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Posted at 8:07 PM ET, 12/27/2010

Open thread: Wizards (7-21) at Rockets (14-15)

By Michael Lee

Andray Blatche and JaVale McGee are back from their one-game suspensions and will both be in the starting lineup as the Wizards attempt to end their 15-game road-losing skid dating back to last season. In the last meeting against Houston on Nov. 10, Blatche and McGee combined for 28 points and 17 rebounds, with McGee adding four blocked shots in a 98-91 victory. After scoring 21 points and grabbing 12 rebounds against San Antonio, Rashard Lewis will also remain in the starting lineup, with Al Thornton pushed back to the bench. Nick Young and Kirk Hinrich will fill out the lineup. Hilton Armstrong is out after sustaining a mild left foot sprain in the loss to the Spurs. John Wall, who had a triple-double against Houston, will come off the bench for the second game in a row as he works his way back from a bone bruise under his right knee cap.

Let the conversation begin in the thread below. You can also join the conversation on Twitter with Michael Lee (@MrMichaelLee). See your tweets here by using #wizards.

Tipoff: 8:30 p.m.; TV: CSN; Radio: 106.7 FM.

Check out a live box score from tonight's game here.

By Michael Lee  | December 27, 2010; 8:07 PM ET
 
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Next: Andray Blatche and JaVale McGee move on, while Wizards remain stuck on road losing skid

Comments

Kevin Martin is 2nd in both made 3s and made FTs. Nick's going to have to put in some work tonight.

Posted by: djnnnou | December 27, 2010 8:29 PM | Report abuse

The Rockets Come In Red Hot, Winning 4 in a row, 6 of 7, 7 of 9, and 9 of 12

The Wiz Come In White Hot, Losing 9 of 10, 13 of 15, While Also Managing An 0-14 Road Record

My Take
The Rockets are Hot and we have sucked but the Rox lineup still isnt that scary and most of there recent wins have been against bad teams (which we definitely are) while we should have everyone healthy for the 1st time all season. We have also had a pretty mean schedule and now are finally getting to play some of the other bad teams in the leauge so this is the time to make our run while we are getting healthy.

Tonight will be very interesting as Im still waiting to see our real lineup as Ive been waiting all year. Lets start Wall tonight and get the ball rolling. Im really interested in seeing what the idiot Flip does. I didnt get to see enough of the game last night but alot of people think that Shard & HA played well. Does 1 or both of them start from here on?

NY has struggled so much in the last game and a half, does that open the door for Flip to go back to the Wall-Hinrich lineup instead of the Wall-NY one that everyone thought we would see. Is Al still the starting 3 or will Flip move Howard or even Lewis there? I want to see what happens with all of that tonight. I wouldnt mind seeing us start Wall-NY-Lewis-Dray-McGee tonight.

Those are still our main core as if healthy & in shape, Wall-Dray-Lewis & McGee will all be here for the next few years and you can probably now add NY in that group. All the other guys like Kirk, Al, Howard, HA, Yi, and so on may or may not be here. Thats why I would just start that group and see if they can build a good chemistry while we come off the bench with Kirk, Howard, Thorton, and HA. I like that rotation.

Posted by: dlts2041 | December 27, 2010 8:32 PM | Report abuse

Everything is solid but its still not perfect without Wall starting. Again, if he's healthy enough to play then I think he should start. Lets get the real lineup going for once to see what we have. Im sick of us never having everything set. Theres always someone on the bench. Just start the real guys for once, please

Posted by: dlts2041 | December 27, 2010 8:35 PM | Report abuse

Like I stated before, Flip is afraid th bench Andray Blatche. So much for being in the dog house. The dogs run the kennel here.

Posted by: zack9633 | December 27, 2010 8:40 PM | Report abuse

Suspension is enough. You dont need to bench someone who may be a big part of your future.

Posted by: dlts2041 | December 27, 2010 8:50 PM | Report abuse

If Ted has accomplished nothing else with the Wizards so far, his initiative to get the former Wizards greats back involved with the team is such a good thing. I know Phil and Buck were basically ignoring the game, but it was cool to sit and listen to the Big E wax rhapsodic.

