Tag:Washington Wizards
Posted on: December 13, 2010 10:10 pm
Edited on: December 13, 2010 10:43 pm
 

Wizards' Big 3 may miss Lakers game

Wizards' three best players likely out versus defending champion Lakers Posted by Matt Moore

You know what the Wizards can't afford to have happen? John Wall to miss games. The number one overall pick leads the Wizards in assists and steals, is third in scoring, and fifth in rebounds. But if Wall is missing, what the Wizards really can't afford to have happen is for Gilbert Arenas to miss time. He's their leading scorer and second best overall player. But if those two are missing, they certainly can't afford to have Andray Blatche gone.

You know where this is going. From the Washington Post
Blatche's appears to be the most severe, with Coach Flip Saunders saying that the 6-11 forward is "probably out" against the two-time defending champion Los Angeles Lakers with a swollen left knee. Wall has developed some soreness in his right knee, which Saunders said is probably the result of overcompensation from his left foot injury, and is "very questionable." Arenas is probable, with what the team is calling "general soreness."
via Wizards Insider - The latest NBA news from Michael Lee.

Which means the Wizards, who face the Lakers Tuesday, will be without their three best players, against the most talented team in the league (apologies to the Miami Triad). Even with the Lakers struggling, they're still a dominant team, and the Wizards were a heavy underdog to begin with. Without any of the Wizards' Moderate-Sized-Three, they may as well forfeit. This could get ugly.

Derek Fisher and Lamar Odom are probably thankful, though.

Anyone else wonder if Flip Saunders is going to have to turn to some sort of medicinal alternative to get through this stint with the Wizards?
Posted on: December 10, 2010 9:34 am
Edited on: December 10, 2010 11:50 am
 

Shootaround 12.10.10: Shaq calls Griffin fabulous

Shaq says Blake Griffin is "fabulous,' the Heat are working towards progress, and some in New Orleans want to save their Hornets.
Posted by Matt Moore

  • Shaquille O'Neal on Blake Griffin: "He's fabulous ." Take a second and let that quote sink in. Shaq just described the most explosive rookie to enter the NBA in years in much the same way Lady Gaga likely discusses her latest dress made out of asbestos or drywall or whatever. An odd choice of words for anyone else. Par for the Shaq course.
  • Zach Lowe of SI on a specific shape the Heat have begun to implement: "The Heat have started to position James, Bosh and Wade in a triangle on the same side of the floor. They don’t do it often, but they’re trying it and are getting good results so far. Perhaps the best example happened about four minutes into the first quarter Wednesday. As Carlos Arroyo brought the ball up the left side, the three Miami stars took up residency on the opposite side — Wade in the right corner, Bosh at the right elbow and James on the right wing beyond the three-point line. A nice little $340 million obtuse triangle."
  • Rob Mahoney breaks down the accepted definition of All-Star, then asks the question, what should make an All-Star ?
  • Very quietly, the Kings are awaiting an MRI on the foot of Tyreke Evans. The whispers involve a term that rhymes with "shress shractshure." As of now he only has plantar fasciitis, which was confirmed by a foot expert this week.
Posted on: December 1, 2010 6:41 pm
 

Wizards owner denies Arenas trade rumors

Posted by Royce Young

There's been rumor around Gilbert Arenas getting traded basically since the Washington Wizards won the lottery. It's pretty obvious that the Wizards have at least asked around who migt be interested.

And with the latest rumor coming out today that included Arenas in a deal that would send him to Orlando, the organization saw it fit to try and shoot it down.

Wizard owner Ted Leonsis told the Washington Post it's not happening:
“The team is trying to rebuild and Gilbert is one of the leaders on the team,” Leonsis wrote. “Gilbert is the best player on the team right now…. It isn’t true. I wouldn’t tell you if it was true but I am telling you that it is not true.”
The caveat at the end there is my favorite part. I wouldn't tell you if it was, but I'm telling you it's not. Believable.

Still, the Wizards are at least denying it which speaks to the fact they might be willing to hold on to Arenas for at least the rest of this season and maybe another after.

Leonsis has been a very public supporter of Arenas over the past year and this isn't a surprise. He's probably telling the truth in regard to this specific talk. But if the right deal were to come along, I don't think the Wizards would think too much about offloading Arenas' huge contract and start the transition entirely to the John Wall Era.
Posted on: December 1, 2010 3:36 pm
Edited on: December 1, 2010 3:37 pm
 

Report: Magic interested in Gilbert Arenas

Posted by Royce Young

At some point, Gilbert Arenas has to move on from Washington. There's just no way the Wizards are willing to jeopardize John Wall's development by stunting his growth with Arenas playing alongside him.

