Wizards Locker Room Portraits After A Win Against Milwaukee | Truth About It.net

Wizards Locker Room Portraits After A Win Against Milwaukee

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Updated: December 4, 2009

I experienced a “first” on Wednesday night.

In the Wizards locker room before the game, I noticed a stack of duPont Registry magazines under one of the huge flat screen televisions. If you aren’t familiar with the duPont Registry, it’s a publication full of fancy/luxury cars, etc. that only really, really rich people can afford. One of my friends had a duPont Registry once, but it was just for lookin’, not for buyin’.

So … Wednesday night was the first time I was in the vicinity of the magazine while also being in a room full of dudes who could purchase something from it.

So I have that going for me.

After Wednesday’s win over Milwaukee, I was all ready to write about Earl Boykins, as was everyone else in the world (and I kinda did … below), but life/work got in the way of a more formal game write-up. It happens.

I’ll be going to/reporting from the Toronto game tonight, and … IT’S FRIDAY!

Go Wizards.


{Post Bucks Game Locker Room Portraits}

******

Caron Butler thinking about dunking on Andrew Bogut.

Nick Young working on his tough, non-smiley face.

He then proceeded to smile … a bunch.

Brendan Haywood thinks about a career in the media while talking to the media.

Gilbert Arenas wonders: “Where do I win at?


Antawn Jamison is not satisfied.

The Humble Hero.


When you’re a below .500 team, specifically 6-10, you go with what’s working … no questions asked.

And on Wednesday night against Milwaukee, in the crucial waning moments of the game, what worked was a high pick-and-roll between 5’5″ Earl Boykins and 7’1″ Brendan Haywood. The play set was used on the final five possessions, including start and resets on two of those.

Meanwhile, the Big Three, a trio that once led the NBA in points per game, served as virtual decoys, watching the action unfold.

The wizardly triumvirate of Gilbert Arenas, Caron Butler and Antawn Jamison dropping a combined 71 against the Raptors had no bearing on the trust of Flip Saunders … especially since the game in Toronto was just one night and not an indication of developed chemistry.

Saunders went with what worked before. He went with his closer, Little-Big-Man Earl Boykins … the Mariano Riviera of the Wizards, according to Steve Buckhantz … our very own Kyra Sedgwick (TNT’s “The Closer”).

You’d think that putting the game in the small hands of Boykins, a guy who spent a prior season overseas and was working out in Denver when the Wizards called him to join the team in mid-November, might cause some locker room strife on a team full of veterans. Not at all. These are ‘wins over individuals’ players.

These guys want Malcolm X wins … by an means necessary.


{web hits}

[Craig Stouffer - Washington Examiner]

Gilbert Arenas had 22 points and nine assists, but it wasn’t for him that the Verizon Center crowd chanted “MVP!” Antawn Jamison had 15 points and nine rebounds, but it wasn’t for him. Even Caron Butler had 15 points, six rebounds and four assists, but it for wasn’t him either.

It was for Earl Boykins, who wasn’t even on an NBA roster at the beginning of the season, and who scored 10 of the Wizards’ last 14 points, including two free throws with one second remaining, to give Washington a 104-102 win over Milwaukee.

[Michael Lee - Wizards Insider, Washington Post]

The Wizards have won four of their past five games and the difference in three of those games has been the presence of Boykins, who scored 11 of his 13 points in the fourth quarter, with Saunders relying on the same high pick-and-roll with him and Brendan Haywood. Saunders said he contemplated putting in Nick Young late in the game, but decided to stick with Boykins because the Bucks couldn’t stop it. They just took it to Jennings, who played against Boykins last season in Italy.

“He’s real quick. He was running on seven different screens at one point. How can you really guard that?” Jennings said. “He’s so hard to guard because he is so little. Once he gets around the screen, he puts pressure on the big man. It’s just hard to stop him.”

[Mike Jones - Wizards Outlet, Washington Times]

When it comes to Earl Boykins, Antawn Jamison said it best “The only amazement is that this guy wasn’t on a team.”

Seriously. I mean, I know it may drop off at any moment, but for now, Earl Boykins is hot at the right time for the Wizards. Gilbert Arenas still is working his way back, and although he’s getting better as is evidence of the last two days. But without Earl Boykins and his late-game charges of energy, the Wizards very well could be looking at 3-14 instead of 7-10.

[Mike Prada - Bullets Forever]

Earl Boykins wasn’t originally going to talk to the media.  He had somewhere to be and left before everyone got there, and the Wizards’ PR people apologized to everyone on his behalf.  But he eventually came back and chatted for a bit, though he’s not the most talkative guy in the league.

One thing he was asked was about playing in Italy last year, which yielded an interesting answer.

“It was easy for me [to go to Europe], because when most guys go, they go because they’re forced to.  I chose to go.  That’s the big difference.  When you choose to do something, it’s easier to handle being away from home.”

It’s nice that he tells himself that, and clearly it’s allowed him to persevere.  But let’s be honest, he kind of was forced to go to Europe.  The money dried up in the 2008 offseason and nobody was willing to offer him good money, so he went to the only place that paid him.  Nothing wrong with that, just saying his explanation doesn’t seem right to me.

[Rashad Mobley - Hoops Addict]

In the second quarter, Gilbert Arenas came down on three consecutive possessions, drove the ball, was seemingly fouled, but nothing was called. After each call, he went and pleaded his case to the referees. This happened just one night after he earned a technical foul against Toronto for doing the same thing. In the third quarter, Arenas again complained about the officiating, and this time that complaining led to him being relaxed on defense and Brandon Jennings went by him and scored. Flip Saunders promptly called a timeout and yelled something to Arenas as he ran off the floor. After the game, Arenas explained his behavior, “I used to average 11 or 12 free throws a game, and now I can’t even get a call. I feel like they’re profiling me as a player,” Arenas said while he stood in front of his locker. “They say I’m creating all the contact, and I’m saying that’s what a scorer is supposed to do, there’re supposed to create the contact when they get in the lane. If they [the defensive players] are outside the lane its a charge…now if they’re inside the lane and I run into them, its a no-call. I’m asking [the refs] where do I win that? Last night I got frustrated I got a technical.”

{other side}

[Alex Boeder - Brew Hoop]

0. As noted, the point guard duo of Jennings and Ridnour didn’t commit a single turnover. The Wizards aren’t the best defensively, or really very good at all. But zero turnovers is zero turnovers, and they had 13 assists together.

1. Earl Boykins made more free throws in the final second of the game than all Bucks not named Hakim Warrick did the entire game. Warrick made 8-8 while the rest of his mates shot 1-4 at the free throw line. The Wizards made 25-34 at the stripe.

25. The Bucks (42-95) attempted 25 more shots from the field than the Wizards (38-70). Neither team did much work on the offensive boards (6-3 Milwaukee) so the field goal discrepancy was largely a product of… surprise, surprise: shooting far fewer free throws (34-12).

[Jeremy Schmidt - Bucksketball]

Nick Young for one was shredding the Bucks. The same Nick Young whose game I was so critical of Wednesday morning. The Nick Young who does nothing but score. Well, he again did little but score (he did chip in five rebounds) but he scored a whole bunch. Young poured in 21 points on 7-12 shooting. Toss in his 7-7 performance from the free throw line and he joins Vince Carter, John Salmons and Thabo Sefolohsa as the latest shooting guard to score with great efficiency.