[Ed. Note: This is the 'official' TAI debut of Conor Dirks, longtime Wizards fan, Maryland transplant in the ATL. Follow him on Twitter: @ConorDDirks. -Kyle W.]
A pensive Ernie Grunfeld prepares to “explain.” Please allow him to do so.
In the last 10 years, the Wizards have had exactly one general manager, former NBA player Ernest Grunfeld. During Ernie’s tenure, the Wizards have amassed 475 losses, which is good for the second-most losses (tonight’s opponent, Minnesota, has the most) and third-worst winning percentage in the NBA over the last 10 years. The reason for the discrepancy between total losses and percentage is appropriately sad: the Charlotte Bobcats didn’t exist during Grunfeld’s first year with Washington.
It would be irresponsible to hold one individual wholly accountable for the failure of an organization with so many moving parts. However, after the trade of Jordan Crawford, and a recent history riddled with failed player development, it’s appropriate to try to ascertain what has gone wrong.
Bad draft picks and failed draft picks are not one and the same. Many of Ernie Grunfeld’s draft-day acquisitions have gone on to play significant roles in the NBA. However, the Wizards under Ernie Grunfeld have shown a complete lack of ability to develop and retain valuable players. Washington has also, during Grunfeld’s tenure, become notorious for dysfunction. This dysfunction isn’t endemic to D.C.’s team (see: Sacramento Kings), but the Verizon Center might be its headquarters. Read more »
[D.C. Council: setting the scene, rating the starters, assessing the subs, providing the analysis, and catching anything that you may have missed. Unlike the real DC Council, everything here is on the table. Game No. 53, Washington Wizards vs Denver Nuggets; contributors: Adam McGinis and Kyle Weidie from the Verizon Center and Rashad Mobley from behind the television screen.]
[D.C. Council: setting the scene, rating the starters, assessing the subs, providing the analysis, and catching anything that you may have missed. Unlike the real DC Council, everything here is on the table. Game No. 37, Washington Wizards at Denver Nuggets; contributor: Kyle Weidie, Adam McGinnis and John Converse Townsend from behind the television screen.]
Kalorama Courts – NW Washington, DC – Photo: K. Weidie
Well, the season is here. No big, blow ‘em out preview from the TAI crew. We’re just here to offer continued coverage of the hometown pro basketball team as we usually do, and more. The site is entering its sixth season, by the way. So leggo…
On October 9, www.Bovada.lv released estimated win totals for every NBA team, or their over/under. The Washington Wizards stood at 31.5. About a week ago, TAI threw up a poll of various over unders, including:
O/U on John Wall PPG, 68% took the over on 17 points;
O/U on John Wall APG, 56% took the over on 8.5 assists;
O/U on Nene PPG, 63% took the over on 14 points;
O/U on Nene RPG, 53% took the over on 7.5 rebounds;
O/U on Jordan Crawford PPG, 56% took the over on 12.5 points; and
O/U on Bradley Beal PPG, 72% took the over on 12.5.
Truth About It.net will turn a whole five years old at the end of this October.
Hard to believe/interesting. Nonetheless, over the life of the site from the 2007-08 season to 2011-12, we’ve seen/lived/suffered through 131 wins, 263 losses, four coaches, two owners, one GM/team president, one Phil Chenier mustache removal, and 56 total players (amazingly, 48 players over the last three seasons).
You may have heard of ESPN’s #NBArank project, now in year two. Now hear of #WizardsRank, where we rank each of those 56 players during Truth About It.net’s five-year run. TAI anonymously polled 27 members of the Wizards pixel establishment — from mainstream media to new media, TAI staffers included, to a few pixel consumers (readers of the site) — and got 17 responses.
Participants were given the full list of 56 in alphabetical order, and included for each player were total games, minutes, PER (player efficiency rating), and WS/48 (win-shares per 48 minutes) only from the last five seasons. Participants were asked to rate each player on the scale of 1-to-10 according to this criteria: on court performance; off court performance; intangibles; and own personal memory. Yes, this is totally subjective, but relatively collective.
The new design simply features our iconic ‘spur’ logo and it is positioned over the heart as it has such enormously deep roots with our team, fans and the entire community. It’s the first-ever NBA jersey logo without any writing or peripheral design on the front of the jersey…
ShareBullets: Links, commentary, pictures, the Web, and stuff you may have missed…
>> USA Today is reporting that the Wizards want to bring back Maurice “Mo” Evans for a front office gig (even though Mo wants to play one more year). But also, there’s this:
But it’s his locker room presence that made an impact in Washington. Last season, Evans filled that leadership role as a mentor to guards John Wall and Jordan Crawford. One person with knowledge of the Wizards’ season said Crawford would have been late to the airport for a handful of road trips had Evans not picked him up. The person, who requested anonymity because Evans is still trying to reach a deal, also said almost every player credited Evans for his leadership and advice during their exit interviews.
Tell us, now who will now get Jordan Crawford to the airport on time?!?!?
[ShareBullets: links, thoughts, randomness, shares, Washington Bullets...]
John Wall turned 22-years old on Thursday, September 6. Kevin Willis turned 50 on Thursday, too. (Could’ve sworn he was 60 … he was still playing in the NBA less than 2,000 days ago.) Who else celebrated a birthday on September 6? None other than Pippa Middleton, Foxy Brown (the rapper), Jeff Foxworthy (the redneck), Rosie Perez, and Idris Elba (Stringer Bell from The Wire). Now let’s check out some John Wall birthday club fliers — Wall surely won’t become the next “Party All Dray,” right? (H/T DC Sports Nexus)
First, there’s New York…
And then Miami, where there will be girls holding boobs, clearly…
Who says child prodigies have no time to grow up, to be young?
… John Wall seems to be doing just fine.
Just like during last year’s NBA lockout summer, Wall this summer has made his way around the land like a Tribe Called Quest song. Instead of a mic, it’s a basketball… but he’s still having all the fun that a world tour can provide.
From NOC, there’s John Wall’s breakout story, set at a 2007 camp sponsored by Reebok where college coaches try to find breakout stories; Wall’s breakout happened in Philadelphia. One thing that’s clear about Wall, which is reflected in his passion for basketball, is how the tough times he faced as a kid are clearly reflected in his professional maturity.
Maybe you’ve already seen the 15-minute NOC feature that shows some old footage of Wall with coverage of today’s prospects at this year’s Reebok camp. Featured is Baltimore’s Aquille Carr, who is facing some tough times himself this summer (the prodigy nicknamed the “Crimestopper” was recently arrested for allegedly assaulting the mother of his child).
The key (to the summer) is exposure, as North Carolina coach Larry Brown says in the video; Oh, it’s also about the hair.