SG since his Arizona days, but I think he will attempt to play D, or put Josh Howard on the opposition's best playere. I like the idea of 9 Gillimeter coming off screens ala Reggie Miller, but his days of isolating & pounding the ball for 10 seconds into the shot clock need to be minimal.

Posted by: bernard_thompson | September 15, 2010 5:47 AM | Report abuse

"When I saw a white woman wearing Big Ben's jersey in Safeway this past Sunday afternoon, I couldn't help but wonder if she would have still worn that jersey if Ben was black...and accused of raping two white females...Posted by: eyekey416"

Maybe you 'couldn't help wondering', but I think you're reading too much into it. Some women (of various races) correspond with convicted rapists in jail, accept their marriage proposals. There are a lot of corners in the human psyche that are about something other than race.

Posted by: Samson151 | September 15, 2010 6:57 AM | Report abuse

"With Arenas moving to shooting guard, he also won't have to worry about defending the quicker point guards in the league, ones like Tyreke Evans, who gave him so much trouble last season. Yes, the 6-foot-4 Arenas will have to contend with shooting guards who are much taller and stronger, but those bigger guards will also have to deal with him on the other end."

I don't think of Evans as a PG, either. He's a scorer who needs the ball in his hands. Looks like he averaged around 20% fewer assists per game than Gil did.

I don't know if it's reasonable of us to expect much from Gil defensively. If the other team's SG threatens to dominate, I imagine we'll see Hinrich. If Arenas holds his own, probably not.

Posted by: Samson151 | September 15, 2010 7:18 AM | Report abuse

Man where are the Post getting these writers from and who's editing?

Gilbert will be alright. Very few in the NBA play defense.

(That's because the Fans want to see DUNKS OHHHHHHH)

NBA needs to reduce down to 12 teams then maybe you will see a good game every nite.
What it cost to see an NBA game, you at least should be assured a good game!

Posted by: shamken | September 15, 2010 7:49 AM | Report abuse

"When I saw a white woman wearing Big Ben's jersey in Safeway this past Sunday afternoon, I couldn't help but wonder if she would have still worn that jersey if Ben was black...and accused of raping two white females...Posted by: eyekey416"

Maybe you 'couldn't help wondering', but I think you're reading too much into it. Some women (of various races) correspond with convicted rapists in jail, accept their marriage proposals. There are a lot of corners in the human psyche that are about something other than race.

Posted by: Samson151

Come on Samson, you know better than that. Race always plays a role in things. Most of the "hate" spewed toward Gil is because he is black. Just like what is happening with Obama(compared to his immediate predecessor). Black people are held under a different microscope and to a higher level of accountability. "The World" wanted Gil's career "stoned to death", over a joke. They wanted him locked up, contract voided, traded, etc. Then they want to disquise it as getting cap space for the team, in a league where contracts are guaranteed. In the NFL, contracts are NOT guaranteed, but you don't hear all this garbage about Rothlesberger. Think about it, this was not Ben's first violation, and he just had his suspension reduced.

But I have learned that when your opinion aligns itself with "the World", you need to check yourself.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 8:09 AM | Report abuse

"Steve Nash is a poor defender due to physical limitations. He's not quick, he has a slight build and he can't jump." = white guy.

But I digress, let Gilbert play to show he is healthy....then trade him to another team or offer a cash buyout. Thats whats going to happen fanboys. He can't defend and never could, can't elevate anymore due to the knee problems, and at best should be a off the bench player to spark some quick offense.

Posted by: nowhine | September 15, 2010 8:09 AM | Report abuse

So Nash's crappy D is excusable because he cant jump....but after 3 knee surgeries and being completely floorbound last season, Gil still has the ability to be a "shutdown" defender if only he tried? Come on

Posted by: divi3 | September 15, 2010 8:12 AM | Report abuse

Who said Gil should be a 'shutdown' defender, divi3?

He has to give a better effort than he has in the past. Period.

Posted by: 2020doc | September 15, 2010 8:23 AM | Report abuse

Somebody asked what I'd consider a bust pick by a GM -- probably somebody like Fran Vasquez of Spain. 11th pick in 2005, a 6'10" forward, to Orlando. The GMs mistake because 1) he went probably 10-15 picks higher than most had projected him, and 2) injuries weren't a factor, and 3) they were never able to get him to America (still hasn't played a minute in the NBA). Of course, the emergence of Dwight Howard put that on the back burner. Now he's 27. Even if he came next season and played well (unlikely), that's still a bunch of lost seasons.

But I wouldn't natter at the GM for having passed up Danny Granger. Most GMs would have at that spot.

Vazquez sounds indifferent in interviews about ever playing in the NBA. No question Vazquez's size (6-10, 229 pounds) and natural shot-blocking skills make him an intriguing prospect, but at 27 it might be time to write him off.

Posted by: Samson151 | September 15, 2010 8:24 AM | Report abuse

Sorry, that last paragraph was to have been in quotes, from an article.

Posted by: Samson151 | September 15, 2010 8:25 AM | Report abuse

nowhine

22 and 7 in a new offense while eliminating rust. How many guards did that last year?

And to those who whine about his defense, how often is he outplayed? How often did an opposing point guard outplay him? Now answer these questions about the rest of the Arenas led Wizard squads.

How often did Haywood get outplayed by the center?
How often did Jamison get outplayed by the power forward?
How often did Butler/Hughes get outplayed by his man?
How often did Stevenson/Jeffries get outplayed?
How often did the bench get outplayed?
How often did Eddie Jones/Flip get outcoached?

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 8:25 AM | Report abuse

"And to those who whine about his defense, how often is he outplayed? How often did an opposing point guard outplay him? posted by g-man11"

Personally, I thought Gilbert was outplayed a fair amount of the time. We're only talking about a 32 game sample here, but he certainly had trouble doing the stuff he used to do at game's end. So despite his remarkable comeback, he clearly wasn't the player he once was. I suppose it's possible his forced 50 game vacation may have helped restore his game -- we can only hope. He's a fairly young guy. But I thought from his interviews last season that Gilbert was more than a little aware of the limitations to his game and was anxious for others to accept he wasn't the same player.

Posted by: Samson151 | September 15, 2010 8:29 AM | Report abuse

He has to give a better effort than he has in the past. Period.

Posted by: 2020doc

Agreed.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 8:31 AM | Report abuse

"How often did Haywood get outplayed by the center?
How often did Jamison get outplayed by the power forward?
How often did Butler/Hughes get outplayed by his man?
How often did Stevenson/Jeffries get outplayed?
How often did the bench get outplayed?
How often did Eddie Jones/Flip get outcoached?
Posted by: G-Man11"

To me, this is a silly question. The issue isn't how other players performed -- they weren't intended to be the best and highest paid player on the roster. Gilbert was. In terms of simple ROI, that contract is among the worst in memory. I tend to think the contract was mostly Abe's idea, since owners rarely delegate that sort of big dollar decision to employees, no matter how senior. But nobody argues it was a good idea to sign Gilbert in view of what's happened since.

Posted by: Samson151 | September 15, 2010 8:33 AM | Report abuse

2020doc

Like I said, I agree. But I got a question for you, do you think Kirk Hinrich will be able to get away with the defensive style he played as a bull, as a Wizard? You do know that refs get into players heads regarding defense so much so that they can end up thinking "I can't touch somebody without the ref calling a foul on me", and ending up in foul trouble, thus they end up playing matador defense.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 8:35 AM | Report abuse

And to those who whine about his defense, how often is he outplayed? How often did an opposing point guard outplay him?

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 8:25 AM

That's a fairly subjective question, since it's not just about points and assists.

My conservative estimate is that he was outplayed over 60% of the time since the other team's guards found a way to help their team beat the Wizards over 60% of the time. Sadly, Arenas did not. And before you talk about supporting cast, please remember that the Wizards lost to some awful teams with Cap'n Gil at the helm. That help, G-Man11?

