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Posted at 1:25 AM ET, 11/20/2010

Greivis Vasquez gets mixed reception

By Gene Wang

Former University of Maryland star Greivis Vasquez was back in town last night, and while basketball fans in the area had grown used to him taking over games for the Terrapins, his role as a member of the Memphis Grizzlies has him adjusting to much less responsibility during his rookie season.

Vasquez played sparingly in an 89-86 loss to the Washington Wizards at Verizon Center, where there were both jeers and cheers when he entered the game for the first time with 4 minutes 47 seconds left in the first quarter. Vasquez, whom Memphis selected in the first round of the June draft with the 28th overall pick, managed five points in 11:31 of playing time, with 10 of those minutes coming in the first half.

"I was very thankful," said Vasquez of those who applauded his return to the D.C. area. "I love my fans. I love my Maryland fans. I love people from D.C. I basically grew up here, so it was so much fun being here. But it's tough to lose when you're so used to winning here."

Vasquez often delighted the College Park faithful with clutch performances. Among the most memorable were his 35 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists in a come-from-behind victory over North Carolina on Feb. 1, 2009. It was the third triple-double in school history and the first since 1987.

Then during his senior season, Vasquez scored his 2,000th point against Georgia Tech on Feb. 20, making him the only player in ACC history to log 2,000 points, 700 assists and 600 rebounds. The week after that game, Vasquez scored 41 points against Virginia Tech to set a personal high.

Vasquez was named ACC player of the year after helping the Terrapins go 13-3 in the ACC and finish in a tie with Duke for first during the regular season. He finished his collegiate career as the second leading scorer in maryland history with 2,171 points.

Vasquez's duties are far less demanding these days as a substitute for starting point guard Mike Conley. Against the Wizards, Vasquez got his first point with 53 seconds left in the first quarter by making the first of two foul shots. In the second quarter, Vasquez sank a nine-foot jumper and then a seven-footer to give Memphis a 45-43 lead with 44 seconds left before halftime.

"I thought he played with a lot of energy, and he played with a lot of confidence," Grizzlies Coach Lionel Hollins said of Vasquez. "He was comfortable playing in here. He's probably played in here a few times, and I thought he did a decent job."

By Gene Wang  | November 20, 2010; 1:25 AM ET
Categories:  Greivis Vasquez  
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Next: John Wall, Yi Jianlian likely out against Detroit

Comments

Wow he must be doing positive things. There wasn't that could be wrote negative about him. So for some purpose it was a MIXED reaction.

Posted by: CTaylor42 | November 20, 2010 2:25 AM | Report abuse

He was quoted over the summer as saying that he had always admired Duke and Coach K.

In the minds of many Maryland fans, that cancels out the good he did with the Terps, and thus the mixed reaction.

Posted by: corco02az | November 20, 2010 6:03 AM | Report abuse

I saw that Lester Hudson got 4 seconds of playing time. What's the purpose of that? To let whoever he subbed for get a nice ovation? Or is there some benefit to Hudson to get in a game, even if it is only for 4 seconds?

I do wish the Wizards would resign Alonzo Gee now that the Spurs have waived him. Lester or H would have to be cut. I guess it should be Lester, since with Wall, Arenas and Heinrich, he's not going to see much floor time anyway. I think Gee would be a nice addition to the bench, and you know when you put him in that he is at least going to rebound and go aggressively to the rim.

Posted by: PostSubscriber | November 20, 2010 7:33 AM | Report abuse

This one is just a win, the real test is against piston.They need to win piston, it will help them to have some momentum to deal against top teams at the end of the month. atlanta, orlando and miami.

Posted by: gtefferra | November 20, 2010 7:50 AM | Report abuse

last night was a solid win against a bad team. it could haveeasily gone either way, but our guys gutted it out and got the W. Good work guys!

of course it wouldn't have been nearly as close if Young hadn't gone 1-8 and 0-3 from th trey (with 1 rebound a steal and 0 asst.) this is why I rag on Nick. where is the cnsistency? And if your shot isn't falling, pass the damn ball.

Its hard to justify a guy that is integral to a win, but then is integral to a loss. Or in this case almost lost it.