But with Arenas' massive contract and the baggage that comes with him, he's going to be tough to move. Doesn't mean the Wizards aren't probably trying though. And despite the problems with him, Gilbert Arenas is still a really, really talented basketball player. So there's absolutely a market for him.

One team that's reportedly interested is the Orlando Magic, a club that's desperately in search of a reliable scoring option to play with Dwight Howard. The Magic have already apparently made everyone available on the team sans Howard and now, they could be getting proactive.

The Orlando Pinstriped Post, a very reliable blog, reports that the Wizards and Magic have discussed a deal that would send Arenas to Orlando. Also involved could potentially be Andray Blatche, Vince Carter, Rashard Lewis and rookie Daniel Orton. From the report:
Both teams have a mutual understanding of what the trade might include, the source says, and it's unclear what factors are holding up the trade. What is clear around the league, however, is that Magic President of Basketball Operations Otis Smith has his eye on Arenas. If Orlando is to make a major trade this season, Arenas will likely be the target.
As noted in the report, CBS Sports' Ken Berger reported the Magic listened to offers for Arenas this summer, but said no to the Wizards due to concern over the salary remaining on his contract, which runs for three seasons after this one, at a total cost of $62.4 million. In early November, ESPN.com reported "the Magic have cooled on the notion of a Vince Carter-for-Arenas exchange," citing "NBA front-office sources." However, the source who spoke to Orlando Pinstriped Post contradicts Stein's report, saying Orlando has indeed initiated the discussions with Washington of late. So who knows.

An interesting deal, especially if Blatche were involved, considering the Wizards just locked him up to be part of their future. But swapping Carter for Arenas makes sense because it gives the Magic the scorer they want and with Carter's deal being up soon, the Wizards have a nice contract to come off the books in the near future, plus can hand the reins of the team completely over to Wall.

With the Magic playing so well early on, they might hesitate. But they had an identical record at this point last season and were missing a scorer that they had in Hedo Turkoglu when they made their Finals run. So Otis Smith might be encouraged to get something done this time around. And by the sounds of it, it could involve Arenas.
Posted on: December 1, 2010 12:16 pm
Edited on: August 14, 2011 9:09 pm
 

Wizards' Armstrong suspended for flagrant foul

The NBA has suspended Washington Wizards forward Hilton Armstrong for one game without pay for his flagrant foul on Miami Heat center Joel Anthony on Monday night. Posted by Ben Golliver

The NBA announced today that Washington Wizards forward Hilton Armstrong has been suspended for one game without pay for his Flagrant Foul 2 against Miami Heat center Joel Anthony during the third quarter of Monday night's game between the two teams.
Hilton Armstrong of the Washington Wizards has been suspended one game without pay for his Flagrant Foul, Penalty Two against Joel Anthony of the Miami Heat, it was announced today by Stu Jackson, NBA Executive Vice President Basketball Operations.

Armstrong is set to serve his suspension on Wednesday night, when the Wizards travel to Toronto to face the Raptors.

To earn the suspension, Armstrong shoved Anthony out of the air during a lay-up attempt with both hands, causing Anthony to crash to the floor like a character from The Matrix. Heat forward Juwan Howard then rushed to Anthony's defense, pushing Armstrong to the ground from behind, which led to some jawing between the teams. Armstrong was assessed a Flagrant Foul 2 and immediately ejected from the game. Howard was also ejected after a video review of the incident. The altercation occurred at the :32 mark of the third quarter, with the Heat leading comfortably, 80-68.

Here's the must-watch video of the entire incident again.
Posted on: November 30, 2010 3:35 pm
 

Award-O-Matic MVP 11.30.10: CP3 as MVP

NBA F&R breaks down the MVP candidates after the first month of the season by dissecting the award down to three parts: Most Valuable, Most Important, and Most Oustanding Player. CP3 is in control.
Posted by Matt Moore with contributions from Ben Golliver and Royce Young




Well, we're a month into the season and the context of this year has begun to take shape. While certainly a long way from the finish line, we've already gotten a glimpse of who's playing well, who's playing average, and who ... not so much. And so it is that we begin our monthly look at awards. On a regular basis we'll take you around the award contenders and give you a look at who is in contention for the NBA's major awards by breaking down what they really mean in our Award-O-Matic. Today we start with the MVP.

The problem, as has been elucidated approximately a million times by various media members, is that the MVP is a nebulous, hard to define award. Its name is Most Valuable, but it most often goes to the Most Outstanding Player on a winning team. If your play is other-worldly but your team doesn't win, you have no shot. If you contribute the most to a winning team but your numbers aren't stellar, again, your chances are slim. It takes a combination of three factors: value, performance, and importance to snag the award. As such, we decided to break the award into those three categories, tally them up with the top player getting 3 points, the second 2, the third 1, then summing to see if we could come up with a list.

