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Wizards to head into season opener with 15 players

When the Wizards submit their final roster to the league by 5 p.m. on Monday, Cartier Martin, Hamady Ndiaye and Lester Hudson will be among the names on it. The Wizards had intended on going into the season opener against Orlando with 13 or 14 players, but elected to go with the maximum 15, especially with Josh Howard still a few weeks away.

Martin, Ndiaye and Hudson were all relieved to make it, but understand that their contracts are still not fully guaranteed until early January -- and anything can happen until then.

"I feel a little better," Hudson said, "but I'm trying to get better, helping the team out. Can't control what's going on. Got to play as hard as you can, work as hard as you can."

Ndiaye said he felt the decision affirmed his decision to head to Wizards training camp, and risk getting cut, over pushing for an opportunity to play overseas. After practice, Ndiaye was in a rush to catch up with Trevor Booker and Kevin Seraphin. He said being around his teammates was one of the main reasons he took the risk.

"When I say I'm doing something, I'm focused on doing it," he said. "Like I don't have no other options in my head. I give it whatever I've got."

Gilbert Arenas sat out of practice on Sunday after developing some soreness in right ankle. Coach Flip Saunders said Arenas started to feel some discomfort on Friday in the same ankle that sidelined him through the final two days of practice in training camp.

Saunders added that with the Wizards set to open the season on TNT on Thursday, the team can be overly cautious with players. Kirk Hinrich (strained right hip) and John Wall (groin) both sat out on Friday but were back in action after the team took a day off. "It's good from a standpoint, because we have a lot of guys who are nicked up, so we've been able to give them some rest time," Saunders said. "So I think that's a positive."

The Wizards practice at Verizon Center the next two days, then leave for Orlando, where they will prepare for the Magic on Wednesday. They spent practice on Sunday focusing on the game plan against Orlando. "With a young team, you can ease them in," he said. "You can gear up for opening night. It's not going to be boom. I think it's a different story when you have so many young players. With veterans, you're anxious to get the season going and trying to establish things."

By Michael Lee  | October 24, 2010; 9:17 PM ET
 
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Next: Flip Saunders uncertain if Gilbert Arenas will play season opener

Comments

Sure hope Flip doesn't run certain guys into the ground with heavy minutes early in the season.

Wall has no idea how rigorous the NBA schedule can be. It might be smart to protect him from himself so to speak.

Finding a way to keep Wall, Arenas and Hinrich fresh may depend on putting a cap on their minutes when possible.

Posted by: elfreako | October 24, 2010 11:44 PM | Report abuse

Rumor has it that Orlando is interested in a trade of Gil for Vince Carter but they want to wait a month to see if Gil is damaged goods. This would be a bad trade for a 34 yr old, over-rated VC.

Didn't we try this before with an old Mitch Richmond for Chris Webber?

Posted by: zack5 | October 25, 2010 6:48 AM | Report abuse

@zack5: I agree it'll be a really bad trade. Unless VC's contract is expiring.

Posted by: tundey | October 25, 2010 8:32 AM | Report abuse

How large a turd will EG eat to get Gil off the roster by Thursday? constantly holding him back with nagging injuries certainly isnt raising his value.

Posted by: divi3 | October 25, 2010 8:39 AM | Report abuse

If we get Vince that would be a major setback. Ernie don't do it.

Posted by: rnbrown4 | October 25, 2010 8:54 AM | Report abuse

About Vince Carter: he's apparently entering his last guaranteed season, with the Magic holding an option for $18.9 mil. So in essence he's playing for a contract. He's been strong in preseason, FWIW.

As for Carter's season in Orlando, don't forget the Magic swept both Charlotte and Atlanta before the loss in 6 to Boston. Carter actually played well in a diminished role for most of the season. His FTs were way down, because Orlando wanted him shooting jumpers. He can still create his own shot.

In fact, he's about where Arenas is in terms of his performance, capable of off-nights as well as 40 point explosions. Two big differences between them: age, and risk of injury. Carter's historically been the healthier player, although that can change.

Posted by: Samson151 | October 25, 2010 8:57 AM | Report abuse

"constantly holding him back with nagging injuries certainly isnt raising his value.
Posted by: divi3"

You think the team is holding Gil back? I got the impression it was his call.

Posted by: Samson151 | October 25, 2010 9:00 AM | Report abuse

"constantly holding him back with nagging injuries certainly isnt raising his value. Posted by: divi3 | October 25, 2010 8:39 AM"

Letting him play with nagging injuries, only to have those nagging injuries develop into something more serious certainly wouldn't do much to raise his value either.

Posted by: kalo_rama | October 25, 2010 9:23 AM | Report abuse

ESPN's "experts" predictions on the Wizards:

http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/preview2010/news/story?page=Predictions1011-Wizards

Don't often agree with Hollinger, but I think he has a point about the bball IQ.

Posted by: kalo_rama | October 25, 2010 9:25 AM | Report abuse

Carter is a bum, but I'd trade Arenas for him in a heartbeat. He's in his last guaranteed year and almost certainly wants nothing to do with a young rebuilding team, so getting him to agree to a reasonable buyout shouldn't be too difficult. The Arenas era is over. Time to move on.

Posted by: kalo_rama | October 25, 2010 9:30 AM | Report abuse

As for Carter's season in Orlando, don't forget the Magic swept both Charlotte and Atlanta before the loss in 6 to Boston. Carter actually played well in a diminished role for most of the season. His FTs were way down, because Orlando wanted him shooting jumpers. He can still create his own shot.

In fact, he's about where Arenas is in terms of his performance, capable of off-nights as well as 40 point explosions. Two big differences between them: age, and risk of injury. Carter's historically been the healthier player, although that can change.

Posted by: Samson151 | October 25, 2010 8:57 AM | Report abuse

They were not close with respect to perfporrmance Carter averaged 16 points, 3.9 rebounds and 3 assists. More importantly he was terrible against Boston when it really counted. I've always been amused by the clearing cap room strategy so many teams tried only to end up empty handed. Why not build the best team possible while still dveloping your young players. Arenas may still be one of the top 15 players in the leasgue.