Posted by: Blurred | November 20, 2010 8:56 AM | Report abuse

"Its hard to justify a guy that is integral to a win, but then is integral to a loss. Or in this case almost lost it.Posted by: Blurred"

We feel your pain, but that's basically the loneliness of the long-distance shooter. Even when you're on a roll, you know it's only a matter of time til you come up empty. Ray Allen, or a specialist like Korver, have plenty of those games, too.

Just as long as Nick plays defense. Doesn't have to be Josh Howard, either. A guy with that sort of length and athletic ability can cause real problems for the opponent's scorers.

Posted by: Samson151 | November 20, 2010 9:14 AM | Report abuse

Nick played really solid D last night. IMO, this was a good game for him. His shot wasnt falling, but he contributed to a subpar night for Mayo/Gay. He played 21mins while going 1-8, Flip liked what he saw apparently

Posted by: divi3 | November 20, 2010 9:43 AM | Report abuse

How about Javale?! He is bringing it right now, love what we're seeing from him. How many times on WI has someone said "He'll never be able to handle the Marc Gasul types"? Doesnt look that way anymore. Gasul had a good game, but it was nothing at all like the 9-10 performance last year where he just steamrolled Mcgee with his size and strength.

12 boards (6 offensive), 3blks, 3stls, 2assts. And only 7FGAs in 38mins. Here's a kid doing exactly what the coach wants him too, and starting to thrive at it. Very encouraging.

Posted by: divi3 | November 20, 2010 9:49 AM | Report abuse

"Its hard to justify a guy that is integral to a win, but then is integral to a loss. Or in this case almost lost it.Posted by: Blurred"

We feel your pain, but that's basically the loneliness of the long-distance shooter. Even when you're on a roll, you know it's only a matter of time til you come up empty. Ray Allen, or a specialist like Korver, have plenty of those games, too.

Just as long as Nick plays defense. Doesn't have to be Josh Howard, either. A guy with that sort of length and athletic ability can cause real problems for the opponent's scorers.

Posted by: Samson151 | November 20, 2010 9:14 AM | Report abuse

Here come the NY bashers. I guess we were supposed to expect him to keep coming off the bench and giving us 20pts 5 rebs. Samson has it right. If he's defending and doing the little things, we can deal with him having a rough shooting night. Have you noticed the smile is totally gone now? Did you see the hustle play to save a key possesion in the fourth? How bout how he didn't settle for his fadeaway jumper on the ensuing offensive set, instead he took it straight down the pike a tried to hammer it home. He ended up at the line, i think he split his fts, but it was a great hustle sequence for the wiz. I think NY is coming along. If you read the article in yesterday's post about him, he sounds more focused and professional. Of course it was just the usual Post "Fluff Piece" about a local player who's playing well, but it just came off differently than last summer's ".....I'm gonna have to go back to doing my own thing" interview. Lay off the kid, there's progress being made.

I liked Javale's effort and hustle. Kirk and Gil really got after it, on both sides of the court. I really think the wiz need to hire AB a personal trainer and life coach, ol boy is too young to be lookin how he looks. It's shameful to think he just got $35M and hasn't found someone to help him get his body right. Hilton Armstron must read WI because since folks have been roasting him on here he's actually contributed in the last few games and looked good doing it. I liked Cartier getting a few "Token Minutes" but he's gonna have to bring it when he gets those opportunities.


BTW did anyone listen to pregame on The Fan 106.7 and hear Flip say that right now NY is "our most consistent player...........him and Kirk Hinrich". NY should play that soundbite over the PA at practices and homegames.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | November 20, 2010 9:51 AM | Report abuse

"I saw that Lester Hudson got 4 seconds of playing time. What's the purpose of that?"

It was near the end of a period, on defense, ao to avoid fouls on starting guards.

Posted by: sagaliba | November 20, 2010 9:55 AM | Report abuse

"Nick played really solid D last night."

I don't think his D was that solid. He did hustle (especially coming all the way to save an offensive rebound), but sometimes he got lost and couldn't find his man.

Posted by: sagaliba | November 20, 2010 9:59 AM | Report abuse

Interesting situation, not surprisingly, Gil and KH have instantly clicked and are playing very well together. You'd think they would only get better as the season wore on. So now you have two 29yr old vets feelin it together, and a 20yr old rook who is locked into 40mins/night. Flip's got some decisions to make.

