The Washington Wizards looked tired and sluggish in a loss to the Chicago Bulls 103-96 Saturday night. The one player who looked rested was Gilbert Arenas, who came off the bench to lead all scorers with 30 points, including an absurd 7-of-10 shooting from behind the arc. While many Wiz fans, and a certain blogger, is tired of Gil’s act in D.C., if this team hopes to make a playoff run, or trade Arenas, is to insert him into the starting lineup.
It is no secret that John Wall is a special talent, even after having back-to-back average games, but he can’t carry this team as a rookie learning to play point guard at an NBA level. While some look at having Wall and Arenas starting in the same backcourt as a bigger issue, but right now the Wizards need to get a true scorer on the floor, and that is Arenas. Unlike Blatche, Gil can create his own shot and/or chuck it up, while Wall is simply not a go-to guy at this early stage in his career. Kirk Hinrich meanwhile is a nice sixth man, but he should not be a starting shooting guard and he seems uncomfortable with his role. Against the Bulls on Saturday, Wall was the only starter to score in double-digits, with Blatche, JaVale McGee and Al Thornton combining to go 7-for-25 from the floor. Flip Saunders will need to do his best to make sure Arenas understands he won’t be the primary ball handler, but in addition to what should be benefits on the court, if other teams see Arenas play and play at a high level, his microscopic trade value might actually improve. Sure, inserting Arenas into the starting lineup may be a big risk, but for a 2-6 team it could be the temporary spark they need to get their season into gear.
About the Author
Written by Robert Bode
A sports die-hard through and through. I grew up playing almost every sport possible, and to this day I try to stay as active as possible. However, since I'm not a professional athlete, talking and writing about sports is the next best thing. A University of Florida graduate but living in my hometown of Washington D.C. (well Northern Virginia), my favorite teams are the Florida Gators, Miami Dolphins, Chicago White Sox, Washington Nationals, Real Madrid, good up-tempo NBA teams (so not the Knicks), and Washington Capitals.