Posted by: NewManagement | October 25, 2010 9:31 AM | Report abuse

You think the team is holding Gil back?

I suspect a trade is imminent (or at least they hope so) and they dont want to risk anything.

Posted by: divi3 | October 25, 2010 9:43 AM | Report abuse

Trading Arenas for cap space/Vince Carter would be flawed and dumb. When VC's contract expires it would virtually guarantee that Grunfield would sign a role player to replace what essentially was a top 10 player in the league.

It would keep the Wizards team in a rebuilding mode. Winners do not trade their best players for role players or cap space. Losers do though.

The highway to the playoffs and consistent top notch winning team is with Gilbert Arenas and what we can add to the Team.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | October 25, 2010 9:54 AM | Report abuse

"Trading Arenas for cap space/Vince Carter would be flawed and dumb. When VC's contract expires it would virtually guarantee that Grunfield would sign a role player to replace what essentially was a top 10 player in the league."

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | October 25, 2010 9:54 AM

A) There are no "guarantees" in life and B) Arenas hasn't been a top 10 player in the NBA in years. Hell, given the amount of time he's missed, he's barely been an NBA player at all the last 3.

Posted by: kalo_rama | October 25, 2010 10:04 AM | Report abuse

ESPN's "experts" predictions on the Wizards:

http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/preview2010/news/story?page=Predictions1011-Wizards

Don't often agree with Hollinger, but I think he has a point about the bball IQ.

Posted by: kalo_rama | October 25, 2010 9:25 AM

I kinda agree more with the optimistic assessments of Chris Sheridan, Marc Stein, and Brin Windhurst.

They each have the Wizs making the playoffs. For me, with the way the East breaks out, this Team would have to underachieve for them not to make the playoffs.

Also, when Hollinger says this Team has the lowest bball IQ in the league, I find that very interesting. I know he is making that analogy based on his perception of where the players are in their youthfulness and performance.

However, to come to that conclusion Hollinger is wrong. There is a saying, "The speed of the Team is the speed of the Leader."

So, in order for Hollinger's statement to be true, it is a serious indictment of Flip Saunders and the leadership/coaching of this team.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | October 25, 2010 10:09 AM | Report abuse

"When VC's contract expires it would virtually guarantee that Grunfield would sign a role player to replace what essentially was a top 10 player in the league."

Huh? The expiration of vince carter's contract would free up about $17 million for the wizards.

Posted by: briffy | October 25, 2010 10:22 AM | Report abuse

You can have a young inexperienced team, but that doesn't necessarily equate to low bball IQ.

The bball IQ of your team to me is a direct reflection of the leadership and coaching of the Team.

If Hollinger had qualified his statement to indicate that he wasn't considering the leadership/coaching of the team, he might have a point.

But why make such a statement. Every team has leadership and coaching, good, bad, or indifferent.

So if the leadership/coaching is so bad on this team that we have the lowest BBall IQ in the league, then we need to change something, don't you think?

I've said that Gilbert Arenas has to realize that he is the leader of this Team in order to revive his career completely.

And in realizing such, it will be a tremendous boon to John Wall's development. That would be team leadership. Maybe Hollinger feels that Arenas will not accomplish that.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | October 25, 2010 10:25 AM | Report abuse

Huh? The expiration of vince carter's contract would free up about $17 million for the wizards.

Posted by: briffy | October 25, 2010 10:22 AM

Very good point indeed. Very good.

However, I don't have as much faith that this organization would be landing a top notch player with the money.

Especially, if they trade Gilbert in the first place just for the money.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | October 25, 2010 10:33 AM | Report abuse

The excitement over the dawn of the John Wall era is tempered by the fact that neither the Gilbert Arenas nor Ernie Grunfeld eras have ended.

Agree with Hollinger on Ernie of-course, but holding-out hope for Gilbert 3.0

Posted by: closg | October 25, 2010 10:37 AM | Report abuse

Trading Gilbert for cap space is like changing paddles in the middle of stream.

The one you traded is just as good as the one or even better than the one you think you are going to get on the come.

A very huge gamble. Betting the house on it, you might say.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | October 25, 2010 10:40 AM | Report abuse

ESPN's "experts" predictions on the Wizards:

http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/preview2010/news/story?page=Predictions1011-Wizards

Don't often agree with Hollinger, but I think he has a point about the bball IQ.

Posted by: kalo_rama

I think Hollnger's about a year behind on his assessment.

Yi and Thornton don't help the BBIQ of the team, but bringing in Hinrich and Wall does. If Howard and Arenas are healthy, they add quite a bit to it as well. Are they the most astute team in the league? No. Are they the dumbest? Can't say that either. Plus, with the veterans they have, Cleveland may be in the upper half in 'understanding the game'. But I don't think anyone has great expectations for them to finish ahead of the Wizards.

Posted by: ts35 | October 25, 2010 11:06 AM | Report abuse

There is no reason to think that Arenas won't be able to come back and give 20 plus points per game. There is also no indication that the knee have been a problem. All these speculations that are coming from people who knows nothing, keep that stuff in the fantasy league.

Posted by: spades72 | October 25, 2010 11:11 AM | Report abuse

http://hoopshype.com/previews/2010_11/washington.htm

PROJECTION: (42-40) 4th in Southeeast Division / 8th in the Eastern Conference

This is the highest I see Wizards projected by a non-Wizards related website.

Posted by: sagaliba | October 25, 2010 11:21 AM | Report abuse

Huh? The expiration of vince carter's contract would free up about $17 million for the wizards.

Posted by: briffy | October 25, 2010 10:22 AM

Very good point indeed. Very good.

However, I don't have as much faith that this organization would be landing a top notch player with the money.

Especially, if they trade Gilbert in the first place just for the money.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD

Personally, I think the point of trading Gil for VC has to do with the cap, but not for the purposes of signing a big time FA once VC's salary is off the books.

Ted clearly thinks the NBA is headed for a cap structure similar to the NHL and I think he is doing close to what he did with the Caps, which is create flexibility before that happens. If he's right, it's likely a fair number of players will become available for lesser amounts than they would get currently. Probably not the top guys, maybe not even the second tier, but quality players. Those teams with flexibility may be able to take advantage. Those teams who are far over the cap, like the Magic and others may get hosed.

