Tag Archive | "NBA Draft"

The Wizardry of Mediocrity

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The Wizardry of Mediocrity

Posted on 26 June 2012 by Brett Dickinson

The Only Wizards AssetWith the NBA draft on Thursday night, Wizards fans are all but reminded of the incompetency of the organization; Kwame Brown over Pau Gasol and Tyson Chandler, Jared Jeffries and Juan Dixon over Tayshaun Prince and Carlos Boozer, Oleskiy Pecherov (who???) over Rajon Rondo, just to name a few.

The most recent blunder could be more damaging than all of those past failures, combined. Since Ted Leonsis took over, the goal has been to build with youth. The team actually made the smart basketball decision taking John Wall with the top pick two years ago (even if it was the logical move), but since then it has been back to ineptitude. Picking Jan Vesely last year over Kawhi Leonard can at least be considered explainable (at best), but the moves since have completely destructed the only asset the Wizards possess worth a damn (outside of Wall of course) in their financial flexibility.

Removing the knuckleheads from the locker room made all too much sense; they were actually more detrimental to their stud point guard’s progress. But the way the front office went about the process has completely shattered their cap consciousness. Not to the mention, they basically received nothing for Nick Young and gave up a high second round pick in one of the deepest drafts in the past decade. Adding the hefty contracts of Nene, Emeka Okafor and Trevor Ariza all but ensures the team will not be players in free agency for the foreseeable future.

In the upcoming seasons, James Harden, Serge Ibaka, Eric Gordon, Dwight Howard, Al Jefferson and Josh Smith are most likely to test the free agent market; the Wizards will not be players for any of them. Instead the team is stuck with large, unmovable contracts for two injury prone undersized (and under performing), aging centers with similar skill sets and a small forward with a lack of a perimeter game.

Everyone now believes the Wizards have all but ensured picking Bradley Beal Thursday night, the sharp shooter from Florida, but with this franchise’s draft history, anything can happen. Unless they hit a home run with the third pick (and with their track record the chances are slim), the Wizards will again muddle in mediocrity until John Wall leaves and the rebuild starts all over again.

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

Posted on 26 June 2012 by Glenn Clark

Honorable Mention: WNBA-Seattle Storm @ Washington Mystics (Tuesday 7pm from Verizon Center live on ESPN2), Connecticut Sun @ Washington Mystics (Friday 7pm from Verizon Center live on Comcast SportsNet), Phoenix Mercury @ Washington Mystics (Sunday 4pm from Verizon Center live on Comcast SportsNet/NBA TV); Auto Racing: NASCAR Quaker State 400 (Saturday 6:30pm from Sparta, KY live on TNT); Pro Wrestling: Ring of Honor (Friday 7:30pm Du Burns Arena); Cycling: Tour de France (Stage 1 Saturday 8am from Liege, BEL Stage 2 Sunday 8am from Liege, BEL to Seraing, BEL Stage 3 Monday 8am from Vise, BEL to Tournai, BEL. All cycling live on NBC Sports Network)

10. Kaskade (Friday 7:30pm 1st Mariner Arena); Dierks Bentley (Thursday 6:30pm Pier Six Pavilion), Ledisi/Eric Benet/Chrisette Michelle (Friday 6pm Pier Six Pavilion), Crosby, Stills and Nash (Monday 6:30pm Pier Six Pavilion); Iron Maiden (Saturday 7:30pm Jiffy Lube Live); Norah Jones (Wednesday 8pm Wolf Trap); Eric Hutchinson (Wednesday 7pm Rams Head Live), Lumineers (Sunday 7pm Rams Head Live); Anberlin (Tuesday 7pm Recher Theatre); Pietasters (Friday 9pm Ottobar); Jimmy Cliff (Monday 8pm Rams Head on Stage); Reel Big Fish/Goldfinger (Tuesday 6pm 9:30 Club), The Head and The Heart (Thursday 7pm 9:30 Club), Scissor Sisters (Monday 7pm 9:30 Club); Chris Isaak (Monday 7:30pm Birchmere); Fiona Apple (Tuesday 8pm Warner Theatre); Smithsonian Folklife Festival feat. George Clinton/Ivan Neville (Wednesday National Mall); Roger Clyne & The Peacemakers (Saturday 7pm State Theatre); The Jacksons (Sunday 8pm Modell Performing Arts Center at The Lyric); Linkin Park “Living Things” and The Offspring “Days Go By” available in stores/on iTunes (Tuesday)

