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In the visitors' locker room at United Center, Nene sat, as usual, with his feet soaking in ice water. The Wizards had just lost to the Chicago Bulls, and Nene watched as two French-speaking reporters interviewed Kevin Seraphin in his native language, a common occurrence during Washington's road games.
As the Wizards wrapped up their New Year's Eve practice session Monday, coach Randy Wittman said he's not much for New Year's resolutions — although this year, there is one thing he's hoping will be different in 2013.
Riding a two-game home winning streak, the Washington Wizards hosted the Golden State Warriors on Saturday at Verizon Center, hoping to extend the streak to three. Their luck didn't extend that far. The Warriors defeated the Wizards 101-97, improving their record to 13-7, while the Wizards fell to 2-15.
For two and a half quarters, the Wizards just seemed to be hanging around. On Friday night at Madison Square Garden, the Wizards played just well enough to keep pace with the Knicks. Until the halfway point in the third quarter that is. Then the Knicks shifted into another gear and the Wizards simply couldn't keep up, losing 108-87.
At 0-12, the Washington Wizards were a national joke among NBA pundits. The studio analysts at Turner Sports, home of NBA TV, routinely compared the team to the Washington Generals, the regular foil for the Harlem Globetrotters.
Nene was nowhere to be found. The Washington Wizards 6-foot-11 center wasn't on the inactive list, but he wasn't at the end of the bench, either. After playing more than 48 minutes total in the last two games, Nene sat out the Wizards game against the San Antonio Spurs on Monday at Verizon Center, a 26-point blowout loss.
Despite double overtime, a dramatic turn at the free throw line, and a heroic effort by Nene, the Wizards still couldn't get into the win column, losing 108-106 to the Charlotte Bobcats on Saturday at Verizon Center.
Washington Wizards coach Randy Wittman normally begins his postgame news conferences by making a brief statement before taking questions. After the past couple of games, Wittman has been at a loss for words.