Posted by: divi3 | November 20, 2010 10:03 AM | Report abuse

"Don't let anything negative in," Rivers told Wall. "Only positive. Only positive."

VOILA, the difference between a good coaching approach and a bad one. Listening FLIP?

And LESTER HUDSON doesn't cut it in the NBA. He's almost but not quite. He's the body we need in an emergency; he's filler on this team. Nothing more, IMHO of course.

Posted by: glawrence007 | November 20, 2010 10:05 AM | Report abuse

Its hard to justify a guy that is integral to a win, but then is integral to a loss. Or in this case almost lost it.

Posted by: Blurred | November 20, 2010 8:56 AM | Report abuse

Hey blurred, black and blue on the horizon.

Posted by: glawrence007 | November 20, 2010 10:07 AM | Report abuse

"Nick played really solid D last night."

I don't think his D was that solid. He did hustle (especially coming all the way to save an offensive rebound), but sometimes he got lost in zone defense and couldn't find his man.

"in zone defense" added for clarification.

Posted by: sagaliba | November 20, 2010 10:10 AM | Report abuse

"VOILA, the difference between a good coaching approach and a bad one. Listening FLIP?"

LOL attend some Boston games. In the past couple years Doc has been all over players like Big Baby and Perkins. Like they say, coaching is all about knowing when to deliver a pat on the back and when to administer a swift kick in the tail.

Wall's the sort of full-speed-ahead PG that will draw criticism for playing out of control at times. IMO Doc's telling him to ignore it. The way Rondo did.

Posted by: Samson151 | November 20, 2010 10:32 AM | Report abuse

"He did hustle (especially coming all the way to save an offensive rebound), but sometimes he got lost in zone defense and couldn't find his man."

That's probably true. Still, the effort is what counts. If you're trying, you'll learn.

Posted by: Samson151 | November 20, 2010 10:34 AM | Report abuse

Hinrich plays well with most guards. That's probably a big reason he's on the court. In Chicago he was mainly criticized for off-shooting nights.

Posted by: Samson151 | November 20, 2010 10:36 AM | Report abuse

Doc was probably referring to the Colin Cowturd rants re: Wall

Posted by: divi3 | November 20, 2010 10:36 AM | Report abuse

Nick was 1-8 last night....and it didn't bother me a bit. All of his shots that I remember came out of the offense. Some times they just don't fall. But he played hard on both ends, didn't hang his head when he wasn't scoring, and even though the stats don't reflect it per se, he contributed.

Plus, we got to see what some have been calling for and all of us like to see, when Nick took it hard to the rack. He didn't get to finish because he got fouled, but that's ok!

Sort of an interesting moment, others probably took note. With about 8 mins left in the game, there was that sequence where Nick took the ill-advised shot going 1 on 4 into the paint and got his shot blocked. Flip immediately calls for Hinrich to go in, and I'm thinking, here comes the hook for Young....but Hinrich comes in for Cartier Martin. No hook off of the mistake by Young. I thought it was good in this case because Nick has been playing hard. He had a couple of nice hustle plays, and I honestly can't remember saying that before. Nice to see.

Another great effort by JaVale. He's still not smooth on the offensive end, and he's trying too hard on the put-backs, but you live with those things when he's exerting the effort he has been. He makes the bad turnover trying to drive the lane, but makes up for it by chasing down Conley and swatting the shot off the backboard. Conley is still probably wondering where he came from. Again, I'll live with the miscues if he continues to give effort like that.

I thought JaVale and Kirk and to a lesser extent Gilbert won the game for them tonight. I'm not trying to diminish Gilbert's contribution because I thought he played well. But, in that ugly second quarter, I thought JaVale's energy kept them in the game. In the third quarter it looked like Memphis was about to take control of the game. The Wizards had nothing going on offense, and I thought KH kept them in it and changed the dynamic by putting fouls on Conley and Greivis. His play for a lot of game (and the season) was uneven, but I thought he really dug his heels in and ground it out through a tough stretch for the team that could have gone the other way.

And then Gil and KH took them home.

It will obviously be interesting to see what happens when Wall is healthy. But I think it will be just as interesting to see what happens when Yi is healthy. Yi is obviously more skilled than Booker, but I feel like Booker provides more of a missing element of hustle that they some times need. Armstrong has played ok as well. The way McGee is playing, they can't go back to the way it was before, with Yi taking some of his minutes, unless McGee starts to wear down.

