The Washington Times - December 9, 2008, 06:32PM

The Wizards and Pistons are just more than a half hour away from tip-off, and Washington‘s starting lineup will remain the same: Dee Brown and DeShawn Stevenson in the backcourt, Caron Butler, Antawn Jamison and JaVale McGee up front.

Starting for the Pistons will be Rodney Stuckey and Allen Iverson at point and shooting guard, respectively, and Richard Hamilton, Rasheed Wallace and Tayshaun Prince in the frontcourt.

Ed Tapscott said he’ll monitor how the game is progressing but is prepared to match the Pistons with a smaller look or try to exploit them with a bigger lineup, which would feature both Andray Blatche and McGee on the floor at the same time.

“It’s because of their ability to run the floor and they both have a pretty high skill level,” Tapscott said. “JaVale has actually shot the ball pretty well, and Andray Blatche has provided us a number of things here in recent games. He’s handled the ball, passed the ball, rebounded the ball and shot the ball. All I ask is that they drive the ball to the basket and initially and play the game inside out. Start by going to the rim first, and that tends to open your jumpshot up.”

On another front, there’s a rumor out there that the Wizards and Memphis Grizzlies are close on agreeing to a move that would send point guard Javaris Crittenton to the District to complete the deal that sent Juan Carlos Navarro to the Grizzlies in 2007. Crittenton is in his second year in the league but is part of a crowded backcourt in Memphis. He’s averaging just 2.7 points and 0.7 assists in 6.3 minutes a game. Working on trying to flush something out on this, but I have been able to confirm that the teams have been in talks.



To make space for Crittenton, the Wizards would have to dump a player, and the likely candidates would be either Brown or Juan Dixon, both of which signed partially guaranteed deals this past offseason. Both players’ deals stipulate that if they are still on the roster by Jan. 10, their deals become fully guaranteed. The Wizards would love to dump an additional salary, but Memphis doesn’t want to take on any financial responsibility. Stay tuned …