Wednesday, March 16, 2011

In Case You Didn't Get Enough of Javale

Javale Mcgee's Pathetic Triple Double

I haven't posted in awhile, and not due to lack of material, but more in an act of shear laziness. Then last night Javale Mcgee's desperate attempt at a triple double prompted me to get back into the game.

Like most D.C. sports fans, I was watching the Caps last night and completely dismissed the fact that the Wizards even existed. I went to the Zards' box score, as I always do, and saw that Javale had 11 points, 12 rebounds, and 12 blocks. Quite impressive, no? Like me, you would be wrong if you made that assumption.

With 3 minutes left, the Wizards continuously fed Javale the ball so he could get to 10 points to complete the milestone. Javale then proceeded to go on a relentless and determined tear in his quest for his first triple double. Three straight possessions, three straight Javale Mcgee isolation plays. In the future, let's refrain from ever doing that again. Air ball, turnover, clank off the backboard.

And if Javale couldn't make his attempt any more egregious, when he actually dunked and finished his quest, he then pulled himself up on the rim, receiving a technical foul (keep in mind, the Wizards were down 20 at this point).

Javale blocked 12 shots last night in an NBA game, so whatever way you look at, that is a positive. But this insanely irrelevant sequence of events was embarrassing.

I decided the Zards should keep Javale a few weeks back. But after the most "Javale Mcgee moment" thus far, I immediately rescind my opinion.

Friday, March 11, 2011

The Latest Duke Goon to Make it Rain Against the Terps

Meet Ryan Kelly. Enough Said.

Nyjer Morgan is a Giant Problem in Center Field, Not to Mention at the Plate

The Nats have made plenty of moves this offseason, while in the process addressing some big holes on their roster, and kudos to them for that. However, what I and I'm sure many other Nats fans may be feeling, is that Nyjer Morgan could be a potential liability come April.

Nyjer played a decent center field when he wasn't throwing his glove in disgust, or displaying his less than impressive arm. The bigger issue may lie with his bat. Nyjer once again will be the leadoff hitter, and that raises too many questions. Can he get on base? He had just a .319 OBP last season. More importantly, can he get on base without attempting a bunt? Nyjer struggled so much with the bat last season he tried to drag bunt entirely too much, further lowering his OBP and costing the Nats too many outs. He batted just .253, and the Nats are in dire need of more production out of the top of the lineup. With Zimmerman, Werth, and Laroche in the middle of the lineup, it is essential for him to be on base, and steal a few here and there.

Oh right, he also proved last season he has a short fuse, and got into trouble with the league via suspension. The Nats gave him the benefit of the doubt last season, and are giving him the chance this season to prove it was just an aberration.

Expect Nyjer to have a very short leash this season, and by that I mean like a month. If his numbers prove to be a liability come May the Nats will look elsewhere to fill their centerfield void.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Adam Laroche is Possibly More Redneck Than Adam Dunn

If there was one thing Adam Dunn conquered in Washington, it was being the most redneck S.O.B. in the locker room. Subsequently another Adam came to replace him, and ironically enough, he too enjoys killing deer. Enough so that he has a tattoo of one on his arm.

I promise you Nats fans, this redneck will not disappoint. Sure, we will all miss Dunn's home run ability, but for the sake of a winning team, Laroche's defense and mid-leveling power will do just fine.

It Doesn't Get Any Prettier Than This

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Rashard Lewis is Better Than Gilbert Arenas

Yeah, that's right. Just 3 years ago Gilbert Arenas was on the cover of NBA Live. The more I think about it, the more it seems like a generation ago that he was good, and maybe even great.

Today I thought it had been long enough since the trade occurred between the Zards and the Magic that we can finally look at how it panned out. And by looking at the stats, it hasn't panned out very well for the Magic. Sure he's playing about 13 less minutes a game, but he is still the number one guy off the bench for them.

Here are Gilbert's stats since joining Orlando:

PPG: 8.0
SPG: 0.8
FG PCT:34.4
3PT FG PCT: 26.4
FT PCT:72.1

Ouch. I'll leave the points and assists per game alone because of the lack of minutes compared to in D.C. But his shooting percentages are just downright miserable. 34 percent from the field is very bad for a guard (one that shoots a lot too), his 3 point percentage is at the point where he should be told not to hoist any more up, and even his free throw percentage has dipped to very low levels.

