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John Wall talks about his NBA debut

By Michael Lee  | October 30, 2010; 9:39 AM ET
Categories:  John Wall  
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Next: John Wall putting in extra time to work on his jumper

Comments

You realize that's nonsense, right? There's not a single player on the Wizards roster with a prayer of guarding Lebron or Wade. And if Blatche and McGee couldn't stay in front of Marcin Gortat on his way to the basket, it's unlikely they'd have had better luck with Bosh. Between the three of them they could have easily racked up 70 against the Wizards. Meanwhile, against the defense Miami put up on the Magic, the Wiz would have been lucky to score 70 total as a team.

Posted by: kalo_rama | October 30, 2010 1:22 AM


Match ups and style of play does not correlate from one team to the next. The Magics pummeled the Wizards, the following night the Magics got clobbered by the Heat so when the Heat play the Wizards it will be a complete mauling. Complete fallacy

Posted by: spades72 | October 30, 2010 9:21 AM | Report abuse

Absolutely my point, spades. But it's futile to argue with Kalo now, since he's always full of his own arguments. Much of the time they make sense, but not always.

I will revisit this issue AFTER the Miami game. Remember, he who laughs last laughs best. The Wiz are not as bad as they looked opening night, and of course the Magic aren't as bad as they looked last night either.

Posted by: bpybay | October 30, 2010 9:59 AM | Report abuse

Wall did not have a terrible game against the Magic. He simply had a terrible shooting game. The other aspects of his game, though not superb, were okay. In fact, he had quite a few passes to open shooters that simply did not knock down their shots. He could have (should have) had 13-14 assists easily.

I predict a win tonight. Dray will have either 25+ points or 8+ assists. He should take it as a HUGE compliment that the Magic played him the way they did. It shows they have much respect for his game. He has to make adjustments, and I believe he will. He will come back very strong tonight.

Posted by: bpybay | October 30, 2010 10:21 AM | Report abuse

JWow has a bright future, but he has no J and pretty soon, teams will be able to clamp down on his drives to the basket either by tightening up their D, or getting physical. He's got a thin build and will probably hit the wall at 30-35 games.

There are no good finishers on the team unless the shot is an alley oop dunk to JaTravel, so based on all that, I don't expect JWow to have a dominant rookie year and probably not ROY.

I've yet to see any signs of a well coached, disciplined team.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | October 30, 2010 10:24 AM | Report abuse

Saunders was pleased with the energy displayed by the last group he had on the floor: Cartier Martin, Jianlian, Trevor Booker, Hamady Ndiaye and Lester Hudson. "Realistically, in the last week, those guys have been kicking the tail out of the first team," he said. "So I guess, maybe it shouldn't be a surprised based on how they've been playing."

There's some great news.

Posted by: divi3 | October 30, 2010 10:31 AM | Report abuse

I only caught a couple minutes and it looked awful. What I saw of McGee was pretty good. Evidently the only 2 minutes he looked good.

Javale had the best +/- of the starters, though for whatever reason people seem to blame him for every bucket.

Hopefully we just improve this year. I think Flip will lose his job this winter and Cassell will replace him.

He's definitely on the hot seat. With no superstar player to bail him out, he's going to have to prove his acumen by getting this team to overachieve (even just a little bit). A $5mill/yr head coach should be able to win some games through motivation, schemes, and in-game moves just as much as highly paid players are expected to perform.

Posted by: divi3 | October 30, 2010 10:48 AM | Report abuse

"Saunders was pleased with the energy displayed by the last group he had on the floor: Cartier Martin, Jianlian, Trevor Booker, Hamady Ndiaye and Lester Hudson. "Realistically, in the last week, those guys have been kicking the tail out of the first team," he said. "So I guess, maybe it shouldn't be a surprised based on how they've been playing."

There's some great news.

Posted by: divi3 | October 30, 2010 10:31 AM | Report abuse "

Hmmm, yes....all guys without inflated contracts and a foot from the unemployment line showing more energy. And, instead of a 35 pt. blowout, it was only 29? Small victories that amount to nothing.

