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Kool-Aid Drinking, Season Turnaround Thread

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Post#221 Re: Kool-Aid Drinking, Season Turnaround Thre
Sat Feb 23, 2013 9:49 am by hands11

Seems with the removal of Crawford, the culture change is mostly if not completely complete. I don't t think they worked that process of removing Dray and Crawford very well and didn't get value but at least its over. Its done. Moving forward.

Here is my observation.

While we have given Ted and EG a good bit of bashing over many thing, lets see whats left and what it looks like is different about the players they are adding. What kind of players they used to add and what kind they are adding now.

Seems EG never used to give enough weight to smart/personality over the years. Gil, Crawford, McGee, Nick, Critter. I could even add D Sleez in there. Talent... yes but to much DSleez/JSteez. Nick and McGee were just :roll: Gil was mentally special. Critter pretty much insane. Bulter was solid. AJ was good but played zero defense. He would add players that had talent, but to many had questionable personalities regarding what works for a winning professional NBA basketball team. If you are trying to build a winning team, personality and smarts need to be considered higher. Sure you want talent but after identifying talent, they have to measure up and pass the personality and smarts test or you don't add them. Professionalism and character matter a ton on a winning basketball team.

But for all we can complaining about Ted, it does seem there is a different standard now. Nene, Okafor, Webster, Trevor A, Beal. All of them are in a completely different class regarding personality type. Even Temple fits in with the second grouping. I would rate all of those players with A or B grades regarding that quality.

With the removal of J Craw, it does look like the culture change pretty much complete. What remains is a group of players with no bad eggs and smart mature professionals leading them. The remaining younger players are good kids that will follow the lead of those players and the HC.

From here, you keep adding talent but only if that talent measures up to the personality and intelligence level of the new core. I have harped on this for a long long time and it finally looks like they are doing things differently.

As for young player, Beal is the standard. Some people jabbed at me because I said I was won over after watching my first interview of him but that was really all it took and I was locked in. I saw his talent in the videos. I know the position they team most needed to fill and what skills that player needed to have. It was his personality and maturity that lead me to believe he would be something special and would fit perfectly with this team that was looking to rebuild. His draft position was 11th at the time and the focus was on A Davis and MKG. I said get that Beal kid. He would be perfect. He ended up going #3 and if CHA was smart, he would have gone #2.

For vets, Nene, Okafor, and Webster are the standard. Nene for McGee was a huge huge win. He added exactly the personalty and skills they needed to add and in doing it, they removed McGee who was the opposite. He didn't have to skills they needed to anchor the D or the personality.

So I see this as a new team now. Adding Nene was the move that really started it. Okafor and Trevor A expanded it. And Beal was the perfect draft pick to seed the future. And if the trend continues, I feel pretty good that they will only add pieces that measure up to this new standard. The good news it, the draft seems to have a plenty of this type in it.

They have to find the best fit of personality, smarts, maturity, motor, need, skill.
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Post#222 Re: Kool-Aid Drinking, Season Turnaround Thre
Sat Feb 23, 2013 9:54 pm by hands11

Take a good long slow drink people. Spike it if you want. Just enjoy.

Guess what DC. You have a professional basketball team.

I said it before and I still believe it. This is the best Wiz team in 15 year.

Better then any Gil, CB, AJ team. Better then GIl and Hughes.

They are build on D. Every starter plays D which is my standard.
Nene and Okafor are better then anything since Hayes and Unseld.
Beal at SG
Wall as a true PG
Two SF that while neither is a stud, both play D and both can hit the 3. Webster is very good at it.

If they start the year with this roster, they are a sure playoff team.

Add some depth, and they can make some noise.
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Post#223 Re: Kool-Aid Drinking, Season Turnaround Thre
Sat Feb 23, 2013 10:19 pm by Chocolate City Jordanaire

As of 1/6/2013, the Wizards were 4-28.

Since 1/7/2013, the Wizards are 13-9.