Rashard Lewis' stats since joining Washington:

FG PCT:44.6
3 PT FG PCT:34.7
FT PCT:84.3

Well there you go, folks. Lewis clearly has been much more productive since joining the Wiz, and the percentages alone confirm that.

At first I was skeptical about the deal, mostly because I thought they were getting a lesser player in return. I thought Arenas could begin to return to his former self with better players around him. I was dead wrong. And I'm glad that I was. Gil has just become a guard that plays little to no defense who shoots the rock very poorly. Odds are he won't be a significant contributor come playoff time.

Let's look at it this way. The Wiz traded up a washed up player with more years and way more money on his contract than what they got back. They have gotten significantly better production from Lewis (even though he is currently injured).

The deal officially gets the thumbs up. As bad as Gilbert has been with the Magic, odds are he won't single handedly destroy the franchise like he did in D.C.

Thanks again, Gil.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Vinny Cerrato is Irrational

Vinny. Oh Vinny. You are no longer affiliated with the Redskins' organization. You are now an afterthought, and your views about anything are completely irrelevant to anyone and everyone that is associated with the Redskins. In case you missed it on "The Mike Wise Show", enjoy:

"When we started out, we're 6-2 and the guy's doing a good job," Cerrato said. "But then I think ego got into play and then he stopped listening to coaches, became a celebrity. I mean, that's when Rush Limbaugh's on the sideline, he had all these people on the sideline. Give me a break. Just worry about Clinton Portis, Chris Samuels. Worry about the next team. To me, that's what happened. We're 6-2, we're on a run, and all you people in the newspaper were saying Dan finally got it right, hired a great coach, blah blah blah, and then see how fast you guys turned?"

Are you serious? First of all, you hired him, dude. Don't pin all of that on Snyder. You were a premiere decision maker, and no one is quite sure why. Second of all, ego? You really want to say that the innocent Jim Zorn had too big of an ego? Do you know what that word means, Vin? You always had the biggest ego in whatever room you were in.

I also have no recollection of Zorn "becoming a celebrity", whatever that means. Vinny, the reason things went south is because Jimmy Zorn was a bad head football coach. He was a bad head football coach hired by a bad General Manager. The sooner you realize that, the better off we will all be.

Oh, and shut the hell up.

Lavar Arrington Writes About Hockey

I was browsing through Twitter today when I came across Lavar Arrington's profile. I then saw him advertise a blog post he wrote about the Capitals. I knew he wrote for the Washington Post as a blogger, and mostly about the Redskins. I had come across him posting about the Wizards a few times as well, but never did I run into a Capitals post, nor did I really want to.

I always read his "Hard Hits" blog posts, mostly because I like the title, and it's so Lavar. I always read his Redskins posts, and for good reason, considering that is the sport he actually played. I would even glance at what he has to say about the Wizards, and that's because I know he attends games. But the second I saw the Capitals post I immediately closed the window, having little to no interest about his views on hockey.

Sorry Lavar, I still love you. Get some!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Please Tell Us This isn't the Wizards' New Logo

(via Dan Steinberg)
Oh God.

That is hideous.

I'm trying to think of another word to describe it.

Eye gauging-ly hideous. That's not a word. But yea, that's the one.

Rumors are swirling around blogger nation today that this could possibly be the Wizards' new logo. And i believe we are all collectively praying that it's not.

I know Ted Leonsis is trying to "launch his brand" and make the Zards' logo more patriotic. I'm all for going red, white, and blue, but come on. The entire logo has to be changed. The name has to be changed, for that matter. Adding a little red to the current logo does nothing but make it more ugly.

Ted's thoughts on the image that broke out today:

"Many of you have seen a new version of a Wizards logo circulating online. We won't get into confirming or denying the validity of any logo designs. We appreciate and understand the excitement surrounding the new color scheme, and we are planning a comprehensive brand launch. We will announce the specific date for our public unveiling event soon and look forward to sharing our new brand identity with our fans."
Go ahead, Ted. Unveil that logo, and further add to the misery of this 2010-2011 campaign.

Espinosa has a Rocket for an Arm

(via Mr. Irrelevant)
This is great to see. There has been plenty of talk about how good Espinosa can be, and if this is what is to come, then the Nats finally have a second baseman. No more Adam Kennedy! Ronnie Belliard! The list goes on and on. The Nats have not had a legitimate second baseman since they got to D.C., when a washed up Jose Vidro had the honor.