I may only LIKE Norah Jones, but I LOVE this Norah Jones tune…

I quite much enjoy the tunes of The Lumineers…

Wait, The Offspring and Goldfinger in the same section of T10BD? Is this 1996?

For the record, the new Offspring tune is pretty good. They clearly decided they wanted to sound as much like the Foo Fighters as possible. That’s not a bad thing…

9. Erik Griffin (Friday & Saturday Baltimore Comedy Factory), Aisha Tyler (Friday & Saturday DC Improv); “Ted” out in theaters (Friday); “21 Jump Street” & “The Artist” available on Blu-Ray/DVD (Tuesday)

There are humorous things going on here. One-I actually think Ted looks fairly funny. Seth McFarlane and Mark Wahlberg kinda nail this one…

Also, 21 Jump Street was almost unquestionably the most pleasant surprise of the last year the last five years the last decade my life? Honestly this was a quality flick. Language NSFW…

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Former Morgan F/C Thompson gets Wizards workout

Posted on 13 June 2012 by WNST Staff

WASHINGTON, DC – The Washington Wizards will conduct pre-draft workouts on Wednesday, June 13th at Verizon Center.

The following players are currently scheduled to participate in tomorrow’s workout:

  • Al’Lonzo Coleman – F – Presbyterian College – 6’7, 255 lbs
  • Thomas Robinson – F – Kansas – 6’10, 237 lbs
  • Kevin Thompson – F – Morgan St. – 6-9, 240 lbs

Thompson was one of the premiere big men in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference over the last four seasons. He helped lead the Bears to two MEAC Tournament championships and two appearances in the NCAA Tournament. His MSU teams reached the MEAC Championship Game three times in his four seasons.

As a senior Thompson averaged 10.8 points per game and 8.2 rebounds per game. As a junior he averaged 13.1 points and 9.1 rebounds. As a sophomore he averaged a double double, 12.7 points and 11.8 rebounds. Even as a freshman Thompson averaged a respectable 8.9 points and 7.1 rebounds per game.

Thompson’s former Morgan teammate Reggie Holmes was signed by the Memphis Grizzlies after the 2010 NBA Draft and played for the team in the NBA Summer League.

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

Posted on 28 May 2012 by WNST Staff

Honorable Mention: Boxing-Antonio Tarver vs. Lateef Kayode (Saturday 9pm from Carson, CA live on Showtime), Gabriel Rosado vs. Joel Julio (Friday 9pm from Bethlehem, PA live on NBC Sports Network); WNBA: Minnesota Lynx @ Washington Mystics (Wednesday 7pm from Verizon Center live on Comcast SportsNet); Pro Lacrosse: MLL Chesapeake Bayhawks @ Denver Outlaws (Saturday 9pm from Denver live on ESPN3.com)

10. Zac Brown Band (Thursday 5:30pm Merriweather Post Pavilion); Capital Jazz Fest feat. Indie.Arie, Bill Cosby (Friday-Sunday Merriweather Post Pavilion); Radiohead (Sunday 7:30pm Verizon Center); Miranda Lambert/Jerrod Niemann (Sunday 4pm Jiffy Lube Live);  City and Colour (Wednesday 7pm Rams Head Live); Smile Empty Soul (Saturday 5pm Recher Theatre); Crossfade (Monday 7pm Baltimore Soundstage); Dandy Warhols (Tuesday 7pm 9:30 Club); The Used (Wednesday 7:30pm Fillmore Silver Spring); Victor Wooten (Thursday 8pm Howard Theatre); Dr. John (Friday 7:30pm Birchmere); Rhett Miller (Monday 8pm Jammin Java)

I’d watch ZBB do just about anything, but this was as good as anything I’ve seen them do…

My favorite tune from Thom Yorke and the boys?