For the last six weeks, they have won at the pace of a 48-34 team.
Will the Wizards' success be sustained or was it fool's gold?
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Post#224 Re: Kool-Aid Drinking, Season Turnaround Thre
Sat Feb 23, 2013 10:23 pm by hands11

Chocolate City Jordanaire wrote:As of 1/6/2013, the Wizards were 4-28.

Since 1/7/2013, the Wizards are 13-9.

For the last six weeks, they have won at the pace of a 48-34 team.


And by a full season standard, where would that place them in the conference ?
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Post#225 Re: Kool-Aid Drinking, Season Turnaround Thre
Sat Feb 23, 2013 10:24 pm by nate33

I'm not drinking anymore. It was a nice 2-day home stand against some solid competition, but let's not act like it's some major achievement. Denver and Houston are modestly above-average West coast teams. A half-decent, .500ish team should beat them at home. Don't forget that we lost to Toronto at home just before that.

The Wizards are a competent basketball team now, but nothing special. I love the D, it keeps them in games. Unfortunately the offense is still too unreliable and Wall still isn't any good in the half court. I won't start feeling really good about this team until Wall develops a jumper and stops turning the ball over. Until then, he's nothing more than an average starter.
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Post#226 Re: Kool-Aid Drinking, Season Turnaround Thre
Sat Feb 23, 2013 10:32 pm by Chocolate City Jordanaire

nate33 wrote:I'm not drinking anymore. It was a nice 2-day home stand against some solid competition, but let's not act like it's some major achievement. Denver and Houston are modestly above-average West coast teams. A half-decent, .500ish team should beat them at home. Don't forget that we lost to Toronto at home just before that.

The Wizards are a competent basketball team now, but nothing special. I love the D, it keeps them in games. Unfortunately the offense is still too unreliable and Wall still isn't any good in the half court. I won't start feeling really good about this team until Wall develops a jumper and stops turning the ball over. Until then, he's nothing more than an average starter.


They are 12-9 with Wall and 5-28 without him.

Washington, despite Wall's mistakes, just beat a team with Harden (who went off for 46 against OKC in a win) and Lin on a back-to-back. I expect the Wizards will go on the road Monday and give Toronto a great game, if they don't win.

Wall was terrible against TOR, 1-12 FGs and 7 TOs. It is good for Wall to play TOR again so soon after that game.
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Post#227 Re: Kool-Aid Drinking, Season Turnaround Thre
Sat Feb 23, 2013 10:38 pm by nate33

Chocolate City Jordanaire wrote:
nate33 wrote:I'm not drinking anymore. It was a nice 2-day home stand against some solid competition, but let's not act like it's some major achievement. Denver and Houston are modestly above-average West coast teams. A half-decent, .500ish team should beat them at home. Don't forget that we lost to Toronto at home just before that.

The Wizards are a competent basketball team now, but nothing special. I love the D, it keeps them in games. Unfortunately the offense is still too unreliable and Wall still isn't any good in the half court. I won't start feeling really good about this team until Wall develops a jumper and stops turning the ball over. Until then, he's nothing more than an average starter.


They are 12-9 with Wall and 5-28 without him.

Washington, despite Wall's mistakes, just beat a team with Harden (who went off for 46 against OKC in a win) and Lin on a back-to-back.

I expect the Wizards will go on the road Monday and give Toronto a great game, if they don't win.

Yes, there is no doubt that they are MUCH better with Wall. But is that because Wall is a superstar? Or is it merely that Wall is a competent starter who replaced the worst PG rotation the league has seen in many years.