Posted by: ts35 | December 27, 2010 9:41 PM | Report abuse

And even you can admit than Kirk is a far improvement to Earl "the curl" Boykins, right?

Posted by: Blurred | December 27, 2010 4:54 PM | Report abuse

Blurred

Yes he is...

That just goes to show you how sad this organization is...we are settling for a guy just because he is better then a player who shouldn't even be in the NBA?

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | December 27, 2010 5:04 PM | Report abuse


Dude...you are a complete moron. Kirk is fantastic...and he is our second best pg. No one is "settling" here.

Posted by: Blurred | December 27, 2010 9:56 PM | Report abuse

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Posted by: sdgashasdg | December 27, 2010 9:58 PM | Report abuse

heard EG offering Blatche and a 2011 No1 for Cousins. Don't know if it's a good idea to give away our problem child for someone elses.

Posted by: zack5 | December 27, 2010 5:28 PM | Report abuse

Have I missed something? What has Cousins done this year (or last) to be a "problem child." I'll admit I haven't paid much attention to him this season, so I could have missed something, but everything I read about hi is that all this "problem Child" talk is about some incident from when he was like 14 and talked back to/threatened a coach. Since then, I haven't seen any documented problems. Plus, there is no way EG would even consider this if Wall wasn't vouching for him.

More importantly, though, unless EG is absolutely positive that trading for Cousins gets us out of the lottery, it seems silly to trade this year's top 5 pick plus a guy giving you 15+ & 7 for last year's top five pick.

That said, I like cousins and think he can make an impact be a strong inside presence.

Posted by: Blurred | December 27, 2010 10:06 PM | Report abuse

Kirk is fantastic...

Posted by: Blurred | December 27, 2010 9:56 PM | Report abuse

Rumor has it the Board of Governors
of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame is going to make a special exception and will put Kirk into the Hall of Fame at the end of this year since he single-handedly turned the Wizards franchise around.

MVP! MVP! MVP!

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | December 27, 2010 10:14 PM | Report abuse

Cousins isn't worth Blatche and a 2011 #1 pick. Blatche for Cousins straight up maybe should be the only consideration, even if that at all.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | December 27, 2010 10:15 PM | Report abuse

BF - the question is not "did 'he single-handedly turned the Wizards franchise around?'" but "are we "settling" for him?"

No he did not turn us around singlehandedly or otherwise.

And no- we are not settling on him. he is a good player and the kind that can help teams.

You keep making ludicrous comments that make your imbecility that much more obvious.

Is Kirk and improvement over DeShawn? Yes.

Is he an improvement over Boykins? Yes.

Vastly so on both counts. So he is improving that aspect of the team. That's all that was said at the beginning of this. you started making dumbass comments after that.

Posted by: Blurred | December 27, 2010 10:28 PM | Report abuse

Have I missed something? What has Cousins done this year (or last) to be a "problem child."

Media says he has conduct problems also was suspended for taunting by simulating choking motion in game agaist Sacramento!

Posted by: zack9633 | December 27, 2010 10:28 PM | Report abuse

"What, no degrading comments about black players today?

Posted by: spades72 | December 27, 2010 12:04 PM | Report abuse "

They denigrate themselves plenty good without me mentioning it. BTW, I did say "idiot players.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | December 27, 2010 10:29 PM | Report abuse

I asked a question once but didn't get an answer. Was reminded again by McGee's shot blocking talent.

On an and-1 shot where the shooter is fouled but the shot is blocked by another defender, the ball is still live for if it goes in it is a score. But if it is blocked does the blocker McGee get credit for a blocked shot?

If not, I would think the NBA ought to consider recording this as a blocked shot in the future. After all the shot is still live and if it goes in the offensive team and player gets credit for the basket.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | December 27, 2010 10:34 PM | Report abuse

How can Hinrich not realize that is a foul jumping into and making contact with a 3-point shooter?

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | December 27, 2010 10:36 PM | Report abuse

"Kirk is fantastic"

Posted by: Blurred | December 27, 2010 9:56 PM | Report abuse

and that's not an imbecile comment?

