When Gilbert Arenas was traded to Orlando in December 2011, it created a goofy void in the locker room that no one will ever be able fill. But if there was ever a player who could come close to filling that void, it was Jordan Crawford. He may not have had all of Arenas' skills, and he may not have had the off the court star power Arenas had, but he brought a special quirk that helped a fanbase desperate for some entertainment get through some rough times.
While most of us can probably agree it's for the best that the Wizards and Crawford have moved on (regardless of how you feel about what the Wizards got back in the trade) there's still a part of me that's going to miss Crawford. To understand what I'll miss, let's take a look back at some of his finest moments.
ON THE COURT
Years from now, this is what we'll probably remember most. Not only was this a dramatic win on the road (which has been quite a rarity recently) but it allowed Steve Buckhantz to break out "DAGGER!!!" from its dusty sheath for the first time in ages. Plus, it was the quintessential Jordan Crawford play: Awkward looking and a little harder than it needed to be, but very rewarding when it worked.
The most underrated aspect of Crawford's game was his ability to find players for alley oops. For a guy with a well-deserved reputation as a gunner, he knew how to find a guy streaking to the basket for a highlight dunk. This oop to John Wall over Baron Davis is my favorite but there are plenty of others to enjoy:
One of the great shames of the trade is that with Crawford, John Wall was free to unleash his speed off the ball to create highlight plays like the one you just saw. Now that he's gone, Wall has to be the facilitator on the break almost exclusively. That said, we'd be remiss if we didn't bring up Crawford's most (in)famous pass:
OFF THE COURT
In the future, if you ever have to explain Jordan Crawford to someone who has never heard of him, I'd recommend just showing them the following section and they should have a pretty good understanding by the time they're done.
Least Romantic Wizard goes to Jordan Crawford with this gem.
"I'm the wrong person to talk to about Valentine's Day," he said laughing. "I usually get rid of my shorties around now."
via Sarah Kogod
"When it's time to score, I score. As I should." via Mike
"It really comes down to if I make the shot, it's a good shot." via Craig Stouffer
Crawford isn't a fan of Bieber or his music, but couldn't help but ignore his celebrity as he drove to practice and pre-teen girls surrounded the arena holding signs and screaming.
"He's a popular guy," Crawford said. "I seen all the little girls in there waiting on him before practice. So, you know, it's definitely here."
When asked if he was sure if the fans weren't waiting for him, Crawford had a long laugh before saying, "Nah. Not them young ones." via Michael Lee
Just ran into a grinning Jordan Crawford at Verizon Center. Me: Going to Vegas? JC: "Yes". Me: To play? JC: "To be a Playa." #Wizards— Ben Standig (@BenStandig) July 10, 2012
And let's not forget his amazing Instagram page, where you can find pictures of him riding in planes with Jan Vesely, dunking on grocery displays, and posting his post-workout meal, which I'm pretty sure consists of a hot dog bun, shredded cheese and Ramen noodles.
Best of luck in Boston, Jordan. I'm pretty sure they have no idea what's coming their way up there, but we certainly know what we'll be missing.