[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. 66, Washington Wizards at Charlotte Bobcats; contributors: Conor Dirks, Adam Rubin and Kyle Weidie via television broadcast.]
[Happy Pappy Michael Jordan finds a smile amidst the glow of his outfit.]
Shaun Livingston, Jordan Crawford, Bradley Beal, Jan Vesely, Kevin Seraphin (…assuming Randy Wittman keeps the same starters from last game — we’re still not so sure about Vesely starting, but he matches up against Byron Mullens better than he does against Josh Smith.)
Here to provide the DC Council Opening Statements for Washington’s sixth game of the season against the Bobcats in Charlotte are TAI’s Kyle Weidie (@Truth_About_It) and guest Spencer Percy (@QCsportscrave), who writes about the Bobcats for the TrueHoop blog Queen City Hoops. John Converse Townsend (@JohnCTownsend) also drops in with a game prediction.
ShareBullets: A Q&A with Kemba Walker and some links…
Before Monday’s Wizards-Bobcats game, I headed to the Charlotte locker room while it was open to the media. Tumbleweeds. The Cats’ beat reporter from the Charlotte Observer wasn’t even sent to cover the game. Go figure. In any case, upon my entry into the threshold, some eyes turned toward me, and then quickly looked away. I could’ve sworn that Kemba Walker immediately looked at me, deadpanned, and said, “No.” Can’t blame the Bobcats players. Not. At. All. But, Kemba did end up speaking with me — perfectly willing and perfectly nice about it, he was. So here that goes…
KYLE WEIDIE: Going from winning a championship at UConn to being on the worst team in the NBA, who is giving the best advice on how to deal with the drastic environment change and what are they saying?
KEMBA WALKER: “Nobody really, just the people that’s around me on an everyday basis, like my coaching staff, Rod Higgins, just everyone who’s just been around … my teammates, just doing a great job of keeping me positive and making sure that, regardless of the losses, that I’m still getting better.”
Do you tell yourself anything… anything extra to get motivated to play? Read more »
Break out the Yakety-Sax, the slide-whistle and whatever other devices you need to comically convey a professional(ish) basketball match-up between the 12-44 Washington Wizards and the 7-47 Charlotte Bobcats … it’s time for the Lottery Toilet Bowl! Before you potentially watch basketball action that will likely later lead you to using an abrasive scrub on your retinas, John Pettice (@BobcatsPlanet) of BobcatsPlanet.com, along with TAI’s Dan Diamond (@ddiamond) and Ryan Gracia (@rgracia2378) are here to provide three answers to three questions. Let it begin, I think…
#1) How are the Wizards/ Bobcats actively trying to tank?
DIAMOND: Whether by intention or injuries, the Wiz are ramping up PT for the lackluster Jan Vesely (averaging 32 mpg in April) and the bench mob, while cutting back on John Wall’s minutes. Wall played less then 30 minutes in two of the past three games — that hasn’t happened since January. I had to recheck Charlotte’s depth chart — I love the Association but couldn’t come closing to naming the ‘Cats starting lineup off the top of my head. Apparently a guy named “Cory Higgins” is getting major minutes and just led them in scoring. That is all.
GRACIA: The season is effectively over for both teams. There’s a better chance that the players have already begun planning for their summer vacations (because, ya know, it’s either that or blow it in the club), than begun planning for an undefeated end to the season. These are two very young teams with little playoff experience between them. So with the playoffs already out of the picture, they may question the importance of continuing to play hard and therefore may not give their utmost effort for every play … to put it nicely.
[The DC Council -- After each Wizards game: setting the scene, rating the starters, assessing the bench, providing the analysis, and catching anything that you may have missed. Unlike the real DC Council, everything here is over the table. Game 20 contributors: Adam McGinnis, Rashad Mobley and Kyle Weidie.]
[The DC Council -- After each Wizards game: setting the scene, rating the starters, assessing the bench, providing the analysis, and catching anything that you may have missed. Unlike the real DC Council, everything here is over the table. Game 18 contributors: Adam McGinnis, Arish Narayen and Kyle Weidie.]
Highlights of John Wall’s improved jump shot plus a mini-duel with Michael Beasley at “Clash of the Superstars” in Washington, D.C.
The NBA’s unofficial stand-in—this summer’s suite of pro-am games—have drawn basketball’s biggest names to the delight of frenzied crowds from Northeast Baltimore to Southeast Asia. The exhibitions have clearly meant something to the players, visible in celebrations after big plays as well as reactions to suspect officiating.
That wasn’t so much the case at Saturday’s showdown at Calvin Coolidge High School in northwest Washington, D.C. that featured John Wall, Kevin Durant, DeMarcus Cousins, Michael Beasley, Jeff Green, Greg Monroe and Kemba Walker. Billed as “Clash of the Superstars,” the charity game had all of the star power but none of the flash; it was a sleepy affair that played more like the final run of a pickup game among friends—very little energy and even less defense.
Although the action on the court didn’t exactly rouse the sparse crowd, a few in attendance had high praise for Washington Wizards second-year point guard John Wall. I caught up with Goodman League commissioner Miles Rawls who talked about Wall’s “spectacular” summer, and explained that while pro-am competition doesn’t compare to the NBA, it’s still an important part of preseason preparation:
“You got to work on the summer stuff to get you ready for the season. His jump shot has progressed tremendously. The more I see him, the more he progresses; that’s the key thing, his jump shot. And I didn’t know he was that athletic, he’s athletic as I don’t know what. I see the progression and the work he’s been putting in. I’ve even seen the technique change on him. At first it was like a push shot, but now I see a lot of wrist in his shot. So whoever is working with him is doing a good job.”