Ugly, but entertaining game. Still a long ways for this team to go, but in the interim, I like the effort. Give the effort, the knowledge and execution will come in time. If they give effort like that, I can live with whatever the results of this season are.

Posted by: ts35 | November 20, 2010 10:37 AM | Report abuse

"He did hustle (especially coming all the way to save an offensive rebound), but sometimes he got lost in zone defense and couldn't find his man."

That's probably true. Still, the effort is what counts. If you're trying, you'll learn.

Posted by: Samson151 | November 20, 2010 10:34 AM | Report abuse

The effort and the W are all that counts. He mighta got lost in zone sets, but our zone sets leave a lot to be desired, and the other team is running through our zone, so it's not as if "His Guy" is the same guy for the whole defensive set, nor is "His Guy" gonna run to the same designated areas of the court each series.

I think it's more telling that Gil and Kirk each went for 22 against a team with as many quality, young, athletic guards as memphis has. I hope their chemistry keeps building, but they shouldn't get too familiar. Flip's gonna start Wall. Gil is prolly gonna be ready for that starting 2 role in a coupla games and Kirk is gonna have to give up some mins.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | November 20, 2010 10:43 AM | Report abuse

KH is always going to be at his best at the PG position rather than SG/SF, last night was a great example of what he can do at his natural spot. I think Flip will be pulling his hair out about who has to sit between Gil and KH, it's a tough decision.

Notice in the postgame that when saying he thought we had one of the best backcourts in the league, he said John, Gil, Kirk, and Nick.

Young Nicholas finally workin his way in!

Posted by: divi3 | November 20, 2010 10:57 AM | Report abuse

The encouraging thing so far is that this team can get better if for no other eason than they are clearly not at full strength from a health standpoint. The injuries have given guys time and subsequently developed depth off the bench. The real keys going forward are the continual improvement of Arenas and Blatche. Arenas has to play significant minutes to get his timing back but it appears to me that his athleticism and court feel is improving with each game. As an admitted Hinrich doubter, I will give him his props he is a solid ballplayer and played extremely well last night. I hope Flip can find a happy medium with his guard rotation, which may mean cutting back John Wall's minutes (for his and the teams sake). There should be a way that the Hinrich, Wall and Arenas can all play in the 35 minute range. Nick Young also desreves game time and is playing the game rather than just being a scorer. He played with more heart than anyone on the squad at Boston.

Javale McGee who was only credited with 3 blocks last night clearly took away the rim for the Grizzlies perimeter players. Like him or hate him, he most definitely is improving before our very eyes and I believe has the right mindset.

In some ways the injury to Wall may be a blessing in disguise because it has moved the focus off the John Wall's team phenomen that has been talked about ad nauseum to one of a team developing. We are getting a chance to appreciate Arenas, Javale, Nick, Kirk and others. The offense is flowing better because it is simply not a clear out for JW every one standing around.

Posted by: NewManagement | November 20, 2010 11:07 AM | Report abuse

Young Nicholas finally workin his way in!

Posted by: divi3 | November 20, 2010 10:57 AM | Report abuse

I'm tellin u son, I almost dropped a tear listenin to the pregame and hearing Flip say that NY was their most consistent player, him and Kirk. I think he's shown Flip what he wanted to see offensively, as far as playing "the right way". I've noticed NY geting a lil more comfortable driving the ball. He keeps his handle under control and doesn't pound the air out of it, en route to his fadeaway. He's playing a much more controlled offensive game. Even though he went 1-8 they were all pretty good looks. The "Rip Hamilton Program" looks like it's in full effect. The only thing i'd like to see more of is the other guards getting him the ball faster when he comes off that curl. He's usually the best option on those plays, and the ball really sticks in KH or GA's hands when they don't swing it immediately, on some occasions. When they don't swing the ball immediately the usually end up with a 1 on 1 play for Dray; which lately has led to overdribbling and a potentially lower percentage shot.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | November 20, 2010 11:08 AM | Report abuse

In some ways the injury to Wall may be a blessing in disguise because it has moved the focus off the John Wall's team phenomen that has been talked about ad nauseum to one of a team developing. We are getting a chance to appreciate Arenas, Javale, Nick, Kirk and others. The offense is flowing better because it is simply not a clear out for JW every one standing around.