Hey Flip Flop, if you're so pleased, then put your money where your mouth is and start the 2nd team.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | October 30, 2010 10:51 AM | Report abuse

Interesting quote from sports statistician Ken Pomeroy on basketball stats:

"If a team scores frequently, we assume its has a good offense. Over the course of a full season, this a good assumption, but over the course of a game, or a half, this may not be true. A team could have taken horrible shots but gotten lucky and made a lot of them, and it is impossible to determine that from the play-by-play. In football, you can at least look at things like total yards or yards per play after a game and get a sense of who won the line of scrimmage and how that matches up with the final score. I think you can tease out a lot more of the luck from an individual football game than from a basketball game."

Posted by: Samson151 | October 30, 2010 10:51 AM | Report abuse

"He's definitely on the hot seat. With no superstar player to bail him out, he's going to have to prove his acumen by getting this team to overachieve (even just a little bit). A $5mill/yr head coach should be able to win some games through motivation, schemes, and in-game moves just as much as highly paid players are expected to perform.

Posted by: divi3 | October 30, 2010 10:48 AM | Report abuse "

Who's on the hot seat? Try Grunfeld first. He put this team together. He should be the first fired, not Flip Flop. Flip Flop can only work with the players given to him.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | October 30, 2010 10:54 AM | Report abuse

"Match ups and style of play does not correlate from one team to the next. The Magics pummeled the Wizards, the following night the Magics got clobbered by the Heat so when the Heat play the Wizards it will be a complete mauling. Complete fallacy.Posted by: spades72"

But is that really the question? As I read it, the discussion concerns how well the Wiz match up with the Heat -- the Big Three in particular. I can't think of anyone on the Wiz who could handle LeBron or Wade one on one. I can't think of anybody who can stop Bosh around the basket, either. What's to argue about?

Posted by: Samson151 | October 30, 2010 10:57 AM | Report abuse


The Wizards should be super-motivated tonight and might gain a measure of confidence from the knowledge that they did, in fact, beat the Hawks in the preseason with Blatche and McGee doing a lot of dirty work in the paint. On the other hand, if Dray's first shot is an early-in-the-shot-clock, defiant 3, then the Wizards might limp home at 0-2.

Posted by: and_1 | October 30, 2010 10:58 AM | Report abuse

"I predict a win tonight."

The Wiz aren't going to beat Atlanta because Atlanta is a good team.

I'm happy that people think the Wiz can win, and so do the Wiz, but they haven't learned HOW to win yet. Gotta take baby steps first.

This is how the season is going to go: If Arenas shoots good, they will compete. If he does not they will lose.

Honestly, look at the roster. Beyond Wall and Arenas, and *maybe* Mcgee, nobody on this team is a starter in the NBA. Hinrich is a role player who can play defense and run the point off of the bench.

It's 100% about matchups but it's also about talent, and the Wiz just don't have it.

But again, you need a good GM in place and the Wiz don't have that either.

- Ray

PS - Playing back to back nights in the NBA is always tough and that's why the Magic lost so bad to the Heat. If the Heat and Magic play in a series it just might go 7 games.

Posted by: rmcazz | October 30, 2010 11:01 AM | Report abuse

"A $5mill/yr head coach should be able to win some games through motivation, schemes, and in-game moves just as much as highly paid players are expected to perform.Posted by: divi3"

LOL there's the $$ argument again, and only one game into the season. Probably saved up from last year.

The Wiz' coach was hired to coach a veteran team with playoff aspirations, and received commensurate salary. NBA coaching contracts are generally market-based. Abe Pollin signed off, which suggests he thought it was worth it.

The team's aspirations quickly dematerialized. After the Gilbert fiasco and Pollin's death, the ownership decided (on EG's recommendation) to blow up the roster. They did, giving up three quality NBA vets for less than they might otherwise have been worth. Later on the team began to get lucky, picking up some quality from Chicago and NJ when those clubs were in the process of preparing for free agency. And of course they got John Wall.

EG decided to keep Flip for another season to see if he could build this newly configured roster into something resembling an NBA team. We presume Ted signed off on that -- he's not a rook in these matters.

At year's end, if the team hasn't shown real progress, they'll probably replace Saunders with somebody else. Maybe somebody cheaper, maybe not.