I'm not saying Wall is terrible because he isn't. I'm just saying that I wonder if Wall is really all that good yet.
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Post#228 Re: Kool-Aid Drinking, Season Turnaround Thre
Sat Feb 23, 2013 10:42 pm by Chocolate City Jordanaire

Wall is not a superstar and that should be obvious by now IMO. He is a little better than competent starter, but that's as much as I will give him. Occasionally, he's not even good and he costs games in the clutch with bad decisions, bad handle, or a terrible shot.

nate, I agree with your assessment of Wall but I think there are workarounds, if not a future trade. For now, winning games is nice to me.
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Post#229 Re: Kool-Aid Drinking, Season Turnaround Thre
Sat Feb 23, 2013 11:00 pm by hands11

nate33 wrote:
Chocolate City Jordanaire wrote:
nate33 wrote:I'm not drinking anymore. It was a nice 2-day home stand against some solid competition, but let's not act like it's some major achievement. Denver and Houston are modestly above-average West coast teams. A half-decent, .500ish team should beat them at home. Don't forget that we lost to Toronto at home just before that.

The Wizards are a competent basketball team now, but nothing special. I love the D, it keeps them in games. Unfortunately the offense is still too unreliable and Wall still isn't any good in the half court. I won't start feeling really good about this team until Wall develops a jumper and stops turning the ball over. Until then, he's nothing more than an average starter.


They are 12-9 with Wall and 5-28 without him.

Washington, despite Wall's mistakes, just beat a team with Harden (who went off for 46 against OKC in a win) and Lin on a back-to-back.

I expect the Wizards will go on the road Monday and give Toronto a great game, if they don't win.

Yes, there is no doubt that they are MUCH better with Wall. But is that because Wall is a superstar? Or is it merely that Wall is a competent starter who replaced the worst PG rotation the league has seen in many years.

I'm not saying Wall is terrible because he isn't. I'm just saying that I wonder if Wall is really all that good yet.


It so much more then Wall returning but he was very important because...yes.. they had no PG.

But it Nene healthy. Okafor finding his role. Trevor A returned as well. Even Booker is back. Beal returned. And now without Crawford, it is a unified locker room of players that know their roles.

Its not just Wall.

If they can now go in the road and beat TOR then return home and get revenge on DET. That is going to be huge.

We have actually come to expect them to fight and even win against good teams. Its kind of funny that we are waiting for them to beat the non playoff teams.

Its a quality problem. I think they are about to fix it.

They still might not beat TOR on the road. But I fully expect them to beat DET at home.

Nice that this year is, the winning started earlier so it not just a late season meaningless push. This is legit. These are wins that are for real.
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Post#230 Re: Kool-Aid Drinking, Season Turnaround Thre
Sun Feb 24, 2013 1:42 am by Kanyewest

nate33 wrote:I'm not drinking anymore. It was a nice 2-day home stand against some solid competition, but let's not act like it's some major achievement. Denver and Houston are modestly above-average West coast teams. A half-decent, .500ish team should beat them at home. Don't forget that we lost to Toronto at home just before that.

The Wizards are a competent basketball team now, but nothing special. I love the D, it keeps them in games. Unfortunately the offense is still too unreliable and Wall still isn't any good in the half court. I won't start feeling really good about this team until Wall develops a jumper and stops turning the ball over. Until then, he's nothing more than an average starter.


Toronto hasn't been that bad though either. They have been undefeated on the road since the Rudy Gay trade with road wins against the Pacers, Knicks, and Wizards. Wall only had 2 turnovers tonight- yes it is only 1 game but it is start. Wall's jumper has looked good over the past 2 games- but yeah he hasn't been anything special. Hopefully the Wizards can retain him for a cheaper contract not sure what his value would be if he was like the 18th pick in the draft.
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Post#231 Re: Kool-Aid Drinking, Season Turnaround Thre
Sun Feb 24, 2013 4:09 am by Zonkerbl

First you win. Then you get good.

I would refine that: First you win at home, and then you win on the road.

With no statistical chance now of reaching the playoffs, I really don't care if they win on the road at all. I'm happy they are dominating at home. That is the first step.

