HoopsHype Washington Wizards rumors

Washington Wizards highlights

March 17, 2014 Updates

In 1998, you applied to be the general manager of the Denver Nuggets—while working for the Post. This has always struck me as a conflict of interest. Tell me why I’m wrong. And do you think you would have/could have had a fruitful career as a GM. Peter Vecsey.: I was always told, you’ve got to have at least two conflicts of interest to be successful. Pro sports has plenty of former sportswriters-turned executives. The Knicks were started by Ned Irish. The latest example was John Hollinger leaving ESPN to become VP of basketball operations of Memphis. Why shouldn’t we be allowed to pursue front office or coaching, as long as it’s during the off-season? I tried to put together group to buy the Nuggets in the early ’80s … tried to get Rick Pitino to hire me as GM when he was running the Celtics … approached Larry Brown about helping him in Washington when he was close to coaching the Wizards … had an interview on tap as Hawks’ GM just before Stan Kasten left … and had a very brief interview with James Dolan to be Isiah Thomas’ GM. I am positive I would’ve been an asset to one and all. Jeff Pearlman

March 16, 2014 Updates
March 15, 2014 Updates
March 14, 2014 Updates

Washington Wizards guard John Wall was fined $15,000 by the NBA for inappropriate comments toward game officials. Wall made the remarks on the court after the Wizards' 98-85 home loss to the Charlotte Bobcats on Wednesday night. Wall had plenty to say about the officiating. He was particularly upset that was called for fouling Kemba Walker during Walker's three-point attempt in the fourth quarter. "I ain't touch him. All he did is scream," Wall said. "Ref gave him a call all night because he was screaming . . . I think they made some unfortunate calls plenty of times." Wall also said: "Plenty of times I drove to the basket. I think I should have been to the line plenty more." Philadelphia Inquirer

March 13, 2014 Updates

Fifteen regular season games will be left when Gooden gets a contract for the rest of the season, and he'll be eligible for the postseason roster as well. If Nene (left knee) is able to recover fully and Kevin Seraphin (right knee) doesn't have any more setbacks with swelling, that'll give Washington even greater depth in the post. Gooden reiterated that he's all-in. All president Ernie Grunfeld has to do is put the next contract on the table. And that will happen. "We'll see. I believe in loyalty. The Wizards organization gave me this opportunity," Gooden said. "Why not? Why not stay here the rest of the year?" CSNWashington.com

March 12, 2014 Updates

The Wizards (33-30) gave Gooden a nameplate last week, which hinted that he might not just be a short-term fix and could last well beyond the expiration of his second 10-day contract on March 18. According to a league source with knowledge of the situation, the Wizards intend to retain Gooden for the rest of the season. “Big, big, big pro. Hands down, guy comes in every day, works hard. He’s engaged in everything we do,” Marcin Gortat said of Gooden. “That’s what you can expect from a 12-year veteran. He gives you everything he’s got. A very good player…and a very good guy in the locker room. He’s coming and giving us a tremendous job off the bench for us.” Washington Post

March 11, 2014 Updates

Within a team meeting pushing hours, John Wall sat and listened to veterans lash out and grumble about misplaced shooting tendencies of younger players. Nene had pressed the issues of selfish play days earlier and Trevor Ariza and Al Harrington hatched a team sitdown nine games into the season, a cleansing of beliefs about distributing offensive touches and roles, about minutes and schemes. Everyone spoke, everyone provided opinions on why another season had started like so many others for the Washington Wizards: unorganized and mismanaged. Final say? The exchanges stopped upon John Wall’s words. RealGM

Essentially, teammates gave Wall the room, centered him in a classroom setting and asked: What should our roles be? You’re the heralded franchise star, the organization’s maximum salary designation. How about you tell us? “From that day forward, I knew I was the guy, the leader, and I knew that they trusted me,” Wall told RealGM. “I let everybody know what I thought about our state. I think we were passing the ball, but when you’re not playing good for a stretch, frustration sets in. So guys find a way to blame it on somebody else or something else. Nene told me to stand up in front of the whole team and told me, ‘You’re our leader, you’re our franchise guy, so tell us what you think everybody’s roles are.’ “My first few years, I didn’t have really great veteran leaders. It was tough on me trying to learn and trying to stay healthy at the same time to improve my game for the NBA. Trevor won a championship – [Marcin] Gortat, Nene, guys who have been to the playoffs – I’m trying to learn from them and be in their shoes. “These past two years, I’ve had great veterans – guys who see how hard I work and trust my talent. They want to see me progress.” RealGM

Wall secured his long-term deal in late July, and he recognizes the looming free agencies of Ariza and Gortat. Now, Wall, 25, has assumed the responsibility to let pending both pending free agents know about his desire for them to stay with the Wizards. Ariza is an indispensible defender and shooter this season, a former NBA champion whom teammates trust. Despite talk the Wizards explored negotiating an extension during the season, Gortat had made clear before the season that he would solely focus on playing out his contract prior to becoming a free agent, sources told RealGM. RealGM

“Trevor and Gortat already know how I feel about them,” Wall told RealGM. “I talked to Trevor about when he could have opted out this past season and I wanted him to come back. I know it’s a tough situation for him because you never know when your career is over. You want to get closer to winning championships, but I feel like if we stick together, anything can happen. RealGM

“I signed five years for a reason: Yeah, I want to keep this core going. I want to keep winning and bring some excitement back to D.C.” RealGM

Any rule changes that you think would help the NBA game? For instance, sometimes they talk about instituting FIBA goaltending rules in the NBA. Any thoughts on that or any other changes that would help the game play? Marcin Gortat: The goaltending? It definitely wouldn’t help. You have too many athletic guys in this league that would tip the ball out of the rim, so pretty much to make a basket you will need to swish it, you know what I’m saying? I would say I would loosen up a little bit the rules about the fighting fines. That’s what I would loosen up. Because today you go to an ice hockey game, and the one thing they’re waiting for is a fight, you know what I’m saying? So if they could set it up something like that in the NBA. That if there are two guys and they have a problem, if they could just separate everybody. And these two people that have problem, if they could fight ... ESPN.com

Your mother was a volleyball player for the Polish national team, your father was big-time boxer -- you have the tattoo of him on your chest. If you weren’t playing basketball, what would you be doing? One of those two things? Something completely different? Marcin Gortat: You know what, I’m asking the same question. I’m asking myself this question every once in a while and quite honestly I can’t answer this question. I don’t know what I’d do. I would probably ... I definitely won’t play volleyball, maybe I’d be a boxer. I’d definitely be a bodybuilder. I’d lift and I’d probably be a security or some bouncer in the a club, maybe, I don’t know. I’d probably finish school and work toward a direction from there. ESPN.com

THE TOP 50 PLAYERS
IN WIZARDS HISTORY
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Gilbert Arenas and Antawn Jamison are the only two new-era players cracking the Top 10.

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