The guy is this years Mike Miller, yes Ernie and the Wizards organization want people to believe he is a great influence and if he was that "fantastic" why did the Bulls let him walk and replace him with Brewer and Bogans?

I guess he had influenced Rose all he could?

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | December 27, 2010 10:39 PM | Report abuse

3-Guard lineup? Why?

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | December 27, 2010 10:40 PM | Report abuse

They can't get a rebound and no interior play with this dumb arse 3-Guard lineup. Flip is anything.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | December 27, 2010 10:44 PM | Report abuse

That lineup was crazy down the stretch. Flip is dumb as bricks. Gag me wit a maggot.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | December 27, 2010 10:56 PM | Report abuse

Can anybody explain why Flip would go to the three guard lineup down the stretch?

Samson151, you got a good handle on Flip's reasoning. WTF gives my good man?

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | December 27, 2010 10:59 PM | Report abuse

Agreed, LarryInClintonMD.

With a 10 point lead, I'd think you'd go with your best defensive line-up -- meaning you find a way to get Josh Howard on the floor and maybe McGee. Probably some veteran combo would have worked too. If Howard was on the bench because Flip was managing his minutes, then get Thornton or McGee on the court and pull one of the guards.

Posted by: JPRS | December 27, 2010 11:03 PM | Report abuse

ok, we have a day off and an easi(er) sked coming up. Get Wall into the starting lineup. Kirk has played well but we need to start the Franchise and get our real lineup on the floor. There is no excuse for darn near 40min & no assist tonight. We need Wall to run the show and we better keep NY as the starting 2. We should be slowing down Kirk's minutes anyways. If we do sneak in the playoffs late, he'll be dead by then at this rate. We can turn it around if we get healthy and get the right group on the floor.

Houston's commentator Clyde Drexler tonight said that we have a ton of talent and could win 50 games next year. Now its time for Flip to show it. Stop the bad lineups & rotations and lets get moving

Posted by: dlts2041 | December 27, 2010 11:03 PM | Report abuse

LarryInClintonMD.

Come on Larry you know it's not ever the coach it must have been the players who loss the game...

I didn't see the game so are you telling me Fantastic Kirk didn't take over the game and win it by himself?

Stats that lie?

AB got 14 boards he must be listening to the coach...

Fantastic Kirk O ast's

team 15 ast and 14 TO

What happen to Seraphin and Booker are they hurt?

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | December 27, 2010 11:03 PM | Report abuse

BF - you can call it an imbecile comment and thats fine...thats your opinion. but twice you made comments to indicate i said things I did not.

Just stick to denigrating my actual comments rather than making stuff up.

As far as why Chi let him go...you seem to be the only one who doesn't remember that they were ditching salaries to try and woo LeBron.

Anyway. he made a few mistakes tonight, but overall played tough and smart ball. He isn't my favortie player and if he leaves after next year, I probably won't be too torn up, but he is a great asset to almost any team. Unless you are trying to shed salaries.

Also, I like the way you see fit to only compare him to a white player. Why not just say "this years Brent price" or this year's JJ Reddick?

Posted by: Blurred | December 27, 2010 11:04 PM | Report abuse

Flip, Flip. Flip! Can't figure out what he was doing down the stretch!

Posted by: zack9633 | December 27, 2010 11:05 PM | Report abuse

"Come on Larry you know it's not ever the coach it must have been the players who loss the game...I didn't see the game so are you telling me Fantastic Kirk didn't take over the game and win it by himself?
Stats that lie?AB got 14 boards he must be listening to the coach...Fantastic Kirk O ast's team 15 ast and 14 TO" posted by bulletsfan78

Tell you what -- why don't you get a good night's sleep and we can talk about this tomorrow, when your head has cleared.

OK maybe the day after...

Posted by: Samson151 | December 27, 2010 11:10 PM | Report abuse

Also, I like the way you see fit to only compare him to a white player. Why not just say "this years Brent price" or this year's JJ Reddick?

