Hello from New Orleans

It's great to be back in one of my favorite towns. Haven't been here in six years but it feels amazingly similar. I'm gong to take a look around town tomorrow. Tonight is all about Bourbon Street baby.

As for the Wiz, Caron Butler did not make the trip and is out for tomorrow's game against the Hornets and Tuesday's game against the Rockets. That vibes with Coach Eddie Jordan's strong statements before the Charlotte game that it would be best for Butler to shut it down and get that left hip right before trying to get back on the floor. I'll keep you posted as fresh Caron news emerges.

Gilbert Arenas made the trip but Etan Thomas did not.

Right now, I'm freaking out over missing the new Wire. Did I see Omar in a body bag at the very end of tonight's episode. Say it ain't so. (Don't be posting that info on here. I plan on catching up asap). So far, this has been the best season so far. And I must say, I really want to see Marlo go down. I didn't feel that way about Stringer Bell and company in past seasons. Take care.

By Ivan Carter |  February 24, 2008; 10:25 PM ET
Previous: Saturday update | Next: Wiz at Hornets

Comments

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hey ivan i lovr your job man i think you have one of the best jobs in the world to wake up in the morning and write about sports thats great. wat advice can you give somebody like me that wants to be a beat writer when he gets older

Posted by: brandon | February 24, 2008 10:37 PM

Ivan, I will not spill the beans on what happened on The Wire...but one thing I will mention.....I think I saw Thom Loverro in a cameo appearance tonight on the show....

Posted by: Lisa | February 24, 2008 10:42 PM

Good lord, was that first post serious?

Posted by: Anonymous | February 24, 2008 11:36 PM

Ivan, can you write a feature about the Wizard's team Doctor? I'm serious, from Jarvis' knee, to Gilbert's knee, Songaila's back, now Caron's hip, has this guy done anything good for us lately?

I think if Abe opened up his wallet for a better doctor that would be good for at least 5 more wins a year.

Posted by: juandixonformvp | February 24, 2008 11:41 PM

Ivan, if you want a good Po Boy samich down in NO, go to a place called Mothers. Just get in the cab and tell the guy to take you to Mothers. He will know where to go. The line for lunch goes out the door !! My favorite is called the Debris.

Posted by: Section101 | February 25, 2008 12:05 AM

JuanDixon, the team doctor would not be the problem. You see them after you get injured. It's the training staff that probably could use some looking into. I'm not saying they are at fault either, but sometimes change is necessary and training regimes need changing. Phoenix is said to have an "unorthodox" training staff, whatever that means, but they have kept Nash, Hill, Amare healthy for the most part. Or, at the very least, got them back to speed on schedule and kept them healthy.
I agree there have been too many complaints by the team's players and poor recoveries by players who have significant injuries. Could be just a coincidence, but I'm pretty sure the training staff could be better!!!

Posted by: Rob P | February 25, 2008 2:23 AM

Yeah, I agree with anon. The best advice you can get is to learn to type quickly with decent grammar and spelling...

Posted by: JE | February 25, 2008 2:37 AM

I hope Phoenix' staff has some tricks up their sleeves. That Shaq trade is looking like some do-do right now. I predicted it would be a huge mistake. I may be wrong but it aint looking good. They should have stuck with their guns and kept running instead of trying to conform to the half court philosophy that a lot of teams have won with. Break the mold !
That said, I hope the Wiz play like they did at the beginning of the season once we get out guys back. Put a hand in ppls faces and give up no wide open shots but still try to score in the high 90's or low 100's. It's obvious that EJ has no confidence in our low post offense, so slowing it down plays into the opponents hands.

Posted by: mark | February 25, 2008 8:04 AM

The best season on the Wire? That was last year with the kids and the schools - but it still is better than anything on television.

Posted by: ken | February 25, 2008 9:01 AM

Ivan,Take it easy on that hamstring dancing til dawn! You might have to duck in the trainer's room for some treatment.

On the medical/training staff subject, Jamison seems fresher and stronger this year after looking pretty hobbled last year. So somebody deserves credit for Jamison's offseason conditioning which brought him back fresh. And Butler looked like a beast before he got hurt, the guy was in really great shape, the best of his career.

Injuries sometimes just happen, and somethings like a hip flexor will not heal until it's left alone for awhile. If there's a way to train to avoid knee injuries I'm sure every team in the league would have adopted it by now. There's not a team in the league that hasn't had a season or a player's career ruined by knee injury.

Smart move on the part of Butler and the team to take the time to get him right. It's not showing up in the win column but the youngsters are showing steady improvement as of late.

It seems largely un-noticed but the Wizards are one of the youngest teams in the league this year. Ernie's growing a bench for this team, Blatche and Pecherov are both just 21 and 7'with skills, Young and McGuire are both showing they can be solid NBA players. An offseason will do wonders for all of these guys growth as NBA players.