Posted by: NewManagement | November 20, 2010 11:07 AM | Report abuse

I agree. Wall's gonna get the ball 85% of the time when he's on the floor. He'll be able to do whatever he wants most games. It's good to see what some of these other guys can do for us this year.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | November 20, 2010 11:11 AM | Report abuse

If anyone watched the last 2 MD games it was really interesting to listen to Bob Knight...he said it's really bad when a point guard dribbles too much and he hates when a guard drives to the basket looking only for his own shot while missing the open man who he should pass the ball to.

Sounds like the way Flip has had Gil and Boykins play the position?

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | November 20, 2010 11:14 AM | Report abuse

Wow! McGee played 39 minutes. Anybody know why?

LarryInClintonMD.

Hilton picked up quick fouls. Also, when McGee left the game, Memphis guards immediately drove to the basket. McGee had 12 boards. Randolph wanted nothing to do with McGee after blocking a shot and later forcing an air ball. McGee also had the follow slam after Arenas' miss for the last basket. He hustled hard tonight. He deserved the minutes.

Posted by: VaWizard85 | November 20, 2010 9:29 AM

Thanks, missed entire game. Glad to see those 39 mpg in the box score by McGee. I heard a little of Glen on the radio, when McGee got the ball stolen but on the other end Glen said he blocked the shot and the Wiz got the ball right back.

Glen was saying great redemption play by McGee. In McGee's case he said you have to accept the bad with the good.

I totally agree. Let the man just play.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | November 20, 2010 11:23 AM | Report abuse

Greivis who?

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | November 20, 2010 11:28 AM | Report abuse

To win in the NBA over an 82 game haul a team's got to gut out some wins when their shots aren't falling. Last night is exactly the kind of game the Wiz have blown on a consistant basis because they failed to defend, and battle on the boards.
Good to see them battle their way to a win last night.

McGee did a great job of hustling and scraping on the boards. Last night I actually saw him really boxing out on the defensive boards. He stayed on the floor moved his feet and got his rear end into somebody and didn't release til the rebound was secure.

For McGee that's an "I see, said the blind man moment". Some of our "educated beyound their mental ability posters", have insisted McGee would never get it. His play on the court indicates that he does.

Still got to not try and put every offensive rebound back in the hoop though. Last night he gave up two possessions with wild shots. And in the 4th I screamed "don't do it" as he put the ball on the floor at the top of the key. If he hadn't have ran down the floor and blocked the shot after the steal, he'd have gotten the hook on that one.

Blatche's summer in a boot didn't help his physical shape, but for him to make the step into being an elite player he's got to get himself into better shape. He reminds me of a young Charles Barkley in the old "round mound of rebounds" days. He flashes pure talent, but he's not in good enough shape to do it for 40 minutes a night, 82 nights a year.

For some guys it's a bigger struggle to get into and maintain the degree of physical conditioning that the NBA requires. I know the foot was a factor this offseason, but Blathe has got to somehow get himself into better shape. I remember years ago Phil Jackson had to play Shaq into shape, maybe Flip's got to go that route.

Got to give Nick some props, he went 1-8, those used to be the nights that Nick got the quick hook and pouted out on the floor after every missed shot. But Nick was taking and missing good shots, not a coach in basketball that wants a shooter to pass up good shots. They all know that a shooter has to shoot his way out of a slump, so as long as he's taking good shots within the flow of the offense, fire away.

But Nick was doing enough other good things that Flip saw fit to give him his minutes. Nick may have just finally played his way into the rotation. And it's not March, for Nick that's a break through.

Nick and Thorton did a nice job on Gay, and Hinrich and Arenas did a nice job of checking Mayo and Conley. The Wiz's perimeter defense wasn't half bad last night.

Smart move to sit Wall an extra night, got to make sure that foot is right before trotting him out there. Besides watching isn't always a bad thing for a rookie...
GM

Posted by: flohrtv | November 20, 2010 11:30 AM | Report abuse

In some ways the injury to Wall may be a blessing in disguise because it has moved the focus off the John Wall's team phenomen that has been talked about ad nauseum to one of a team developing. We are getting a chance to appreciate Arenas, Javale, Nick, Kirk and others. The offense is flowing better because it is simply not a clear out for JW every one standing around.