If Desmond can sure up his fielding (which we assume he will), an effective double play combination may be here to stay.

If not, maybe the Nats could consider moving Desmond to second and Espinosa to shortstop, to make throws a little easier for Ian.

Weekend Wrap Up: Wizards Still Bad on Road; Capitals Rising

I apologize for being M.I.A. since Thursday, but you know, I'm a busy man. And surprisingly I stayed away from D.C. action for the most part this weekend (besides yesterday's Caps game). I enjoyed some quality college basketball, and no, that does not include the Terps ( I thankfully missed Saturday's debacle against Virginia).

In any event, the Wizards did win on Saturday night against Kevin Love and the Wolves, but followed that up Sunday with their continuous road ineptitude. The Wiz are now 1-29 on the road, and are 11 losses away from matching the 1990-1991 Sacramento Kings for the worst road record in NBA history. The unfortunate thing is that the odds are probably in their favor that they will match it. With the Wizards' lone road win in Cleveland, they took the monkey off the back and no longer had the league's attention. That seemed to be a positive thing, but the Wiz immediately reverted back to their old ways. Looking at the remaining road schedule, I circled three games I think they can win to avoid the embarrassing record: @Toronto, @L.A. Clippers, and the highly anticipated season finale @Cleveland.

After what Lebron and the Cavs did to the Wiz in 3 consecutive playoff series', two road wins in '11 with both coming against a more woeful Cleveland squad would be awesome. If that happens, let's chalk that up as a victory for 2011.

And now to the team that has intentions of winning a championship. Watching the Capitals this season has been a roller coaster, but boy are they fun to watch when they win by one goal every game, and playing great defense in the process. Since the deadline deals, the Caps are 3-0, with every win coming by that lone goal. Albeit they were against non-playoff squads, it is impressive nonetheless. The Caps are playing grade A defense, especially on the power play. The Panthers had 7 power play opportunities yesterday, and only cashed in on a 5-on-3 advantage. Neuvirth has been stellar, and is slowly putting a stranglehold on the playoff goalie role. The Caps are now in first place for the first time since December 29th, and that all leads to the showdown in Tampa tonight. Win and get some breathing room, lose and relinquish first a day later after claiming it.

Bottom line from the weekend: The Wizards still stink, and the Caps are surging at just the right time. It's time to get very excited for playoff hockey.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Maryland Loses at Miami; All too Familiar

It is now official. After the Terps' lackluster loss at Miami Wednesday night, they are now forced to have to win the ACC Tournament in order to dance in March. Coming into this season we all knew there would be tough times, but I don't think any of us could imagine it would play out this way. The Terps lost quite a bit. Their two best leaders and scorers, Hayes and Vasquez, were replaced by two freshman. Nothing about that is going to be easy. It's the veteran players that are so frustrating. The inconsistent play from Bowie and Gregory, the ineptitude of Mosley, and the disappearing act of Tucker. These guys logged significant minutes the past two years on decent tournament teams. Their role was to step up and be leaders, and they have failed tremendously at that. The one guy (besides Williams) that has stepped up is the freshman Stoglin. That bodes well for the future, but certainly not for the present.

What many of us Terps' fans may be forgetting is this season is eerily similar to the NIT campaigns of 2004, 2005, and 2007. In these seasons, the Terps have been unable to beat teams at their level or below it towards the end of the season. In particular that includes last night's Miami team, Virginia Tech, and Boston College. Since these teams have joined the ACC (in 2004), Maryland is an astonishing 10-21 against them, including 0-5 this season. No other ACC team has struggled with the conference's newcomers as much as the Terps.

Maryland is supposed to be a great college basketball tradition. Those teams are not. So why the struggles? In recent years, when the Terps are NIT bound, they just don't have the talent. Once again this season is rearing it's ugly head, and it all leads back to Gary Williams and his inability to recruit.

Gary has seemed untouchable because of his longevity, but if he continues to do half of his job, that will no longer be the case.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

"A Dazzling Overtime Winner for the Great Eight"

First off, a phenomenal call by Joe Beninati. That was a vintage goal by Alex and a vintage call by Joe. Love it.

