I want to say hello to The great BF community from the Golden city of Prague! Forgive me my English, it's sometimes like Jan shooting FT :-)
Been following Wizards for 3-4 years now (started year before Jan was drafted) and want to say few things about how the team looks like from beyond the ocean.
1. Organization seems like one of the top 5 worst right now - top 5 worst GM, top 5 worst Head coach, top 5 worst player development, top 5 worst medical organization/staff, maybe drafting is there as well. Like really. What does it say about Ted Leonsis? Top 5 owner???
2. Reaction to Mike's article about bench problems, and how this is not Randy's fault - I can see that, but by that logic, it's not EG's fault, but it's all only Ted's fault, beacause he is the boss of it all. I think that Randy, and he really is in a tough spot, is terrible HC (maybe he is a nice AC) and he is to blame like everybody else. Look at Phoenix, Boston, Philly, Lakers etc. those teams got terrible terrible players (not just bench), and they are doing a better job (even if we are just a few games into the season). Sorry but no excuses like that.
3. Players - this team has got some really nice players, but other than Ariza and Webster (spot up corner 3 shooters) everyone is playing well below their capabilities. That's on coaching staff. Our offense is just sum of parts relying on their natural talents. Defense is not better. Without beast mode Nene we are bad and we will be bad. And we can be 100% sure Nene will not be in that mode more than 10-15 times a year. He's in Washington for money and that is all. I don't blame him, he survived cancer, he knows what's important in life, but it don't make me love him. Now you know why people in Brazil don't like him, or why legendary Oscar Schmidt doesn't like him. For me, he's now something like better (and cheaper - thanks god!) Rashard Lewis - he will coast though his contract with us, than probably make a run with contender as a bench veteran. Nice :-)
4. Player development. Man that is the most frustrating to me. How can you be succesfull, when everybody is getting worse (or injured) with you? Besides corner 3 point shooters (Webster, Ariza and Beal if Randy doesn't want him to create on his own would be here too) who thrived here??? It's totally ridiculous. Kevin Seraphin just dedicated his whole summer (throwing Eurobasket gold medal and having fun with Tony Parker, Nick Batum etc. out of window) to work with coaching staff and he is at best the same old terrible MBP.
For veterans this is the place to collect checks and mabe try to showcase yourself before next career move. For young guys this is hell, that probably will lead you out of the league (or on the brink of it) - Blatche, Petcherov, Nick Young, JaVale, Ves, Singleton, Seraphin, Jordan Crawford, Shelvin Mack, you can go on.... Thank god Satoransky is playing in Spain (czech fan perspective). John was considered can't miss pick and right now he is playing like a mediocre-to-good nba point guard, one with great natural abilities, but terrible shot, not consistent defensive focus, average at PnR etc. Same with Bradley - great talent, but where he's at right now? HERE
And Otto? 3rd pick, such a great talent, and we don't even know if he's doing good or bad or what? How sad is that?
5. And finally Jan?
Opening statement - I like him very much, but Jan is not very good, and he never actually was. What he was back in Europe, was a talented, promising young big, great athlete with kind of unique skill set. He was not at all a finished product, not even for Europe. We talked about him before the draft with my guys, and my friend, ex-national team player ( some 30 yers ago :-) ), was actually unplesantly suprised by how raw he was after seeing him in some Euroleague game. So when Washington took him at nr. 6 in 2011 draft, what you think the organization would realize was, that they are committing to a long term project, that they are taking a guy who is not your typical big by any means and that if you pick him this high you have a specific plan what you want him to become (and that you have a plan how to get there). Now we all know that this was not the case, that Wizards struggled badly after realizing what Jan really was and that they didn't have the developmental quality even if they knew what they were doing. So now it stands like this - the pick was a complete waste of a resource and Jan is probably heading back to Europe.
One wonders, what could happen, if the team started with him for example by demanding (and helping with) to get better at shooting free throws as a absolute number one priority. Maybe not being afraid to get fouled, would help with those frickin confidence issues... GEEEEEZZ!!!