Although I've been lurking on the site for quite some time, just wanted to start out by introducing myself - as this is my first post; so hello fellow wiz heads!
Since the draft is over and we are inevitably headed towards a lockout, NBA news and specifically news regarding the Wiz is dwindling daily - which sucks! Last night, I was scouring the net for something to read and came across an article about Andray Blatche going to Jamaica on a charity mission. First off, kudos to Dray for doing something positive for people who need help improving their life conditions - I'll even go as far as wiping a clean slate for Lapdance Tuesday! But Dray, being Dray, had to drop some pretty questionable quotes, which I will discuss below.
I know the general consensus around here on Blatche - most people want him long gone. Which based on his attitude, general lack of conditioning and shot selection last year, I can't say the same sentiments haven't arisen in me. Now, having said that, I think the reason many of us are so disgruntled and dare I say, even disgusted with him, is the fact that we can see he has tremendous potential and skill. Basically, he has frustrated the hell out of us, because he teases us with a great showing and then he reverts to being the same old Dray! Although I'm not going to dive into a bunch of stats to breakdown his potential, IMHO he has all the tools to be a top PF in this league. What I feel holds him back is his childish attitude, nonchalant energy, lack of hustle / toughness, shot selection and the fact that once he gets the ball, he's usually not giving it up!
To the quotes!
This was what Blatche called in to say on the Mike Wise Show earlier THIS year:
"If anybody watched me grow into this team and into this league, they'd know that I've never been a back-to-the-basket, bang-bang down player. I'm more of a face-up and a finesse player. That's who I am. I can't force myself to be a different player that I'm not."
and this is what he said in yesterday's article:
“I’m still an up-and-coming player”
“I just want to be mean and tough in the paint, work on my jump shot and become more consistent. Work on my body. My goal is to be one of the best players in the league.”
First off, I think calling himself an "up-and-coming player" is a bit of a stretch. I would have been alright with that comment, in say 2010, but its almost 2012 and he's been in the league for almost 7 years now. Yes, I understand he was 19 when he came into the league and yes, I understand he had to wait for his time behind some veterans. But like it or not, he's a veteran on this team of youngsters; no longer is he a "project." He needs to accept that fact and began acting like a leader, instead of a 20 year old who just came into the league!
Secondly, I just was curious to see what you guys thought in regards to his "I just want to be mean and tough in the paint" comment. Now that the Wizards are trying to put together a team based on toughness, grittiness and DEFENSE, does Dray finally feel the heat? Has the Wizards new approach lit his fire or is it all talk? Going from saying you're a finesse player to wanting to be "mean and tough" in the within 7 months, doesn't really add up, does it?