Posted by: 2020doc | September 15, 2010 8:35 AM | Report abuse

Samson

But your best player can't take you but so far by himself, even LeBron realizes that. People run around here like Rashard Lewis is better than Arenas, and Arenas contract is worse than Rashard. You might not have complained, but back when Gil signed that contract, injured or not, if Abe had let Gil walk, he would have never heard the last of it.

Think about it, who was the last legitimate free agent to sign with Washington? Before Arenas it was who? Since Arenas, who? And when Arenas signed with Washington as a free agent originally, he was under the radar. He came here and blew up. He did not blow up and come here.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 8:42 AM | Report abuse

TS35,
My point about Gil's D under Eddie Jordan was all about a lack of system and an overall defensive scheme. It's not like Gil was the only poor defender here during the Jordan years.

Gil's D the first two years here was ok, not great. But it played to the philosophy that Eddie was extolling at the time. Gil and Larry, and Juan Dixon and Steve Blake, all played a trapping style once the team crossed half court.

Gil and Larry were amoung the league leaders in steals as a pair, and Juan's steals per minute were very good. Overall the Wiz defense was pretty pourous, had a coach that said pourous was the G version of pour assed.

The concept was to go for the early steal or to force the other team to take a quick shot if they broke the trap. Either way the goal was to get back on offense as quickly as possible.

Remember then after year two Ernie forced Eddie to hire a defensive lead assistant coach from Houston. What I really remember was the Ayers got to sit in the second row on the bench, and as the season wore on he wasn't even in the huddle when the Wiz were on defense. That told the world what EJ thought of defense.

In defending, or making excuses, for Nash's lack of D you pointed out that he played for a team that never was known for defense. Agreed. But, if Eddie Jordan ever had a rep as a defensive coach I sure missed it...

I'd agree with you, if Flip installs team defensive concepts and Arenas makes it clear he's going his own way, or not bothering to play D, I'd think the Wiz should MarBURY him as a DNP coach's decision until he leaves for China.

Gil has 32 games under Flip, I thought he was playing better team defense then before. But granted that's a small sampling and the team was mostly out of sync.

I think that the other veterans were really chaffing under Flip, Jamison and Butler were consistantly breaking off plays to get their first chance to shoot.
And it got even worse after Gil was suspended.

As another poster pointed out, I thought Arenas and Foye started to get it going before Foye got hurt and then Arenas was gone for good. Too bad, we'll never know if that combo could have worked.

I'd look for Flip to return to having his guards pressure the ball and look for steals. Differnce now will be that the Wiz are quicker at the other positions as well to overplay for the steal off the trap.

Gil and Wall as a pair will have quickness and long arms to work with as defensive strengths.

It keeps getting mentioned here that Gil won't have the lateral quickness to play D. The one way to defend a player that quicker then his defender is to overplay him to one side and steer him to to help.

Celtics did it for years and just funneled guys into Russell. Most teams that have strong shotblocker will try and steer guys to him. I'd assume with McGee on the backline Flip is devising something along those lines as a defensive scheme.
GM

Posted by: flohrtv | September 15, 2010 8:43 AM | Report abuse

actually rphilli likes to a reference a time (1 GSW game he happen to catch?) when Gil was a "shutdown defender"...also said can't compare Nash's nonexistent D to Gil. Probably because people want to give Nash an excuse.

I'm just saying after 3 knee surgeries and OBVIOUSLY not being the same physically, it's pretty pie-in-the-sky to hope Arenas is suddenly going to be a solid defender after years of being one of the very worst in the league.

Posted by: divi3 | September 15, 2010 8:43 AM | Report abuse

'Shutdown' defender is asking too much. 'Solid' defender is not. Especially if he has no physical limitations on offense. If he's making sharp cuts and doing power jumps to get his shot off, he has no excuse on defense and nobody should be making excuses for him, imo.

Posted by: 2020doc | September 15, 2010 8:49 AM | Report abuse

G-Man,

I absolutely expect Hinrich to play the same way he did in Chicago. As much as we hate to admit it, in the NBA, a players 'reputation' influences the refs. Kirk has established that he's a tough defender. I don't see any reason for that to change.

Posted by: 2020doc | September 15, 2010 8:51 AM | Report abuse

TS35,
My point about Gil's D under Eddie Jordan was all about a lack of system and an overall defensive scheme. It's not like Gil was the only poor defender here during the Jordan years.

Gil's D the first two years here was ok, not great. But it played to the philosophy that Eddie was extolling at the time. Gil and Larry, and Juan Dixon and Steve Blake, all played a trapping style once the team crossed half court.

Gil and Larry were amoung the league leaders in steals as a pair, and Juan's steals per minute were very good. Overall the Wiz defense was pretty pourous, had a coach that said pourous was the G version of pour assed.

The concept was to go for the early steal or to force the other team to take a quick shot if they broke the trap. Either way the goal was to get back on offense as quickly as possible.

Remember then after year two Ernie forced Eddie to hire a defensive lead assistant coach from Houston. What I really remember was the Ayers got to sit in the second row on the bench, and as the season wore on he wasn't even in the huddle when the Wiz were on defense. That told the world what EJ thought of defense.

In defending, or making excuses, for Nash's lack of D you pointed out that he played for a team that never was known for defense. Agreed. But, if Eddie Jordan ever had a rep as a defensive coach I sure missed it...

I'd agree with you, if Flip installs team defensive concepts and Arenas makes it clear he's going his own way, or not bothering to play D, I'd think the Wiz should MarBURY him as a DNP coach's decision until he leaves for China.

Gil has 32 games under Flip, I thought he was playing better team defense then before. But granted that's a small sampling and the team was mostly out of sync.

I think that the other veterans were really chaffing under Flip, Jamison and Butler were consistantly breaking off plays to get their first chance to shoot.
And it got even worse after Gil was suspended.

As another poster pointed out, I thought Arenas and Foye started to get it going before Foye got hurt and then Arenas was gone for good. Too bad, we'll never know if that combo could have worked.

I'd look for Flip to return to having his guards pressure the ball and look for steals. Differnce now will be that the Wiz are quicker at the other positions as well to overplay for the steal off the trap.

Gil and Wall as a pair will have quickness and long arms to work with as defensive strengths.

It keeps getting mentioned here that Gil won't have the lateral quickness to play D. The one way to defend a player that quicker then his defender is to overplay him to one side and steer him to to help.

Celtics did it for years and just funneled guys into Russell. Most teams that have strong shotblocker will try and steer guys to him. I'd assume with McGee on the backline Flip is devising something along those lines as a defensive scheme.
GM

Posted by: flohrtv | September 15, 2010 8:51 AM | Report abuse

No 2020 it doesn't. They beat some damn good teams too BECAUSE of Gil. Or do you choose not to acknowledge that? You choose to look at things as half empty, but 2020 sure aint your hindsight. Since you don't recall nothing but losses, I won't remind you of any victories.

I'll just remind you that Gil has never played with a low-post threat. Never played with any role players worth a nickel coming off the bench either. Check that, Daniels was the only one. LeBron abandoned a squad that surrounded him that was better than the squad surrounding Gil when Gil was healthy.

But you do your thing. How bout you put Gil on the bench and let another Wizard take the last shot of the game, with the Wizards tied or down.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 8:54 AM | Report abuse

So if Hinrich plays exactly like he did in Chicago, that will mean once again he's the worst 2guard in the league offensively. Will everyone complain about that or is it ok because of the D he brings?

By the same token, if Gil is efficiently scoring 22/night along with a grip of assists...just how critical will it be for him to play solid defense?

Posted by: divi3 | September 15, 2010 8:55 AM | Report abuse

Awe hell Samson151 my good man, you are clearly drawing parallels between Big Al and Gil.