I agree Wall is only slightly above average on offense. I think he has Payton like potential on defense. Wall needs to maximize the impact of his strengths and minimize the impact of his weaknesses. He has to focus as hard as possible on becoming the NBA's best defender at point guard. He can achieve that. He has to maximize the talent of his court vision by always making the easy play. That will reduce his turnovers -- he always has one or two turnovers a game where he's trying to be too cute with his dribble or forces the issue. Jason Kidd could make crazy, crazy plays in practice, but when he was being paid to win he always, always made the simple plays. Save the crazy stuff for practice so that your teammates learn to expect the ball from you at any time. During the game, keep it simple. And minimize your weak jumper. But in my mind that's only third on the list of things he should be focusing on.
Comparing Rose to Wall is like asking which is a more impressive cat: A cheetah or a wolf? Dude, Wall ain’t no damn cat!
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Post#232 Re: Kool-Aid Drinking, Season Turnaround Thre
Sun Feb 24, 2013 7:39 am by hands11

Heard an interview with Trevor A where the reporter said they are 11-4 against teams with winning records since the OKC game.

Is that true ?

Now that would be a very surgical tank approach :lol:

Beat as any of the better teams as you can so the team gels, grows and you announce to the league you are legit, but don't beat the other teams you are competing with for a high draft pick.
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Post#233 Re: Kool-Aid Drinking, Season Turnaround Thre
Sun Feb 24, 2013 9:30 am by closg00

hands11 wrote:Seems with the removal of Crawford, the culture change is mostly if not completely complete. I don't t think they worked that process of removing Dray and Crawford very well and didn't get value but at least its over. Its done. Moving forward.

Here is my observation.

While we have given Ted and EG a good bit of bashing over many thing, lets see whats left and what it looks like is different about the players they are adding. What kind of players they used to add and what kind they are adding now.

Seems EG never used to give enough weight to smart/personality over the years. Gil, Crawford, McGee, Nick, Critter. I could even add D Sleez in there. Talent... yes but to much DSleez/JSteez. Nick and McGee were just :roll: Gil was mentally special. Critter pretty much insane. Bulter was solid. AJ was good but played zero defense. He would add players that had talent, but to many had questionable personalities regarding what works for a winning professional NBA basketball team. If you are trying to build a winning team, personality and smarts need to be considered higher. Sure you want talent but after identifying talent, they have to measure up and pass the personality and smarts test or you don't add them. Professionalism and character matter a ton on a winning basketball team.

But for all we can complaining about Ted, it does seem there is a different standard now. Nene, Okafor, Webster, Trevor A, Beal. All of them are in a completely different class regarding personality type. Even Temple fits in with the second grouping. I would rate all of those players with A or B grades regarding that quality.

With the removal of J Craw, it does look like the culture change pretty much complete. What remains is a group of players with no bad eggs and smart mature professionals leading them. The remaining younger players are good kids that will follow the lead of those players and the HC.

From here, you keep adding talent but only if that talent measures up to the personality and intelligence level of the new core. I have harped on this for a long long time and it finally looks like they are doing things differently.

As for young player, Beal is the standard. Some people jabbed at me because I said I was won over after watching my first interview of him but that was really all it took and I was locked in. I saw his talent in the videos. I know the position they team most needed to fill and what skills that player needed to have. It was his personality and maturity that lead me to believe he would be something special and would fit perfectly with this team that was looking to rebuild. His draft position was 11th at the time and the focus was on A Davis and MKG. I said get that Beal kid. He would be perfect. He ended up going #3 and if CHA was smart, he would have gone #2.

For vets, Nene, Okafor, and Webster are the standard. Nene for McGee was a huge huge win. He added exactly the personalty and skills they needed to add and in doing it, they removed McGee who was the opposite. He didn't have to skills they needed to anchor the D or the personality.

So I see this as a new team now. Adding Nene was the move that really started it. Okafor and Trevor A expanded it. And Beal was the perfect draft pick to seed the future. And if the trend continues, I feel pretty good that they will only add pieces that measure up to this new standard. The good news it, the draft seems to have a plenty of this type in it.

They have to find the best fit of personality, smarts, maturity, motor, need, skill.


