The Wiz-Grizz ‘Play of the Game’
comes courtesy of JaVale McGee.
The Washington Wizards found themselves ahead of the Memphis Grizzlies 82-79 with just over three minutes left in the fourth quarter.
The Wizards were on the offensive, but on this particular occasion, they faced a defense playing with a little more attitude. As the shot clock winded wound down — the Wiz just couldn’t find a good look at the basket — the ball found its way into the hands of JaVale McGee. About 20 feet from the basket. Passing the ball back to PG Kirk Hinrich (1) would have been too easy … so with about six seconds left on the shot clock, McGee decided it was “go time.”
McGee (5) tried to lose Zach Randolph (x4) with a hard crossover and a spin move. Z-Bo wouldn’t stand for this and punched the ball out. Mike “Million Dollar Man” Conley (x1) collected the loose ball and took off on the break.
First, thanks to all the Re-Tweeters who participated in TAI’s ticket giveaway for tonight’s Wizards-Raptors game. The lucky random winners were @tehbee (who will be attending her first Wizards game, second pro basketball game), and @TwiceDown, who has been a “Bullets” fan all of his life, but hasn’t been to a see a home game since Allen Iverson was with the 76ers (so about four years). TAI will have some more ticket giveaways (among other things) in the future, perhaps including some good seats for when the Miami Heat come to town on December 18th. So stay tuned …
Scenes like this will not be seen at the Verizon Center tonight:
This Player Lock investigates the battle between two starting NBA centers with similar skill sets and celebrity parents.
With just over four minutes left in the second quarter, Derrick Rose worked a pick and roll with Taj Gibson about 25-feet from the hoop. John Wall zipped around Gibson’s 6’9″ frame like a slalom skier around a flag. Easy. But Andray Blatche did little to contain Rose — in fact, did little more than shuffle his feet — in what played out to be a trademark foray to the basket. However, fortune was on the Wizards’ side when Speed (Rose) and Greed (McGee) reintroduced themselves above the rim; JaVale recorded his third block of the night.
And then, it was showtime.
John Wall scooped up the loose ball and took off on the break, with McGee matching him stride for stride. With a skip just outside the three-point line, Wall floated a pass in the direction of the rim. Kyle Korver, one of those walking-paradox types (you know, the unathletic professional athlete), made a concerted effort to prevent the inevitable. McGee flashed his otherworldly athleticism by snatching the ball away from Korver mid-flight and finishing the alley-oop.
JaVale McGee had a pretty nice dunk on Josh Smith in Atlanta on Saturday. He also had a pretty nasty dunk on Spencer Hawes last night at home. Both dunks are very close in awesomeness. I have my ever-so-slight favorite, but you be the judge. Watch both and then vote in the poll below.
The Washington Wizards held their last preseason practice at the Verizon Center on Tuesday afternoon before heading down to Orlando for Thursday’s regular season opener, a national television showcase against the Magic on TNT.
If you’re a Wizards fan, you might be losing sleep over the match-up nightmares Orlando specifically poses against Washington. Okay, never mind, you’re probably dreaming about John Wall — it’s good be distracted, for now. Plus, I imagine the coach of a rebuilding team is still slightly more concerned with how his own players follow his instructions than countering what a great team like Orlando does.
Of course, match-up-wise, we don’t know who Flip Saunders is going to start just yet, or if Gilbert Arenas will be available because of soreness in his ankle that caused him to sit out of practice on both Monday and Tuesday, which piggy-backed on a groin injury he experienced in the fifth preseason game against the Milwaukee Bucks that caused him to miss the last two games on the slate.
“From what happened before, you’ll know our starters 10 minutes before the game. That’s our new policy,” the coach quipped on Tuesday. ‘Before’ being when Arenas lied about soreness in his knee.
In the summer of 2006, Gilbert Arenas was cut from the United States national team that was to compete in the 2006 FIBA World Championships (Kirk Hinrich made the final roster). National Team Managing Director, Jerry Colangelo, attributed the early exit to the groin Arenas injured while going up for a dunk in practice. Arenas said he never really got a fair shot to make the team.
“No joke, I felt like I was the 16th man on a 15-man roster. You are there to support your team and support your country and be happy to play but you know, I did everything they wanted me to do; but if I did everything they wanted me to do, why am I on the bubble of getting cut? I sacrificed. You’ve got LeBron being LeBron. You’ve got Carmelo being Carmelo. You’ve got D-Wade being D-Wade. Why can’t I be me? Why do I have to transform? I did that and now you are going to cut me?”
Due to this perceived slight, Arenas vowed to get his revenge when the regular season started. Portland Trailblazers coach Nate McMillan, Mike D’Antoni (then the coach of the Phoenix Suns) were assistant coaches for Team USA, and Arenas said he’d do his best to wreak havoc on their respective teams.
“I’m going to be the silent assassin this year. I can’t wait to play the Suns and Portland. Against Portland, Nate McMillan, I’m going to try to score 100 in two games and against D’Antoni, I’m going to score 100 in two games. I’m going to try.”
I probably should have included the above pic of the Monumental Sports banner on the Verizon Center in my post about a similar banner on another building. I guess I was distracted by the dueling plastic drum drummers. You can spot the other one, right?
With a hotly contested 142-all summer league contest on the line, Nick Young’s killer instinct took over as he hit the buzzer-beating game-winner … over former teammate Shaun Livingston no less. He then smiled a lot in the post-game interview. The video, via Ball Is Life, is embedded below.
Now, it seems that JaVale McGee could possibly be making a similar, but different list. Or perhaps he’s just venting some frustrations on the Twitter machine. Or maybe he’s simply proclaiming his curiosities about so-called reporters and their credentials (somewhat of an anti-shoutout alert). I invite you to decipher a listing of recent, consecutive Tweets by @bigdaddywookie.
Reporters who never played the game of basketball or never succeeded in it… Shouldn’t b able to report on it #FACT @bigdaddywookie