It's also important to keep in mind one of Ted's 'lessons' from Caps ownership. Ted is definitely interested in winning championships, but he's also interested in maintaining a viable financial model for the franchise. Trading Gil may set them back a bit in the short term competitively, but greatly helps the mid-to-long term financial picture, especially with the economic and league cap structure uncertainty still before them.

Posted by: ts35 | October 25, 2010 11:23 AM | Report abuse

"There is no reason to think that Arenas won't be able to come back and give 20 plus points per game. "

There's also no reason to assume that his 20 ppg are going to make a difference. 20 ppg is not some kind of magical formula. Monta Ellis puts up 20 like falling out of bed, but the Warriors still stink. It's about fit, chemistry, and team goals. This team is building for the future, one that realistically, does not include Arenas. (Anyone really think he'll be re-signed here when his current deal is up? Or that he should?) He's a remnant of a past that this team/franchise desperately needs to move forward from.

The only reason not to trade him is because his presence might be the difference between winning and not winning a title between now and the end of his deal. Certainly no one is foolish enough to believe that.

Posted by: kalo_rama | October 25, 2010 11:28 AM | Report abuse

The DIRECTIVE from the owner of the Washington Wizards made it clear on several occasions that he was not interested in throwing money at free agancy. That they were going to develop the players that they have and continue to build through the draft. The Wizards were $23 million under the salary cap during free agency and yet did not go after any free agent. MAYBE I AM MISSING SOMETHING

Posted by: spades72 | October 25, 2010 11:30 AM | Report abuse

Yi and Thornton don't help the BBIQ of the team, but bringing in Hinrich and Wall does. If Howard and Arenas are healthy, they add quite a bit to it as well.

I'm not sure Wall adds to the bball iq of the team this year, whatever that mysterious term really means. I suspect we'll see a ton of 1-on-1 from him as he tries to figure out the league and exactly how he fits in.

AB may not play the way everyone wants him to, but that doesnt mean he has a low bball iq. Any big with his assist ability is clearly seeing and understanding the game well.

Gil knows what he's doing. Might not be best for team at all teams, but he understand what's going on.

Mcgee/NY are obviously the guys people like to point to about the "low bball iq", but I'm still not sure what Hollinger is getting at other than it's a young team.

Posted by: divi3 | October 25, 2010 11:46 AM | Report abuse

"The DIRECTIVE from the owner of the Washington Wizards made it clear on several occasions that he was not interested in throwing money at free agancy."

I must not have gotten that memo. The one I did get indicated only that he wasn't interested in throwing long-term money at any of the FAs available on the market this summer (at least no the ones the Wiz had an actual shot at landing). There's a huge difference between that and not wanting to spend money on FAs ever.

Posted by: kalo_rama | October 25, 2010 11:47 AM | Report abuse

Would someone post a link/soundbyte/quote of Ted Leonsis exploring trade talks involving Gilbert Arenas.

Better yet, just post a link/soundbyte/quote from Ted talking about Gil period.

Do you think a new owner would lie to everybody straight out the box in a situation where somebody is pretty much untradeable?

Posted by: G-Man11 | October 25, 2010 11:49 AM | Report abuse

Trading Gil isnt about saving money or getting CAP space for another FA, it's about getting rid of him.

Posted by: divi3 | October 25, 2010 11:57 AM | Report abuse

Well, if he's not giving extensive interviews talking about his plans to trade Arenas then clearly Leonsis has no intention of trading him. Because, as we all know, owners routinely talk at length to the press about their intentions to trade players well in advance of actually making a deal. Right?

Besides, no one said Leonis was planning on trading him. The discussion is whether trading him would be best for the team. Two different topics, really.

Posted by: kalo_rama | October 25, 2010 12:03 PM | Report abuse

I'm not sure Wall adds to the bball iq of the team this year, whatever that mysterious term really means. I suspect we'll see a ton of 1-on-1 from him as he tries to figure out the league and exactly how he fits in.

He's averaging what 7 or 8 assists? So he already has an understanding of how to get people the ball in spots to score. Does he still have stuff to figure out and work on (like his turnovers), of course. But even if we call his bbiq average, that's still an improvement for the team at the PG position over what it was at times last year (Boykins / Foye).

Posted by: ts35 | October 25, 2010 12:07 PM | Report abuse

Trading Gil isnt about saving money or getting CAP space for another FA, it's about getting rid of him.

Posted by: divi3

I'm sure there's an element of that to it, but imo, it's more about the salary structure. If Gil were a model player and the caliber of player he was pre-injury, maybe the math would be different. But when you factor everything together: the potential for new cap structure, Gil's contract, his injury, and his history, I think Ted's decided that the juice may not be worth the squeezing.

Posted by: ts35 | October 25, 2010 12:13 PM | Report abuse

AB may not play the way everyone wants him to, but that doesnt mean he has a low bball iq. Any big with his assist ability is clearly seeing and understanding the game well."

Blatche has averaged as many as 2 apg only one season in his career (last, barely) and has only posted a positive A/TO ratio once in his career (08-09, barely). He's not exactly Chris Webber in his prime when it comes to dishing the ball. In fact, his tendency to attempt spectacular plays that end up with the ball in the front row (or in the other team's basket after a fast break layup) has always been one of the markers of questionable decison making that constitutes poor bball IQ.

Posted by: kalo_rama | October 25, 2010 12:14 PM | Report abuse

Getting rid of Gil for cap-space is not addition by subtraction. It is fool's gold. Especially being that the Wizards are at the food-chain of franchises that are attractive to quality free agents.

By the time Wall and the Wizards are ready to do more than token damage, Gil's contract will be expiring.

Or do you want to play the lottery game again?

Posted by: G-Man11 | October 25, 2010 12:16 PM | Report abuse

The DIRECTIVE from the owner of the Washington Wizards made it clear on several occasions that he was not interested in throwing money at free agancy. That they were going to develop the players that they have and continue to build through the draft. The Wizards were $23 million under the salary cap during free agency and yet did not go after any free agent. MAYBE I AM MISSING SOMETHING

Posted by: spades72 | October 25, 2010 11:30 AM

MAYBE you aren't in fact not missing anything at all. But the point of contention is whether the trading of Gilbert is a wise move or not as a part of rebuilding this team.