For more traditional country folk, I sorta dig this Jerrod Niemann tune…

I wish I didn’t have to admit to digging this tune…

9. Great Grapes Wine & Food Festival (Saturday & Sunday 12pm Oregon Ridge); Guy Torry (Thursday-Saturday Baltimore Comedy Factory); Corey Holcomb (Thursday-Sunday DC Improv); “Man on a Ledge” available on Blu-Ray/DVD (Tuesday); Glenn Clark’s first ever “Hogfest” (Saturday)

That’s right. For the first time in my (still?) young life, I will be roasting a pig Saturday. It’s all thanks in part to ABC Rental Store in Rosedale. A talented young man I listen to on the radio is always talking to me about them. I think his show is called “The Reality Check.” I PRAY my results make me as happy as George W. Bush…

Also, I will be hosting a qualifier for the Olympic KanJam team Saturday (more on Twitter @OlympicKanJam). I expect the day to look much like this…

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

Posted on 22 May 2012 by Glenn Clark

Honorable Mention: Golf-PGA Tour Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial (Thursday & Friday 3pm live on Golf Channel Saturday & Sunday 3pm live on CBS. All golf from Ft. Worth, TX), Champions Tour Senior PGA Championship (Thursday & Friday 3pm live on Golf Channel Saturday & Sunday 3pm live on NBC. All golf from Benton Harbor, MI); High School Lacrosse: MPSSAA Class 2A/1A Final-Fallston vs. South Carroll (Tuesday 6pm UMBC Stadium), Class 4A/3A Final-Westminster vs. South River (Wednesday 4pm UMBC Stadium), Class 3A/2A Final-Hereford vs. Glenelg (Wednesday 8pm UMBC Stadium); WNBA-Tulsa Shock @ Washington Mystics (Wednesday 7pm Verizon Center)

10. Drake (Friday 7pm Verizon Center); One Direction (Thursday 7:30pm Patriot Center); Corey Smith (Friday 8pm Rams Head Live); Jason Isbell (Saturday 1pm Rams Head on Stage); Garbage (Wednesday 7pm 9:30 Club); Collective Soul (Wednesday 8pm Fillmore Silver Spring); Thrice (Wednesday 7:30pm Howard Theatre); John Mayer “Born and Raised” and Garbage “Not Your Kind of People” available in stores/on iTunes (Tuesday)

You know that I’m a “money over everything, money on my mind” type of guy, right?

I used to have the biggest crush on Shirley Manson. Hell, I probably still have  huge crush on Shirley Manson…

If you don’t want to go see Collective Soul we probably wouldn’t be much of friends…

John Mayer is apparently doing country music now. This is a classic example of when “success just simply isn’t enough.” See below.

9. Men in Black III” and “Chernobyl Diaries” open in theaters (Friday); Bob Marley (Wednesday-Sunday DC Improv); Cedric The Entertainer (Saturday 8pm Modell Performing Arts Center at The Lyric); Brew at the Zoo (Saturday & Sunday Maryland Zoo in Baltimore)

There’s simply no chance MIB3 is something I’ll want to go see. And while Cedric the Entertainer is funny, I’d rather talk about beer.

I have no idea whether or not Flying Dog Brewery will be unleashing canned Underdog Atlantic Lager on the Zoo this weekend, but I DO know that the campaign they used to roll it out in our nation’s capital was simply fantastic…

Brilliant.

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Gary Williams, Johnny Holliday, Len Bias to be honored this weekend

Posted on 03 May 2012 by WNST Staff

ROCKVILLE, Md. - Retired basketball coach Gary Williams will receive a lifetime achievement award in a ceremony at the Washington, D.C., Metropolitan Basketball Hall of Fame this Saturday night at the Capital Hilton.

