BRAVEONAWARPATH

The Official Washington Wizards Thread: The JOHN WALL ERA

Recommended Posts

I had the NBA free preview this week. I watched the Sixers game, the Suns game and the Jazz game.  I had an appointment and missed the Celtics game.  I decided to watch to see what you guys were talking about.  Since the last two games are fresh in my mind, this is what I observed.

 

Randy REALLY mismanages the playing time like you said.  He does a good job in the first half with the substitutions.  We always have a bad 3rd quarter because he takes the starters out too fast to try and save them for the 4th quarter.  Problem is, he leaves them out too long.  I noticed that our bench is not bad at keeping leads or at least keeping the team withing striking distance.  But they get tired.  REAL tired.  Randy keeps them in until they are gassed.  He also does not go deep enough on the bench.  With back to back games, we really needed to go deeper into the bench, even if a guy (Jan?) plays 3-5 minutes, it's a rest for another player.

 

I kind of knew we'd lose to the Jazz.  The starters were exausted, especially Wall.  Dragic ran, ran and ran some more.  I think Phil or Buck said Wall told them that was the most he'd run this year. Phoenix is a running team and Randy should have not used a short bench with the back to back.  I mean, look how hot Ariza was at the befginning of the Jazz game, but he got tired and was not really a factor in the 2nd half after carrying them in the first half. If we play Utah on Sunday instead, we beat them. You could tell they were gassed at the end. 

 

But you know what wouldn't surprise me?  With the tough part of our schedule in the next 5 games, I wouldn't be surprised to see us go 3-2.  We seem to play down to our competition and play up to the big boys. 

 

I want to add that I just don't get coaches putting their players in the "doghouse" for mistakes.  A good coach chastises a player, but also teaches them how to not do it againg.  Putting someone on the bench "in timeout" is just going to piss them off. Personally, when Rice gets back, there is no reason Wittman can't go 10 or 11 deep with a rotation.

Edited by pjfootballer

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good post PJ. I think you're right.

We're all pretty much of one mind about Randy here. But I've argued some with posters on RealGM who defend him. What they don't understand is that bad coaching isn't about making one damning mistake that everyone can point to as a fireable offense. It's about making all sorts of little mistakes, missing all sorts of little opportunities that add up cumulatively to performance being lower than it should be over time.

It's all sorts of little poor decisions with line up management/substitutions/game management from night to night. It's all sorts of little problems in your system that have the cumulative effect of playing poor, inefficient basketball. And you see that with us in how we consistently play farther from the rim than our opponents, and we don't protect our own paint. We consistently have to work a lot harder for our buckets than our opponents even when we have talent advantages.

And it's all sorts of daily mistakes and misevaluation/losing sight of the bigger, better perspective that hinder the development of your players and cause you to misuse resources. Our young players have stagnated or rotted away under Randy unless they made a massive leap in the summer on their own or playing for another team. Pretty much to a man.

All that said, if there was one single thing to point to as a reason for firing Randy, it's that he himself has admitted to having trouble motivating this group. That was the biggest thing going for Randy. If the players aren't buying in any more, he's cooked.

This is why having coaches go into a season without an extension almost always leads to failure or disappointment in almost every sport. If you don't believe in a coach enough to want to commit to him long term, then he shouldn't be your coach.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wittman just doesn't get the most out of this roster. I mean look at what Thibs is doing in Chicago without Rose, even after dealing Deng. Or Jeff Hornacek in Phoenix. Wittman doesn't really give us any discernable advantages and his rotations and out of bounds plays are horrid.

 

It's unfortunate because there is no way we can fire him after we inevitably make the playoffs this year, but he's really a mediocre at best coach. We'll never win anything of significance with him at the helm.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wittman just doesn't get the most out of this roster. I mean look at what Thibs is doing in Chicago without Rose, even after dealing Deng. Or Jeff Hornacek in Phoenix. Wittman doesn't really give us any discernable advantages and his rotations and out of bounds plays are horrid.

It's unfortunate because there is no way we can fire him after we inevitably make the playoffs this year, but he's really a mediocre at best coach. We'll never win anything of significance with him at the helm.

I'm not so sure making the playoffs automatically results in an extension because the East is so weak. The truth is that Wittman is a secondary consideration. Grunfeld is the problem. If the team hires a good GM, Wittman won't survive the transition. This team needs a GM that believes in this team and this city as a place NBA players would want to play. It needs a leader that has vision and isn't just making moves that keep things good enough not to keep his job.