Ts35 makes a good point about the direction of the CBA and what impact it might have on salaries. I made note of an article when Blatche signed his contract extention and its impacts under a hard salary cap.

Truly from that perspective alone, then keeping Gilbert salary wise, might not be wise. Even resigning JW under a hard cap, will be a challenge. We could resign him but some others may have to go. Blatche, McGee...

I say it will be wise to hold Gilbert for now, to trade him now would be like folding your hand. Once you fold, you can't get that hand back, but if you hold a bit, you can always fold later, with a bit more wisdom to do so or not.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | October 25, 2010 12:17 PM | Report abuse

but then, C-Webb as a bullet/wizard had low b-ball iq too then, and he had more playing time, at a higher level than Blatche has to date. He overcame it though as he matured.

Posted by: G-Man11 | October 25, 2010 12:19 PM | Report abuse

"but then, C-Webb as a bullet/wizard had low b-ball iq too then"

Not really. He had other issues, but that really wasn't one of them.

Posted by: kalo_rama | October 25, 2010 12:29 PM | Report abuse

Trading Gil isnt about saving money or getting CAP space for another FA, it's about getting rid of him.

Posted by: divi3 | October 25, 2010 11:57 AM

Awe come on divi3, get over it already. Why would the Wizards want to do a Chris Webber all over again?

You know what they say about not learning from your mistakes. Trading Gilbert just to get rid of him would surely be Chris Webber II.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | October 25, 2010 12:35 PM | Report abuse

Blatche has averaged as many as 2 apg only one season in his career (last, barely) and has only posted a positive A/TO ratio once in his career (08-09, barely).

Blatche has averaged close to 3assts/game in his starts over the past 2 seasons, that would be top5 for PFs most years.

AJ had same asst/TO ration as AB last season. Are you saying that means AJ is a low bball iq player?

Posted by: divi3 | October 25, 2010 12:39 PM | Report abuse

Why is Blatche making bad passes(sometimes) a sign of low b-ball iq, but it is not a sign if C-Webb did the exact same thing during his tenure in Washington?

I don't think has low b-ball iq, he just his game needs to mature a lil.

Posted by: G-Man11 | October 25, 2010 12:40 PM | Report abuse

I don't think Blatche has low-b-ball iq, his game needs to mature a lil bit. That comes with playing time.

Posted by: G-Man11 | October 25, 2010 12:42 PM | Report abuse

Imo, AB's bbiq, or more accurately for this particular case - his decision-making -- took at step up in the back half of last year from 'poor', i.e. the ill-advised passes and between-the-legs forays to the basket, to 'average'. When he became the focal point of the offense, he started making better decisions. He still has some room to improve, for sure, but imo he did take a step forward last year. And I think divi has at least part of a point that when AB is starting his decision-making is better. Perhaps he worries less about having to be immediately productive, or he knows that he'll get enough opportunities, who knows? But he does seem to play a bit calmer and smarter.

Given that he'll be starting this year, but will be back to not getting as many opportunities as he did to end last year, it will be interesting to see how his decision-making manifests this year. He's a solid passer for a big man, and he'll have better options to pass to, but it might come at the expense of some of his own opportunities to score. We shall see.

Posted by: ts35 | October 25, 2010 12:52 PM | Report abuse

Why is Blatche making bad passes(sometimes) a sign of low b-ball iq, but it is not a sign if C-Webb did the exact same thing during his tenure in Washington?"

Because it's more than just "(sometimes)" with Blatche. As indicated by his perpetually negative A/TO ratio, Blatche makes bad passes more often than he makes good ones. Every time the ball leaves his hand it's a toss up whether it ends up going to a teammate or an opponent. During his entire career in D.C., Webber never came close to posting a negative A/TO ratio. Did he sometimes send 'em sailing into the expensive seats? Sure. But he got it right more often than he got it wrong on that score. The same cannot be said of Blatche.

Webber is generally considered one of the best passing bigs to ever play the game, so comparing Blatche to him a nonstarter of an argument

Posted by: kalo_rama | October 25, 2010 12:55 PM | Report abuse

Chris Bosh avgs same number of TOs as he does Assists. He must have a low bball iq right?

Or is "bball iq" really just a crap term that amounts to not much more than someone's opinion in most cases?

Posted by: divi3 | October 25, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

Hollinger after the trade that brought in Thornton -

As for Thornton, he was a necessary component of the deal but basically gives the Wizards exactly what they don't need -- another quasi-talented, shot-happy young guy who has no idea how to play. Washington's quartet of Thornton, Nick Young, Andray Blatche, and JaVale McGee might be the most clueless unit any single NBA team could muster.

I guess necessity is the mother of the three guard lineup..

Posted by: djnnnou | October 25, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

I disagree. Do you take anything into account besides statistics?

Last year, how was Blatche defended? Last year, teams started doubling Blatche for the first time. Did he have trouble passing, yes he did. But who was he playing with? Was he playing with anybody the defense respected? Teams were clogging the passing lanes. He had to get used to being doubled. Teams were jumping him like they he was the only opponent on the court. During situations like that, turnovers will occur.

In other years, he had shown the ability to pass, and play without the ball, showing the ability to slide along the baseline putting himself into position to receive and finish(layup, not dunk). He has been a decent defender.

Those are not signs of low b-ball iq. Those same plays Webber learned to make as the offense was run thru him in his Warrior years, Blatche has the ability to do. Passing out the double team. Behind the back bounce passes to cutters. Hitting the open mid-range jumper. Pump-faking and then going around the defender. All things Webber learned to do. Cause I remember Webber shooting a high b-ball iq level of 3 pointers as a Bullet/Wizard and playing around on the court.

Does that mean that Blatche can achieve Webber level? No. He is not as strong or athletic. But he is taller and longer and can be near Webber's level.

