Tagged: Washington Wizards

Wizards Trade Bolsters Nuggets and Clippers

It’s become a custom in pro-sports to reward players for years of dutiful service on hard-luck teams with a chance to play for a contender before their careers end.  Neither JaVale McGhee nor Nick Young fit the usual profile of players receiving such a benefit, but nonetheless both players received promotions for their picaresque years of service with the Wizards.

The Nuggets and Clippers meanwhile have to be very happy with their haul at yesterday’s deadline.  In return for Nene’s bloated contract, Denver gets a 7-foot shot blocker.  This will be McGee’s first time experiencing a playoff run and playing alongside a veteran playmaker like Andre Miller is guaranteed to boost his stock.  This is a win-win for the Nuggets and McGee.  If McGee plays well, the Denver goes even further in the playoffs.  And if he just plays at his current level and Denver realizes that the JaVale experience is not what they’re after, then they still have a legitimate 7-footer to offer in a sign-and-trade deal.

Los Angeles should be just as eager to have Young on board.  Young can definitely shoot the rock and once he realizes that he’s not in the Wizard’s haphazard offense anymore, then he should fit in nicely alongside Chris Paul, Blake Griffin and Caron Butler.

Meanwhile for Washington, while it may feel good at the moment to get McGee out of the locker room, we will see if this enthusiasm persists two years from now when John Wall is looking down the bench and seeing Nene and Rashard Lewis and finally decides he wants to ask for a trade.  60million is a lot to pay for stability, so for the Wizards sake let’s hope that it’s worth it.




Should Your Team Trade For Andray Blatche?

Having seen Andray Blatche play on a number of occasions over the past few years I feel confident in saying that he’s a good basketball player.  He can score from either the blocks or the perimeter.  He rebounds well.  And if he gets hot, he can easily go for 20 and carry a team to victory.

Now should Andray Blatche be the best player on a team? Definitely not.  And even if he were the second or third best player on your team there’d be no guarantee of success.  But that does not mean that he wouldn’t be an asset to most teams in this league.

Blatche’s biggest weakness as a professional basketball player is, well, it’s, Andray Blatche. 

His contract is not too onerous.

He is capable of averaging 13pts and 7 rebounds a game.

And did I mention he’s 6’10”?

If you called into any front office and you told them that you have a 26year old 6’10 player who’d give them 13 & 7 a night they’d likely jump at the opportunity to sign this person.

However, if you happened to lead with that you have Andray Blatche, the conversation is likely to instantly go cold.

The fear of Blatche precedes the realities of the actual player.  Blatche is not the first player in this regard, and nor will he be the last.  What makes escaping his own reputation more difficult for Blatche than it is for other players who’ve had to deal with this issue is that in truth Blatche is a pretty average player.  He’s not like Rasheed Wallace or Vince Carter, players who arguably could have accomplished significantly more with their talents.  It’s been so long since Blatche was considered a prodigy that the general public has long since forgotten any talk of him having an unsurpassable ceiling.  Seven years into his career, Andray Blatche is simply Andray Blatche, and the cold hard truth is that Andray Blatche is someone most teams would rather do without.

But Blatche does not have a bad enough attitude or even perception, like say what plagued Zach Randolph and his “Jail Blazers” teammates early in his career.  With Randolph you could at least talk yourself into trading for him because there was an edge to go along with the talent. There’s no such overriding edge with Blatche.

He’s essentially Joe Smith with a bad attitude.

However, if you see him play, you can’t help but wonder how Blatche would perform if he weren’t playing alongside a point guard who can make a good pass, and teammates who seem to forget one another once the ball finds its way into their hands.

How would Blatche do playing alongside Steve Nash or Chris Paul for example?  How would he do as the sixth man for the Heat, Spurs, or even the Lakers?

I’m willing to bet there’s a second act in the career of Andray Blatche.  And for his and The Wizards sake, that second act kicks off on March 15th.

JaVale McGee, John Wall, 2012 NBA Champs

Are the Wizards The Next Dallas Mavericks?

Of course not, but SB Nation’s Mike Prada is still kind enough to offer the Wizards some advice in the off chance that they ever come close to fulfilling their championship aspirations.

Funny thing is, when you read Prada’s entry you realize that the Wizards aren’t in as bad shape as one would think, especially given where they were just 20months ago.  They have two gifted young players at two of the sports most important positions in John Wall and JaVale McGee.  Washington also has ample salary cap room, another lottery pick on the way, and some young role players who might evolve into solid veterans.

In some ways , which if you’re a Wizards fan likely means nothing at all–but at least there’s hope, right?

Lessons Wizards Can Learn From Dallas Mavericks Winning 2011 NBA Finals – Bullets Forever.