Posted by: Blurred

KH is no JJ and def no Brent Price. Slightly above average player. Yeah, probably the best white player we have but that's not saying much!

Posted by: zack9633 | December 27, 2010 11:13 PM | Report abuse

"Just stick to denigrating my actual comments rather than making stuff up."

LOL good luck with that...

Posted by: Samson151 | December 27, 2010 11:14 PM | Report abuse

Alright, next game I expect to see Wall starting!

I want to see Wall, Howard, Lewis, Blatche, Mcgee.

Off the bench with Hinrich, Young, Thornton, Booker.

Give it to me Flip!!


Posted by: Darnell1 | December 27, 2010 11:15 PM | Report abuse

Flip, Flip, Flip (shaking head). What the heck are you thinking? Are you that narrow-minded a coach that you cannot see when something isn't working and make an(y) adjustment? How about a timeout while the game hangs in the balance to steady your team and stem the momentum of the opposition, for a change? Flip, any adjustment during critical junctures of the game, other than shifting your weight from one foot to the other, would be appreciated by this Wizards fan.

How many late game collapses must we witness before the Flip apologists here assign, even begrudgingly, some responsibility for this team's failings on Flip Saunders. I don't know -- maybe Flip is "pulling a Gilbert" and trying to choreograph his way out of town. Sigh...

Posted by: bazookajoe1 | December 27, 2010 11:15 PM | Report abuse

Watching the Rockets post game show did they really get 44 points in the paint and outrebound the Wizards?

Where is Armstrong when you really need him?

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | December 27, 2010 11:15 PM | Report abuse

Gil still laughing at Wizard fans. We're looking for a savior.

Posted by: zack9633 | December 27, 2010 11:21 PM | Report abuse

Up 10pts with 8mins left, Flip sits Javale for good and Rockets end game on 25-9 run. Really hope he didnt sit him because of that poor goaltend. Yes, it was a bad play but so what? Javale was changing shots on virtually every possession en route to Wiz building a lead, the moment he came out the Rockets started scoring at will. Puzzles me as to how Flip didnt see Mcgee as key to our defense tonight

Posted by: divi3 | December 27, 2010 11:21 PM | Report abuse

Kirk had a good game.....if he's the SG...but NY was the SG.

How can he, after 38 mins played, not have a single assist? WTF?

http://scores.espn.go.com/nba/boxscore?gameId=301227010

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | December 27, 2010 11:22 PM | Report abuse

Lewis and Howard shoot too much, Wall looked very rusty, and they kind of quit there at the end, hate to see that. A lot of coaches like to tighten up the rotations to get wins, but that doesn't seem to working here.

Posted by: djnnnou | December 27, 2010 11:23 PM | Report abuse

"KH is no JJ and def no Brent Price. Slightly above average player. Yeah, probably the best white player we have but that's not saying much!"

Posted by: zack9633 | December 27, 2010 11:13 PM

It's not saying anything, since Hinrich's the only white player on the Wizards roster.

Posted by: kalo_rama | December 27, 2010 11:24 PM | Report abuse

"It's not saying anything, since Hinrich's the only white player on the Wizards roster". Posted by: kalo_rama

FOR REAL KALO?

Posted by: zack9633 | December 27, 2010 11:27 PM | Report abuse

"FOR REAL KALO?

Posted by: zack9633 | December 27, 2010 11:27 PM | Report abuse "

Why isn't the EEOC looking into this?

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | December 27, 2010 11:28 PM | Report abuse

"Kirk had a good game.....if he's the SG...but NY was the SG.

How can he, after 38 mins played, not have a single assist?"

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | December 27, 2010 11:22 PM

Hinrich played a good portion of his minutes at SG with Wall on the floor. Hinrich is a combo guard. Always has been. He was looking to score more in this game. No crime in that. Also, as a general rule, getting an assist requires the other players to make baskets. Not a whole lotta that going on when the team shoots 40% from the field. Shots were there (however they were created). Guys missed them.

Posted by: kalo_rama | December 27, 2010 11:31 PM | Report abuse

"FOR REAL KALO?