Posted by: G-Man11 | October 25, 2010 1:18 PM | Report abuse

To more accurately vet Blatche's development would have to place principal focus on the last 32 games of the season when he was given playing time. I have not Looked up his assists during this period but points and rebound wise he played as well as anybody at his spot in the East. The kid is a decent passer and I do remember one game where he flirted with a triple double finishing with 9 assists.

To splice statistics from fractured playing time stints these guys have and develop an analysis about any of the Wizards players is pure crap.

While I consistently hear about the negative bball Iq of Wizards players from Kalorama and Samson inparticular, I never hear the same level of analysis about the Wizards coaching or player development strategy. There is unrefutable evidence that Blatche, McGee and Young are better players when they get reasonable handling and playing time.

Posted by: NewManagement | October 25, 2010 1:19 PM | Report abuse

Louis Scola, Rashard Lewis, Corey Maggette, Nick Collison, Amare, Rudy Gay....the list of "low bball iq" PFs sure gets long if asst/TO is the measure.

Posted by: divi3 | October 25, 2010 1:25 PM | Report abuse

As indicated by his perpetually negative A/TO ratio, Blatche makes bad passes more often than he makes good ones

I didnt realize the only way to record a turnover was through a bad pass.

Posted by: divi3 | October 25, 2010 1:35 PM | Report abuse

There is unrefutable evidence that Blatche, McGee and Young are better players when they get reasonable handling and playing time.

Posted by: NewManagement

Care to quantify that? Not sure how you will quantify at what points they got 'reasonable handling'. It's also a little dicey trying to decide whether more playing time means playing better or just more production by virtue of being on the court more. IN NY's case in particular, it's pretty easy to make a case that in many instances he got more minutes because he was playing better that night, as opposed to saying he was playing better because he got more minutes.

Posted by: ts35 | October 25, 2010 1:43 PM | Report abuse

You know, I have been reading nothing but negative posts about Gil since God knows when. I hope like hell that he gets traded and then comes back and toast the Wizards. I am a Wiz fan but am a Gil fan as well. And I don't care who he plays for, as long as dude plays in this league, I will always root for him. If they are going to do it, I hope they do it soon so I won't have to read the hater ade everytime I read this blog. Jeeze! Glad I don't know or am not friends with any of this bunch. A bunch of holier than thou non forgiving negative nellies if I have ever seen any. Now bring on all the rants, I can handle it. Just giving my opinon. Free Gilbert!!!

Posted by: ivyleague | October 25, 2010 1:58 PM | Report abuse

There is unrefutable evidence that Blatche, McGee and Young are better players when they get reasonable handling and playing time.

Posted by: NewManagement

Care to quantify that? Not sure how you will quantify at what points they got 'reasonable handling'. It's also a little dicey trying to decide whether more playing time means playing better or just more production by virtue of being on the court more. IN NY's case in particular, it's pretty easy to make a case that in many instances he got more minutes because he was playing better that night, as opposed to saying he was playing better because he got more minutes.

Posted by: ts35 | October 25, 2010 1:43 PM | Report abuse

I'll quantify it this way, Blatche was perceived as the biggest underacheiving knucklehead on the team prior to the Jamison trade. It took about a week for anyone with a brain to realize that the only problem he had was lack of playing time. Blatche's maturation would have happened sooner without the incompetent nincompoops that were running the franchise.

There is no young player in the league that would have thrived under the veteran hierarchy system that has been the staple of this franchise. Imagine what would happen to John Wall's confidence if he were to be benched after getting torched by Rodney Stuckey in the last preseason game (34 and 7 coupled with a 6 turnover perfomance). If either Blatche, Young or McGee had a comparable performance they would not play for a month.

BTW, the franchise has went overboard in the handling of Wall giving him Superstar handlinhg predicated upon flash and potential (I think Flip Wilson calls it style over substance). To make him a co-captain, is about the dumbest move you could possibly make (see Lebron James).

Posted by: NewManagement | October 25, 2010 2:01 PM | Report abuse

And I have been checking out Wall. Not the friendliest chap I have ever seen. You had better hope we don't have a baby Bron-Bron on our hands because they are best friends and he is taking advice from LBJ. We all know Lebron is not a fan friendly NBA baller. I too think they went overboard in the way they just gave dude the key to the city without the first bounce. On the one hand Leonsis says that he doesn't like teams centered around one individual. He likes the team concept. Well, from everything I have seen, Leonsis's actions belie his words.

Posted by: ivyleague | October 25, 2010 2:15 PM | Report abuse

"There's also no reason to assume that his 20 ppg are going to make a difference. 20 ppg is not some kind of magical formula. Monta Ellis puts up 20 like falling out of bed, but the Warriors still stink. It's about fit, chemistry, and team goals."

Posted by: kalo_rama | October 25, 2010 11:28 AM


When Arenas average 25 ppg, 29 ppg and 28 ppg and Eddie Jordan got to coach the eastern allstar team did the Wizards stunk? Did the Wizards or Eddie Jordan had another winning season after Arenas got hurt?

Antawn Jamison played with LeBron James, Dirk Nowitzki and Steve Nash and never made it on the allstar team but did it with Gilbert.

Caron Bulter played with Kobe Bryant, Dirk Nowitzki and Dwyane Wade and never made it on the allstar team but did it with Gilbert.

Larry Hughes 2 best seasons of playing basketball in 16 years was with Gilbert Arenas. Signed a 5 year $70 million contract to play with LeBron but never came close to what he was in Washington.

Arenas might be many things but not being able to play effectively with his teammates is unfounded. For the all the crazy stuff people accuse him of doing the man takes his approach to the game of basketball seriously. Maybe Wall can pick up some of his work ethics.

Posted by: spades72 | October 25, 2010 2:16 PM | Report abuse

Wow! Spankem' Spades72! Well Said!

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | October 25, 2010 2:21 PM | Report abuse

It took about a week for anyone with a brain to realize that the only problem he had was lack of playing time.
Posted by: NewManagement

Great theory, except that he had had stretches of extended playing time before and had in fact proven that he was a knucklehead, which the team, his coaches, his mom and he himself have admitted. Hence the 're-dedication' at the beginning of last season and the birth of "7-day Dray". Hardly 'irrefutable' when your own star witness admits that he was a big part of the problem.