In addition, longtime play-by-play announcer Johnny Holliday will be inducted into the Hall at the ceremony, along with former Maryland player Len Bias.

“Gary’s contributions to the Washington, D.C., basketball community are tremendous,” said Bob Geoghan, founder of the Hall. “I can’t think of anyone locally who deserves this type of recognition and award more.”

Williams was a head coach for 33 years, including 22 at his alma mater. He earned a record of 668-360 overall and 461-252 at Maryland. He was the National Coach of the Year in 2002 and the ACC Coach of the Year in 2002 and 2010.

Holliday is known throughout the nation as the Voice of the Terrapins and recently completed his 33rd year as the play-by-play man for University of Maryland football and men’s basketball. A former Washingtonian of the Year, Holliday is also known throughout the region for his tireless fund-raising endeavors and his charity leadership.

Bias is still considered to be one of the best college basketball players ever in the game. He was the ACC Player of the Year in 1985 and 1986, and was the second overall pick in the 1986 NBA Draft.

Others being inducted on Saturday are former NBA player and current broadcaster Phil Chenier; Georgetown University announcer Rich Chvotkin; former Washington and Baltimore general manager Bob Ferry, high school coach Stu Vetter and Earl Lloyd, the first African-American to play in the NBA.

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Providence Forward Dixon To Transfer to Towson

Posted on 30 April 2012 by WNST Staff

Bilal Dixon Will Transfer to Towson
Forward/Center Played in 94 Games & Started 68 for Providence from 2009-12

TOWSON, Md. – The Towson University men’s basketball program has added a big man to help the Tigers for the 2012-13 season, as Bilal Dixon, a 6-foot-9, 245-pound forward/center, will attend Towson. Dixon will have one year of eligibility remaining after transferring from Providence College, where he played in 94 games and started 68 for the Friars from 2009-12.

“We’re excited to add a player with Bilal’s talent and experience to our roster,” said Towson head coach Pat Skerry. “I coached him for two years in the BIG EAST conference, at a prestigious school like Providence that has a rich basketball tradition. I know what he’s capable of and I am thrilled to have him as a member of our basketball family. We are looking forward to adding a student-athlete that’s had success at the highest level of collegiate basketball.”

Dixon, a native of Jersey City, N.J., was named to The Sporting News BIG EAST All-Freshman Team in 2010 after averaging 8.2 points, 6.8 rebounds and 1.9 blocks per game while starting 30 of 31 games for Providence. As a freshman, Dixon recorded his first double-double in conference play against No. 19 Connecticut as he registered 12 points and 11 rebounds and guided the Friars past the Huskies, 81-66. Dixon also hauled in 16 rebounds while matching up against future NBA draft pick Greg Monroe and seventh-ranked Georgetown and he set his career-high with 19 boards vs. Seton Hall.

As a sophomore, Dixon had nine double-digit rebounding games, including double-doubles against Colonial Athletic Association foe Northeastern and BIG EAST rival Seton Hall.

This past season, Dixon saw action in 31 of 32 games for the Friars and averaged 4.3 points per game. He was fourth on the team in rebounding (4.1 rpg), second in blocked shots (37) and second in field goal percentage (55.8 percent). Dixon scored a career-high 18 points and hauled in 10 rebounds to lead Providence past Rutgers on February 1, 2012. He also had a career-high seven blocked shots against South Carolina on December 1, 2011. Dixon averaged a rebound every 3.87 minutes he was on the floor, which ranked eighth in the BIG EAST Conference.

Dixon attended Queen of Peace High School (N.J.) from 2006-08 where he was a second-team All-State selection and the Conference Player of the Year as a senior after averaging 19 points, 14 rebounds and six blocks. Dixon led Queen of Peace to an 18-0 mark in conference action in 2008. Dixon played at St. Anthony’s High School (N.J.) during his freshman and sophomore seasons.