Posted by: zack9633 | December 27, 2010 11:27 PM "

Nice try, but no one's buyin' it. (HINT: It was the "probably" that gave you away.)

Posted by: kalo_rama | December 27, 2010 11:33 PM | Report abuse

Darnell1; You sound like a loser. And that line up is weak. Every player on the team, play keep the ball out of Nick hand. When Nick is long gone, from the wizards team, you guy's will still be losing. So if you put Jesus in the line up and your team will still lose. And contrary to what you fell about Nick he is a starter, and a star, in this league. On another team.

Posted by: maejude | December 27, 2010 11:34 PM | Report abuse

I was just noticing that Houston home win streak -- it's pretty impressive for a team like the Rockets, going back all the way to November. Here's the list of victims:

GSW 111-101
OKC 99-98
Lakers 109-99
Det 97-83
Cle 110-95
Sac 118-105
Mem 103-87
Wiz 100-93

Lot of weak clubs in there, but a couple strong ones, too.

Posted by: Samson151 | December 27, 2010 11:35 PM | Report abuse

Well, I'm glad I missed watching most of this game. I don't see the rest of this season getting interesting at all.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | December 27, 2010 11:36 PM | Report abuse

Nice try, but no one's buyin' it. (HINT: It was the "probably" that gave you away.)

Yeah right. How in the H could anybody NOT know KH was the only white player on this team? The real shock is that you bit on a post mean't for blurr! Sometimes we need to stay in our lanes, lol

Posted by: zack9633 | December 27, 2010 11:47 PM | Report abuse

Tell you what -- why don't you get a good night's sleep and we can talk about this tomorrow,

Posted by: Samson151 | December 27, 2010 11:10 PM | Report abuse

What's wrong, the Wizards PR department hasn't called you yet to let you know how they want you to spin another Flip loss?

Just go with the standard response it's AB, NY and JM's fault because they won't become better ball players on their own.

I'm sure Flip and Fantasic Kirk did every thing they could.

Kal said Fantasic Kirk passed the ball and if AB, NY and JM could make their shots he would have had at least 20 ast's.

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | December 27, 2010 11:47 PM | Report abuse

Certainly a weird ending. Looking at the play by play after Javale's goaltend at around the 9 minute mark:

Houston hit 10 FTs, 3 two point FGs, and 3 three-pointers.

Washington hit 1 FT and 5 two pointers.

That's a lot of free throw shootin' for the Rockets...

Posted by: Samson151 | December 27, 2010 11:58 PM | Report abuse

"Yeah right. How in the H could anybody NOT know KH was the only white player on this team? "

I'm constantly amazed by the obvious things people don't seem to know around here. That said . . . I don't doubt that you knew it. I simply question your ability to tell the difference between using that knowledge in a way that sarcastically makes a point vs. a way that makes you look kind of dim.

"The real shock is that you bit on a post mean't for blurr! Sometimes we need to stay in our lanes, lol" Posted by: zack9633 | December 27, 2010 11:47 PM

No, the real shock is your apparent inability to distinguish between saying something stupid and saying something funny (a common malady around here, as it turns out).

Case in point:

"Kal said . . . [followed by a bunch of nonsense Kal never said]."

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | December 27, 2010 11:47 PM

Posted by: kalo_rama | December 27, 2010 11:58 PM | Report abuse

"What's wrong, the Wizards PR department hasn't called you yet to let you know how they want you to spin another Flip loss?"

Nope. Just hoping some of that chronic would leach out of your system. You know that stuff accumulates, right? You've probably got some in there from last September...

just kiddin'. That California is some progressive place to live.

Posted by: Samson151 | December 27, 2010 11:59 PM | Report abuse

No wonder Nick can't wait to get home.

Posted by: Samson151 | December 28, 2010 12:02 AM | Report abuse

"Kal said . . . [followed by a bunch of nonsense Kal never said]."

Posted by: kalo_rama | December 27, 2010 11:58 PM | Report abuse

I simply question your ability to tell the difference between using that knowledge in a way that sarcastically makes a point vs. a way that makes you look kind of dim.

