After Gilbert’s failed prediction of a win over the Boston Celtics, I recalled recently hearing that Chad Johnson would not do any more touchdown celebrations until the Cincinnati Bengals were back to .500 ball. Well…that was back when they were 1-4 and about to beat the lowly Jets… (Hey, a W is a W, but that’s probably the most disappointed I’ve been after a Skins win. Ever)… and much before a loss to the Steelers, and a bad loss this past Sunday to the Buffalo Bills and a resurrected duo of J.P. Losman and Lee Evans (thank you fantasy gods!).
Point is, we haven’t heard from Chad since. And I sure hope that we hear from him again….he took a nasty hit, fell hard, and got carted off on a stretcher yesterday. But I like the guy. He is entertaining, a little much sometimes, but by all accounts I’ve heard, a pretty good teammate, (even opponents get an innocent kick out of him) and a gamer. The guy knows how to market himself….don’t forget about chadjohnson85.com.
So, the similarities are obvious. Gil is entertaining. He’s a marketer. He’s a good teammate.
So what can Gilbert learn? He can learn about separating Arenas the marketer from Arenas the basketball player….especially since the level of the latter dictates the opportunity of the former.
Granted, Chad hasn’t done much lately. But he seems to want to be a winner because losing has humbled him.
Not to say that Gil isn’t humbled right now. And not saying that he doesn’t know how to put the game as his priority, I’ve got confidence that he does, (ok, vastly more confident that I was in a Wiz win over the Magic).
Just forgive me if I’m weary about in which direction things can go from Zero and 3.
Then, I read this post by Sam Rubenstein of Slam Online.
Gilbert Arenas is coming dangerously close to being the Chad Johnson of the NBA. It’s hilarious and entertaining when he’s winning, but if he’s gonna talk all that trash, he’s just a goofball if he can’t back it up. Not to nitpick here, but in that SI story about how Gil proclaims he makes everyone better because he pushes the ball and everyone gets more shots and thus everyone is happier… well, that may be true. He’s funny and people like him. But he was basically putting himself over Kobe, Wade, and LeBron. Kobe is a three-time champion. Wade is a champion who swept Gilbert’s team out of the playoffs a few years ago all by himself. LeBron beat Gil’s team with their happy 20 ppg big three in the playoffs, also mostly by himself. I enjoy the zany character Gilbert as much as anyone. Hey, he makes our jobs so much easier, and you have to love that. But Gilbert, win some games.
A little bit harsh, but there is a point. As fans, we need to be patient. We need to understand that coming back from knee surgery isn’t easy. (I’d also contest the goofball statement about Ocho Cinco at this point in time, but I don’t follow Cincy local media so I’m not an authority on the subject).
Gilbert, DC basketball fans are on the edge of their seats, albeit, a little more restless after this start. We are looking towards you to take this team to the next level. The general sports rule is that everyone is happy in times of winning, but what kind of leadership is present during adverse times? You’ve made a motivated career out of being the underdog. Time to translate that to being a sustained winner on the court, and more importantly, in the playoffs (if the Wiz even make it).
In the least, the Wizards need to make ESPN’s Bill Simmons, “sports guy”, eat his words. He picks the Wizards to finish 11th in the East. But then again, he also picks the Raptors to miss the playoffs and that’s just wacky tobaccy.