Friday, April 18, 2008

Can a King Beat a Team of Wizards?

Pradamaster says no way. Michael Wilbon (taking time from his TV gigs) agrees with that sentiment.

Bottom line: we know what the Wizards will bring. They haven't really shuffled their roster that much over the years. The reason some fans have been pissed at GM Ernie Grunfeld (not making splashy or panicky trades) has proven to be a key ingredient in making a perennial playoff contender.

We have three All-Stars. At least two bonafide clutch players (Jamison and Arenas) and two potential ones (Stevenson and Butler). We have size (imagine a lineup of Haywood, Blatche/Songalia, Jamison, Butler, and Arenas) and speed (Arenas, Daniels, Young). We have a waaaay better coach. Our guys are, for the most part, recovering from their injuries.

The Cavaliers, on the other hand, don't really know who they are. As others have mentioned, there's little firepower beyond James and Big Z. Unlike the Wizard's coach, Cavs coach Mike Brown hasn't been able to juggle injuries that well. And that's not a good position to be in when you're going up against a team that you've pretty much owned in the playoffs.

Think Arenas has forgotten the "you're a [punk] if you miss those free throws?" Think Butler doesn't recall watching James cut through the defense like a controlling mother through self-esteem? Think Stevenson has forgotten an offseason of fans and critics alike wondering aloud, "Why did we get this guy? He barely scored in the playoffs last year."

Think James doesn't realize that he doesn't have Larry Hughes around to defend the smaller guys, hit an open shot and telegraph Eddie Jordan's plays to his teammates?

Anyone thinking this rivalry is just a watered-down, Eastern Conference version of those Lakers-Kings battles in the early 2000's better think again. This is more like the Knicks-Heat if anything...you know, where both sides won critical games.

Like Doc Holiday said in Tombstone, the Wizards aren't looking for revenge...they want a "reckoning."

Charles Barkley was right about it not being a good idea to piss people off before the game; he just had the wrong team.

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