Dixon will be one of three transfer students from BIG EAST programs who will be eligible to play for Towson. He joins Jerrelle Benimon (Georgetown) and Mike Burwell (South Florida), who each have two years of eligibility remaining starting with the 2012-13 season.

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Maryland guard Stoglin declares for NBA Draft after year suspension handed down

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Maryland guard Stoglin declares for NBA Draft after year suspension handed down

Posted on 30 April 2012 by WNST Staff

(Updated: 10:15 a.m.)

Looking primed to return to the NCAA tournament next season with a loaded recruiting class coming this fall, the University of Maryland will suffer a major blow to those hopes.

More details are emerging about the reason for leading scorer and second-team all-ACC guard Terrell Stoglin declaring for the 2012 NBA Draft on Sunday. The university announced Monday morning that Stoglin and Mychal Parker, who recently announced his intention to transfer to another school, had been suspended for a year due to “a violation of the University of Maryland Student-Athlete Code of Conduct.”

Averaging 21.6 points per game to lead the Atlantic Coast Conference in the 2011-12 season, the 6-foot-1 Stoglin will exit College Park after his sophomore season.

Stoglin’s relationship with first-year head coach Mark Turgeon was strained at times last season, which included an incident in which the guard publicly questioned the coach’s motives after he was benched in the final minutes of a loss at Duke. Turgeon openly shared his frustration with Stoglin’s willingness to be coached at different points but had recently expressed confidence on AM 1570 WNST that he would be a better coach for the Tuscon, Ariz. native next season.

The mercurial guard — along with Parker — will instead depart after one season under Turgeon.

“Being a University of Maryland student-athlete carries a tremendous honor and responsibility,” director of athletics Kevin Anderson said. “As much as we appreciate the effort these two young men gave to the program this season, they were unable to live up to that responsibility. We’re disappointed, but hope they use this as a learning experience.”

It is believed that Stoglin’s suspension stems from academic issues.

The deadline to declare for the NBA Draft was Sunday, with the draft itself to be held on June 28 in Newark, N.J

Based on Stoglin’s action on his Twitter account Monday morning, it became more apparent the announcement was not based solely on his desire to play in the NBA.

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Your Monday Reality Check-Turgeon Deserving Of Praise With Work To Do

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Your Monday Reality Check-Turgeon Deserving Of Praise With Work To Do

Posted on 12 March 2012 by Glenn Clark

On Friday’s edition of “The Reality Check”, Ryan Chell and I decided to put together a Maryland Terrapins season ending report card. After the Terps’ loss to North Carolina in the ACC Tournament, it was easy to assume the basketball season was over in College Park.

That assumption proved accurate Sunday night, as the NIT failed to extend an invite to the Terps as expected. The University of Maryland declined to participate in the lesser known postseason CBI Tournament due to the financial model that forces schools to pay for participation. (Three schools from BCS conferences-Washington State, Pitt and Oregon State all accepted CBI bids.)

It’s a long winded way to say the season is over. The Terps finished 17-15 in Mark Turgeon’s first season since taking over for the retired Gary Williams, surpassing the expectations of many while still falling short of the expectations of others.

In our Report Card segment Friday, I graded Turgeon’s job in year one as a “B”. I noted the lack of both quality and quantity in Maryland basketball players that Turgeon was forced to deal with partly due to the late timing of Williams’ retirement announcement. Not only did Maryland lose All-ACC Center Jordan Williams to the NBA, they also lost F Haukur Palsson to a pro turn in Europe. Turgeon was only able to retain one from Williams’ three-man recruiting class (G Nick Faust) although he made up for that in part with a late commitment from C Alex Len.

(I point all of this out because some Maryland fans have decided to “blame” Gary Williams for the state of the program. They’re only telling half of the story.)

Len’s 10 game suspension to start the season and PG Pe’Shon Howard’s 18 missed games due to injury made an already difficult situation nearly impossible. Entering the season, there was legitimate reason to fear a “bottoming out” of sorts for the Maryland program.