Yeah!! After 10 years as Wiz GM Ernie is beginning to do what the Spurs and other superior organizations have always been doing. Better late than never.

This current team is the best Wiz team in years, but we have exactly one season (next year) to enjoy a return to the playoffs before the next scramble. Okafor expires next year and you know from our history that Mgmt prefers to get "something" rather than to lose an asset completely. Who knows if we will be as-fortunate with the next set of rentals.

Gonna have fun the rest of this season, go into hiding during next draft, and enjoy next-year as-if it will be my last drink of water before heading into the desert again.
Guys on a message board could do a better job managing the Wizards than Ernie Grunfeld.
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Post#234 Re: Kool-Aid Drinking, Season Turnaround Thre
Sun Feb 24, 2013 9:28 pm by mohammed10

Meh - EG had had 10+ yrs to get this team the way he wanted. He crafted every single trade - bringing in all those players that hands mentioned.

I'm sorry, but if you cannot build a team capable of making it to the playoffs, let alone out the first round of said playoffs, you should not be a GM. Ernie was not handicapped by a meddlesome owner in Abe (maybe more meddlesome owner in Terd), nor were we in luxury tax hell. If we were, it was all Emperor Ernie's doing (Gil's max contract on a gimpy knee, taking on 'Shard for Gil, then the Okariza debacle).

Bottom line is there are many, many, many more shrewd GM and assistant GMs out there running circles around our ownership/GM axis of idiocy. This long, cold winter does not have any indication of thawing anytime soon.
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Post#235 Re: Kool-Aid Drinking, Season Turnaround Thre
Mon Feb 25, 2013 7:26 am by Chocolate City Jordanaire

mohammed10 wrote:Meh - EG had had 10+ yrs to get this team the way he wanted. He crafted every single trade - bringing in all those players that hands mentioned.

I'm sorry, but if you cannot build a team capable of making it to the playoffs, let alone out the first round of said playoffs, you should not be a GM. Ernie was not handicapped by a meddlesome owner in Abe (maybe more meddlesome owner in Terd), nor were we in luxury tax hell. If we were, it was all Emperor Ernie's doing (Gil's max contract on a gimpy knee, taking on 'Shard for Gil, then the Okariza debacle).

Bottom line is there are many, many, many more shrewd GM and assistant GMs out there running circles around our ownership/GM axis of idiocy. This long, cold winter does not have any indication of thawing anytime soon.


As this is the Kool Aid Drinking, Season Turnaround Thread, I feel like putting things in a positive light.

I was against signing Gil because I feared his body was breaking down. When I suggested EG should let both Gilbert and Jamison walk, that was considered a terrible idea by well over 90% of this board. I mentioned salary cap problems for years and years with a broken player before anybody else here did. But we have lived to see the end of that contract and two trades since.

Gilbert was traded to Orlando for a player who had one less season of a similar deal, Rashard Lewis. That turned out to be a double feel good deal. After Gun Gate, Gilbert was allowed to go to Orlando and Otis Smith, the GM he wanted to play for. Rashard Lewis was done there but he became a solid citizen for the Wizards, and one who had one less year on his max deal than Gilbert's. Instead of letting that expire Washington made a move in the offseason. Now, Rashard is a Miami Heat, because New Orleans, our Okariza trade partners immediately amnestied him. So, Gilbert's deal is going to be expiring next season in the form of Okafor and Ariza, who have contracts which both expire next season. (Trevor can choose to opt out this summer, actually.)

What is so good about this? Putting things in a positive light, Okafor is playing very well and so is Trevor Ariza. This time Ted and Ernie have effectively turned nothing performance into something. Ariza is 27 and Okafor is 30 and both are playing much better than Lewis is capable of playing at this point. Gil was struggling with injury issues in China last time I checked. So, the thing I hated the most, at least has had the best return since they chose to make the deal. Okafor and Ariza aren't both stiffs, as was feared by many Wizard fans when the trade was made.