Even if the Wizards win a playoff series, I still want Grunfeld fired. Vinny Cerrato was bad, incredibly so, but I think he believed that he could build a winner. He couldn't, because he was horrible, but at least he had that Wile E. Coyote thing that let him walk on air so long as he never looked down. You need that. Houston has that. They had a sorry team but they convinced themselves that it was the greatest place to play in the world and built made a winner out of an unimpressive roster by being bold. Miami had that. Miami has nice weather but so what? It's not the only place that does and it's not a large media market. Before the big three and after Shaq no one gave a damn about the Heat. You think the big three couldn't have gotten together somewhere else? Teams would have traded everything to clear space and gone into the luxury tax happily to get them. Pat Riley knows he can build a winner and DWade has seen him do it before so he told his boys, this is the place.

I think Grunfeld lost his faith and is really doing nothing more than clinging to his job for the paycheck. I listen to his press conference and watch his body language and all of it screams defeat. If you don't believe you can do it, you're right.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What's sad is that in a season where the Raptors were supposedly tanking, we're now looking up at them in the standings.  This was a season of no excuses for the Wizards. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not so sure making the playoffs automatically results in an extension because the East is so weak. The truth is that Wittman is a secondary consideration. Grunfeld is the problem. If the team hires a good GM, Wittman won't survive the transition. This team needs a GM that believes in this team and this city as a place NBA players would want to play. It needs a leader that has vision and isn't just making moves that keep things good enough not to keep his job.

Even if the Wizards win a playoff series, I still want Grunfeld fired. Vinny Cerrato was bad, incredibly so, but I think he believed that he could build a winner. He couldn't, because he was horrible, but at least he had that Wile E. Coyote thing that let him walk on air so long as he never looked down. You need that. Houston has that. They had a sorry team but they convinced themselves that it was the greatest place to play in the world and built made a winner out of an unimpressive roster by being bold. Miami had that. Miami has nice weather but so what? It's not the only place that does and it's not a large media market. Before the big three and after Shaq no one gave a damn about the Heat. You think the big three couldn't have gotten together somewhere else? Teams would have traded everything to clear space and gone into the luxury tax happily to get them. Pat Riley knows he can build a winner and DWade has seen him do it before so he told his boys, this is the place.

I think Grunfeld lost his faith and is really doing nothing more than clinging to his job for the paycheck. I listen to his press conference and watch his body language and all of it screams defeat. If you don't believe you can do it, you're right.

Good post, I can't say I disagree.

 

Grunfeld is a loser of epic proportions. Dude has NO vision/foresight. His moves are always 1-2 year bandaids. A good GM would be thinking of ways to possibly lure Durant to D.C. and trying to build a core of Durant/Wall/Beal. Instead he uses up cap space on vets like Nene and Gortat. Good players sure but what's the upside? Two vets in the frontcourt with a talented young backcourt. There just isn't potential there to grow into a contender.

 

But Ted keeps him, because Ted too is a loser. He talks a big game, I thought he'd be much smarter, but I don't see anything different between him and Abe Pollin. At least Pollin(RIP)in his youth was terrific, considering we made a couple Finals appearances, and he never came across as an elitist dbag tool like Ted.

 

We'll probably get like the 6 seed, get bounced in the first round, and extend Grunfeld and Wittman. Then we'll be a carbon copy of the Hawks or Bucks of a few years back where we make the playoffs every year and lose in round 1, maybe 2, because the roster was built in a flawed fashion by flawed FO/ownership.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If I had my wish, Ted Leonsis would sell all his teams immediately. He's one of the worst owners in sports, and he's damn lucky he lucked into Ovie and Wall. Imo, Danny is a lot better than him, because while Danny tends to suck at hiring competent managers, he actually wants to win a title and cares about the team's performance. Ted Leonsis literally does not care about winning beyond what's required to get fans in the seats and buzz in the media. He's a marketing guy, his expertise is not in building things, but in trying to market mediocre products with gimmicks and glitz.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When Danny gets to the playoffs with regularity we can compare him to Teds Caps ownership. The redskins have had a ton of high picks and 15 years to build a consistent winner, and they've built the opposite.

Also every team with a drafted star essentially lucks into it. Look at OKC. No team can replicate drafting Durant, Westbrook, Harden, and Ibaka. They got peanuts for Harden, that was a mistake, but their success in the draft is incredible.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah there is definitely an element of luck. But again, A #1, a #6, a #3, and a #3 overall picks in four successive years should be enough opportunity for luck to build a winner.

