Wednesday, December 21, 2011

2011-2012 NBA Preview #9: Washington Wizards

Greetings all... tales from Washington aka the craziest team in the league...

Roster Breakdown (Starters in Bold)
  • PG - John Wall, Shelvin Mack
  • SG - Nick Young, Jordan Crawford, Roger Mason
  • SF - Rashard Lewis, Jan Vesely, Chris Singleton, Mo Evans
  • PF - Andray Blatche, Trevor Booker, Kevin Seraphin
  • C - JaVale McGee, Ronny Turiaf, Hamady Ndiaye

General Thoughts

I'm going to start with effusive praise. John Wall is the player that I hear most mentioned when the question is asked, "who's ready to breakout?" in the same fashion of Durant two years ago and Griffin last year. Wall averaged 16 points, 8 assists, 5 rebounds, and 2 steals a game as rookie, and I can see a 20/9/5/2 type of line in year two while cutting down on his near league-leading turnover total from last year. He's the reason they are as high as they are in my pre-season rankings. Elsewhere, they have a lot of question marks. Nick Young and Rashard Lewis may be the best shooting duo on any wing in the league, but that's literally all that either one of them can do, and with Jordan Crawford as the number one swingman backup? That's a defensive situation that could be an epic disaster. Jan Vesely comes in as a lottery European player with freakish athleticism who is apparently more of a finisher/slasher than your typical Euro big. Here's the fun part: Andray Blatche and Jevale McGee. Blatche is immensely talented, but he may have the worst shot selection in the ENTIRE LEAGUE, and while you can't completely scoff at a guy that averaged 17 and 8 last year, but unless you watch Andray Blatche (Fool!) operate live, you can't grasp the entire picture. As far as McGee, he's a complete athletic marvel at 7-feet that can run and leap like a swingman, but the skills are still developing. I'm actually pretty high on McGee, and I believe if he was in a better situation (i.e. not next to Blatche) he'd be better, but he's giving you like 12 and 8 with 2 blocks this year. That's fine. There are some pretty big issues (no backup for Wall, defense on the wing, the fact that Blatche is on the team), but if John Wall explodes like some think, this team could have a higher ceiling than we think.


Blatche. Against my better judgment, it almost has to be Blatche. I'm penciling in Wall for making a leap of sorts, but if Blatche can EVER get his head on straight, this is a far more interesting team. There's certainly a limit to where they can go without a single reliable wing defender, but with Blatche and McGee on the backside with their athleticism, they could mask some things.

Predicted Finish

10th in the East

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