Despite his team just coming off a nice victory over the Bulls, Flip Saunders was curt when responding to the first query of Monday night’s post-game press conference.
“Josh Howard update?,” began a voice from the media corps.
“Knee,” Saunders deadpanned. “Know more tomorrow,” he followed. “I’m sure he’ll be out for a little bit,” the coach trailed off as he surveyed the room for the next question.
It’s hard to tell what Saunders really knew about what had been called a sprained left knee at that exact moment, judgment is usually withheld until an MRI is procured. But his demeanor regarding the subject spoke of a grim outlook, as if the worst was expected, as if the post-game diagnosis divulged a strong possibility that it was more than a sprain.
The injury turned out to be much worse than a sprain. As you probably know by now, Howard will be out for the rest of the season with a torn ACL in his left knee. Wizards Insider reports that Saunders found out the final and official verdict about a half-hour into this morning’s practice.
When I first heard the news via Twitter (@MikeJonesSports won the typing fingers race to post), I was shocked … in a state of disbelief.
Did this really just happen to the Wizards, much less to a guy essentially playing for an NBA contract?
Flip Saunders said, “I’m numb to everything at this point.”
Numbness only comes after jumping into a tub of ice and staying there for a while. It’s not like I’m constantly sitting sub-zero water. If that were case, I’d be long dead by now. No, my Washington Wizards fandom keeps being doused with freezing water just when I think I’m close to being able to dry off.
Then Michael Lee reminded us of one important thing (also via Twitter): “Josh Howard done for the season (ACL) makes me think back to Flip in late Dec.: “Don’t ever think it can’t get any worse, because it can.”"
Ahh, ye olde ‘Things Could Always Be Worse’ motto … something I’ve often lived by in life.
“You’re dealing with XYZ? Well, at least you’re not dealing with XYZ with one arm.” (apologies to those who actually have one arm)
So, when one of the newest Wizards, who happens to be one of the team’s three best players, goes out for the season, you gotta say, “Well, at least the Wizards aren’t dealing with ….”
Aw screw it. I’m not going to say.
When the Howard news came out, via Twitter, those who like to Tweet reacted. But first, a note from a Mavericks blogger:
I know Josh isn’t a Mav, and has had his fun taking a shot or two at the Mavs since he was traded. But how can you not feel for him right now? Howard’s already low value as a free agent just fell even further, and Josh’s opportunity to redeem his rough start has been completely obliterated. Nothing but sympathy for Josh, who has already fought to overcome a bucket-full of injuries in the last few years, and doesn’t deserve the hand he’s been dealt.
Since Howard actually injured his knee, the words “curse” and “boulez” (which is the ‘correct’ spelling) appeared on Twitter roughly 21 times, which is lower than I expected, but still a bit too much … as I don’t like to believe in this curse concocted by d-bag extraordinaires with the initials T.K., at least this is what I keep telling myself.
Top J-Ho ACL Twitter Reactions
@wzzntzz: poured a 40 out for him. man, it’s so cold in the D.C.
@BulletsForever: So … who’s ready for the Al Thornton era! OUR TIME BABY
@HomerMcFanboy: The Josh Howard era sure was fun while it lasted. #Wizards
@Truth_About_It: Poor Josh Howard. He had no idea of the pile of dung he was getting into when he joined this Wizards team.
@JonesOnTheNBA: Feel bad for Josh Howard. Sucks to have a major injury like that before you’re going to be a free agent.
@thejuiceisgood: Their is no magic left in DC
@CarbonPrimo: Just when we see the spark from the #newlookwiz Josh Howard tears his ACL and is out for the season. BLOWN!!!
@jjrathnam: Curse of the Boulez
@jamiemottram: Curse o’ Les Boulez.
@bjrock: The curse of Le’Boules lives!!
@CharleyTerrito: Only took 2 games for curse of les bullet to kick in
@KeithsCaps: Josh Howard’s injury is just plain sad. The Wizards are just pathetic. SO CURSED! Move the team to Winnipeg and give us an expansion team.
@LifeDeath78: Damn man jus when it looks like the Wizards might turn shit around…Josh Howard is out for the rest of the season wit a torn ACL…DAMN
@RonONealDC: Le curse of le boulez strikes again! Josh Howard been in DC for 23 minutes. Out for season. Smmfh
@SaulRom: wtf! I ordered a josh howard wizards jersey the other night too smh
@boneystarks: …Smh @ JoshHoward #frail #weedmakesyouweak
@AngryBlkManDC: Wizards JoshHoward done for season w/torn ACL… Like I said last night, The Curse of Les Boulez continues…
@MrMalibuBobby: Damn Josh Howard is out for the season? The wizards are CURSED I swear. The curse of les boulez.
@ESPNRadio980: curse les boulez FTW… #joshhoward out for season.
@dkolta03: What did the wizards do to deserve this? first Abe dies and our team pummels then JoshHoward tears his acl
@basketamericano: Más problemas (aún) para los Wizards. JoshHoward se pierde lo que resta de temporada por lesión.