More impressive than OKC's drafting is Indy's IMO. OKC got #2 in a year everyone knew you were getting a franchise talent at #2. Harden was a #3 pick, not a no brainer that year, but a lot of people had him as the 2nd or 3rd guy that draft. Westbrook was an impressive get, and definitely not a no brainer. I think he went 5th. But everyone also said that, raw as he was, his upside was tremendous. So he didn't exactly come out of nowhere. Ibaka did though, and that was a work of pure draft and development genius. They knew how to develop him from utterly raw talent to near finished product and they did it.

But they kind of whiffed on Jeff Green. And they squandered the Harden asset.

Indy didn't have high picks like OKC. George I think went 8th or 9th. Granger was upper teens I think. I think Hibbert was 15th. And Lance Stevenson was a second rounder. Plus they kind of plucked David West from New Orleans when he was undervalued. Talk about a good construction job when you don't have a lot to work with.

There are other good teams around the NBA like OKC and Indy that organically built from within using low key FAs and draft picks. Chicago (excepting Boozer) did it. Portland did it. They actually had a pretty amazing draft run paired with amazingly bad luck when you think about it. Not many teams could recover from losing Oden and Roy. But they killed it with Aldridge and Lillard and found a bunch of good low value players like Batum and Mathews and Robin Lopez.

Phoenix and Toronto cobbled together nice teams with low value assets and 5th overall pick centers for the most part. Good coaching and management have emerged in those places really suddenly.

The Spurs have always been very organically built. And Golden State built a pretty scary team with a nice mix of FAs and draft picks. Golden State has never been a FA destination either. They went after the right guys in Iggy and Lee and made the right trade of Ellis for Bogut.

Most of the good teams in the NBA today were well built like that actually. Miami actually stands out as a big anomaly for buying their team.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When Danny gets to the playoffs with regularity we can compare him to Teds Caps ownership. The redskins have had a ton of high picks and 15 years to build a consistent winner, and they've built the opposite.

Also every team with a drafted star essentially lucks into it. Look at OKC. No team can replicate drafting Durant, Westbrook, Harden, and Ibaka. They got peanuts for Harden, that was a mistake, but their success in the draft is incredible.

 

How many NHL teams make the playoffs? Seems like most of them. Then again, Ovie is a once in a generation player that we hope a healthy RG3 will be. As far as Ted's NBA team.....he inherited this GM and those mistakes....and really hasn't done much since beyond going to Red/White/Blue. He fired a coach, kept another guy from the staff. 

 

If I were a GM of a team that wasn't pre-selected by the NBA to be one of their elites right now. I'd go and build a team of ass kickers. Not bad boy or dirty players. But if you're going to get called for ticky-tack fouls on the Divas. Then make those fouls count. Put them on their butts. that means tough nosed vets, and smart gritty younger guys. No clowns. No showboaters.

 

Team up with the marketing team after a season of this to create a persona of these guys...not before like the Skins seem to do all the time. Roll into Miami...knock out a few teeth...and leave with a win or loss. Whatever.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This week is going to be interesting. 

 

Wizards have:

 

@Golden State

@Clippers

OKC

Portland

San Antonio

 

Nets have:

 

OKC

@Indy

Philly

San Antonio

@Detroit

 

The Nets could go 2-3 and find themselves in the sixth seed. They are one game behind the Wizards right now.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As long as we dont make 7th or 8th seed, we could potentially advance to the second round

 

That's the real trick, isn't it?

 

In the East, you either want to tank or be a 1-6 seed. Getting the 7th or 8th seed is utterly pointless.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's the real trick, isn't it?

 

In the East, you either want to tank or be a 1-6 seed. Getting the 7th or 8th seed is utterly pointless.

 

Agree completely. The first round is pretty much a warm up for the top 2 seeds. But how awesome would it be if we were to knock one of them off lol

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The nets are going to pass the Wizards. They've definitely started playing better and if they gain confidence they'll claim the 3rd seed fairly easily. Their roster is just too talented, even without Lopez, and the a East is weak. They aren't championship contenders but they are much better than their record IMO.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The nets are going to pass the Wizards. They've definitely started playing better and if they gain confidence they'll claim the 3rd seed fairly easily. Their roster is just too talented, even without Lopez, and the a East is weak. They aren't championship contenders but they are much better than their record IMO.

I agree with you that the Nets will probably pass the Wizards.