While those fears never came to fruition, the team never fully came together. Sophomore G Terrell Stoglin at times carried the Terps during a 6-10 Atlantic Coast Conference campaign, but often proved to be as much of the problem as the solution. Len never showed progress during his freshman campaign, Senior G Sean Mosley offered valuable leadership but never overwhelmed with his play on the floor. The only player that showed marked progress was Faust, who was named to the league’s All-Rookie team.

All of these were contributing factors in grading the job Turgeon did this season. It was a tough campaign, but it could have been significantly worse. Turgeon deserves credit for keeping the program afloat and avoiding any true embarrassment. (Only a late season loss at Georgia Tech stands out as a head shaker due to the opponent and Maryland’s most lopsided defeats came at the hands of NCAA Tournament participants like UNC, Duke, Virginia, Florida State, Alabama and Iona.)

Nearly five hundred words in, it’s time to look to the future. While Turgeon is absolutely deserving of praise for how he kept this Maryland team together in his first season, the coach offered a noteworthy thought Sunday night via Twitter.

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Slow Your Roll Monday on the MSB

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Slow Your Roll Monday on the MSB

Posted on 05 March 2012 by Thyrl Nelson

The MobTown Sports Beat is handing out speed warnings. Here’s who needs to slow their proverbial roll.

 

Danny Ainge

 

The first and biggest speed warning goes to Danny Ainge and the Boston Celtics. Rajon Rondo scrapped together 28 points, 17 rebounds and 20 assists for a “Big-O/Wilt-style” triple double on Sunday, perhaps responding to the trade rumors that have been swirling around him for seemingly as long as anyone can now remember. Sooner or later the Brass above the brass that runs the Celtics is going to realize that Rajon Rondo is surely the best player that the Celtics have, not to mention the youngest of their array of stars. They’re also bound to realize that Rondo can and will win a hell of a lot more games for the Celtics in the future than either Danny Ainge or Doc Rivers could ever hope to.

 

There’s an argument that Rondo could be the best player in the game, and still the Celtics seem content…no determined to ship him out of town. That’s right I said the best player in the game. Lebron is the most talented, that’s not even close, Kobe Bryant and Derrick Rose are the most tenacious and the most willing and able to put the team on their backs, but no one is scrappier or more helpful in more areas than Rondo. He’s the best extended dribble point guard in the league, he’s the most consistent threat to hand out 20 dimes on any given night since John Stockton, he rebounds as well and any 6’1” guard ever and it wasn’t that long ago that we saw his arm bent unnaturally backward in a playoff game that he returned to play well in almost immediately.

 

And what I didn’t mention yet, but will now is that at about $11 million per season Rondo is at least the league’s best pound-for-pound player or dollar-for-dollar player if not its all-around best.

 

With all of that said, Rondo should walk into Ainge’s office at first chance and demand to be traded or paid. If Ainge and Rivers think Rondo’s already tough to deal with imagine him disgruntled and intentionally a distraction. At the very least Rondo should point out that all of the trade talks involving him seem to involve players on the other side who make substantially more money than Rondo by comparison. Ainge, who seems intent on keeping the Celtics aged core intact while shipping out every useful young player on the roster needs to slow down before he really gives Rondo a reason to exercise his leverage.

 

 

Miami Heat

 

The Lakers served the Heat a gigantic helping of “slow your roll” on Sunday and showed the young risers that everything won’t be as easy for them as they’ve made it look of late. We all waited to see what would happen with Kobe and Wade on Sunday, and it looked like the Heat did too. Miami got caught up in trying to out-physical the Lakers early and never got their game on track behind it. Leave it to Kobe to run psychological warfare on the Heat when everyone else (including the heat themselves) were looking for physical retaliation.

 

The Heat are still easily the best team in the league and have to be the hands down favorite to win it all, while the Lakers may not even be the best team playing in their building this year. Still for one game at least, Kobe and the Lakers reminded Miami that they still have some work to do, and before you can get “not 4, not 5”, you first have to get one and then two. Until then the Miami Heat can still slow their roll.

 

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