Evaluating Juan Dixon in 2008-09
Player evaluations for ’08-09 are in full effect, up second is Juan Dixon. My thoughts are below, you can check on the full report on Bullets Forever.
[Previously: Oleksiy Pecherov]
Juan Dixon seemingly fell into the right opportunity last year … well, for him, not the Wizards. Gilbert Arenas goes down and signing Dixon, local kid made good via prevailing under abysmal childhood circumstances and a Maryland Terrapins national championship, seemed the perfect fit.
Dixon knew the system, having previously played for the Wiz under Eddie Jordan, and would presumably provide the same veteran guard skills and bench scoring punch that was vacated by Roger Mason, Jr. (or not really).
Unfortunately, so went the season, so went Dixon’s recognizable contributions to the team. His play, when it saw the court, was inconsistent, and his lack of veteran poise drew the ire of many on Bullets Forever, especially after an embarrassing five turnover effort in a late season loss against Toronto. What did we expect from the guy? Well, we kind of expected better.
But when he wasn’t experiencing a nagging injuring, Dixon never knew if he’d be playing from one night to the next. The were faint grumblings about playing time, both from Dixon desiring more and from some fans wanting less. Ed Tapscott had to speak with him about his minutes prior to an early December matchup with Chicago.
I can hardly blame Dixon for getting testy about his run. The Wizards were essentially the last chance for a soon-to-be 31-year old to get a swan song NBA contract. But he just wasn’t able dispel the preconceived negative aspects of his game, unreliable offensive initiation and non-existent defense.
His sporadic play was not a large blemish on the season, rather a product of the unfortunate environment. 2008-09 Dixon, which resulted in his career low PER, will just be a blip on the franchise’s historical radar.
Juan Dixon has been a better than expected human being, much less his unheralded success in basketball, college and pro. He came in, tried with good intentions, but things just didn’t work out.
We thank Juan for his contributions. We thank him for being the always-ready consummate vet. He could very well prove me wrong, but I’d estimate that he plays overseas for a couple of years before putting the game of basketball behind him, moving on to bigger and better things, such as community outreach/service, which would be right up his alley.