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | December 28, 2010 12:02 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: Samson151 | December 27, 2010 11:10 PM | Report abuse

""What's wrong, the Wizards PR department hasn't called you yet to let you know how they want you to spin another Flip loss?""

LOLF. I don't think they called him yet either. He hasn't given any reason yet for that dumb butt 3-guard lineup, especially with the players we can put on the court now.

It was obvious to all of us watching the game that our bigs was clearly giving us the best chance to win this game.

Then all of a sudden after we are up by 10 heading into the stretch, Flip goes small with no energy.

I know Samson151 saw that and knows that is what happened, but he can't man and admit it. Shame. Shame.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | December 28, 2010 12:04 AM | Report abuse

"I know Samson151 saw that and knows that is what happened, but he can't man and admit it. Shame. Shame."

LOL 'fraid I didn't see it. Forced to miss this whole game. That's why I had to review the play-by-play for that unholy fourth quarter.

I know what you guys are saying, but I learned from experience that you've generally decided who to blame before the game starts...

Posted by: Samson151 | December 28, 2010 12:10 AM | Report abuse

"I know what you guys are saying, but I learned from experience that you've generally decided who to blame before the game starts..."

In fact, I don't know why you bother to watch at all. You could just submit the complaint letters to Ted at the beginning of the week.

Posted by: Samson151 | December 28, 2010 12:11 AM | Report abuse

just kiddin'. That California is some progressive place to live.

Posted by: Samson151 | December 27, 2010 11:59 PM | Report abuse

Samson151

I don't get offended by what other people think or write on here and it's amazing to me that most people can't pick up on my sarcasm.

It's a stupid game where guys who don't care about the fans get paid lots of money to do what most of them would be doing on the play grounds for free if they didn't make it into the NBA.

But, I do find it amusing that people actually try to defend Flip, Ernie and/or the players while the team has a 7-22 record which is worse then Minn?

Don't know if you've ever been to San Diego but it's a great place to kick back relax, watch beautiful sunsets, nice looking ladies walking on the beach and the fact they made MJ legal is just a plus...beat living in Florida.

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | December 28, 2010 12:15 AM | Report abuse

Hinrich getting an assist requires the other players to make baskets. Not a whole lotta that going on when the team shoots 40% from the field. Shots were there (however they were created). Guys missed them.

Posted by: kalo_rama | December 27, 2010 11:31 PM | Report abuse

Fantasic Kirk passed the ball and if AB, NY and JM could make their shots he would have had at least 20 ast's.

"Kal said . . . [followed by a bunch of nonsense Kal never said]."

assists require the other players to make baskets...Shots were there (however they were created). Guys missed them.

You are right you didn't say it, you wrote it...other then that you tried to cover for Kirk not getting a single assist.

But anyone who knows anything about basketball realizes the starting point guard had a bad game when he can't get a single assist.

At least he has You, Blurred and Flip as members of his fan club.

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | December 28, 2010 1:00 AM | Report abuse


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Posted by: doramartin28 | December 28, 2010 1:14 AM | Report abuse

"But anyone who knows anything about basketball realizes the starting point guard had a bad game when he can't get a single assist. Posted by: bulletsfan78"

LOL should occur to anyone who 'knows anything about basketball' that when a guard leads his team in scoring and finishes with no assists and no turnovers, he probably wasn't playing the 'point' much during the game...especially since the other 'starting' guard also finished without an assist.

Notice that the forwards combined for 60% of the team's assist total, with John Wall getting the remaining 40%?

And despite this, the team was in control most of the game before blowing it at the end?

Should tell us something about how the game was played.

Posted by: Samson151 | December 28, 2010 4:02 AM | Report abuse

"But, I do find it amusing that people actually try to defend Flip, Ernie and/or the players while the team has a 7-22 record which is worse then Minn?"

What's to defend? It's a poor team playing about up to its standard. I don't know why you bother trying to get the coach fired when the players will still be here. Not likely that will substantially improve anything.

Sometimes they play pretty good ball, though, provided your expectations are low enough. And John Wall can be really fun to watch.

Posted by: Samson151 | December 28, 2010 4:07 AM | Report abuse

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