First up?

Most Valuable Player (To Their Team): Who is most responsible for their team's success? Or, to put it another way, whose team suffers the most without them?


Matt Moore:


1. Dirk Nowitzki: Without him that offense is anemic and it's been his rebounding that's kept them in games at points.
2. Carmelo Anthony: Seriously, Nuggets. Cliff. Teetering. Melo's the only thing keeping the truck from smashing into pieces.
3. Dwight Howard: Get him in foul trouble and the Magic turn into a Mid-Major college team, just wining it from perimeter to perimeter.

Ben Golliver:

1. Chris Paul:
  I like Darren Collison as much as the next guy, but CP3's return from injury to lead New Orleans' absurd hot start, despite an unimpressive supporting cast, reveals exactly how valuable the league's best point guard is.
2. Rajon Rondo Boston would still be good without Rondo, but his game ownership places them on an elite level and makes them the odds on favorite to win the East yet again. 10.6 points, 14.2 assists (what!), 4.8 rebounds and 2.5 steals through the end of November. Crazy.
3. Kevin Durant The Thunder have had an up-and-down start but imagining this team with Russell Westbrook at the helm by himself, dragging an ineffective Jeff Green along for the ride, would be a recipe for a guaranteed lottery team. KD will get better -- perhaps much better -- over the course of the season, and he's already easily leading the NBA in scoring again.

Royce Young:

1. Chris Paul:   Subtract Paul and what do you have. I can promise you it's not an 8-1 team. It's really as simple as that.
2. Dirk Nowitzki:   The Mavericks are dangerous in every fourth quarter that they're close in. The reason is because Dirk can score in every situation, at any time. He essentially is the Maverick offense.
3. Steve Nash:   Take Nash away and yes, there's Goran Dragic who can dazzle in stretches. But without Nash this Suns team is nothing more than a 35-win club. With Nash, there's potential to push for the playoffs.

Most Important Player: Who is most crucial to their team's success? Ex. Last year I argued that Josh Smith was MIP because when he did Josh Smith-y things, the Hawks were nearly unstoppable, and when he didn't, they were much more beatable.


Matt Moore:

1. Chris Paul:
He does everything and it starts and stops with him. This is even more clearly illustrated by their recent struggles down the stretch where he hasn't been involved.
2. Al Horford: The level of production Horford is creating right now is simply astonishing. More astonishing is how overlooked he is.
3. Pau Gasol: It's him that's carrying the Lakers. Even as Kobe scores all the high points, the most dominant Laker performances this season are from Gasol.

Ben Golliver:


1. Pau Gasol: His virtuoso early season performance has single-handedly made Andrew Bynum an afterthought. What more needs to be said?
2. Deron Williams:   Utah's streak of comebacks begins with Williams' tough-minded leadership and ends with his play-making and shot-making.
3. Dirk Nowitzki:   Another banner start from Dirk singlehandedly puts a Dallas roster loaded with question marks in the playoff mix.

Royce Young:

1. Pau Gasol: Having Gasol as part of the triangle has been like a revelation. He's really what makes the Lakers so darn dangerous.
2. Kevin Garnett:
We saw what an impact his has in regard to the Celtic defense two seasons ago when his knee was injured.
3. Nick Collison:   He's a classic no-stats All-Star. He's only played for a few weeks so far this season for Oklahoma City but his value is immeasurable and impact immediate. He tips rebounds that become extra possessions, takes charges, sets outstanding screens and makes two or three small (but big) plays a game.


Most Outstanding Player: Who has simply wowed you?


Matt Moore:

1. Rajon Rondo: Key plays every time he's on the floor and he makes it look easy, There are a lot of moments where he looks like he's just on a different plane from everyone else.. and he's got three Hall of Famers on his team.
2. Russell Westbrook: Westbrook has managed to take over the game down the stretch. His turnovers are down, assists are up, he's got range and that mid-key pull-up jumper is as deadly as it ever has been. He's been simply phenomenal in half-court and full-court sets.
3. Deron Williams: Three point guards? Yup. Check Deron at the end of the clock with the game on the line. Money. And that's after all the assists, rebounds, key plays and floor leadership. Man's a ninja, no joke.