Most assuredly you are, so don't be trying to requantify your position by your degree of comparison of the two.

You either are paralleling the two are you aren't and you clearly are.

But, good fellow, it is all good. I predict that the toxic abaltross of salary will become not one at all. Time and winning can change perspectives so magnificantly.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | September 15, 2010 8:55 AM | Report abuse

2020 - as for Hinrich being able to get away with things defensively as a Wizard, I sure as hell hopes he is able to compete defensively, and understand what you said about his "rep", but...

I have been a wizard/bullets fan for a long time, and teams get calls, not players. The Celtics, Lakers, New York have always gotten calls. Then you got players like LeBron which transformed Cleveland into a team that got calls. But you have teams that are at the bottom of the pecking order. Washington has gotten the shaft from refs for 20 years and it doesn't matter who they are playing.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 9:01 AM | Report abuse

TS35,
My point about Gil's D under Eddie Jordan was all about a lack of system and an overall defensive scheme. It's not like Gil was the only poor defender here during the Jordan years.

Gil's D the first two years here was ok, not great. But it played to the philosophy that Eddie was extolling at the time. Gil and Larry, and Juan Dixon and Steve Blake, all played a trapping style once the team crossed half court.

Gil and Larry were amoung the league leaders in steals as a pair, and Juan's steals per minute were very good. Overall the Wiz defense was pretty pourous, had a coach that said pourous was the G version of pour assed.

The concept was to go for the early steal or to force the other team to take a quick shot if they broke the trap. Either way the goal was to get back on offense as quickly as possible.

Remember then after year two Ernie forced Eddie to hire a defensive lead assistant coach from Houston. What I really remember was the Ayers got to sit in the second row on the bench, and as the season wore on he wasn't even in the huddle when the Wiz were on defense. That told the world what EJ thought of defense.

In defending, or making excuses, for Nash's lack of D you pointed out that he played for a team that never was known for defense. Agreed. But, if Eddie Jordan ever had a rep as a defensive coach I sure missed it...

I'd agree with you, if Flip installs team defensive concepts and Arenas makes it clear he's going his own way, or not bothering to play D, I'd think the Wiz should MarBURY him as a DNP coach's decision until he leaves for China.

Gil has 32 games under Flip, I thought he was playing better team defense then before. But granted that's a small sampling and the team was mostly out of sync.

I think that the other veterans were really chaffing under Flip, Jamison and Butler were consistantly breaking off plays to get their first chance to shoot.
And it got even worse after Gil was suspended.

As another poster pointed out, I thought Arenas and Foye started to get it going before Foye got hurt and then Arenas was gone for good. Too bad, we'll never know if that combo could have worked.

I'd look for Flip to return to having his guards pressure the ball and look for steals. Differnce now will be that the Wiz are quicker at the other positions as well to overplay for the steal off the trap.

Gil and Wall as a pair will have quickness and long arms to work with as defensive strengths.

It keeps getting mentioned here that Gil won't have the lateral quickness to play D. The one way to defend a player that quicker then his defender is to overplay him to one side and steer him to to help.

Celtics did it for years and just funneled guys into Russell. Most teams that have strong shotblocker will try and steer guys to him. I'd assume with McGee on the backline Flip is devising something along those lines as a defensive scheme.
GM

Posted by: flohrtv | September 15, 2010 9:03 AM | Report abuse

G-Man11,

What damn good teams did they beat with Gil last year? Lakers? Celtics? Thunder? Magic? Who?

I agree Gil has value, but lets not pretend that he's an all-world player, okay?

As far as your last shot question, it's moot. Gil's defense was so bad last year and his turnover to assist ratio was so high that the games rarely came down to a last shot by the Wiz. If he improves in that area, our fortunes might change.

Posted by: 2020doc | September 15, 2010 9:04 AM | Report abuse

Most sports fans know that beat writers have to invent controversial things as part of their job. Most are taking on characteristics of the National Inquirer...in their writing.
Most fans are over what Arenas did with the guns. Having gone to jail as a result has been a real wakeup call...about how to conduct his life in more appropriate ways.
I`m sure he will tell people that he now knows he can`t mask his fears, and insecurities with clowning around.

HE DESERVED TO GO TO JAIL. NOW, HE DESERVES TO HAVE A CHANCE AT REDEMPTION.
IF HE WAS NOT OWED 80 MILLION DOLLARS..I GUARANTEE A LOT OF TEAMS WOULD HAVE MADE OFFERS FOR HIM.

There may be 3-4 players from his old teams that are still Wizards..but the bulk of the team is
new...and he will have to earn his playing time like everyone else. Gil has not played with another guard with John Walls talents..it could create nightmares for other teams.

Posted by: blazerguy234 | September 15, 2010 9:05 AM | Report abuse

I'll tell you what to expect from Arenas. He's the same guy he's always been, hopefully back to full strength after his injury and legal problems. Some nights he'll come out and stink up the place. Other nights he'll scorch the other guys for 60 points. Most nights he's good for somewhere between 20 and 40 points. He'll play competent but unspectacular defense. Having John Wall beside him will only make him better (and make John Wall better, too).

In other words, let Gilbert be Gilbert, but leave the firearms at home (if even there).

Posted by: FergusonFoont | September 15, 2010 9:16 AM | Report abuse

If Gil is shooting 44% I'm pretty sure I will be happy with his play.

Posted by: divi3 | September 15, 2010 9:23 AM | Report abuse

"Saunders implemented a two-guard offense near the end of last season..."

How many guards are you SUPPOSED to have?+

Posted by: FergusonFoont | September 15, 2010 9:27 AM | Report abuse

G-Man11,

What damn good teams did they beat with Gil last year? Lakers? Celtics? Thunder? Magic? Who?

I agree Gil has value, but lets not pretend that he's an all-world player, okay?

As far as your last shot question, it's moot. Gil's defense was so bad last year and his turnover to assist ratio was so high that the games rarely came down to a last shot by the Wiz. If he improves in that area, our fortunes might change.

Posted by: 2020doc

Like I said, you subscribe to the half empty theory. Last year started out bad from the jump. Jamison was out. Then when Jamison came back, Miller went down immediately. In the meantime, Gil was obviously and UNDERSTANDABLY rusty, and playing in a new system and for a new coach. They came out and beat a good/not great Dallas team(sort of like the skins did Sunday night LOL). Then, I guess it was Gil's fault that Caron was in rebellion. Caron, I assume wanted to be the man and didn't want Gil to be the man. But in all actuality, Caron shot his load the year Boston won the championship, because the very next year, he quit. Now when Gil comes back, all of a sudden he wants to be the man! So he rebels! Then Gil got played that stupid joke and got suspended. The real problem with last years team was not Gil, it was Caron smelling himself. Cause a damn good team that Washington beat last year blind2020 was Cleveland. But in that game, Gil played the good teammate and cheered Boykins and the other wizards that were playing in the 4th quarter, to victory. He was not rebelling.

But I guess you a Tuff-Juice fan.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 9:30 AM | Report abuse

But I guess you a Tuff-Juice fan.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 9:30 AM

No, I not. Lol.

I agree with you about Butler. His alpha-dog ambitions and contract aspirations led to a weird locker room dynamic that spilled onto the court and affected the whole team, imho.

Bottom line for me is that Arenas has as much to prove as ever, given his less than stellar performance last year and his role change this year. IF his mind and body are right, he might turn into a valuable asset again for the Wizards. Unlike some, I'm willing to give him a chance.

Posted by: 2020doc | September 15, 2010 9:43 AM | Report abuse

2020

The thing about last year, I was pleased with what I saw when Gil played the 2 with Foye at the 1, and I was never impressed with Foye, who like Gil, is a tweener. So I am highly optimistic of the Gil/Wall combo as Wall is a more pure point guard.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 9:52 AM | Report abuse

"People run around here like Rashard Lewis is better than Arenas, and Arenas contract is worse than Rashard.posted by Gman11"

LOL well, think about it in terms of return on investment.