You want to talk about not getting value for the money? Start with Gilbert Arenas. Then move on to Albert Haynesworth.

Posted by: Samson151 | October 30, 2010 11:08 AM | Report abuse

Honestly, look at the roster. Beyond Wall and Arenas, and *maybe* Mcgee, nobody on this team is a starter in the NBA. Hinrich is a role player who can play defense and run the point off of the bench.

1)in case you hadnt noticed, Arenas is not playing.
2)Wall is a 20yr old rook, who says he's really an nba starter at this moment?
3)Hinrich's defense was very bad against the Magic, and Flip didnt let him run the point. Personally, I would like to see KH set up the offense a bit more rather than having all the responsibility on Wall at all times.

Posted by: divi3 | October 30, 2010 11:11 AM | Report abuse

JaTravel is no starter in this league yet....it's going to be awhile, if ever.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | October 30, 2010 11:13 AM | Report abuse

""A $5mill/yr head coach should be able to win some games through motivation, schemes, and in-game moves just as much as highly paid players are expected to perform.Posted by: divi3"

BTW, that argument about coaches' being able to 'win' games on a par with a highly paid player seems bogus. The coach isn't in uniform. It's a different role, and one that's hard to quantify. Even harder than the GM's -- you can at least argue about player transactions.

How do you evaluate a coach? Substitution patterns? Where's the objective standard for that? 'Motivating others' is a pretty vague concept in a world of guaranteed contracts. People can argue about schemes and in-game moves, but this isn't football, where percentages exist for what to do in every situation.

You know how coaches get judged? Won-loss record. It's unfair, but there you have it.

Larry Bird said KC Jones was the ideal coach for that Celts' club because said little and rarely interfered. So how would he have done with the current Wiz?

Posted by: Samson151 | October 30, 2010 11:18 AM | Report abuse

You want to talk about not getting value for the money? Start with Gilbert Arenas. Then move on to Albert Haynesworth.

And? So what. You're always so sensitive about management LOL. Flip is supposed to be an elite coach, that's why he's paid the way he is. If he cant make the team better (no matter their talent level) then he should be canned.

Posted by: divi3 | October 30, 2010 11:19 AM | Report abuse

I've yet to see any signs of a well coached, disciplined team.

I don't think the individual players or the team as a whole are buying what SAUNDERS is shovelin.'

Of course, it's ARENAS' doings. It always is. I want DELONTE WEST on this team. What a shoot-out!

Posted by: glawrence007 | October 30, 2010 11:35 AM | Report abuse

"And? So what. You're always so sensitive about management LOL. Flip is supposed to be an elite coach, that's why he's paid the way he is. If he cant make the team better (no matter their talent level) then he should be canned.Posted by: divi3"

That's just more woofing. Flip's paid according to a contract. Contract isn't based on his being an 'elite' anything. Flip will be canned if Ernie and Ted decide so. Your input is, as always, just more complaining.

Posted by: Samson151 | October 30, 2010 11:43 AM | Report abuse

Flip is supposed to be an elite coach, that's why he's paid the way he is. If he cant make the team better (no matter their talent level) then he should be canned.
Posted by: divi3

I'd like to see Ernie make some trades before that happens. He didn't make moves to bring in the kind of players that EJ wanted. That shouldn't be the same case for his handpicked coach.

Posted by: djnnnou | October 30, 2010 11:52 AM | Report abuse

they took the ball out a proven players hands and gave th keys to guy who cant drive the car yet and [ut the vet in the corner..if my point guard is gonna shot 19 shots...10 more then the rest of the team...i think i would like the guy who can actually shoot put up 19..give the ball back to arenas let him avg 30 until wall is ready..and ive yet to see this steve nash passing from him..hes arenas who cant shoot and got better spot up shooters..since preseason who has he made better? he could get dray a decent shot..

Posted by: MrNoOne | October 30, 2010 12:20 PM | Report abuse

But is that really the question? As I read it, the discussion concerns how well the Wiz match up with the Heat -- the Big Three in particular. I can't think of anyone on the Wiz who could handle LeBron or Wade one on one. I can't think of anybody who can stop Bosh around the basket, either. What's to argue about?

