Originally written November 17, 2012 on Blog So Hard Sports:
Washington-wizards-draft
GIF by Truth About It   I remember the feeling the day of the lottery, it was May 18th 2010 and the Washington Wizards won one of the biggest prizes in sports, the #1 pick in the NBA lottery. I sat in my chair with an enormous smile on my face; it was a no-brainer the Wizards were going to get John Wall. The Wizards were going to begin the process of being relevant again. The media machine began at once; Reebok was the first to reveal Wall as the face of their latest basketball shoe, the ZigTech Slash. Then D.C. Mayor Adrian Fenty declared June 25 as John Wall Day on a plaque handed to Wall during his Washington Wizards homecoming parade. He had not even taken a shot in the NBA, yet the stage was set. John had the weight and expectations of the most impatient city in sports on his shoulders. Wall surprisingly started out great and was named “Most Outstanding Player” at the 2010 Las Vegas Summer League, where he averaged 23.5 points, 7.8 assists, 4.0 rebounds and 2.5 steals in 32.3 minutes per game. Expectations of what he can do were confirmed and you could feel the bar for his rookie campaign being raised. John Wall’s first home game was a memorable one. He tied a franchise record with nine steals, and became only the second player in NBA history to get nine assists or more in each of his first three games.  John followed this up in short order having his first career triple-double with 19 points, 10 rebounds, and 13 assists to go along with 6 steals and only 1 turnover. This put him in elite company, as the only other player to have a triple double and 6 steals in his first 6 games was Magic Johnson. He finished the season averaging over 16 ppg and over 8 assists per game. And he would have gotten rookie of the year if it was not for 2nd year rookie Blake Griffin. The next season was more of the same; John played in 69 games and literally had the exact same statistical line. The Wizards even seemed to surprise a lot of people by unloading garbage players such as Nick Young, JaVale McGee, and Ronny Turiaf for Nene in a 3-team trade involving the Denver Nuggets and L.A. Clippers. The wheels continued to turn in the right direction in this years NBA draft when the Wizards picked up Bradley Beal with the 3rd overall pick. Was this the season when the Wizards would begin the climb out of oblivion and become a team that was now on the radar as an up and coming threat? No, because like all D.C. teams that show any promise whatsoever, everything that could go wrong has gone wrong this season so far. John Wall is out until most likely mid-December with a knee injury, Nene is out with a foot injury and so far has NO time table for his return.   So the result of those key injuries is what we are currently watching: Beal is struggling to adjust to the NBA, there is no rhythm on offense, and the Wizards are a national laughing stock being the only team left in the NBA without a win and have no upcoming games on the schedule where they have a chance to change that. So I am left with a very different feeling then the one I began with, a feeling that has become all to familiar to D.C. sports fans. Disappointment.
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