With the new additions of Sturm, Wideman, and Arnott, the Caps brought a whole new look to the Verizon Center last night. Except there was one problem: For 59 minutes they looked like the same old anemic offense that forced them to make the moves. Then lightning struck. With an empty net and 47 seconds to go, new Cap Jason Arnott found Brooks Laich at the net, and Laich pushed it past Islander goaltender Nathan Lawson. Good to get it to overtime, but we all know how the Caps usually fare in 4 on 4 play. The difference last night was Ovi took it into his own hands, and made a play that few others, if any, can make in the league.

So much for Alex being "out of shape". Check it out at 6 seconds, when Alex shoved the poor Islander defender out of his way to create space to go backhand. Incredible. That was Jordan getting to the rim, brushing off whatever obstacle was in his way. Alex was not going to be denied.

This is what the Caps have come postseason time that no other team possesses. The ultimate X- factor. The Caps can keep playing these low scoring games in April (and hopefully further), and be able to rely on an overpowering force in crunch time.

They may not score like years' past, but last night was as entertaining as they come.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

The Current Wizards' Roster: Keep or Dump?

The Zards' are winless since the All Star break, and for the most part have been getting clobbered in the process. Due to the recent developments, I thought I'd take a look at the current roster, and be the verdict on who stays and who goes. There clearly is change needed, so don't expect to see too many "keeps".
  • Andray Blatche: Andray is skilled, big, and athletic. He is also lazy, kind of fat, and has a poor work ethic. Seven Day Dray is the definition of "dead weight". He is the black hole of the offense. He is the poor man's Al Harrington. I think you know where I'm going with this one. VERDICT: Dump
  • Nick Young: I've probably posted more on Nick Young than any other Wizard, and I only counted one positive post. Nick can shoot the rock, and he can jump out of the building. As you already know, he doesn't pass, and he is as inconsistent as they come. Nick maybe could be a third guy off the bench for a good team, but that is pushing it. VERDICT:DUMP
  • Trevor Booker: Trevor is an interesting 'fella. He isn't very polished, but he too can jump out of the building, and he hustles like Michael Ruffin in his glory days. Whenever one of the first things you notice about a player is how hard he goes on the floor, he should be part of the future. VERDICT:KEEP
  • Jordan Crawford: Brought over in the Hinrich deal, Jordan too is a raw player. But he is a scorer, and he's young. He should have some time to prove himself, so let's take a further look at him in '12. VERDICT:KEEP
  • Maurice Evans: Also brought over in the Hinrich deal, Maurice is a hard worker. Throughout his years in Atlanta, he came to work everyday and just did his job. Problem is, he's old, and has no role in the rebuilding process. Sorry, Maurice. VERDICT:DUMP
  • Josh Howard: I've always liked Josh as a player, but he is fragile and old. Once again, there is just no room for him. He's also a pothead. Not a good combination. VERDICT:DUMP
  • Rashard Lewis: I wasn't a fan of what the Wizards' got back for Arenas in Lewis, but they had to get rid of Gil's salary, so no harm done. Rashard is a big man that stays on the perimeter, shoots three's, and plays no defense. He is exactly what the Wiz don't need in a player. VERDICT: DUMP
  • Cartier Martin: Cartier doesn't play too much, but he can shoot. And when building a winner, you need shooters. Let's take another look. VERDICT: KEEP
  • Javale Mcgee: Javale is a tough one to understand. The sky is the limit athletically, but his rawness is mystifying. Will he ever develop? Who knows. But we have to find out. VERDICT:KEEP
  • Hamady Ndiaye: I'm not going to lie. I know nothing about this guy. I know he is young and big, but most likely sucks. VERDICT:DUMP
  • Kevin Seraphin: I like Kevin a lot, and not only because we share the same name. He's big, and quite polished. With the right coaching, could become something. VERDICT:KEEP
  • Mustafa Shakur: Just like Hamady, I don't know much about Mustafa, except they have terrible names. He's only been on the roster for a handful of games, so the jury is still out. VERDICT: KEEP
  • Al Thornton: Al hasn't quite shown what we thought he might this season, and that's really disappointing. He too, like Howard, is always hurt, and jacks up a ton of shots. VERDICT: DUMP
  • Yi Jianlian: As much as I love Yi for his asian-ness, he's just not very good. He has somewhat of an effective mid-range game, but his slow moving body impedes that. Sorry, Yi. VERDICT:DUMP
  • John Wall: Hold on for dear life. The Wiz have 3 years to prove to him they can build a winner, or else he's long gone. Get cracking, Ted and Ernie. VERDICT:KEEP