Rashard Lewis in Orlando (3 seasons): averaged 77 starts per year.
Gilbert in past 3 seasons: averaged 14 starts per year.

That's not much value for the $$, you must admit.

Posted by: Samson151 | September 15, 2010 9:56 AM | Report abuse

If we're talking last year's lineups, I'm of course compelled to point out that (82games.com) the only 5man units with winning records were those that our boy Nick Young played on. And our best backcourt last season was Gil/Nick....juss sayin

Posted by: divi3 | September 15, 2010 10:05 AM | Report abuse

the bulk of the team is
new...and he will have to earn his playing time like everyone else.

Posted by: blazerguy234 | September 15, 2010 9:05 AM

I dont think so. Wall, Gil, Hinrich, and AB are guaranteed big minutes imo. And Mcgee would have to screw up in a huge way to not get as much burn as his lungs can handle.

Posted by: divi3 | September 15, 2010 10:15 AM | Report abuse

Samson

That is so true. But Rashard aint the player Gil is. I have no problem if they got rid of Gil due to his contract, but I don't want an Eddie Curry and his expiring contract just for cap-space. I don't want VC either. You got to give me some quality for Gil.

LeBron is teaming with Wade and Bosh. Melo and CP3 is scheming to get with Amare. They are realizing you need help. I don't like scheming. I'd rather grow my own and surround it with depth. To me, Gil/Wall/Blatche is could be a top 3-some. Not to the level of what is in Miami, but again, I don't like the scheming it took for that to happen. Then you surround Gil/Wall/Blatche with an improving JaVale, with Booker and Seraphin providing some muscle and athleticism, with Josh Howard, Thornton, Nick and Kirk, Yi. You got a lot of pieces to grow into a nice team. Nick, JaVale, Yi need to mature cause they are vets now. But the only one of those 3 that is a necessity is JaVale.

I don't mean this season, but next.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 10:15 AM | Report abuse

If Javale develops this team is headed up with or without Gil imo...this is of course based on my confidence in Wall and AB.

yes i know Wall has yet to play in an nba game, but to me it looks pretty obvious he's going to be damn good

Posted by: divi3 | September 15, 2010 10:19 AM | Report abuse

true Divi, but they will still be better with Gil

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 10:26 AM | Report abuse


To me, Gil/Wall/Blatche is could be a top 3-some. Not to the level of what is in Miami, but again, I don't like the scheming it took for that to happen. Then you surround Gil/Wall/Blatche with an improving JaVale, with Booker and Seraphin providing some muscle and athleticism, with Josh Howard, Thornton, Nick and Kirk, Yi. You got a lot of pieces to grow into a nice team. Nick, JaVale, Yi need to mature cause they are vets now.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 10:15 AM

That's what I'm talking about, G-Man11!
I know I'm a homer, but I like the idea of surrounding Wall with talent. If Wall gets into the paint as much as it appears he will, you've got to give him some options when he gets there. Gil gives us that and Ed Curry doesn't. Then you add Blatche's ability to see the court and be a willing passer. I like our young guns (oops)!

Posted by: artiesliver | September 15, 2010 10:27 AM | Report abuse

I think its funny how everyone is pushing Gil aside calling this JWall's team, it may be true that JWall is the new face of the franchise but Gil is and will still be the best player on this team.

I agree he has to make the adjustment mentally and allow JWall to lead the team on the floor but like Gil or not, he's the best player the Wizards have.

Posted by: hoopsdavis | September 15, 2010 10:30 AM | Report abuse

true Divi, but they will still be better with Gil

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 10:26 AM

I'm on record believing that Nick would be a better 2 for this team than either Gil or Hinrich, and I'm sticking to it....

But I do like the roster and believe there are plenty of strong options for Flip to mold a winning team. I'm happy for what Gil can and hopefully will bring to the table, but I'm even happier about the fact I don't think Arenas is any longer a "must have" for the team to eventually thrive.

Posted by: divi3 | September 15, 2010 10:36 AM | Report abuse

All gil can do is just play along. He cant really do anything else really at this pint, and who is the leader of the team? No one has metioned anything about that since twan left for cleveland. The x factor for the wizards this year will be Andray Blatche. He is the closest thing to a leader right now for the wizards, but unfortunatley with his ego, its up in the air, since arenas SHOULD BE THE LEADER, but after what happend last season, it's really Flips choice to make that decesion.

Posted by: hawksbest08 | September 15, 2010 10:49 AM | Report abuse

I like Nick, but Nick's confidence waiver's too much for me. I agree he has all the tools for the 2-spot, but he is a bigger chucker than Gil, and he doesn't penetrate like a one-legged Gil. He has the potential to be a nice defender to boot. But Nick has a ways to go to be a 4th quarter assassin like Gil. And 4th quarter is where the stars come to play. Gil has proven to be a top 3 to 5 closer in the league.

A roster without Gil is good, but you still would have to replace Gil for it to threaten. Nick, right now, is very streaky in the regular season. We ain't even talked about the playoffs. Gil is proven. A lot rests on Gil's health, but he is a proven big game scorer. Blatche is good, and improving. But again, the playoffs are a different animal.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 10:54 AM | Report abuse

I thought Wall was supposed to be the eventual leader. Remember though, this year is for growth and chemistry.

Your leaders this year will be Kirk and Josh Howard, if healthy.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 10:59 AM | Report abuse


The x factor for the wizards this year will be Andray Blatche. He is the closest thing to a leader right now for the wizards, but unfortunatley with his ego, its up in the air, since arenas SHOULD BE THE LEADER, but after what happend last season, it's really Flips choice to make that decesion.

Posted by: hawksbest08 | September 15, 2010 10:49 AM


I like Gil as much as the next guy, but there's no way he'll be put in a formal leadership role on this team. Based on his tenure with the team, salary and on-court accomplishments, Arenas SHOULD be the leader but he has shown time and time again that he is simply not up to the task. His best approach is to try to lead by example and hope that others will follow.

My best guess on the team captains? Hinrich, Blatche and perhaps Wall. I really get the feeling they want Wall, in particular, to assume a leadership role from the jump.

Posted by: Firuz1 | September 15, 2010 11:01 AM | Report abuse

Artie

It goes both ways in surrounding Wall with Talent. I think this will end up being the most talented team surrounding Gil too.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 11:04 AM | Report abuse

it's pretty pie-in-the-sky to hope Arenas is suddenly going to be a solid defender after years of being one of the very worst in the league.
Posted by: divi3

And yet you have repeatedly expressed a similar expectation for Nick Young.

By the same token, if Gil is efficiently scoring 22/night along with a grip of assists...just how critical will it be for him to play solid defense?
Posted by: divi3

Depends, how critical is winning? With Gil averaging 22/7 last year, they were 11-21.

If we're talking last year's lineups, I'm of course compelled to point out that (82games.com) the only 5man units with winning records were those that our boy Nick Young played on. And our best backcourt last season was Gil/Nick....juss sayin
Posted by: divi3

I think it's pretty clear what you're saying here.....Arenas and Young need to play, bench John Wall! ;)


Posted by: ts35 | September 15, 2010 11:06 AM | Report abuse

"And yet you have repeatedly expressed a similar expectation for Nick Young."

Nick has played solid D and I'm not the only one to believe it. I think Bullets forever or one of those sites broke down his defensive play pretty well and Gil isnt in the same ballpark.

"Depends, how critical is winning? With Gil averaging 22/7 last year, they were 11-21."

Except that I specifically said "efficiently." Gil was a volume scorer last season.

Posted by: divi3 | September 15, 2010 11:11 AM | Report abuse

I don't remember Nick doing anything consistently. Score, defend, pass, rebound. Nothing consistently, and that went for the second half of last season too.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 11:20 AM | Report abuse

Gil has always been a volume scorer, so really you're asking him to change that part of his game as well.