There is no young player in the league that would have thrived under the veteran hierarchy system that has been the staple of this franchise. Imagine what would happen to John Wall's confidence if he were to be benched after getting torched by Rodney Stuckey in the last preseason game

Yes, because holding players accountable for their play is a HUGE mistake. Unlikely Wall or any player would get benched for getting lit up once. Getting lit up repeatedly however probably would get his playing time curtailed. More importantly, if he was getting lit up because of a failure of effort, as was often the case with McGee, Young, and AB, he most certainly should take a seat.

Phil Jackson used to bench Bynum on a regular basis for not filling his defensive assignments and hustling. Clearly the Lakers have the same franchise issues and veteran hierarchy problems.

Posted by: ts35 | October 25, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Amen Spades75! I could not have put it more eloquently. You never miss your water until the well runs dry and with out Gilbert on this team, I feel a thirsty season approaching. Sorry to keep using cliches but one has to be careful of what you wish for. But there is something funky in the air because last I heard it was Gil's groin hurting and not his ankle.

Posted by: ivyleague | October 25, 2010 2:28 PM | Report abuse

I must not have gotten that memo. The one I did get indicated only that he wasn't interested in throwing long-term money at any of the FAs available on the market this summer (at least no the ones the Wiz had an actual shot at landing). There's a huge difference between that and not wanting to spend money on FAs ever.

Posted by: kalo_rama

As long as this team is in the rebuilding phase the Wizards are going to build through the draft and develop their young players. That's plain as day. If you notice there are 4 rookies on this team. I am sure once they become a serious team they will look to improve the team through other means.

Posted by: spades72 | October 25, 2010 2:33 PM | Report abuse

Antawn Jamison played with LeBron James, Dirk Nowitzki and Steve Nash and never made it on the allstar team but did it with Gilbert.
Posted by: spades72

Just FYI, AJ only played with LeBron *after* the All-Star Break. And he was the 6th man in Dallas. Hard to make the All-Star team as the 6th man. But he did with 6th Man of the Year.

When Arenas average 25 ppg, 29 ppg and 28 ppg and Eddie Jordan got to coach the eastern allstar team did the Wizards stunk? Did the Wizards or Eddie Jordan had another winning season after Arenas got hurt?

Those years they were 45-37, 42-40, and 41-41. The next season, the one after Gil was hurt and in which he only played 13 games at the end of the year....they were 43-39. Kinda makes it look like it didn't make much difference. Just sayin'.

Posted by: ts35 | October 25, 2010 2:34 PM | Report abuse

But he did *win* 6th Man of the Year.

Posted by: ts35 | October 25, 2010 2:35 PM | Report abuse

I don't know if Blatche has a low bb iq, or if his deficiencies are more realted to the fact that he is a "hybrid" player and poor conditioning.

To me, a player like Ron Artest has low bb iq. And I love Artest's game but he does sum really dumb sh**..

As far as Gil goes, I stand by my point. Gilbert has tons of basketball left in him. And he probably would come back and torch us but so be it. We need and he need's a new start..And I actually am still a Gil fan but it's just time. We are rebuilding so the sooner the better.

I will be surprised if he is still here come the trade deadline IF he is healthy, and doesn't do anymore dumb sh**.

I hope JW is fan friendly but really don't give a damn about that as long as he plays like the all-star point guard we think he will become..

Posted by: kevenjones | October 25, 2010 2:35 PM | Report abuse

Great theory, except that he had had stretches of extended playing time before and had in fact proven that he was a knucklehead, which the team, his coaches, his mom and he himself have admitted. Hence the 're-dedication' at the beginning of last season and the birth of "7-day Dray". Hardly 'irrefutable' when your own star witness admits that he was a big part of the problem.

Posted by: ts35 | October 25, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Still has nothing to do with the evidence, 22 and 10 overnight while outplaying virtually every PF in the East (Garnett included). With regrads to the 7-day Dray rhetoric, what was he supposed to say in an effort to get playing time. The long and short of it was 7-day Dray got no more run than before.

Phil Jackson did bench Bynum early on but he had the good sense and smarts to put him back in as well.

Posted by: NewManagement | October 25, 2010 2:38 PM | Report abuse

I hear you Kevinjones, but I, like you, stand by my opinion. Time will tell. The Wizards have the knack of giving away good players and Gil is no exception. I would rather have him on the team and my husband and I bought a package of tickets with Gil being on the team in mind. I like Wall too but am not ready to crown him king,prince or what have you of the Wizards. I am not. I didn't follow him at Kentucy and I like what I see but how far can "he" take this team without a spot on shooter in his arenal like Gilbert.

Posted by: ivyleague | October 25, 2010 2:41 PM | Report abuse

Still has nothing to do with the evidence, 22 and 10 overnight while outplaying virtually every PF in the East (Garnett included). With regrads to the 7-day Dray rhetoric, what was he supposed to say in an effort to get playing time. The long and short of it was 7-day Dray got no more run than before.

Phil Jackson did bench Bynum early on but he had the good sense and smarts to put him back in as well.

Posted by: NewManagement

Riiiiight. Because when Phil Jackson treats a player a certain way, it's coaching genius. When Flip treats a player the exact same way, he's an idiot. And the player bears no responsibility. As long as we're considering things in a balanced manner.

Dude, when your mom says you need to stop messing around and get serious, that has nothing to do with rhetoric to get playing time. And 20-10 is great, except that he replaced a player who most people here think was overrated, who averaged....20 and 10. And it wasn't overnight. AB credited some of it to the late nights he came in working with Sam Cassell. Wait, what? A coach helping a player develop??? Unheard of!

AB's a great story and hopefully he will continue to develop, but let's not pretend like the first few years of his career, with the ill-advised jumpers, ill-conceived passes, and attempts to dribble between his legs in the lane, and failures to get back on D never happened. He was a knucklehead. That doesn't excuse Flip and the coaching staffs going back from not doing the best job with players, either, but AB was indeed a knucklehead.

