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.
Posts tagged ‘josh smith’
Ok, so the Wizards blew a game against the Knicks tonight. Maybe Earl Boykins and Fabricio Oberto have played their last road game in the NBA … come bid them farewell at home on Wednesday. But really, what’s fun about writing about a game in which I couldn’t quite force myself to root for the Knicks (or against the Wizards), but don’t mind that they won, keeping Washington’s futile draft lottery hopes drinking from a glass slightly more than half full?
So, in lieu of writing about Andray Blatche putting up good numbers while kinda, sorta trying, I present a photo-blog from last Saturday’s game against the Atlanta Hawks. For that game, I changed places with Adam Douglas, the TAI site photographer since the last time the Wizards faced the Hawks in D.C., and sat baseline to capture the game from up close. Here that goes…
JaVale McGee no hands ball kiss.
Of mice, of men … the Hawks were the predator and the Wizards were the prey. Early, both teams were cold. I’ll concur with a comment of Wiz broadcast TV HOFer (or at least he should be if he’s not … if that type of thing exists), Steve Buckhantz, who said that unlike versus the Pistons, the Wizards started against Atlanta with energy. They just couldn’t buy a basket, and neither could the Hawks in the beginning.
The Wizards should have felt at home though, the Phillips Arena looked dwarfed by the Verizon Center in capacity. After getting down by as many as 22 points, 40-18 with 3:43 left in the second quarter, the Wizards made the game competitive, getting as close as two points, 66-64, with 11:41 left in the game. But they never could get over a seven point hump late in the fourth quarter.
The Wizards were bested by only 43.5% shooting from the Hawks and a couple ineffectual turnovers. They lost to the better team, and not necessarily because of lack of effort, but because they are not very good.
It’s worth observing that their reason to play inspired basketball has drastically dwindled. If two things plague this team most, one is lack of discipline, which is on the account of the players inconsistently following Flip Saunders’ game plan and often free-styling at crucial points of the game. The second is that the Wizards are not hungry, as in, ‘Did you see D-League call-up Mario West hustle his ass off?’ West had four offensive rebounds in 12 minutes.
Just as holistically in-sync the Wizards looked on Tuesday in Dallas, they looked about the exact opposite on Friday in Atlanta. What gives?
Sure, the team came on late behind some yesteryear Hibachi appetizers and a little Epic Vale pogo-stick length. But when Agent Zero goes from eight points and one turnover in the game’s first 6:20 to Agent Turnover with one point and five giveaways in the first half’s remaining 17:40, the team is digging itself a hole.
Gil likes to listen to Jay-Z before games … I wonder if he was listening to track #12 off ‘Kingdom Come’ pregame at the Phillips Arena.
Not to discredit the Hawks, they are a good team. But it was less of them beating the Wizards and more of the Wizards beating themselves. Oh … and well, Atlanta was also 31-34 from the free-throw line while the Wizards shot 14-22. The disparity seems dramatic, but the Wizards migrated between trying to carelessly attack the basket and settling for jumpers. So in that regard, the Wiz really don’t have anyone to blame but themselves … but I’ll also credit Atlanta’s defense just a tad.
Looking for areas to pin blame? Point guard play and poor initiation/stewardship of the offense stand out to me. To others, it was the defensive presence of Haywood (minus-11, tied with Arenas for the second worst plus/minus) and Blatche (team worst minus-17), and their inability to contain Al Horford and Josh Smith.
Just released: Team President Ernie Grunfeld announced that the Wizards would exercise the contract options on Nick Young and JaVale McGee. Young will be retained for his fourth season (2010-11) for an estimated $2,630,503, and McGee for his third season (also 10-11) for an estimated $1,601,040. [Salary Source: HoopsHype]
Now on to the preview of tonight’s game … back to the ATL already?
The Wizards were in Atlanta just over 10 days ago for a preseason game that was disappointing … to put it simply. Of course, they were without Gilbert Arenas and Mike Miller due to the flu, and Antawn Jamison due to a shoulder subluxation. Still, lack of effort is lack of effort.
Amare Stoudemire, Vince Carter, Chris Bosh, Manu Ginobili, Michael Redd, Josh Smith, Josh Howard, Kirk Hinrich and Andrei Kirilenko are just of the few of the tiny players jumping over a fence in the mind of the restless Ernie Grunfeld as he tries to fall into a slumber every night leading up to the draft on June 25.
But he can’t sleep. He sits up in bed, drenched in sweat. It’s 3:30 in the morning and he’s trying to plod through the day’s ninth showing of Law & Order: Criminal Intent. But the show doesn’t help take his thoughts away from the matter at hand. His mind is racing through Wizards trade scenarios instead. And if you don’t pay attention to those damned Law & Orders, especially the crime at the beginning, the show just becomes a scrambled mess.
The mess, parallel to the team Grunfeld commands, spills into the night and into the next day, all of which are becoming the same. The Wizards GM is on the verge of making the most important move during his tenure with the team.