What it really comes down to for me is that if we're going to have a team where players are excused from their defensive responsibilities, we're heading right back where we were.

Whatever an individual's defensive capabilities are, the teams that compete for championships have all of their players giving effort on both ends of the floor.

I'm still waiting for the part where it makes sense not to expect all of the Wizards players to give effort on D.

And imo, anyone, be he Mike Prada, Michael Lee, or whoever, who thinks Nick Young played 'solid' D last season, is delusional.

Posted by: ts35 | September 15, 2010 11:43 AM | Report abuse

Personally, you have a guy you have $80Mill invested in, I'd give Gil the Captain position for a few reasons. To see if he's grown any, to keep him focus (Wall will get all media attention)
You have to do something to keep Gil focus.

Posted by: hoopsdavis | September 15, 2010 11:44 AM | Report abuse

I don't remember Nick doing anything consistently. Score, defend, pass, rebound. Nothing consistently, and that went for the second half of last season too.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 11:20 AM

One thing he does consistently is shoot the ball better than either Gil or Hinrich.

Posted by: divi3 | September 15, 2010 11:59 AM | Report abuse

hoops,

There is no way on Earth that Leonsis, Grunfeld and Saunders get together and decide to give a newly-minted felon capataincy 'to see if he's grown'. Gil will get nothing and deserves nothing.

Posted by: gimmedat | September 15, 2010 12:00 PM | Report abuse

One thing he does consistently is shoot the ball better than either Gil or Hinrich.

Posted by: divi3 | September 15, 2010 11:59 AM

Dude. Are you crazy? Nick is the poster child for "streaky, inconsistent shooter".

Posted by: gimmedat | September 15, 2010 12:03 PM | Report abuse

I can't wait for Gil to come back! All of you who will love when he wins. You are either a fan or find another team. He is not the first athelete to make a mistake (that hurt no one by the way) and he won't be the last. We all know his shortcomings, some need time to grow, some need the no calls of a LeBron and Kolby. Have some respect for your team and it's players that can't win with out it.
Michael Lee you're a Jerk if you think 22 and 7 with a bum knee isn't worthy, or do you really know what you're talking about?

Posted by: Beverly7649 | September 15, 2010 12:03 PM | Report abuse

Kirk, yes. Gil, debatable. Was Nick ever defended like Gil is defended? Nick had all of 1/2 a season to establish himself last year, just like Blatche did. If Nick had ceased the moment, like Blatche, he would have gotten more credit. Blatche did a lot in changing his rep. Nick, not.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 12:04 PM | Report abuse

...newly-minted felon captaincy...

Posted by: gimmedat | September 15, 2010 12:04 PM | Report abuse

One thing he does consistently is shoot the ball better than either Gil or Hinrich.

Posted by: divi3

Not dramastically better (career .435 vs .426 for Gil and .415 for Hinrich), aaaand, that would be it. For a guy who's 6'6", you'd think he'd rebound better than those other two. Even gimpy, no lateral movement Gil schooled him on the glass last year (even if you average out the minutes).

Posted by: ts35 | September 15, 2010 12:05 PM | Report abuse

Anyone who thinks John Wall, and not Gilbert Arenas, will/should be the Wizards #1 offensive option must have been in a hotel room with Marion Barry. Arenas is still, by far, their best player. Wall certainly has the potential to eventially be their best player, especially at the defensive end, but Arenas has shown what he can do at this level while potential gets coaches fired.

Posted by: largetony86 | September 15, 2010 12:18 PM | Report abuse

"Not dramastically better (career .435 vs .426 for Gil and .415 for Hinrich)"

Aside from his one legitimately all-pro year back in '06, Hinrich is barely a 40% shooter. And I'm sure you know the stats on Gil arent always pretty to say the least.

Posted by: divi3 | September 15, 2010 12:19 PM | Report abuse

'Anyone who thinks John Wall, and not Gilbert Arenas, will/should be the Wizards #1 offensive option must have been in a hotel room with Marion Barry'

I think AB should be the #1 offensive option, it's about time the team played inside-out rather than bombs away

Posted by: divi3 | September 15, 2010 12:22 PM | Report abuse

gimmedat - There is no way on Earth that Leonsis, Grunfeld and Saunders get together and decide to give a newly-minted felon capataincy 'to see if he's grown'. Gil will get nothing and deserves nothing.
----------------------------------------------------

I don't disagree with you, but at this point its not about Gilbert, its about protecting that $80mill investment. They know Gil, they know how to deal with him, and if making him the captain will keep him in line, that's what's got to be done. What do you loose by making him the captain, nothing, if he's not taking ther responsibility serious you take it from him. You deal with people in a way to get the best out of them, if they show Gil they trust him enough to make him the Captain, you have no idea how much of a positive effect that could have on Gil. Lets be honest Gil is very immature but not an idiot and not a bad person. If you name 3 Captains and JWall is one of them, you may have more locker room issues than you need.

Posted by: hoopsdavis | September 15, 2010 12:26 PM | Report abuse

"For a guy who's 6'6", you'd think he'd rebound better than those other two."

When it came to scoring, Hinrich was the single worst scoring guard in the nba last season. Gil is always the worst (or close) at his position defensively.

But hey, they sure can rebound.

Posted by: divi3 | September 15, 2010 12:37 PM | Report abuse

Arenas was a team captain last year.

Posted by: djnnnou | September 15, 2010 12:37 PM | Report abuse

And I'm sure you know the stats on Gil arent always pretty to say the least.
Posted by: divi3

And yet, you're hoping for an 'efficient' scorer next year.

And I must have missed the season where Young shot .500. His shooting %'s actually look a lot like Gil's and Hinrich's...up some years to the high .430s low .440s and down some years to the .410s. Last year, Young shot a whopping .009% better than Hinrich and a stunning .007% better than no-lateral-movement, gimpy, hasn't played a lot in 3 years Gil. Be still my heart.

Personally, I'm not wed to any of the available options as the 2. I think Gil has earned (on the court) the first crack at it, but I'm fine with Young ending up being the starting 2 if he earns it on both ends. I'm just not expecting it. And for now, I think there is some value in pairing Wall with someone, be it Arenas or Hinrich, who can take on some of the ball-handling and offense-running duties from time to time.

Posted by: ts35 | September 15, 2010 12:37 PM | Report abuse

Arenas was a team captain last year.

Posted by: djnnnou | September 15, 2010 12:37 PM

Your point?

Posted by: gimmedat | September 15, 2010 12:46 PM | Report abuse

"For a guy who's 6'6", you'd think he'd rebound better than those other two."

When it came to scoring, Hinrich was the single worst scoring guard in the nba last season. Gil is always the worst (or close) at his position defensively.

But hey, they sure can rebound.

Posted by: divi3

You have excuses for why we shouldn't expect defense from Arenas, what's the excuse for why Young can't get a board? He's healthy, he's tall, he's athletic. Really tough to score without the ball.

If scoring is the issue, considering their relative percentages, sounds like all we really need to do is ask Kirk to shoot more. Or you could factor in his 4.5 assists per game. Even if all of them were 2pters, that's still adding 9 points per game to his contribution to the team. I don't think Nick is going to get the same bump from his assist totals.

So far we have that Nick might be a marginally better shooter, doesn't board, doesn't get assists, and at best his defense is in question. What exactly does he bring to the table again?

Posted by: ts35 | September 15, 2010 12:53 PM | Report abuse

When it came to scoring, Hinrich was the single worst scoring guard in the nba last season. Gil is always the worst (or close) at his position defensively.

Posted by: divi3 | September 15, 2010 12:37 PM | Report abuse

Where do you keep pulling this stat from? I can think of worse scoring guards off the top of my damn head.