Some nights it's mighty hard to watch, but Ernie's got a plan, and he's developing some young Aces to play here or use as a bargaining chips down the road.

Posted by: GM | February 25, 2008 9:15 AM

I just wish that these Rookies and AB have the same commitment as AJ so that they can improve on their game. Because right now all have potentials to be a solid players in this league for a long time' It's a the dedication and hundred of hours practicing your skills that will push them to a higher level. AJ's work ethic has been remarkable and that has made him a 2 time all-star in his 30's.

I hope CB will be back after this 3 game road trip as the team really needs him if they want to play in the playoffs.

Posted by: Dave, | February 25, 2008 9:33 AM

I was hoping that Omar would take down Marlo, but Marlo is a punk! I hope he goes down dammit!

Posted by: Sam | February 25, 2008 9:54 AM

If the Wizards win just one of the next three without Butler, I'll be very surprised. Houston and New Orleans have looked awesome lately, and even the Bulls appear to be better without Ben Wallace clogging the paint. We'll see what happens...

Posted by: Krem | February 25, 2008 10:26 AM

Watching the weekend NBA games, I was struck by how fast these guys are, including the Pistons!
My goodness, compared to them the Wiz are downright plodding including on fastbreaks.
In the past with Gil leading the way, the Wiz were one of the "runningest" teams. I suppose with Antonio Daniels or Deshawn Stevenson controlling the ball, we slowed down some.

The team has to speed it up again to be able to approach last season's successes.

Posted by: rgz | February 25, 2008 10:37 AM

This will be a tough road trip, this team needs a confidence boost and a win tonite would be just what the doctor ordered. I watched the Cavaliers new lineup last night and WHOA!!!!!! they looked good we can't compete unless we get GA and CB back and that's for real. I wont give away the WIRE Ivan, but is Clay Davis the biggest BS'ER ever, he is the real tefflon politician.

Posted by: dargregmag@aol.com | February 25, 2008 10:46 AM

"Ivan, can you write a feature about the Wizard's team Doctor? I'm serious, from Jarvis' knee, to Gilbert's knee, Songaila's back, now Caron's hip, has this guy done anything good for us lately?

I think if Abe opened up his wallet for a better doctor that would be good for at least 5 more wins a year.

Posted by: juandixonformvp | February 24, 2008 11:41 PM "

It goes further back then that. Anybody remember CWebb and his separated shoulder?

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 25, 2008 11:52 AM

"I watched the Cavaliers new lineup last night and WHOA!!!!!! they looked good we can't compete unless we get GA and CB back and that's for real. I wont give away the WIRE Ivan, but is Clay Davis the biggest BS'ER ever, he is the real tefflon politician.

Posted by: dargregmag@aol.com | February 25, 2008 10:46 AM "

Hey, I'm not surprised, as I predicted. They have added toughness with Ben, to go along with the tough Eric Snow.

It's early, but there's no reason why this team can't run with the west especially when Danny Gibson comes back. They beat the lowly Grizzlies tho.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 25, 2008 11:55 AM

You mean the sperated shoulder that he decided to rehab instead of following a doctor's advice and have it operated on, and then it popped out again the next season?

Rehab might have actually worked if Chris would have been the kind of guy that really worked hard in the offseason like Butler, or Jamison, or even Gil.

Webber has had a long career with lots of ups and downs and he's worn out his welcome more then a few times. I used to be a big fan, and I've always wondered how great he'd have become with all of that talent if he had the work ethic and drive of a guy like Jordan.

Webber never showed up for a season where it looked like he'd spent an off season working on his game or his body. That rap has carried through Sacramento, Philly, and Detroit. Several teams took a pass on him this offseason cause they said he just wasn't in shape.

But I'm sure it was the Wizards' doctors that caused it all somehow.

Posted by: GM | February 25, 2008 12:16 PM

Ivan - Red Fish Grille (which is right at Bourbon and Canal) has a great shrimp remoulade and Emeril's Nola has great bbq shrimp appetizer. I know I sound like the dude from Forrest Gump, but the shrimp are better down there. I just mention those since you are on expense. Mother's po' boys are famous, but kinda gross. For the ankle injury: Abita Turbo Dog.

Posted by: Pauly B. | February 25, 2008 12:29 PM

Wish I was there with you Ivan - I love Bourbon Street too!

Hope the Wiz can pull out a win tonight and get this tough stretch rolling. I just hope the coaches pass it around a little more and don't keep wearing out the starting line-up....

Posted by: Anonymous | February 25, 2008 12:33 PM

There was an interesting discussion going on a few weeks ago comparing Gilby to Deron W. and Chris Paul.

