- The Washington Times - Friday, April 4, 2008

In the world according to Gilbert Arenas, it is his way or no way.

That is in part what this season has been about — the refusal of Arenas to listen to anyone about his training regimen in the offseason.

So he overdid it, and you know the rest.

He had to undergo a second surgery, which possibly would have been avoided if only he had followed the instructions of those urging caution.

That is Arenas. He is stubborn to a fault.

To be fair, his stubbornness has worked in his favor at times.

He is where he is in part because of people telling him what he could not be as a basketball player. Arenas used those slights as motivation and became a workout fanatic. He showed the skeptics in his midst. Now he must show that his stubbornness is not a liability.

Take the last play against the Bucks. It was typical Arenas.

Arenas felt compelled to drift over to Andrew Bogut, which left Ramon Sessions free to receive a pass from Bogut and shoot a 19-footer from the left baseline as time expired.

It was hardly a surprise. Arenas is forever chasing the ball, even if the percentages are against him, as they were on the last play. The calculations should have been obvious to him.

He should have wanted Bogut to shoot a turnaround jumper with Brendan Haywood in his face. What would have been the probability of Bogut sinking that shot? Maybe one out of five. But nearly every perimeter player in the NBA can make an open jumper, even one just up from the developmental league.

Why, high school players can sink uncontested 19-footers, although Arenas did manage to stick a late hand in the face of Sessions.

Alas, the last play symbolized the team’s change in attitude.

With Arenas back in the lineup, the Wizards reverted to their matador defensive mentality and lost a game they otherwise would have won if they had not followed the shoot-first, play-no-defense lead of their diva.

And they lost in the worst way, as if they had been punched in the gut.

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