Posted by: SDMDTSU | September 15, 2010 12:55 PM | Report abuse

2020doc

This has nothing to do with respect but it has to do with heart. Gilbert is not as talented as Lebron agreed but he has got a bigger heart. Bosh reminds me so much of Jermaine O'neal in his old days and he never impressed me as much. Gilbert will surprise a lot of poeple this year including yourself

Posted by: svafai2000 | September 15, 2010 12:56 PM | Report abuse


This has nothing to do with respect but it has to do with heart. Gilbert is not as talented as Lebron agreed but he has got a bigger heart. Bosh reminds me so much of Jermaine O'neal in his old days and he never impressed me as much. Gilbert will surprise a lot of poeple this year including yourself

Posted by: svafai2000 | September 15, 2010 12:56 PM

I'm not too sure about Gil having a bigger heart than LeBron.
Some of us remember a playoff series a few years back where LeBron whispered something into Gil's ear that rattled Gil, an excellent FT shooter, to such a degree that he missed free throws that would have sealed the game for the Wizards. LeBron went on to take over the game and win the series.

Posted by: ArmChairQB | September 15, 2010 1:07 PM | Report abuse

svafai

They may have forgot, but I haven't.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 1:09 PM | Report abuse

ArmChair

I don't know if that was a heart thing. Sure LeBron got in his head and disrupted Gil's routine and Gil choked, for once.

But when I think about heart, that is guts. That is not punking out to physical play. That is being afraid to go to the basket. That is passing the ball around the perimeter so somebody else can take the shot. That is what happened to LeBron against Boston. That is what Garnett attempted to do to Blatche.

So yes, I saw Gil choke against Cleveland on the line, not long after taking and making one of those shots from 4pt land to tie the game. I never seen Gil's heart taken.

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 1:17 PM | Report abuse

all this wonderful speculation....almost basketball season. i like to think things will play out in a positive manner for the team this year. for arenas' name to be mentioned at all positive or negative sounds good. i'll give him some time to show what he has to offer this year before i try to find a trade partner. it does trade 2 willing parties to make a trade, so for some to just say trade him, remember, someone has to want him. i think the 22-7 sounds good, if he's capable, from your 2 guard. defense is attitude. i too saw him play shut down in sf, so the ability is there. where the mind set is will be the determining factor. and stop bashing him for having a warped sense of humor which cost him credibility and money. everyone grows up at a different pace. money and positive attention, being a stiff price to pay, may have helped him grow. we'll see.

as for the rest of the pieces of the team, well it's kind of a puzzle right now. you have pieces, can you make them fit. that's where the coach comes in. flip looked kinda bad last year and maybe his layoff had something to do with that. i'm not convinced he's a bad coach yet. i think the team he came to was so overrated as far as potential to win big, that he was overwhelmed in the beginning when it became obvious it was a team with flaws, and things just sort of fell apart after all the distractions. if the team comes in focused and he has his strategy for the type of team he wants and if, and if, and if,,,,,,,, hell it's almost basketball season.. :-)

Posted by: joerutgens72 | September 15, 2010 1:18 PM | Report abuse

I remember that game but who knows whether that would have been the outcome of that game should Lebron not mention anything to him .. I used to be a huge lebron fan but he bailed out to go to another team to win the championship and that is not what the heart of champion is about .. Gil stuck around

Posted by: svafai2000 | September 15, 2010 1:20 PM | Report abuse

It'll never end. Who cares if he brought unloaded guns into the locker room it's not that big of a deal. There are guns in every locker room in the league, maybe not now. The big deal was the gun wasn't registered in DC. This is the ONLY trouble he has been in here and people are crucifying him. The injury wasn't his fault, it happens. Is everyone mad at him cause he wanted to come back so bad he hurt himself? This guy wants to ball, badly. If only we had a whole team with his desire for basketball. Gil I ain't mad at ya. I'm with you 110%.
With that said, I would like to see a little better D this year from ya.

Posted by: wizravterp | September 15, 2010 1:32 PM | Report abuse

Where do you keep pulling this stat from? I can think of worse scoring guards off the top of my damn head.

Posted by: SDMDTSU | September 15, 2010 12:55 PM

Then name'em. Hinrich is the ONLY sg in the league last season to avg over 31mins and less than 11pts

http://espn.go.com/nba/statistics/player/_/stat/scoring-per-game/sort/avgMinutes/position/shooting-guards

Posted by: divi3 | September 15, 2010 1:39 PM | Report abuse

G-Man11 and svafai2000:

I disagree with you both. You can't let some wet-behind-the-ears punk, a couple years removed from high school get in your head like that. Period. We don't know for sure if Gil would have missed the free throws if Lebron had said nothing. But we do know that LeBron said something and Arenas uncharacteristically missed two straight big FTs. That's enough cause and effect for me.

WRT LeBron passing to his teammates, every superstar who has played in this league and won has done that. I remember LeBron doing the same thing with Boobie Gibson and everybody talked about LeBron's maturity as the Cavs made it to the Finals. The difference was his teammates did their jobs. When it works, he's mature, brilliant, taking what the defense gives him, etc. When it doesn't, he's weak. Go figure. It's ironic that people are calling him a punk for a game in which he recorded a triple dub while his teammates, who helped Cleveland have the best record in the league, looked like hot, buttered garbage. LOL.

Gil stuck it out? Lol. Gil's not LeBron. He didn't have as many choices. If I'm not mistaken, his choices were Golden State and Sacramento and they couldn't offer as much money as the Wizards. A no-brainer if ever there was one.

Btw, LeBron, Bosh and Wade are assured of nothing. They have to quickly develop chemistry and win while they're doing it in order to have a chance at a championship this year. That's not an easy task.

Posted by: ArmChairQB | September 15, 2010 1:43 PM | Report abuse

"Personally, I'm not wed to any of the available options as the 2. I think Gil has earned (on the court) the first crack at it, but I'm fine with Young ending up being the starting 2 if he earns it on both ends."

IMO there is nothing Young could do that will get him more mins than Hinrich. Or Gil. Gil kind of has to be played and EG/Flip have mancrushes on KH. So whether NY outplays them both or not, personally I do not think he can move past them on the chart.

Posted by: divi3 | September 15, 2010 1:43 PM | Report abuse

Then name'em. Hinrich is the ONLY sg in the league last season to avg over 31mins and less than 11pts

http://espn.go.com/nba/statistics/player/_/stat/scoring-per-game/sort/avgMinutes/position/shooting-guards

Posted by: divi3

Mitigated to a degree by the fact that he split his time between the point and the 2.

Posted by: ts35 | September 15, 2010 1:46 PM | Report abuse

YOu said it wizravterp

Gilbert never backed down from a challenge and he worked out everyday at awkward hours to get better .. he came back from a devastating knee injury before he was fully healed .. that is what heart is .. to risk everything to come back to take his team to the promise land .. what is the point of being a vocal team leader when you bail out on them and they have to start all over again .. NO RESPECT .. I am not a Cave fan but I do feel sorry for them ..

Posted by: svafai2000 | September 15, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse

IMO there is nothing Young could do that will get him more mins than Hinrich. Or Gil. Gil kind of has to be played and EG/Flip have mancrushes on KH. So whether NY outplays them both or not, personally I do not think he can move past them on the chart.

Posted by: divi3

I'm sure that's 90% true, however, it sounds like at least early on they plan to give Nick minutes at the 3. So, if he plays the right way (or at least the way Flip wants him to) and is productive, Flip may change his tune.

Posted by: ts35 | September 15, 2010 1:52 PM | Report abuse

ArmChair, I said Gil choked. To me, it is just different. I agree that LeBron should pass to open teammates, but he uncharacteristically stopped attacking the rim. I have seen that happen where I come from. When people get punked, they start passing on the perimeter and staying out of the paint. Lebron avoided the paint. Lebron got punked. Period.