Of course we can talk about players the team would have, should have, or could have acquired -- if we don't want to sip Kool Aid. Ryan Anderson, Ersan Ilyasova, Danny Green, Omer Asik, Elton Brand, etc might have been Wizards if not for Okariza. That said, Martell Webster is shooting lights out this season. Ariza has been terrific on defense this season. Okafor is rebounding better than he has in his career this season. Those three players are helping this team play good basketball now with 29 games, roughly one-third of the season remaining.

I don't want to focus on the GM's shortcomings but rather on the serendipitous discovery that guys we had reason to expect not too much from have all produced in major ways. Along with Nene, Wall, and Beal; you can be sure that Okafor, Ariza, and Webster are solid contributors moving forward.
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Post#236 Re: Kool-Aid Drinking, Season Turnaround Thre
Mon Feb 25, 2013 8:18 am by Chocolate City Jordanaire

Speaking of moving forward, playing Toronto on the road will be interesting. I wonder if I will sip Kool Aid after the Toronto game?
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Post#237 Re: Kool-Aid Drinking, Season Turnaround Thre
Mon Feb 25, 2013 1:31 pm by dobrojim

Just noticed last night or this morning that as well as we have been playing lately
and generally, the next individual game on the schedule that I EXPECT them to lose isn't until
the Lakers game in LA on March 22nd. There are 13 games before that game.
Now I am not saying I expect them to win all of those 13 games, but it will be
very interesting to me at least, to see how many of these next games they do
end up winning. 2 of those games I would be more than a little iffy about, NY at home
and BKN on the road. But the last time they played both of those teams, they won
although the Nets game was here (as was the Nix game).

This is a cupcake stretch of the schedule coming up (CHA 2x, PHO 2x, CLE, MIN, NOH,
DET, PHL). The Wizards need to devour those cupcakes.

I guess I need to edit with a caveat that being the Zards need to start being
like a more normal good team that beats up on cupcakes and wins half their
games against quality opp.
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Post#238 Re: Kool-Aid Drinking, Season Turnaround Thre
Mon Feb 25, 2013 5:29 pm by dandridge 10

dobrojim wrote:Just noticed last night or this morning that as well as we have been playing lately
and generally, the next individual game on the schedule that I EXPECT them to lose isn't until
the Lakers game in LA on March 22nd. There are 13 games before that game.
Now I am not saying I expect them to win all of those 13 games, but it will be
very interesting to me at least, to see how many of these next games they do
end up winning. 2 of those games I would be more than a little iffy about, NY at home
and BKN on the road. But the last time they played both of those teams, they won
although the Nets game was here (as was the Nix game).

This is a cupcake stretch of the schedule coming up (CHA 2x, PHO 2x, CLE, MIN, NOH,
DET, PHL). The Wizards need to devour those cupcakes.

I guess I need to edit with a caveat that being the Zards need to start being
like a more normal good team that beats up on cupcakes and wins half their
games against quality opp.


I was just going to post something similar. I'm not drinking any kool-aid until the Wizards start consistently beating the cupcakes. The Wizards always seem to play down to their competition. Truly good teams don't do that.
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Post#239 Re: Kool-Aid Drinking, Season Turnaround Thre
Mon Feb 25, 2013 5:34 pm by Ruzious

Chocolate City Jordanaire wrote:Speaking of moving forward, playing Toronto on the road will be interesting. I wonder if I will sip Kool Aid after the Toronto game?

Hard liquor might be a better choice - considering how the Wiz typically play on the road. :beer:

Cue the Debbie Downer music. Waa waa waa waaaaaaaa.
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Post#240 Re: Kool-Aid Drinking, Season Turnaround Thre
Mon Feb 25, 2013 6:30 pm by tontoz

Most of the Wizards wins have come against good teams. I am not sure how much the schedule matters. I think the more important issue is whether the 3s are dropping. If they are they can beat anyone. If not they can lose to anyone.
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