Posted by: Samson151 | October 30, 2010 10:57 AM | Report abuse

Actually, the real question related to whether the Heat would beat the Wiz by 50 just because Magic beat Wiz by 30 and Heat beat Magic by 20 (26, actually), which is Kalo's argument. Individual play does not necessarily equate to team play. Just because individually we don't match up better does not mean the team COLLECTIVELY doesn't. The Wiz/Heat match up better than Wiz/Magic. Now I am NOT saying they match up well; just better than Wiz/Magic.

Let me say it again. We stand a better chance against the Heat than we do the Magic, primarily because we have no inside game, and the Magic has a MUCH BETTER inside game than does the Heat.

With that said, we don't stand a good chance against either. At this stage, I'd just rather play Miami than Orlando.

Posted by: bpybay | October 30, 2010 12:46 PM | Report abuse

The Wiz aren't going to beat Atlanta because Atlanta is a good team.

Posted by: rmcazz | October 30, 2010 11:01 AM | Report abuse

Sorry, but that is a fallacious argument! Based on that theory, the best team in the league will go 82-0, and the worst team will go 0-82.

Ever heard of the word "upset?" That's when the worst of the two teams beats the best, and that can happen on any given day. The best team doesn't always win.

PS - Playing back to back nights in the NBA is always tough and that's why the Magic lost so bad to the Heat.

Would also be one reason why Wiz could beat Hawks tonight. Hawks played (and won) last night. Sense of urgency not nearly as great as Wiz, who desperately want to atone for Thursday's annihilation.

Posted by: bpybay | October 30, 2010 1:18 PM | Report abuse

The Wiz aren't going to beat Atlanta because Atlanta is a good team.

Posted by: rmcazz | October 30, 2010 11:01 AM | Report abuse

Sorry, but that is a fallacious argument! Based on that theory, the best team in the league will go 82-0, and the worst team will go 0-82.

Ever heard of the word "upset?" That's when the worst of the two teams beats the best, and that can happen on any given day. The best team doesn't always win.

PS - Playing back to back nights in the NBA is always tough and that's why the Magic lost so bad to the Heat.

Would also be one reason why Wiz could beat Hawks tonight. Hawks played (and won) last night. Sense of urgency not nearly as great as Wiz, who desperately want to atone for Thursday's annihilation.

Posted by: bpybay | October 30, 2010 1:24 PM | Report abuse

The Wizards lost one game in which two essential, experienced players were out with injuries and from that loss all kinds of conclusions are being drawn about the viability of the team and players like McGee, Blatche, Wall, etc. That's just as silly as assuming that because the Wiz lost to the Magic by 30 they'll lose by 50 to the Heat.

There is for Blatche, McGee, Young, Armstrong and Ji an accompanying history that is cause for alarm and suggests the Wizards have reason for concern, unless of course you had quite reasonably concluded after Hayward, Jamison and Butler departed last season that this season was a total write off and potential lottery opportunity.

Yet it is plausible to assume that if a healthy Arenas and Howard could be plugged into a lineup with Wall, Blatche and McGee, the Wizards would be entertaining and might win 30 -40 games, (some of the more light headed among us even felt the 7th or 8th playoff spot were a reasonable hope)... this was assumed and discussed just one game ago.

The Wizards can't be as bad as they looked against Orlando and Arenas and Howard will make a difference it they ever get back. The Wizards lost by 30 to Orlando and were declared road kill, yet Orlando was trounced by the Heat one game later, what can be concluded from that after two games and after the Heat were beaten by the Celtics?

The Wizards are in a reasonably good position for building a team over the next few years, questions about playing time for Seraphin and Booker are to be expected but not after one game

Posted by: midlevex_ | October 30, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

The Wizards lost one game in which two essential, experienced players were out with injuries and from that loss all kinds of conclusions are being drawn about the viability of the team and players like McGee, Blatche, Wall, etc. That's just as silly as assuming that because the Wiz lost to the Magic by 30 they'll lose by 50 to the Heat.

Posted by: midlevex_ | October 30, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

We need a new panic button. The old won is now completely worn out.