I remember Xavier McDaniel tried to punk Jordan years ago. It didn't work. It worked with Lebron. Then he punked out again to go get his big lil brother(Wade).

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 2:03 PM | Report abuse

G-Man11,

I guess Michael Jordan was a punk too (against the Pistons) until Pippen and Grant matured and they got 'Medical Bill' Cartwright, based on your analogy.

I'll also say this: Cleveland will be a lottery team this year. When Jordan left the Bulls in '93, they won 55 games without Michael. LeBron made that team. Now they'll find out what they lost.

Posted by: ArmChairQB | September 15, 2010 2:09 PM | Report abuse

svafai2000:

Slow your roll with elevating Gil to sainthood, chief.

He left the Warriors high and dry after his rookie contract was up. They badly wanted him and tried to move Heaven and Earth to keep him. What did Gil do? He chased the dollars to come to a then-woeful franchise in complete disarray: Your Washington Wizards. You RESPECT that?

Posted by: ArmChairQB | September 15, 2010 2:13 PM | Report abuse

I agree with you too ArmChairQB

Michael had a team in place when he first retired in 93 but Cleveland put all their eggs on Lebron and they most likely will be a lottery team this year and that is why I said Lebron does not have a heart of a champion because he bailed to go some place else to win the big one rather than sticking around .. but then again Lebron did not have a player like Pippen or Grant on his side .. all the players Cleveland have are not starters on other teams .. Lebron was that good but owner did not act fast enough and tought he would stick around no matter what .. I blame the owner too for not bringing in tallent and I am happy being a die hard Wizard fan and not wanting to see Cleveland beat us again

Posted by: svafai2000 | September 15, 2010 2:18 PM | Report abuse

ArmChair, you are kidding aren't you?

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 2:19 PM | Report abuse

Then name'em. Hinrich is the ONLY sg in the league last season to avg over 31mins and less than 11pts

http://espn.go.com/nba/statistics/player/_/stat/scoring-per-game/sort/avgMinutes/position/shooting-guards

Posted by: divi3

Mitigated to a degree by the fact that he split his time between the point and the 2.

Posted by: ts35 | September 15, 2010 1:46 PM | Report abuse

And the fact that Chicago was one of the worst scoring teams and Hinrich's role wasn't to be a scorer.

I love the 31 mins. and 11 points..anything to squeeze that 10.9 huh? 31 minutes to disqulify Brandon Rush too? Sefolosha? Anthony Parker? They're better scorers?

Stop trying to twist numbers to make him worse than he is. He's a good defender that plays his role.

Find me a SG that plays more than 30.499594 minutes and shoots LESS than Hinrich. You know...I'm sure that has nothing to do with it right?

Posted by: SDMDTSU | September 15, 2010 2:22 PM | Report abuse

ArmChair, you are kidding aren't you?

Posted by: G-Man11 | September 15, 2010 2:19 PM

About?

Posted by: ArmChairQB | September 15, 2010 2:23 PM | Report abuse

The Bulls won 55...but they had another top 50 all time player still on the team.

Kinda doesn't have anything to do with Cleveland...

Posted by: SDMDTSU | September 15, 2010 2:28 PM | Report abuse

ArmChairQB .. At the time he was barely 21 years old and Warriors could not afford to pay him what his skills was about ... They offered Lebron the MAX to stay with them but he turned them down .. apples and oranges .. if Gilbert would have bailed out the second time he had a chance to sign a contract where about dozen of teams expressed interest including the warriors, kings and clippers just to name a few then I would agree with you ..

Posted by: svafai2000 | September 15, 2010 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: SDMDTSU | September 15, 2010 2:28 PM

My point was Jordan had more to work with than LeBron.

Posted by: ArmChairQB | September 15, 2010 2:30 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: svafai2000 | September 15, 2010 2:29 PM

Are you nuts? The Warriors lost Gil because under league rules they COULDN'T offer him a max contract. Since he was a second rounder who had less than three years with them, they couldn't use the Bird Rule to pay him more than a salary starting at the MLE. Washington could because they had cap space.

I repeat: He left them high and dry.

There were no "dozens" of teams interested in Gil when he signed his second contract here. He had two options according to everything I've read.

Posted by: ArmChairQB | September 15, 2010 2:35 PM | Report abuse

"And the fact that Chicago was one of the worst scoring teams and Hinrich's role wasn't to be a scorer....


Stop trying to twist numbers to make him worse than he is. He's a good defender that plays his role."

Ever consider they were one of the worst scoring teams because their scoring guard couldnt score???

I never suggested Hinrich wasnt a good defender nor that he didnt have a role. If you re-read the thread without being defensive about KH, you'll see my point was that Gil cant defend and KH cant score- not that either has no role.

Posted by: divi3 | September 15, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

"I love the 31 mins. and 11 points..anything to squeeze that 10.9 huh? 31 minutes to disqulify Brandon Rush too? Sefolosha? Anthony Parker? They're better scorers?"

Would you prefer 33mins since that's how many KH played? Still dead last.

Posted by: divi3 | September 15, 2010 2:42 PM | Report abuse

"I love the 31 mins. and 11 points..anything to squeeze that 10.9 huh? 31 minutes to disqulify Brandon Rush too? Sefolosha? Anthony Parker? They're better scorers?"

Would you prefer 33mins since that's how many KH played? Still dead last.

Posted by: divi3

Yet he was 6th among SGs in assists and 1st in Ast / TO ratio. (Nick Young did not qualify, as you have to record an assist to have a ratio > 0). He was behind pesudo SGs like Wade and Joe Johnson, who handle the ball a lot for their teams, Kobe, Igoudala and Ginobili. Not to mention playing alongside the highest scoring PG in the league, and not coincidentally, the one who took the most shots.

Posted by: ts35 | September 15, 2010 3:00 PM | Report abuse

"Yet he was 6th among SGs in assists and 1st in Ast / TO ratio."

That's because he's a good PG not a SG, which is basically my point. I see KH as a great backup to Wall and perfectly capable of starting should the need arise.

Posted by: divi3 | September 15, 2010 3:09 PM | Report abuse

"Yet he was 6th among SGs in assists and 1st in Ast / TO ratio."

That's because he's a good PG not a SG, which is basically my point. I see KH as a great backup to Wall and perfectly capable of starting should the need arise.

Posted by: divi3 | September 15, 2010 3:09 PM | Report abuse

But your basis is that Gil can't play defense but can score (at a very high level) Hinrich can't score (which I don't agree with) but he can play defense (at a very high level) but Nick should get minutes because....he hasn't shown he can do either?

Posted by: SDMDTSU | September 15, 2010 3:18 PM | Report abuse

ArmChairQB .. Like I said they could not afford to get him the contract but Lebron got the MAX from his hometown .. again apples and oranges .. read my comment ..

Posted by: svafai2000 | September 15, 2010 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Nick should get minutes because....he hasn't shown he can do either?

Posted by: SDMDTSU | September 15, 2010 3:18 PM

because he's a legit 2guard rather than a tweener and has shown the constant ability to score as well as displayed improved defense last season (opinions vary on that). I also think he moves better than Gil without the ball and is therefore a better fit on an offense where Wall dominates the ball.

Of course I'm also just fed up with watching undersized players get exposed at various positions over the years.

Posted by: divi3 | September 15, 2010 3:31 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: svafai2000 | September 15, 2010 3:25 PM

I'll try again.

Both teams (Warriors with Arenas and Cavaliers with James) offered the most they could under league rules to the respective players (apples to apples). Both teams badly wanted the respective players to return and expressed it (apples to apples). LeBron chose to take LESS money to try to win. Arenas chose MORE money to play for arguably one of the worst teams in the league. Yet, you don't respect James for wanting to win and have mad respect for Arenas wanting to get paid. And when Arenas signed with Washington the second time, he signed with the team that could pay him the most money and made sure they paid him more than anyone else could.

