The end has come as the Washington Wizards have ended their Training Camp. As they now get ready to play their first preseason game this coming Tuesday at Dallas. They went out with a bang as the Wizards had a Fan Fair that was located outside in Parking Lot L at George Mason University. There was balloon animals, face painting, autograph sessions from former Bullets/Wizards Legends. I asked one fan, Rizzy Sheikh on his thoughts of the whole Fan Fair fest and he had nothing but great things to say, "I love it, it's at my school (George Mason Unviversity) and I met Coach Mike Woodson!" After laughing hard, he did go on to say that he met also Josh Howard and Trevor Booker. He also went to say that, " I love some of the new cheerleaders." Can you blame the man?
What caught my beautiful (yeah I said it) eyes was former the Final 4 Georgetown Hoya shooting guard/small forward and team captain, Tyler Crawford teaching kids how to make a chest pass.
As the outside festivities were coming to an end, the Washington Wizards inside the Patriot Center had their final training camp scrimmage for the public. There was several highlights like John Wall's 360 layup and killer crossover. (Which the crowd went wild and crazy and even made Comcast's very own Chris Miller have that look like, "What in the hell just happened?")
One person who stood out to me was Lester Hudson aka 'Baby Microwave' who had a great camp in my honest opinion. He was shooting lights out and was consistent. He can play the 1 (point guard) or the 2 (shooting guard). He is a great shooter and can help the Wizards outside shooting. He was not only shooting well, he was playing solid defense and even ran the point guard duties very well. He was a surprise because nobody knew that he would shine. I knew he could shoot but he really displayed it this week. I fully expect Lester Hudson to make this team.
Yi Jianlan had his own crowd on hand. As buses full of people from his native country of China came to show their support. Everytime he touched it or made a basket, a loud cheer was to follow for Yi. He had one helluva game, as his jumpers were going down and even had some nice post moves. Grant it, he does get a little soft in the inside (his inside game needs to be worked on), but overall, he has skills to utilize and become a threat in this offense. I saw Yi even shoot a three pointer which can stretch defenses.
Speaking of three's, Andray Blatche shot four three pointers (that i saw). He hit two of the four that he shot. He was shooting several jumpers and took it in couple of times. Dray was being Dray, which is a great thing because he has gotten so much better. But Coach Saunders said that he had, "stupid fouls." Which basically meant he did not want Dray to get meaningful fouls when he needs those fouls for other reasons. He is going to be valueable to this front court, no doubt about it.
After talking to Coach Flip Saunders, it sounded like he was more impressed with Center Hilton Armstrong. Hilton is a solid center but does not have the flash like JaVale McGee. Hilton instead, does all the dirty work and is more fundamentally sound. Coach Saunders even said, "I want more substance then style." It sounded like Hilton Armstrong may be the starting Center for the Washington Wizards, but then again, it could be a message that Flip is sending that he wants more out of these guys.
The towel head (no serious, he had a towel around his head the whole time and it feels like he had it over his face this whole training camp), Gilbert Arenas, tweaked his ankle the last two days in practice so was held out today. He was amusing to watch, I wont lie but I dont know what he is trying to do but I was told several times that, "Gilbert is being Gilbert." As long as he scores and is the old Gilbert, he can wrap himself in a beach towel for all I care, as long as it produces wins!
^ John Wall made the crowd go crazy with the ohh's and the ahhh's. He is very smooth with the ball and makes it look very easy. The way he controls his speed is crazy! He is so aggressive on not only the offensive end but on the defensive end. He has crazy speed and can use it to his advantage. He is the type of player who can run full speed, stop, and then run in top speed as if he did not even stop the first time. I totally expect John Wall to give many point guards and defenders issues with covering him. He opens floodgates for other teammates to do well. Hopefully Al Thornton and others excel with his help.
* Nick Young is going to excel as he was shooting the ball real well. He did run into a Wall, a John Wall. As John Wall went to block his dunk and was blocked but referee's called a foul.
* Al Thornton, who was hit in the knee by a young lady of GMU who was driving, was not a force on the offensive end but was playing good defense. He possibly may be the starting small forward.
* Adam Morrison is a man who will always be cheered for his two rings and never for his shooting. Im kidding but he didn't have a great shooting day. He had a horrible shooting day in my opinion.
Ladies and Gentlemen, introducing the beautiful, Pam Chvotkin of WizardsExtreme.com.