Posted by: ts35 | October 25, 2010 3:03 PM | Report abuse

[Vince Carter and Gilbert Arenas] were not close with respect to perfporrmance Carter averaged 16 points, 3.9 rebounds and 3 assists." posted by NewM

Actually, they're comparable. Of course, Gil only played 32 games before his suspension, and Carter played 75 plus three playoff series. Carter's role in that funny Orlando scheme was mainly shooting jumpers; he took a hundred-plus fewer FT attempts than the season before in NJ. Percentage-wise, he was at 42.8% from the field, 36.7% from the arc, and 84% from the line. He was averaging about 6 minutes a game less than he had with the Nets.

Gilbert finished at 41.1%, 34.8%, and 73.9%. He averaged 36.5 minutes.

Very comparable performances.

Posted by: Samson151 | October 25, 2010 3:31 PM | Report abuse

Gilbert for anyone with an expiring contract is a GREAT deal for the Zards. They need to scrape him off their shoes so they can have the cap room to sign a player who is worth what they pay him. Until he's gone, his bloated salary dooms them to at-best mediocrity. He plays no defense at all and they will have to zone up to cover for his matador man to man efforts or else get used to watching his man run lay-up drills throughout the game.

Posted by: dolph924 | October 25, 2010 3:37 PM | Report abuse

"While I consistently hear about the negative bball Iq of Wizards players from Kalorama and Samson inparticular, I never hear the same level of analysis about the Wizards coaching or player development strategy. There is unrefutable evidence that Blatche, McGee and Young are better players when they get reasonable handling and playing time.Posted by: NewManagement"

Well, it's harder to quantify coaching and player development strategies. It's mostly opinion. So you can bloviate all you want. All I'll do is ask from time to time if there's any evidence to back that up or if you're just making it up out of whole cloth.

By the way, is 'unrefutable' a word?

Posted by: Samson151 | October 25, 2010 3:38 PM | Report abuse

I have an idea that I am thinking about. Gilbert should be used as a shooting guard about 60% of his minutes, while Wall is taking a breather, he should have the ball in his hands pressing the defense. I like Gil on this team, but I am wondering if he is a catch and shoot type of player. He may be, if so, then a traditional SG role will be great. If he is not a catch and shoot, then he should be able to create for himself when Wall is resting. This offense should always be attacking. When the offense is running then it is our athleticism that other teams have to contend with. When the ball slows down our bigs have to go against the other teams strength. Howard, Shaq, Wallace, Stat, and other brutes get to put their muscle on us. When we are running they cant touch us. We should have a second team GO reserve squad that runs the other team into the dirt, No set half court plays, then come back with Wall & Co. to break their back. This team is made for running. If we are one of the youngest teams in the league, we should use this to our advantage and run the legs off of older, less athletic teams. Why play to their strengths?

Posted by: 1bmffwb | October 25, 2010 3:48 PM | Report abuse

Fans forget so easily and are so fake, if Gil is avg 25 PPG on 50% shooting from the field and are winning you all will be singing his praises. Let the season play out some before you make a decision like that.

Posted by: hlwunlimited1 | October 25, 2010 3:57 PM | Report abuse

Well, it's harder to quantify coaching and player development strategies. It's mostly opinion

What's the quantification for "low bball iq"?

Posted by: divi3 | October 25, 2010 3:59 PM | Report abuse

There are very few game changers available in this league. This year we were about 20 million under the cap and brought in no free agents of quality. Next year if we were to get rid of Arenas we would be another 20 million under and who would we get? It takes about ten years to get a legitimate superstar on a team, on average. Gil is a superstar. We now have some really good talent, lets keep it together until we see it wont work for sure. There is only one player I can think of that might be comparable trade value, and that is Carmelo. That is how valuable Gilbert is.

Posted by: 1bmffwb | October 25, 2010 4:01 PM | Report abuse

Gil is a superstar.
Posted by: 1bmffwb

I keep reading this "Gil is a superstar" mantra. Don't you (and everyone else posting the assertion) mean that maybe, over three years ago, Gilbert was a superstar? Not exactly the same thing.

Posted by: nmik | October 25, 2010 4:10 PM | Report abuse

I was disgusted with the LBJ deal. I now hate the Heat and everything to do with them, especially James. I am worried about Wall. If we do not do things smartly in Washington, I can see him doing something similar. It is just how the young players are today. If Wall looks at how Gil is treated, would he feel its all a business and leave when his time comes. Most players feel Gil paid for his deeds, if we dump him would they then feel that the team did not do right by him? Leonsis says Washington has had a hard time drawing talent to D.C., would this hurt us more? Gil does not seem like a bad influence. Immature maybe, introverted, probably, trouble maker - no. Let this team play. In other blogs there are Washington fans kissing Fat Alberts big aaasss right now, singing praise for one game. Gilbert will have a lot more, better games than Fat Albert.

Posted by: 1bmffwb | October 25, 2010 4:36 PM | Report abuse

"What's the quantification for "low bball iq"?Posted by: divi3"

I don't know of one which is why I don't mention it. You can find it used in hundreds of different places on the Net, but it's rarely defined. Players with 'low b-ball IQ' are usually those with a proclivity for making certain types of errors in games -- errors of misjudgment rather than aggressiveness or old-fashioned clumsiness. Players who make a lot of turnovers are automatically suspect but it's a good idea to drill a little deeper to see if they're just being overaggressive or have unusual responsibilities in the offense.

On the Wiz, we'll probably hear Josh Howard & Hinrich referenced as high IQ, they way Saunders has already described Arenas. McGee and Nick Young are characterized as less gifted. Somebody like Seraphin won't be judged yet, simply because he's too raw.

It's a qualitative rather than a quantitative judgment.

Posted by: Samson151 | October 25, 2010 4:38 PM | Report abuse

nmik- I see your point. Can you show me any proof statistically that he is not. One injury that he aggravated by trying to come back too fast is the only injury he has ever had. It has been re-habbed and he has had the additional year that it takes to completely heal. He is in the year that most players make a complete comeback. We have a unique situation here with a lot of talent, why is there a rush to eliminate our best player? Can anyone show diminished ability to score, pass, steal, run, shoot free throws?