Posted by: NewManagement | November 20, 2010 11:07 AM | Report abuse

I agree. Wall's gonna get the ball 85% of the time when he's on the floor. He'll be able to do whatever he wants most games. It's good to see what some of these other guys can do for us this year.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | November 20, 2010 11:11 AM

Ditto, but speaking of advise from Doc Rivers, John Wall would be smart to study Rondo. Notice how Rondo appears to control the ball for the Celtics but constantly gets all his players involved in the flo of the game.

That's what Wall has to do along with his speed to the basket. And it is not just to pass the ball to an open man but to pass the ball timely to an attacking open man, which seems to be a staple of the Celtic offense.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | November 20, 2010 11:35 AM | Report abuse

"so it's not as if "His Guy" is the same guy for the whole defensive set"

That is absolutely right. When I said "his guy," I didn't mean it was the same guy, but just meant the guy he was responsible to guard.

Posted by: sagaliba | November 20, 2010 12:03 PM | Report abuse

But Nick was doing enough other good things that Flip saw fit to give him his minutes.

GM

Posted by: flohrtv | November 20, 2010 11:30 AM | Report abuse

GM

If JW was ready to play do you still think Flip would have given NY his minutes?

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | November 20, 2010 12:03 PM | Report abuse

If JW was ready to play do you still think Flip would have given NY his minutes?

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | November 20, 2010 12:03 PM | Report abuse

shoulda saved yourself the keystrokes. We all know the answer to that one.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | November 20, 2010 12:15 PM | Report abuse

How many times on WI has someone said "He'll never be able to handle the Marc Gasul types"?

He still can't, but he did a great job on Randolph in the second half. That was the adjustment that probably won the game.

-------------------------------------------

This team is soooo much better at home.

AB showed some life. Maybe it was the ballot snub?

Hard to fault Nicks shooting last night. Sometimes the Wizards need someone to put up a shot, any shot, to prevent a clock violation.

Hinrich drew 10 of the Grizzlies 29 fouls. Brilliant.

Posted by: djnnnou | November 20, 2010 12:19 PM | Report abuse

This team is soooo much better at home.

Posted by: djnnnou | November 20, 2010 12:19 PM | Report abuse

The Wizards had 35 FTA while Memphis had 18?

If this game were on the road the blog would be filled with people posting how the refs gave the other team the game.

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | November 20, 2010 12:25 PM | Report abuse

The Wizards had 35 FTA while Memphis had 18?

If this game were on the road the blog would be filled with people posting how the refs gave the other team the game.

Posted by: bulletsfan78

People say all kinds of stupid things on this site. Some don't even watch the games.

Posted by: djnnnou | November 20, 2010 12:32 PM | Report abuse

The Wizards had 35 FTA while Memphis had 18?

If this game were on the road the blog would be filled with people posting how the refs gave the other team the game.

Posted by: bulletsfan78

People say all kinds of stupid things on this site. Some don't even watch the games.

Posted by: djnnnou | November 20, 2010 12:32 PM | Report abuse

I don't matter what they fix while you're out of town, everybody likes home cookin. It's nice that we get some. I can think of tons of home games where the opponents come out on the better side of the FT differential.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | November 20, 2010 12:43 PM | Report abuse

Wizards Faithful,

Are you feeling the reflective warmth of Ernest Grunfeld's brilliance? Do you now get a sense of the moxie he brings to his position?

The man has cobbled together a team that is getting better each day despite the quite-understandable financial restraints placed on him by Ted Leonsis and the clear mandate to "go young".

Given the undeniable fact that the Wizards have been bitten virulently and repeatedly by the injury bug this season and are still a respectable 4-7, I think we can safely agree that better days are ahead for our Wizards. What unbiased observer could deny that our best players - Wall, Arenas and Blatche - are nowhere near being 100% physically and our young game-changers - Young and McGee - are maturing by the minute? Our Wizards are winning while being at far less than their full strength.

I will remind the doom-and-gloom naysayers that I said the Wizards will crawl, walk and then run into playoffs. My comment stands.

In Grunfeld We Trust!!

Posted by: melodious_thunk | November 20, 2010 12:45 PM | Report abuse

I do like this team, and when Howard is back, we become fairly deep at every position. Our guard rotation with Young playing well is a very strong foursome.