Posted by: ArmChairQB | September 15, 2010 3:47 PM | Report abuse

What it really comes down to for me is that if we're going to have a team where players are excused from their defensive responsibilities, we're heading right back where we were.

Whatever an individual's defensive capabilities are, the teams that compete for championships have all of their players giving effort on both ends of the floor.

I'm still waiting for the part where it makes sense not to expect all of the Wizards players to give effort on D.

Posted by: ts35

Absolutely! And this is where Arenas, Blatche, and McGee (yes, there's more to defense than blocking shots) need to prove their mettle.

Posted by: nmik | September 15, 2010 3:56 PM | Report abuse

because he's a legit 2guard rather than a tweener and has shown the constant ability to score as well as displayed improved defense last season (opinions vary on that). I also think he moves better than Gil without the ball and is therefore a better fit on an offense where Wall dominates the ball.

Of course I'm also just fed up with watching undersized players get exposed at various positions over the years.

Posted by: divi3 | September 15, 2010 3:31 PM | Report abuse

That's what I'm saying. He hasn't shown a "consistent" ability to do anything. He'll have a good game..or two...then disappear for a week. We all pretty much know that if he misses his first two shots he almost useless.

Regardless how does Nick impact a game if he isn't scoring? He doesn't get to the line much, no rebounding, passing...no steals...NOTHING.

And that's not based on some unfounded opinion.

The defense? I don't know what you're basing that off...or the moving without the ball.

Posted by: SDMDTSU | September 15, 2010 4:24 PM | Report abuse

Of course I'm also just fed up with watching undersized players get exposed at various positions over the years.

Posted by: divi3

Yes, by all means, it's well past time for our legitimately sized players to get exposed for a change. ;)

Posted by: ts35 | September 15, 2010 5:23 PM | Report abuse

Okay Kevin,

I'll give you Gil's a little childish (and a little odd). But that's what makes him unique and keeping your inner-child alive is better than being a stuck up little nerd.

He has averaged a near league-leading 37 points per game and he is healthy again.

With Wall at the point, I see Gill scoring 40 points per game and us in the play-offs (our goal).

We are all team-mates so stop playa-hatin'. See you later.

As alway's; I Love all ya'll!

Peace, Chef John

PS. They are playing against PROFESSIONAL Basketball players (Grown-men); big, fast, mean grown men.

Do you want boyscouts or assasins (Wall & Arenas)with the B-ball in their hands.

Niether one of them had silver-spoon child-hoods; they came up in the hood, as did I, and you can't be no punk. Stop crying. please.

Man-hood wins basketball games. Oh yeah, defense wins games and offense sell's tickets.

When Gil played with Larry Hughes, they lead the league in steals. How quickly they forget, but I don't. I appreciate people.

Thank you all for your time.

John

Posted by: upscalechef | September 15, 2010 5:37 PM | Report abuse

Niether one of them had silver-spoon child-hoods; they came up in the hood, as did I, and you can't be no punk. Stop crying. please.
Posted by: upscalechef

John, you can be an assassin on the court without being a punk off of it. And Gil was a punk. He was joking but it was a punk move. If he wanted to be a man, paying Crit the money he owed him (if the story is correct) and squashing the rest of it would have been the 'being a man' move.

Gil lives in Great Falls. That's not exactly "The 'Hood".

Posted by: ts35 | September 15, 2010 5:55 PM | Report abuse

Leave Arenas alone. Remember when the sorry were a joke? Remember when Arenas made them relevant? When people actually started to care about basketball in this city. Remember when he was so good that he was getting triple teamed so that he wouldn't bury a last second dagger buzzer beater! Remember when he was so good that even after his first knee injury EVERYONE thought it was a good idea to give him 100 million dollars. Hypocrites and haters. Leave Arenas alone. Yes, he did some stupid things. He's like a big kid. However, no one can ever convince me that he had any real malicious intent with any of his stupid and childish actions. I would still invite the man into my house with no fear of being shot lol. Let's be honest people he got crucified by the league. He isn't Ray Lewis, O.J. Simpson, or some other bone head murdering sports star. Far from it, he was arguably one of the best if not THE best scorer in the league in his prime. He had Kobe range before we started calling it Kobe range. I still remember him shooting a last second 3-point 28 footer and raising his hands in victory before the shot even went down. He was SILLY. He gave us some great moments and for that I am forever in gratitude. I wish him the best of luck. LONG LIVE THE HIBATCHI.

Posted by: rafael13 | September 15, 2010 8:20 PM | Report abuse

Who cares? NBA is a big waste of time and money, as is NFL, MLB and all the rest. Leeches. Parasites. Sucking fish. All these pro athletes should have to go get a real job and contribute to the economy, but they're TOO STOOPID...

Posted by: eat-the-rich | September 15, 2010 9:52 PM | Report abuse

Cant wait to see Gil! Good luck Gil, you still have a lot of fans in DC.

Posted by: washwiz | September 16, 2010 9:07 AM | Report abuse

I guess my hope is that one day you'll read a post before you respond. Posted by: Samson151 | September 14, 2010 11:30 PM

Hope springs eternal.

Posted by: kalo_rama | September 16, 2010 11:52 AM | Report abuse

let the man be..just because he has said anything u guys go running ur mouth..damn if he do damn if he dont..a man that made 65 mil then signed 111 not wanting to pay sumbody coming im that smart but doesnt seem true to me...then pays he 50 thousand for his moms neck its in the report..thats sound like hes not willing to pay...theres always 3 stories JC GA and the truth and we actually havent heard ONE..so let it die already...

Posted by: MrNoOne | September 17, 2010 5:59 PM | Report abuse

between number zero or six or nine or whatever number he's wearing and haynesworthless, know wonder washington area sports teams suck, get rid the bums instead of trying to make it seems as if they are the victims when it is really the sports fans that are suffering.

Posted by: geg5100 | September 18, 2010 4:45 PM | Report abuse

the great pretender, flip saunders, is full of it. get him outta here!

Posted by: dcjazzman | September 19, 2010 12:07 AM | Report abuse

Orlando offer Vince Carter for Gil and The Knicks ask what it will take to get Gil and The Wizard told them he not to be traded, so so much for he can't be traded. but Gil had three years to let his knees get better. we will see a All Pro Gil this year and a real chance to play in the championship game this year. The Wizards made a lot of great moves this year and it will pay off this year. Get ready for the ride.

Posted by: lostdogrwd101 | September 20, 2010 11:03 AM | Report abuse

The sooner Teddy L gets this house in order, the sooner some of the hating nitwit Wiz fans will leave as evident by their comments above.

Just like the Caps have a better breed since TL took over, so will the Wiz.

Lowlifes have no place in TL's world.

Posted by: Rocc00 | September 21, 2010 11:20 AM | Report abuse

Why are there so maney Gil haters out there? Where were we before he came here? With the addition of Wall we have a very explosive team on our hands and should be a playoff contender. When Gil, John, Andre and the others hit the floor and yes in that order because that will be the order the ball will travel we are going to see the type of basketball we havent seen for a long time. Gil has alot to prove to the doubters and that only fuels his fire that he is still an elite player in this league and if Gil has a good year then the Wizards will have a good year like it or not. So expect nothing less than hard work and dedication to this team from Gil and he should mentor Wall in being an Elite player in this league as well. My predition for the Wizards this year is that they have a 50+ win season. Cmon Gil showem what your working with!!!!

Posted by: wizardsfan | September 21, 2010 1:59 PM | Report abuse

GIL IS STILL A GOOD MAN DONT FORGET WHAT HE HAS DONE FOR THE DMV IN THE PAST.MY FRIENDS LOVE GILL.JUST WIN BABY

Posted by: lazy1520 | September 28, 2010 9:58 AM | Report abuse

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