- Seattle socialist: Minimum-wage discussion skewed by ‘right-wing’ GAO analysis
- U.N. warns of Muslim ‘cleansing’ in Central African Republic
- Senate blocks change to military sex assault cases
- Drug mix may have cured child born with HIV, doctors say
- De Blasio’s wife irks former mansion chef with ‘servant’ remark
- Russia’s neighbors shiver amid Putin’s Cold War moves in Ukraine
- New SAT: The essay portion is to become optional
- Military group can’t march to honor the fallen at Boston Marathon due to security changes
- Senate passes bills deleting ‘retarded’ from laws
- China announces biggest military hike in 3 years: We are not ‘boy scouts with spears’
Tom Knott: So far, might as well be on No Fun Street
It added up to the Nets 95, Wizards 85.
The Wizards were able to open the season at home for the first time since 1999. Given the way they played, it probably would have been best for them to be on the road and out of sight of the thoroughly disappointed sellout crowd.
It was a dispiriting outcome for the home team, which wants to avoid equaling its 0-5 start last season.
“Character. Commitment. Connection.”
That is the team’s slogan this season.
It also could be: “Injuries. Invalids. Infirmaries.”
The spirit surrounding the opening-night festivities was somewhat understated, possibly because of the anxiety that envelops the franchise. Is the wait on Gilbert Arenas ever going to end? Or is he destined to end up as the Penny Hardaway of his time? Is there an element of injury fatigue, of forever waiting to see what this team could be at full strength?
Those hard notions were tugging on the fans as they made their way into the arena from Abe Pollin’s Fun Street.
Someone named Taurus sang the national anthem, the players and coaches from both teams were introduced and then Caron Butler grabbed a microphone and acknowledged the support of the team’s long-suffering fans.
“Thanks for the support,” Butler said. “Thanks for the love. Let’s get a victory tonight.”
Victory did not come. Nothing is going to be easy for this team. Enough changes have come to the Wizards that duplicating their 43-39 record from a season ago could be difficult.
Juan Dixon is endeavoring to shore up the loss of Roger Mason, and Nick Young is looking to be a more consistent and thoughtful scorer.
Brendan Haywood, who is likely out for the season after tearing a ligament in his right wrist and undergoing surgery, will be missed more than his numbers suggest.
Haywood averaged 1.7 blocks, 10th-best in the NBA, and routinely altered a good number of shots around the basket. Haywood also orchestrated a statistical improbability, raising his previously modest free throw shooting percentage to a respectable .735.
About the Author
By Tammy Bruce
- Bill Clinton cashes in on struggling nonprofit hospital
- Putin has transformed Russian army into a lean, mean fighting machine
- Aronofsky's 'Noah' banned in Qatar, Bahrain, United Arab Emirates
- Christine O'Donnell eager to re-engage in political debate
- Kim Jong-un calls for execution of 33 Christians
- Bill Clinton poses for photo with Bunny Ranch prostitutes
- DELAY: A revolution for the Constitution
- PRUDEN: Likening Putin to Hitler on Ukraine shows Hillary's shaky grasp of history
- Back to the Future: HUVr Tech marketing video goes viral with hoverboard release tease
- Russias Putin nominated for Nobel Peace Prize
Pope Francis meets his 'mini-me'
Celebrity deaths in 2014
Winter storm hits states — again