Ben Golliver:


1. Dwight Howard:
  Lost in the Miami Heat wave, Howard is quietly putting up 22.6 points, 11.9 rebounds and 2.4 blocks as the defensive and rebounding engine that will make Orlando a title contender for years to come. By the way, Orlando sits atop the Southeast Division -- 3.5 games ahead of the Heat.
2. LeBron James: His numbers are crazy and his highlights are spectacular. It's a wonder he can jump so high and dunk so hard carrying the burden of Chris Bosh and Erik Spoelstra's corpse on his shoulders.
3. John Wall:   Wall doesn't belong in the MVP discussion -- there are too many holes in his game (jumper, turnovers) and his team is terrible -- but for sheer "outstanding-ness" and "wow factor" he merits inclusion here. His assist numbers have been great and his speed is tops in the league; he's a lot further along the NBA readiness scale than even his biggest fans could have imagined.

Royce Young:

1. Rajon Rondo: He's been nothing but insanely ridiculous. Manages the game perfectly, understand his place within an offense and runs the show beautifully.
2. Kevin Love: When given the time on the floor, he's a legitimate 20-20 threat every single night. How many players can you really say that about?
3. Russell Westbrook: There's a case to be legitimately made for Westbrook as an MVP contender. Kevin Durant is still leading the league in scoring, but Westbrook is what's kept the team winning games. But his play has been just insane this year (23.8 ppg, 8.4 apg, 5.1 rpg) and he's a super-highlight waiting to happen.

Here are the tallies:

Most Valuable Player:
1. Chris Paul (6)
2. Dirk Nowitzki (5)
Tied for 3rd: Carmelo Anthony, Rajon Rondo (2)
Tied for 4th: Kevin Durant, Dwight Howard, Steve Nash (1)

Most Important Player:
1. Pau Gasol (7)
2. Chris Paul (3)
Tied for 3rd: Deron Williams, Al Horford, Kevin Garnett (2)
Tied for 4th: Dirk Nowitzki, Nick Collison (1)

Most Outstanding Player :

1. Rajon Rondo (6)
Tied for 2nd: Russell Westbrook, Dwight Howard (3)
Tied for 3rd: Kevin Love, LeBron James (2)
Tied for 4th: John Wall, Deron Williams (1)

Top 5 in Totals:
1. Chris Paul: 9
2. Rajon Rondo (8)
3. Pau Gasol (7)
4. Dirk Nowitzki (6)
5. Dwight Howard (4)
Posted on: November 30, 2010 1:24 am
Edited on: August 14, 2011 9:06 pm
 

Heat forward Udonis Haslem eyes April return

Miami Heat power forward Udonis Haslem eyes an April return from  foot surgery. Posted by Ben Golliver udonis-haslem Back on Nov. 21, Miami Heat forward and co-captain Udonis Haslem tore a ligament in his left foot. He underwent surgery two days later and was ruled out for an indefinite period of time, with some reports speculating that the Heat enforcer could miss the entire 2010-2011 NBA season. The Associated Press reports on Twitter that Haslem said Monday night that there is "no" chance his season is over and that he is looking "more at April than March" for a return to the court. The Heat conclude their regular season on April 13, but an April return would make Haslem available for a playoff run. (Assuming the Heat avoid the lottery.) Haslem's confidence is good news for the Heat, who badly miss their enforcer. Reserve forward Juwan Howard had to step up on Monday night to defend center Joel Anthony following a nasty flagrant foul by Washington Wizards forward Hilton Armstrong, and the physical tests for Miami's weak front line are surely just beginning.  As badly as Miami misses Haslem's physicality, Haslem misses the rough stuff that has buttered his NBA bread. The Sun-Sentinel reports on Twitter that Haslem said on Monday that he wished he could have been out there during the Heat/Wizards game. "I would have loved to be out there tonight, with all the pushing and shoving," the paper quotes Haslem as saying.
Posted on: November 29, 2010 9:52 pm
Edited on: August 14, 2011 9:06 pm
 

Video: Miami Heat scuffle with Washington Wizards

The Miami Heat and Washington Wizards scuffle after a flagrant foul by Wizards forward Hilton Armstrong on Heat center Joel Anthony. Posted by Ben Golliver During the third quarter of their Monday game, the Miami Heat and Washington Wizards got into a bit of a brouhaha after Wizards forward Hilton Armstrong shoved Heat center Joel Anthony out of the air during a lay-up attempt, causing Anthony to crash to the floor. Heat forward Juwan Howard immediately rushed to Anthony's defense, shoving Armstrong to the ground from behind and causing a minor scrum and jawing between the two teams. Here's video of the incident. Armstrong was assessed a Flagrant Foul 2 and immediately ejected from the game. Howard was also ejected after a video review of the incident. The altercation occurred at the :32 mark of the third quarter, with the Heat leading comfortably, 80-68.
 
 
 
 
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