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More 15th-spot madness

Ivan Carter in the print edition of the Post:

Dixon, who has a partially guaranteed contract, is a safe bet to make the final 15-man roster, but one player who is trying to make a case for himself is Washington native DerMarr Johnson, who came off the bench Tuesday night to score a team-high 19 points on 7-of-11 shooting in just under 22 minutes.

After the game, Wizards Coach Eddie Jordan made a point of praising the way Johnson helped spur a Washington run in the second half.

The problem for Johnson, who does not have a guaranteed contract, is that to keep him, the Wizards would have to cut either Dixon, a proven scorer who is familiar with Jordan's system, or Dee Brown, the team's lone backup point guard with Arenas out.

Ivan Carter on Wizards Insider:

There is no question that DerMarr has helped himself but I still see him facing a real battle to make the 15-man roster. The issue, as many of you have discussed, is that he'd have to beat out either Dee Brown or Dixon. Brown fits a need because he's onne of only two point guards on this roster until Gilbert Arenas gets back.

Dixon fits because he's so familiar with Coach Eddie Jordan's system and because he could be a scorer off the bench in the Roger Mason Jr. mode. Now, Johnson would give this team something unique as well. He's a big guard at 6-foot-9, he's long defensively and he's a slasher.

I guess we'll have to wait and see.

A couple really quick points:

  • Juan has somehow gone from being "all but guaranteed" a spot on the roster to being a "safe bet" in the span of two days.  Either DerMarr was just that impressive against New Orleans, or Ivan was being crossed up by his sources
  • And that's the other thing.  Once again, I'm not sure where this "safe bet" comment is coming from.  Ivan's a well-connected, strong reporter, so I know he's not just pulling that out of thin air, but who is telling him that information?  If it's off-the-record discussions, at least say something like "sources close to the team."  Because otherwise, it just sounds like speculation, even if it probably isn't
  • This tires me, but really, Juan Dixon is not like Roger Mason.  Juan Dixon is like Nick Young -- a high-usage, low-efficiency chucker that I suppose is a "proven scorer," if by proven you mean "will score 10 points on 15 shots anytime he wants."  DerMarr's the only one that really could provide the team something unique.  The argument that Juan knows the Princeton is a better one for Dixon's case.