RICHMOND — Flip Saunders just a bit ago gave his first pregame press conference as Wizards coach. The attention of the night is largly on Gilbert Arenas and Nick Young, but this also is Saunder’s debut. Tonight we get a glimps at the coach’s system and what the Wizards will look like this season. Of course, the coach won’t show much tonight. He said the Wizards have installed about 50 offensive plays so far, and have much more to install, but this is enough to give a rough idea. Saunders did say taht some of the things the Wizards do tonight won’t be things they would normally do, but since it’s preseason, this is a chance to try some quirky things and see how it goes.
Saunders said this morning that he planned to play Gil the first eight to 10 minutes of the game then shut him down for the night to protect him from overload this early in the preseason. But this evening Saunders said he talked to the guard and Arenas wants to play longer, so they’ll go with the initial plan of eight to 10 minutes off the jump, and then “see if his knee is still warm” after he sits for a bit, and then give him another brief stint of action.
Saunders said he had to see how everybody felt after pregame warmups but just might go ahead and play everybody a little bit tonight to give them a first taste. This also differs slightly to what he said earlier. It looks like Fabrcio Oberto will play, and Saunders said he will have to see, but expects he’ll be the first big man off the bench. As far as JaVale McGee goes, Saunders said he’ll be int he mix somewhere, but wasn’t entirely sure how much or how little he’d play him.