Posted by: bpybay | October 30, 2010 1:51 PM | Report abuse

We need a new panic button. The old one is now completely worn out.

Posted by: bpybay | October 30, 2010 1:53 PM | Report abuse

You mean they need an ejection button to eject Grunfeld and his sorry @ss out of here.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | October 30, 2010 2:49 PM | Report abuse

"But is that really the question? As I read it, the discussion concerns how well the Wiz match up with the Heat -- the Big Three in particular. I can't think of anyone on the Wiz who could handle LeBron or Wade one on one. I can't think of anybody who can stop Bosh around the basket, either. What's to argue about?"

Posted by: Samson151 | October 30, 2010 10:57 AM

The color of the sky and whether water is wet, because apparently simple obvious facts are now up for debate.

"Actually, the real question related to whether the Heat would beat the Wiz by 50 just because Magic beat Wiz by 30 and Heat beat Magic by 20 (26, actually), which is Kalo's argument."

Posted by: bpybay | October 30, 2010 12:46 PM

Well, that explains a lot. You argument is nonsensical crap because you have no idea what it is your arguing against.

My argument was never that " the Heat would beat the Wiz by 50 just because Magic beat Wiz by 30 and Heat beat Magic by 20". To even suggest that is idiocy. First of all, the actual number "50" was arbitrary and clearly meant as a form of sarcasm/hyperbole. Second, my argument was that the Heat would likely beat the Wiz by a bigger margin than the Magic because (A) like the Magic the Heat have the ability to play stifling defense that would shut down the Wizards' limited offensive capabilities but (B) unlike the Magic, the Heat also have the ability to dominate offensively because they have 3 guys who can drop 30 on a given night with little effort (and dropping 30 against the Wizards "defense" requires very little effort at all). In other words, the Heat may be nearly as good as the Magic defensively, but are better offensively. Thus a bigger final margin against a Wizards team lacking in both offense and defense.

Seriously, that can't have been that hard to figure out.

Posted by: kalo_rama | October 30, 2010 3:29 PM | Report abuse

"And? So what. You're always so sensitive about management LOL. Flip is supposed to be an elite coach, that's why he's paid the way he is. If he cant make the team better (no matter their talent level) then he should be canned."

Posted by: divi3 | October 30, 2010 11:19 AM

Ridiculous claptrap. No coach can win anything at any level without talent. To suggest otherwise is just stupidity.

Posted by: kalo_rama | October 30, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

The color of the sky and whether water is wet, because apparently simple obvious facts are now up for debate.

Lol, are you seriously going to make me re-post your thoughts on this matter?

Second, my argument was that the Heat would likely beat the Wiz by a bigger margin than the Magic because (A) like the Magic the Heat have the ability to play stifling defense that would shut down the Wizards' limited offensive capabilities but (B) unlike the Magic, the Heat also have the ability to dominate offensively because they have 3 guys who can drop 30 on a given night with little effort (and dropping 30 against the Wizards "defense" requires very little effort at all). In other words, the Heat may be nearly as good as the Magic defensively, but are better offensively. Thus a bigger final margin against a Wizards team lacking in both offense and defense.

Which is all good in theory, except that it rarely works out that way in actual games because there are too many variables. And aside from that, as good as the Heat might be and as bad as the Wiz might be, the differential is seldom as bad as it was for the Wiz the other night. If for no other reason (though there are some) than the leading team usually takes their foot off the gas pedal. So, should we expect the Heat to dominate the Wiz, certainly. Should we expect the outcome to be decidedly worse than it was against the Magic? Unlikely.

Posted by: ts35 | October 30, 2010 3:56 PM | Report abuse

clearly meant as a form of sarcasm/hyperbole.

Watch where you point that hyperbolic sarcasm, it might be loaded.

Posted by: midlevex_ | October 30, 2010 4:17 PM | Report abuse

But is that really the question? As I read it, the discussion concerns how well the Wiz match up with the Heat -- the Big Three in particular. I can't think of anyone on the Wiz who could handle LeBron or Wade one on one. I can't think of anybody who can stop Bosh around the basket, either. What's to argue about?