If Booker and Armstrong come along (and they're playing fairly decently so far) We're pretty deep at the 4 & 5 too.

Except when playing the elite teams, they're also very fun to watch. I don't think 8th is impossible by any means.

Posted by: AhhYes | November 20, 2010 2:19 PM | Report abuse

How many times on WI has someone said "He'll never be able to handle the Marc Gasul types"?

------

He still can't, but he did a great job on Randolph in the second half. That was the adjustment that probably won the game.

Agree to disagree on that, he only managed to get off 2FGA in the 4thQ. I think Gasul has been a mild disappointment so far, does not appear to have gotten any better and has possibly regressed a little defensively. AB toasted him pretty easily for that critical bucket late, imho, Gasul looks like he may be a bit heavier and slower than last season.

Posted by: divi3 | November 20, 2010 2:20 PM | Report abuse

@divi3
Marc was definitely stuck in the mud when the laziest player in the league blew past him for the and 1.

What do you think of Booker so far? He's not putting up numbers but has been coming up big for us in the hustle and toughness dept. I dunno if he's "worth" the draft selection at the spot he was at, but we've really needed that type of player round here for some time. I'm glad we got him regardless of what spot he we got him at (well not regardless but you get it).

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | November 20, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse

But I think it will be just as interesting to see what happens when Yi is healthy. Yi is obviously more skilled than Booker, but I feel like Booker provides more of a missing element of hustle that they some times need. Armstrong has played ok as well. The way McGee is playing, they can't go back to the way it was before, with Yi taking some of his minutes, unless McGee starts to wear down. Posted by: ts35

Booker gives them an Atlanta flavor, smaller, active, defensive-minded. It's a good change of pace for short stints. I still think Yi should be the first big off the bench, though. He complements both Dray and McGee better than Hilton. Even with McGee playing well there should be at least 15 mpg available at C. McGee often looks completely gassed on nights when he only plays 25 min. Averaging more than 33 mpg is unlikely.

Posted by: djnnnou | November 20, 2010 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Agree to disagree on that, he only managed to get off 2FGA in the 4thQ.

Wasn't that with AB on him? It looked to me that their bigs were more successful in the 1st half. Then Flip switched McGee onto Randolph, and AB onto Gasol.

Posted by: djnnnou | November 20, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

McGee often looks completely gassed on nights when he only plays 25 min. Averaging more than 33 mpg is unlikely.

Posted by: djnnnou

I generally agree, but in the past few games, it feels like Flip's rotation for McGee seems to be keeping him fresh enough. 38 minutes is not sustainable, but 30 should be, instead of the closer to 20-25 he's been getting between the McGee / Yi / Armstrong switch. The problem I have with Yi is that he hasn't been rebounding.

Posted by: ts35 | November 20, 2010 3:14 PM | Report abuse

Agree to disagree on that, he only managed to get off 2FGA in the 4thQ.

Wasn't that with AB on him? It looked to me that their bigs were more successful in the 1st half. Then Flip switched McGee onto Randolph, and AB onto Gasol.

Posted by: djnnnou

They did switch and it worked well. McGee's length really bothered Randolph. Blatche did a solid job on Gasol and even had a sweet block on one of Gasol's shots.

Posted by: ts35 | November 20, 2010 3:27 PM | Report abuse


"Are you feeling the reflective warmth of Ernest Grunfeld's brilliance? Do you now get a sense of the moxie he brings to his position?"

"In Grunfeld We Trust!!"

Posted by: melodious_thunk

ummm, mel,

"ernest" took on a grossly overpaid hinrich to get seraphin, gave up multiple picks to get booker and passed up some studs to get n'diaye. based on early returns, it appears he grossly overpaid. again.

Leave Grunfeld In The Dust!!

Posted by: omgwthrotfl | November 20, 2010 4:14 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: omgwthrotfl | November 20, 2010 4:14 PM | Report abuse

I agree that Ernie went his own way with this draft, vs choosing some better known prospects. But i can't just give up on the other guys 11 games into the season. Booker, when he has played, has been exactly the player that folks said he was. H is a project. Wall is the real deal. The only real question mark is Big Kevin. He seems like the typa guy that shoulda stayed in europe for one more year, but an injury to AB or even JMac could see Kev logging some minutes. I guess the better question is who else do you think he coulda picked that woulda made a difference.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | November 20, 2010 4:20 PM | Report abuse

What do you think of Booker so far? He's not putting up numbers but has been coming up big for us in the hustle and toughness dept. I dunno if he's "worth" the draft selection at the spot he was at, but we've really needed that type of player round here for some time. I'm glad we got him regardless of what spot he we got him at (well not regardless but you get it).

