[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. 48, Washington Wizards vs. New York Knicks; contributors: Rashad Mobley and John Converse Townsend from the Verizon Center, with Conor Dirks from the ATL.]
[We've posted this before, but why not again? ... Patrick Ewing enjoying a pre-game Pop Tart.]
On any given night, you can turn on SportsCenter and hear the names JaVale McGee and Dwight Howard. McGee gets mentioned for his dazzling dunks and puzzling basketball decisions, and Howard, with his looming free agency sprinkled in with 20 point/20 rebound performances, is equally good ESPN fodder. Even as the Wizards and Magic prepare to face off for the third time this season, the names McGee and Howard are very much in the NBA news cycle. McGee was benched during the second half of last night’s game against Milwaukee, and trade rumors with Howard’s name seem to be picking up steam. To get you ready for that and much more, Eddy Rivera (@erivera7) from the Orlando Magic ESPN TrueHoop blog MagicBasketball.net, and both Rashad Mobley (@Rashad20) and Kyle Weidie (@Truth_About_It) from Truth About It, will give you three answers to three questions…
#1) Who has the tougher coaching job the second half of the season: Stan Van Gundy, who will have to endure “The Dwight Howard Situation” much like George Karl had to do with Carmelo Anthony last year? Or Randy Wittman, who is the coach of 7-27 team that has no shot of even sniffing the playoffs?
[Daniel Orton receives coaching instruction on his shot from Magic assistant Brendan Malone.]
Friday night after the Orlando Magic defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers, 111-100, Coach Stan Van Gundy was very upset about the brand of defense his team had played. The Magic led by as much as 18 points in the third quarter, but they allowed that lead to whittle away to eight points, and they never truly put the Cavs away despite the victory. Here’s what Van Gundy had to say after that game:
“I saw very few good things defensively. We were terrible. Another 47-percent game. It’s the same old thing. With us right now, when the scoring is easy, we won’t guard, and that’s why we can’t put games away. We play one end of the floor at a time. So, we’re going to be in these challenges all the time.”
Last night against the Wizards, the Magic found themselves in a similar situation. They jumped out to yet another big lead of 14 points, but in third quarter the Wizards shot 53-percent, and they even took the lead from the Magic. If it weren’t for a big Dwight Howard putback toward the end, and a last second missed shot by Gilbert Arenas, the Magic could have easily lost the game.
This is a Washington Wizards blog, and even though we have a segment entitled, “From The Other Side”, where we grab comments and interviews from the opposing locker room, we still try to make sure most of our content is Wizards-related.
However, there are instances when I get an audio or video clip that is too good to pass up regardless of whether it has anything to do with the Wizards or not. Tonight happens to be one of those instances.
Los Angeles Lakers coach Phil Jackson and Orlando Magic coach Stan Van Gundy have been engaged in a war of words during this Thanksgiving week. First, Jackson hinted that if that Miami Heat continued to struggle a “Van Gundy situation” could emerge and current coach Erik Spoelstra could be fired. Van Gundy shot right back by saying Jackson was “inappropriate and ignorant” about what really happened in Miami.
After a morning shootaround in Utah yesterday, Jackson offered up a bit of an apology:
“It was an off-handed remark about if things continue to go poorly for Miami, what might happen. But, obviously Stan felt that he had to say something. Unfortunately he got defensive about it. I didn’t mean to do that. I should apologize because I do know about his situation. Stan was going home to be with his family and that was his reason for leaving. I have no idea about the rest of it; why he came back out after retiring and being with his family. But, that’s his decision and fine.”
Quotes, notes, observations and pictures from the Wizards’ 121-94 loss to Orlando.
Seconds away from tip-off, there looked to be a surprisingly crappy crowd in Orlando … oh wait, they’re playing the Wizards on a Wednesday night. Also, Stan Van Gundy got a pre-game ‘t-shirt nap’ in front of reporters.
From the start, Andray Blatche looked lethargic, just jogged to spots on offense and defense. Oh, wait, maybe I should be more optimistic. Okay, we’ll say he was “pacing himself.”
Seems like I’ve heard about it before, but maybe I didn’t think much of it at the time, or just forgot, as it occurred way back in 2003, before the ‘blogging era’.
But there I found myself, coming home to an on television Friday night, checking out game six of an incredibly boring Heat-Hawks series.
Dan Marino was courtside, ESPN showed his retired jersey in the rafters. Little curious to see it hanging in a basketball arena, but okay … I’ll go with it.
I once ate at Dan Marino’s steakhouse in the gloriously classy Hooters Hotel & Casino in Vegas … or is it delightfully tacky, yet unrefined? In any case, I thoroughly enjoyed my experience at Marino’s steakhouse. Plus, you gotta give the guy credit for going from the prince of coal mining country to the king of South Beach … the equivalent to Biggie Smalls going ashy to classy.