Posted by: Samson151 | October 30, 2010 10:57 AM

"Not really. All it means is that if the Wiz had played Miami instead of Orlando, they'd have lost by 50 instead of 30"

Posted by: kalo_rama | October 30, 2010 12:59 AM

You realize that's nonsense, right? There's not a single player on the Wizards roster with a prayer of guarding Lebron or Wade. And if Blatche and McGee couldn't stay in front of Marcin Gortat on his way to the basket, it's unlikely they'd have had better luck with Bosh. Between the three of them they could have easily racked up 70 against the Wizards. Meanwhile, against the defense Miami put up on the Magic, the Wiz would have been lucky to score 70 total as a team.

Posted by: kalo_rama | October 30, 2010 1:22 AM


@Samson151

Teams take turns beating upon each other all the time and though talent and chemistry are the main ingredients a lot has to do with match ups and style of play. I am willing to make wager with you that the Wizards will score more than 70 points against the Heat. I am will to go as far as 80 points.

Posted by: spades72 | October 30, 2010 4:17 PM | Report abuse

Match ups and style of play does not always correlate from one team to the next. The Magics pummeled the Wizards, the following night the Magics got clobbered by the Heat so when the Heat play the Wizards it will be a complete mauling. Complete fallacy.

Posted by: spades72"

But is that really the question? As I read it, the discussion concerns how well the Wiz match up with the Heat -- the Big Three in particular. I can't think of anyone on the Wiz who could handle LeBron or Wade one on one. I can't think of anybody who can stop Bosh around the basket, either. What's to argue about?

Posted by: Samson151 | October 30, 2010 10:57 AM

@Samson151

I have noticed you've been itching to get into to a debate with me so now here is your chance. Answer me this. The 2007- 2008 Boston Celtics finished the regular season with a record of 66-16 and went on to become the NBA champions. The only team that beat them 3 times during the regular season was the Washington Wizards (3-1) The celtics were 66-16, the Wizards were 43-39, but the Wizards won the season series against the celtics 3 games to 1. Did this had anything with who had the most talent or was it more about match ups and style of play???

Posted by: spades72 | October 30, 2010 4:33 PM | Report abuse

"My argument was never that " the Heat would beat the Wiz by 50 just because Magic beat Wiz by 30 and Heat beat Magic by 20". To even suggest that is idiocy. First of all, the actual number "50" was arbitrary and clearly meant as a form of sarcasm/hyperbole. Second, my argument was that the Heat would likely beat the Wiz by a bigger margin than the Magic because (A) like the Magic the Heat have the ability to play stifling defense that would shut down the Wizards' limited offensive capabilities but (B) unlike the Magic, the Heat also have the ability to dominate offensively because they have 3 guys who can drop 30 on a given night with little effort (and dropping 30 against the Wizards "defense" requires very little effort at all). In other words, the Heat may be nearly as good as the Magic defensively, but are better offensively. Thus a bigger final margin against a Wizards team lacking in both offense and defense."

"Seriously, that can't have been that hard to figure out."

Posted by: kalo_rama

And you meant all of that by post the following.

"You realize that's nonsense, right? There's not a single player on the Wizards roster with a prayer of guarding Lebron or Wade. And if Blatche and McGee couldn't stay in front of Marcin Gortat on his way to the basket, it's unlikely they'd have had better luck with Bosh. Between the three of them they could have easily racked up 70 against the Wizards. Meanwhile, against the defense Miami put up on the Magic, the Wiz would have been lucky to score 70 total as a team"

"Not really. All it means is that if the Wiz had played Miami instead of Orlando, they'd have lost by 50 instead of 30"


You seem to be an intelligent guy express yourself more clearly.

Posted by: spades72 | October 30, 2010 5:41 PM | Report abuse

@kalo_rama

My response to your posts did not mention not one scintilla of any of your arbitrary numbers, so to suggest that I took your statememts literally have no basis whatsoever. What I did state, was that match ups and style of play would be a determinant on the result of the game. But of course, you failed to address what I wrote and instead was more busy defending your own foolishness.

Posted by: spades72 | October 30, 2010 6:07 PM | Report abuse

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