I'm kinda liking Booker rather than Yi, but it's a tough call. The thing about bringing Yi in is you go from soft to softest once he's in. At least Booker is a banger...but on the other hand, Yi seems far less likely to make a critical error. Tough call, but I do think Javale's recent play should cease the quick hook on him for awhile.

As ts35 said, it appears Flip has got the hang of Javale's wind (or it's improved). He's active pretty much all the time he's out there

Posted by: divi3 | November 20, 2010 4:21 PM | Report abuse

Javale has a lot of athletic ability. The Wizards would do him, the other Bigs, and the team as a whole a lot of good if they had a decent Big Man Coach. Better positioning and foot work would cut down on their fouls and turnovers and increase their rebounds!

Posted by: oakiedokie1 | November 20, 2010 4:24 PM | Report abuse

not an EG apologist, but this is a rebuilding year. All of the guys we brought in aren't gonna be finished products like the 4 yr college player, Booker. Some are gonna be spectacular with a high ceilings like wall. Some are gonna be projects like H and Kev. Luckily we have depth (in bodies at least) in the post. Now that we have the bodies, we have to develop their talents. That could be what makes this draft bad for us. We have 2 or 3 guys that need to be coached up to their full potential, and our coaching staff isn't the best at doing that IMHO.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | November 20, 2010 4:24 PM | Report abuse

Wasn't that with AB on him? It looked to me that their bigs were more successful in the 1st half. Then Flip switched McGee onto Randolph, and AB onto Gasol.

I think they switched in the 4th? Definitely worked, though I'm not sure if JM was better on Zack or AB was better on Gasul. My thought was more along the lines that Mcgee had as much (or more) impact on the game as Gasul did, far cry from last year's meeting.

Posted by: divi3 | November 20, 2010 4:25 PM | Report abuse

As ts35 said, it appears Flip has got the hang of Javale's wind (or it's improved). He's active pretty much all the time he's out there

Posted by: divi3 | November 20, 2010 4:21 PM | Report abuse

So we've gotten him to rebound and outlet the ball (no more coast to coast trips). He doesn't fly to the ceiling at every pump fake anymore. He's rebounding the rock.Everything seems to be progressing.........and then this guy decides that every offensive board he gets he must throw back up regardless of angle,defense,new shot clock etc. I'm glad he's responding this season, but i see some of you guys frustrations. He definitely takes a couple steps forward and then one backwards...........which isn't THAT bad.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | November 20, 2010 4:31 PM | Report abuse

Certainly not going to judge Seraphin yet (how can you really), but personally so far I'm skeptical. Too heavy, not fast enough, and in serious need of game time rather than end of the bench. Hard to see how he's going to develop without playing in the DLeague. It would seem to me that a guy who has only played ball for 5yrs (or whatever) needs floor-time more than anything else.

Posted by: divi3 | November 20, 2010 4:32 PM | Report abuse

Javale has a lot of athletic ability. The Wizards would do him, the other Bigs, and the team as a whole a lot of good if they had a decent Big Man Coach. Better positioning and foot work would cut down on their fouls and turnovers and increase their rebounds!

Posted by: oakiedokie1 | November 20, 2010 4:24 PM | Report abuse

I'll tell you what; that's the first time that's been brought up around here................today.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | November 20, 2010 4:40 PM | Report abuse

@divi3
i dunno about his size being a liability, but then again i don't remember seeing him run the full length of the court (i was in the car at the end of the bos game). I think he can hack it physically once he starts getting some run, but not only has he just had 5 yrs under his belt, but they've been 5 euroleague years. he's gonna have to adjust to the way the game is played here, and i agree that the only place he can do it (for this teams purposes) is in the dleague. You'd think this team would learn from McGee (never went down to the d league, i think) and his "slow" progression. You can't get better at playing the game of basketball sitting at the end of a bench. Kev and H both need to be playing basketball.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | November 20, 2010 4:47 PM | Report abuse

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