 

Now staying ahead of the Wizards is another story.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The best case scenario for this team is to not make the playoffs this year. I don't care about POSSIBLY making it to the 2nd round in a historically ****ty Eastern conference.

 

It's an absolute disaster waiting to happen. Ted extends Grunfeld and Wittman the moment we clinch a playoff spot. It basically kills away any enthusiasm I have for the future of this team. I think Wall and Beal are EXCELLENT pieces to build around but Ernie and gang will never be able to get the best out of this roster. We can go from the possibility of having perhaps a top 2 team in the East in the next 3-5 years vs. perrenial 6-8th seed under Grunfeld's short sighted management.

 

PS: Kendall Marshall continues to ball in LA. Meanwhile Eric Maynor rots on the bench even though Garrett Temple is almost as bad as him

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's the real trick, isn't it?

 

In the East, you either want to tank or be a 1-6 seed. Getting the 7th or 8th seed is utterly pointless.

Well, it makes sure we get that butt kicking from Miami or Indy instead of losing in the first round to Toronto or Brooklyn.

The nets are going to pass the Wizards. They've definitely started playing better and if they gain confidence they'll claim the 3rd seed fairly easily. Their roster is just too talented, even without Lopez, and the a East is weak. They aren't championship contenders but they are much better than their record IMO.

Yeah they're the third best team in the conference on talent. Indiana is the only other team that has their size. Atlanta and Toronto are synergistic, efficiently built, and they play well. But I too see Brooklyn passing them.

Then again, it still feels like the wheels could come off for Brooklyn at any minute.

Toronto and Atlanta are probably a little better than we are too. I think we're looking at a season long dogfight with Chicago for the sixth seed. Don't they know they're supposed to be tanking?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This upcoming stretch of games is definitely a barometer of where we're at. If we lose all of them, the season could go South. If we acquit ourselves respectably and steal a couple wins, we'll probably be feeling pretty good. Confident that we can finish the year somewhere in that 3-6 range.

I can easily see us finishing at 40 or 41 wins and getting the 7th seed. We draw Miami in the first round. And then I can see us taking a worn down Heat team to six games before they close it out and Ted will cite this as a sign of progress and an excuse to extend Ernie and Randy. Nevermind that 40 or 41 wins and a 7 seed is a definite failure to meet expectations.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Lets be realistic here. If we lose all of them, nothing will change. Just more of the same. Nothing outside of losing all of our games from here on out could affect the leadership of this team. EG isnt going anywhere. Wittman will be gone at the end of the season. Thats just how its going to go. I say we go 1-4 on this 5 game span. With the 1 win being lucky, including 4,000 long two's, and resulting in a told-you-so pat on the back from ted.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This upcoming stretch of games is definitely a barometer of where we're at. If we lose all of them, the season could go South. If we acquit ourselves respectably and steal a couple wins, we'll probably be feeling pretty good. Confident that we can finish the year somewhere in that 3-6 range.

I can easily see us finishing at 40 or 41 wins and getting the 7th seed. We draw Miami in the first round. And then I can see us taking a worn down Heat team to six games before they close it out and Ted will cite this as a sign of progress and an excuse to extend Ernie and Randy. Nevermind that 40 or 41 wins and a 7 seed is a definite failure to meet expectations.

Unless they have injuries the post season heat defense would destroy the Wizards. I'd predict a sweep and the averaging margain of victory in the double digits. The wizards offense already struggles in the half court and with Miami game planning to take away Wall and slow the transition game.... It would be ugly. Edited by Destino

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This upcoming stretch of games is definitely a barometer of where we're at. If we lose all of them, the season could go South. If we acquit ourselves respectably and steal a couple wins, we'll probably be feeling pretty good. Confident that we can finish the year somewhere in that 3-6 range.

I can easily see us finishing at 40 or 41 wins and getting the 7th seed. We draw Miami in the first round. And then I can see us taking a worn down Heat team to six games before they close it out and Ted will cite this as a sign of progress and an excuse to extend Ernie and Randy. Nevermind that 40 or 41 wins and a 7 seed is a definite failure to meet expectations.

 

Ted only stated "playoffs or bust", I don't really think he cares about how we get there.

 

He can advertise the Wizards as a playoff without ever mentioning the record.

 

Ted seems so adverse to firing people, and he's made such a big stink about making playoffs, that I can't see him letting Wittman or Grunfeld go after they "accomplish" his stated goals.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.