Wizards Fans, The Joke Is On You | Truth About It.net

Wizards Fans, The Joke Is On You

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Updated: January 16, 2010

Gilbert Arenas attempted his most over-the-top gag ever. Wearing a fancy designer backpack to the front, Arenas brought a gun to the Washington Wizards locker room on December 21st specifically to escalate a gambling dispute by playing what has been called a prank on Javaris Crittenton, rendering moot Arenas’ claim that guns were in the Verizon Center because he didn’t want them around his children at home. Instead of a prank, Gilbert ended up playing himself and the team.

Joke’s on you Wizards fans! Behind doors one, two and three, the choices are all the same … {game show announcer voice} your franchise is in shambles! Congrats!

Someone has loaded this franchise’s cubicle with packing peanuts, wrapped all office supplies in tin foil, placed frozen cans of shaving cream in desk drawers, hidden dead fish in unknown places, submerged the computer in toilet water, and oh yea, there are loaded guns buried somewhere in those packing peanuts. Be careful.

Wait, you didn’t get the joke? Well, you’re just too damn sensitive. Get over yourself.

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No, Gilbert Arenas, please get over yourself. Sure, the franchise used horrible discretion in enacting a temporary disassociation with you by halting jersey sales and removing your treasured attention-getting banner, which was “your thing,” as your buddy DeShawn Stevenson recently said. Well, perhaps not so temporary considering a local news crew was conveniently around to film the banner take down.

The Wizards were in a tough spot, one can’t exactly blame them for handling this unavoidable public relations nightmare by no longer wanting to associate your image with “character, commitment and connection” and by no longer wanting to profit off your name and number, even though the franchise has benefited from your basketball celebrity many times before. At the same time, I can’t really blame you for being hurt. Massive damage to massive egos are never pretty.

But for some reason, you are now upset at the franchise because it did not stand behind the Gilbert Arenas brand, nor support the subsequent cover-up attempts. Ernie Grunfeld found out about your ‘Guns for fun’ show and ratted you out to NBA league office. Guess that’s why your miffed Gil. Why don’t you and Carmelo got do some ‘Stop Snitching’ PSAs together?

With all due respect Mr. Arenas, you do not have a surgically repaired knee to stand on. As frustrated as you may be with how the franchise has handled your situation is as frustrated as the franchise should be with how they have had to handle you. Gilbert, you have done nothing but act like a child and the franchise has been a bad parent. Shame on both, but more shame on he who can’t yet comprehend the grown-up world, at least to a small degree, as a 28-year old man.

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The silly mass over-reaction to Finger Guns aside, Arenas was supposed to ride out these bad times resulting from poor judgment, humble himself during, and come out on the other side a better person. If becoming a father thrice over and perseverance through injury wasn’t enough to make one reflect on his life’s modus operandi, then the outset of this gun case was Arenas’ chance … and he blew it.

Not to say Arenas can’t find a road to redemption, but he isn’t starting down the right path. Insincere and inconsistent remorse, and blame shifting with finger guns pointing toward the media and the franchise, (who, again, are both at fault in their own way), are clear signs of a kid trying to find every way to avoid assuming proper responsibility. Mommy issues be damned, when will this guy grow up and be a man?

Now, according to a report from Mike Jones, Arenas won’t even respond to the out-reach of his teammates, those friends who have had his back throughout this situation. More kid play. Grown ups don’t try to make others feel sorry for them by throwing themselves a pity party out on an island. Arenas should be sorry for difficult environment he has created for his teammates. He should be reaching out to them.

What a mess. Arenas has put on the shoe in which he shat, taken it off, and walked with dirty socks around the locker room, disregarding the deplorable, smelly path he has created and just assuming someone else will clean up as children tend to do. Quite a tall mountain of amends to climb between Gilbert and the team.

Arenas’ life is a disaster and I certainly hope he comes out on top in the best way possible. I’m not leading the torch and pitchfork party outside the office of voided contracts. Nor would I be opposed to seeing Arenas in a Wizards uniform again. He is not a bad guy. Please remember this. But if the antithesis of either of those scenarios should occur, I’ll gladly accept and move on.

Gilbert is not a scapegoat for all of this franchise’s problems and he is not your classic club house cancer. But his prankish antics have contributed to a disease-infested locker room that’s more putrid than the water in the Anacostia River. In reference to the team trying to focus on basketball, the Washington Post quoted an anonymous player saying, “It won’t matter. We all going to be out of here anyway.”

But the joke is on that guy too. Because his character, or lack thereof, has come shining through.  The plague of poor, selfish basketball has only gotten worse because of trade rumors and the Arenas situation, but is not the result of them. The players have provided their fans with a joke of a product since the start of the season.

What did Wizards fans do to deserve such a cruel escapade at their expense? As usually the case with unsuspecting victims of a pranks, nothing at all. They are simply left to deal with the mess. Sorry Wiz fans, the joke is on you.