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Top Stories of the Week: Wizards show out during Summer League, Mystics continue slump

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LAS VEGAS, NV - JULY 12: Jarell Eddie #8 of Washington Wizards shoots the winning lay up bringing the Washington Wizards in the lead against the Brooklyn Nets during the 2016 Las Vegas Summer League on July 12, 2016 at the Cox Pavillion in Las Vegas, Nevada.
LAS VEGAS, NV - JULY 12: Jarell Eddie #8 of Washington Wizards shoots the winning lay up bringing the Washington Wizards in the lead against the Brooklyn Nets during the 2016 Las Vegas Summer League on July 12, 2016 at the Cox Pavillion in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Free agency has now settled for the most part. That means that it’s time for Summer League basketball. Let’s get to the main storylines this week and go from there.

Wizards advance to the quarterfinals in Summer League Play

I know, it’s just been one week. But time flies.

But the Wizards have played four games in Summer League and are now guaranteed to play at least six games overall. Here’s a quick summary:

If all that wasn’t enough, the Wizards Summer League team got some revenge, beating the Hawks, 71-60 AFTER falling behind by 17 points at one point.

The Wizards will play in quarterfinals on Saturday at 8 p.m. ET against the Chicago Bulls.

Create your own Wizards roster for $15!

The rules: You have $15, and here are the prices.

  • $10 - Gilbert Arenas, John Wall, Mike James
  • $2 - Caron Butler, Larry Hughes, Antawn Jamison, Michael Jordan, Nene, Jordan Crawford
  • $1 - Everyone else

As long as you don’t pick a team of Mike James, Nick Young, Dominic McGuire, Andray Blatche, and JaVale McGee, I think you’ll do better than I did.

We look forward to seeing your teams.

Gary Neal is a bit frustrated

Neal was released midseason after suffering injuries. He had a good year statistically for Washington when he shot 45 percent from the field, 40 percent from three, and 85 percent from the line.

There has been a lot of money thrown at players this season. But unfortunately for Neal, he has yet to receive such an offer. And he decided to go to Facebook to state his point where he pointed out the money that was thrown at his former teammates, without saying their names.

This decision may have backfire a little bit at Neal because some former teammates on the Wizards didn’t particularly like him. The publicity does nothing to quell that. And though stats are certainly an important factor as to whether one gets paid, relationships matter too. If a role player can’t get along with others, he just isn’t worth the money, no matter what the compensation may be.

The Mystics are probably as frustrated as Neal too. But for different reasons.

The Mystics have lost four games in a row now. Their most recent losses were to the Sparks last Sunday and the Mercury on Wednesday. Emma Meesseman has plenty of faults when it comes to her quiet demeanor. But she scored over 20 points in each of those losses, and there wasn’t that much more she could do while being the number one focus from opposing defenses.

Two Mystics make the Team USA Select Team

Congratulations to Stefanie Dolson and Kahleah Copper for getting nods to join the USA national team in practice later this month.

2016 WNBA All-Star Game picks (if there was a game)

There is no game this year, but we still had a chance to make our Eastern Conference and Western Conference teams earlier this week. Yes, we all voted Meesseman and Tayler Hill to be in the game. You’d be surprised that we didn’t make Meesseman a unanimous starter though she probably wouldn’t start on anyone else’s lineup unless your first language is Dutch.

The AFL Team will be the Valor

As you are probably aware now, Monumental Sports now owns a Arena League Football Team. They are now the Valor. So much for a possible revival of the Bullets nickname, right?

Other Wizards and Mystics Links on the Web

  • Dan Steinberg profiled Mia Khalifa, who is quickly becoming one of the bigger voices on the Wizards and the DC sports Twitter World. Mia is a native of Montgomery County, Maryland, and was once a porn actress.
  • Jerry Brewer wrote about Scott Brooks and one area that he must be better at than his predecessor: He must develop good relationships with his young players.
  • You may not like that Jason Smith is getting paid a lot of money to be in the nation’s capital. He likes the chance to play with John Wall. Gene Wang of the WaPo has more.
  • John Wall was on NBA TV earlier this week for interviews. He respects Kevin Durant’s decision to play for the Golden State Warriors and is happy that many of his current and former teammates were well compensated in the last couple weeks if they were free agents. Scott Allen of the Washington Post has something on it and we added more on his desire for the Wizards to add some wing depth.
  • Ted Leonsis gave his take on the Wizards’ offseason and what his expectations were. He’s more pleased about it than most. I’ll have more to say on it next week since this week was a bit hectic for me.
  • I take issue with this headline in De Morgen, a Dutch language newspaper based in Brussels. The headline that De Morgen said the following in English: “Belgian huddle in the WNBA: Ann Wauters floors Emma Meesseman.” I get that the Sparks won 93-82. The Sparks floored the Mystics (and Meesseman) alright. And the article did state that Meesseman played well. But that was clearly an exaggerated headline because Wauters — who is also Flemish (or a Dutch-speaking Belgian) — did not play one second for the Sparks! Can we get that Ieper coach to tell them something?
  • We go from the western part of the EU to the eastern part and check in with Marcin Gortat. He will be on “Inny punkt widzenia” this Sunday for our Polish-speaking and based readers!
  • Ben Mehic of Wiz of Awes gave a nice tribute to Nene who has departed for the Rockets. Though Nene was often injured, he was also the face of culture change for the Wizards. For that, I’m eternally grateful. #ObrigadoNene!

These certainly aren’t the only links around. If you have another one you’d like to share, please do so in the comments or in a FanPost.

Have a great weekend everyone!