Posted by: 1bmffwb | October 25, 2010 4:46 PM | Report abuse

@ts35

What is your explanation for Butler and Hughes for not being as good with other notible players as they did with Arenas? What is your explanation for Eddie Jordan getting fired because he couldn't win without Arenas? I mentioned 3 players and a coach who accomplihed their best years as professionals playing with Gilbert Arenas and some of you think he is bad for chemistry. You can spin it any you want to spin it but the most success these people experienced was playing with a Arenas.

Posted by: spades72 | October 25, 2010 4:47 PM | Report abuse

BB IQ is definitely a vague sort of catch-all phrase, but there are some specific things it does usually include. I say usually because people tend to use it in a wide variety of ways.

For me it generally includes an understanding and consistent application of offensive and defensive concepts, as well as of the specific sets a team runs. Understanding and applying fundamental to advanced techniques. Situational awareness. Stuff like that.

Using IQ with it is really sort of a misnomer anyway, because BB IQ usually refers to someone's current knowledge and application of those principles, not their capacity to learn them.

It's probably not easy to actually quantify, but it is generally pretty easy to separate smart teams from dumb ones and smarter players from the less smart.

As like others have said, the coaching staff definitely does play a role in it as well, although it's tougher to assess their contribution on a younger team.

Posted by: ts35 | October 25, 2010 4:58 PM | Report abuse

It's good to have Basketball IQ. It's even better to have pure talent. AB is has big guard skills in a forwards body. Another poster mentioned that Andray Blatche is a hybrid player. That is a good assessment. After the Wiz unloaded Haywood, Butler and Jamison, Blatche WAS our frontline. Opposing teams doubled him every night and he still put up 20+ points and played decent defense.

Regarding Gil: Folks need to see the BIG picture. Is freeing up $17 million worth losing Gil's skills. Do we really want the well-traveled Vince Carter? He couldn't win in Canada, couldn't win with Yao Ming. What is he going to do with JaVale McGee?

Gil is on a mission to show Washington, DC, the NBA, Ted Leonsis, Mr. Grunfeld and everyone else that they are wrong about him. I can't wait to see it happen.

Posted by: musicmanjr | October 25, 2010 4:59 PM | Report abuse

@ts35

What is your explanation for Butler and Hughes for not being as good with other notible players as they did with Arenas? What is your explanation for Eddie Jordan getting fired because he couldn't win without Arenas? I mentioned 3 players and a coach who accomplihed their best years as professionals playing with Gilbert Arenas and some of you think he is bad for chemistry. You can spin it any you want to spin it but the most success these people experienced was playing with a Arenas.
Posted by: spades72

Well first, all I was doing at the top was illuminating the very obvious flaws in your argument. If you want to make a case that's fine, but make sure your facts are correct and make sense.

Second, you have an effect (effects) but no provable connection that Arenas was the primary cause. I can give you a 100 explanations for either Hughes or Butler which are equally impossible to prove false. I could say Butler made the All-Star team here an not elsewhere because of EJ's coaching. Prove me wrong. I could say it's because he liked the team colors. Prove me wrong. I could argue that Gil wasn't Gil until he was coached by EJ. You can argue that Hughes and Butler had their best years here because they were also hitting their prime age when they were here. You can argue yourself into circles with it, but none of it means anything, because it's all just opinion.

Posted by: ts35 | October 25, 2010 5:16 PM | Report abuse

He couldn't win in Canada, couldn't win with Yao Ming. What is he going to do with JaVale McGee?
Posted by: musicmanjr

Yao Ming?

Posted by: ts35 | October 25, 2010 5:23 PM | Report abuse

It's even better to have pure talent. AB is has big guard skills in a forwards body

Posted by: musicmanjr

Just as a discussion point, not being argumentative, but has anyone ever demonstrated that it's a good thing for a big man to have guard's skills?

Posted by: ts35 | October 25, 2010 5:30 PM | Report abuse

"What is your explanation for Eddie Jordan getting fired because he couldn't win without Arenas? I mentioned 3 players and a coach who accomplihed their best years as professionals playing with Gilbert Arenas and some of you think he is bad for chemistry. You can spin it any you want to spin it but the most success these people experienced was playing with a Arenas.Posted by: spades72"

I think you're the one who's spinning to fit your preconceptions. Eddie Jordan's firing was discussed ad nauseam here and it had little to do with Arenas and a lot to do with Ernie Grunfeld and a losing streak to start a season. Second, other players can have great seasons with Arenas and that alone isn't proof that Gilbert is the deciding factor. Certainly the Wiz' performance in the first half of 2009 doesn't suggest that Arenas improved the team's success.

Posted by: Samson151 | October 25, 2010 5:39 PM | Report abuse

He couldn't win in Canada, couldn't win with Yao Ming. What is he going to do with JaVale McGee?
Posted by: musicmanjr

Yao Ming?

Posted by: ts35

Confusing him with T-Mac maybe?

Posted by: ts35 | October 25, 2010 5:44 PM | Report abuse

I kinda think people here try to equate Gil's situation to the Haynesworth situation, not because they're anything alike but because the media, talk radio (Sportstalk980) all want him out of DC for different reasons. If anyone thinks that there is "equal value" out ther with thay contract are clearly on some goooooood dope! It would be for money or cap relief PERIOD. This year, we will learn alot because as of now, we have no clue what we have as a team! We don't know where Gil is but if he is BACK, I'd rather see him back HERE vs coming to V Center with a chip!

Posted by: zack5 | October 25, 2010 6:05 PM | Report abuse

I kinda think people here try to equate Gil's situation to the Haynesworth situation, not because they're anything alike but because the media, talk radio (Sportstalk980) all want him out of DC for different reasons. If anyone thinks that there is "equal value" out ther with thay contract are clearly on some goooooood dope! It would be for money or cap relief PERIOD. This year, we will learn alot because as of now, we have no clue what we have as a team! We don't know where Gil is but if he is BACK, I'd rather see him back HERE vs coming to V Center with a chip!

Posted by: zack5 | October 25, 2010 6:05 PM | Report abuse

Anyone who comments that McGhee is not a legitimate force at center is abasketball idiot.

Posted by: bobilly2 | October 25, 2010 9:56 PM | Report abuse

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