Just to note, not only is CP averaging almost 21 pts and 11 assists this season, he's also leading the league in steals, which means he does make an effort to play defense, and obviously is a great floor general and leader.

If NO is thinking about moving, maybe they can relocate to Baltimore and create a fan base there and the Les BouleS fans here can have an alternative to Les BouleS, since Les BouleS used to be the B'more Bullets. Even better, NO Hornets can be the B'more Bullets!

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 25, 2008 12:40 PM

"

You mean the sperated shoulder that he decided to rehab instead of following a doctor's advice and have it operated on, and then it popped out again the next season?

Rehab might have actually worked if Chris would have been the kind of guy that really worked hard in the offseason like Butler, or Jamison, or even Gil.

Webber has had a long career with lots of ups and downs and he's worn out his welcome more then a few times. I used to be a big fan, and I've always wondered how great he'd have become with all of that talent if he had the work ethic and drive of a guy like Jordan.

Webber never showed up for a season where it looked like he'd spent an off season working on his game or his body. That rap has carried through Sacramento, Philly, and Detroit. Several teams took a pass on him this offseason cause they said he just wasn't in shape.

But I'm sure it was the Wizards' doctors that caused it all somehow.

Posted by: GM | February 25, 2008 12:16 PM "

Yeah, CWebb should take the blame for trying to persevere through his injury so that he can continue to play and make the team better. Maybe if he ran behind a parachute or biked around town without a helmet or played unsupervised pickup games with 9 ft. rooms, CWebb would get more credit from you.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 25, 2008 12:42 PM

Just wondering if Caron's injury is a lot more than a strain. It just seems to me that it is taking a bit of time to recoup. I thought it was a hip bruise. Does anyone know exactly what type of hip injury it is and is it season ending because it does not seem like he is coming back anytime soon.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 25, 2008 12:47 PM

anon i'm agreeing with you. i'm thinking it could be season ending.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 25, 2008 12:50 PM

Bo Jackson had a hip injury. Look at what happened to him.

Worse case is for Caron needing surgery to reattach a tendon in his hip.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 25, 2008 1:24 PM

They've been calling it a hip flexor. Most of the time guys have to shut it down a little and then restart rehab. If not that injury can really linger, so the smart course of action is to take a little time with it.

It's a more common injury in the NFL, not always season ending, but it can take awhile sometimes. Lots of guys try and play through it like Butler did at first, but they mostly end up shutting it down.

Bo Jackson had a degenerative hip, it was a really rare condition. His hip was just 50 years ahead of the rest of his body at aging.

Webber tried to play in a harness, but very quickly shut it down and sat out the rest of the season. Rehab didn't work and he missed another season after he reinjuried the shoulder and had to have surgery.

CWebb's career is what it is, he had as much talent as any that's ever played the game. He didn't have Jordan's drive, if he did we'd be talking about him as one of the 4 or 5 best to have ever played with the talent he had.

Posted by: GM | February 25, 2008 1:54 PM

You can't be on both sides of your own argument window licker...

Did the Wiz doctors misdiagnose Webber or did Webber defy the doctors to play?

Make up your mind.

Posted by: JSchon | February 25, 2008 2:00 PM

Ivan, on the Wire, you need to get Comcast on Demand and watch all the episodes. You can watch next week's episode a week early -- Very, very good episodes and a great show!!

Posted by: Chad | February 25, 2008 2:03 PM

Ivan-
Central Grocery Store @ 923 Decatur St for the original Muffuletta Sandwich & Felix Oyster Bar (better than the more famous Acme Oyster Bar across the street)- for oysters, crawfish & the half & half Po' Boy (1/2 shrimp, 1/2 oyster)

Posted by: LJ | February 25, 2008 2:09 PM

Thanks GM. I wasn't sure what was going on with Caron. I hope once healed it won't be a lingering injury. I would hate to see that. But, we sure could use him right now. Someone on the team is going to have to learn quickly how to be a closer because the way it is looking now neither Caron or Gil is coming back soon.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 25, 2008 2:11 PM

Ivan, if you get a chance go to Cajun Seafood for some good food. It is near the conventions center in the hood but the food is awesome. The lines can be long at times but the food is worth it.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 25, 2008 2:23 PM

I think Phillip Daniels tried to play through a hip flexor season before last and he looked like he was about finished. He got it healed up and came back and played well last year for the Skins.

Point is, you can't blame the medical staff for a hip flexor. It's just one of those injuries that happens and it just takes some time to heal. There's not a shot to take or a pill to pop that just makes it go away.

Until Caron gets back I'd almost think that Eddie should find a way to get Nick Young a shot at the end of games. I know he doesn't want him on the court late for defensive reasons, but most of the time these last second shots are out of timeouts anyway.

