Maybe Ed Taspcott reads blogs and newspapers as opines on the direction of the remainder of the season have been abundant: [the Post's Michael Lee, DC Pro Sports Report, comments on Bullets Forever, Krem's Sports Blog].
Coach Tap is a fan of using quotes from philosophers and great leaders, but does that mean he ignores the words of the masses? Who knows….but hopefully Tapscott will find ways to improve overall team experience for the season’s remaining games.
Being at the game, I was aware that Caron Butler wasn’t playing in the 2nd half, but didn’t know the reason, other than he seemed to be having a poor night. His hamstring, which has been going through constriction issues lately, flared up again. So, it remains to be seen if his absence affected the totality ofTapscott’s lineup down the stretch.
In any case, the Wiz kids were scrappy and seemed to feed off each other’s hustle, along with the warrior mentality leadership of Jamison, who at one point seemed poised for a 40 point night, but came up just short with 36.
Late in the game, there were several costly plays from Wizards youth, bad plays you gotta hope will be resolved with playing time and experience.
One, in particular, by Javaris Crittenton stood out to me: his missed shot with two minutes left. Sure, the back-to-back traveling calls on Jamison and Crittenton under a minute and a half hurt. But the missed shot, on a possession in which the Wizards could have cut the Magic lead to two or three, was a prime example of panicked decision making by a young player at a key moment. Learn from it J-Critt.
Does Ed Tapscott read blogs? Who cares. The real question is if the youth will continue to receive opportunity, and if they’ll work hard enough to take advantage. Hopefully so.
Best of the Wizards Web:
Can’t be mad at the fellas tonight. The Wizards played and mostly well even after Caron Butler went out with a hamstring problem and had a chance late before a few key plays went against them.
Whoever said the only thing that matters at the end of the day is the final score never blogged about a team that was 15-51. Even though the Wizards lost last night, I’m excited about the minutes distributed to the young guys last night.
Wizards rookie JaVale McGee deposited a rim-rocking dunk follow early in the fourth quarter and a surge rolled through the Verizon Center crowd of 18,152 as they realized Washington had cut the lead of Orlando to two, and had done it with five players age 23 or younger on the floor.
JaVale McGee did a good job on Howard in the fourth quarter, limiting him to just five points and two rebounds, and Nick Young scored nine points and had three assists and two rebounds in the fourth for another bright spot for the Wizards.
[Third Quarter Collapse]
The reason this game was so close was Washington’s clear advantage in terms of effort. I don’t mean to suggest that the Magic didn’t want this game, but the Wizards did outwork them. The talent gap was just too wide, as was the experience one. The game effectively ended when Crittenton, in his second season, got whistled for traveling with his team trailing by 6 and 58 seconds to play. Even Jamison, an 11-year veteran, was guilty of making silly mistakes, having traveled on the previous possession.
With the loss, the Wizards (15-51) remained winless in the Southeast Division (0-14). Orlando (48-17) improved to 4-0 against Washington and remained on Boston’s heels in the fight for second place in the Eastern Conference.
[Orlando] is a balanced team that has good chemistry and is well coached by Stan Van Gundy. The Wizards, who dropped to 15-51 overall and 0-14 against the Southeast Division, can only hope to be like that in coming seasons.
[Dennis' Basketball Blog]
Unless you really follow college basketball, you may not really get how good Dominic McGuire is. He was simply dominant as a college player at Fresno State and I’m glad that he is finding a place with the Wizards off the bench. He’s an exciting player and if he keeps getting the playing time, the Wizards have an excellent cog off the bench with hopefully a healthy team next season. Maybe there will be smiles then, but for now, there are nothing but frowns as the Wizards look to ride out a sad and horrible 2008-09 season.