Of all of the Wizards besides Caron and Gil that kid seems to have ice water in his veins. Daniels just doesn't cut it as the guy taking shots at the end of games. And teams are mobbing Jamison so Eddie's got to find an alternative.

The kid seems to have a little of George Gervin's style about him. He hasn't used Gervin's finger roll, but he has that ability to look slow with the ball but then suddenly create space for his shot.
Those herky jerky guys are always really hard to guard.

Posted by: GM | February 25, 2008 3:23 PM

"Did the Wiz doctors misdiagnose Webber or did Webber defy the doctors to play?

Make up your mind.

Posted by: JSchon | February 25, 2008 02:00 PM "

It can be both @sslicker. Use that pea brain of yours.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 25, 2008 3:24 PM

Bo Jackson's degenerative hip condition was a result of an injury. He was running in the open field and someone grabbed his leg and kept pulling, while he kept running. This resulted in his femur bone being pulled out of the hip socket and then it popped back in, which severed a vein that cut off blood supply to his hip, and the rest is history.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 25, 2008 3:27 PM

Same old news on Gilby, but my gut tells me that early this season could have been the last time fans here see Gilby in a Les BouleS jersey.

http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/news/story?id=3261180

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 25, 2008 3:45 PM

"On January 13, 1991, during a Raiders playoff game against the Cincinnati Bengals, Jackson suffered a serious hip injury which ended his football career and seriously threatened his baseball career. After Bo Jackson was tackled and lying in pain on the ground, he popped his hip back into place. In an interview on Untold, George Brett who attended the game said he asked the trainer what had happened to Bo. The trainer replied "Bo says he felt his hip come out of the socket, so he popped it back in, but that's just impossible, no one's that strong."

Following surgery and rehabilitation on his injured hip, it was discovered that Jackson had avascular necrosis, as a result of decreased blood supply to the head of his left femur. This caused deterioration of the femoral head, ultimately requiring that the hip be replaced. Jackson missed the entire 1992 baseball season. When he announced soon after his surgery that he would play baseball again, many thought that goal to be unrealistic, especially at the Major League level."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bo_Jackson

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 25, 2008 3:51 PM

And what does Bo Jackson's injury have to do with Caron's hip flexor or the Wizard's medical staff?

Little to nothing, which is the amount of thought it took to bring his name up and make the comparison. Two completely different injuries, two completely different situations.

Don't make mountains out of mole hills or try to turn a hip flexor into needing a hip replacement.

Posted by: GM | February 25, 2008 3:56 PM

LOL!

I'm just clarifying your misguided quote of Bo Jackson's hip being some "really rare condition." It wasn't a condition, it was from an injury.

LMAO!!!

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 25, 2008 3:59 PM

BTW, I'm glad NY didn't get invited to the dunk contest. DH would have won anyway, but it's too bad none of our rooks made the rookie all star game even though there was ample chance to get them some PT due to the injuries we had.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 25, 2008 4:00 PM

I don't think Caron's problem has anything to do with the Wizards' doctors. Hip flexor injuries, like strained abdominal muscles, are notoriously slow to heal. http://www.med.umich.edu/1libr/sma/sma_iliopsoa_sma.htm estimates that a severe case can take six weeks or longer. Rest is crucial. When you have a guy like Caron who tries to play through the pain, he ends up hurting himself worse.

I don't see any point in attacking GA because he isn't ready to come back yet. This time,unlike the last, he's doing everything that the medical and training staff are asking him to do. They're the ones who set this cautious pace for his conditioning. Impulsive as he is, he'd probably have been running up and down the court with a parachute on the day that he got off crutches, if it was up to him.

Posted by: pjkiger1 | February 25, 2008 4:56 PM

Second time around guys tend to listen to the doctors and trainers. Remember, Gil had never really been hurt before so the last time was all new to him.

Avascular Necrosis is extremely rare, can't think of another player to ever have suffered it. Hip flexors are pretty common and treatment is pretty striaght forward.

Posted by: GM | February 25, 2008 5:09 PM

Is Abe cheap? What are the facts?
2007-2008 TEAM SALARIES (The list needs to be updated for all the trades)

1. New York Knicks $95.294 million
2. Dallas Mavericks $94.273 million
3. Denver Nuggets $83.816 million
4. Miami Heat $74.932 million
5. Boston Celtics $74.358 million
6. Philadelphia 76ers Salary: $73.838 million
7. Cleveland Cavaliers Salary: $71.564 million
8. Portland Trail Blazers Salary: $71.128 million
9. Los Angeles Lakers Salary: $70.959 million
10. Phoenix Suns Salary: $70.843 million
11. Houston Rockets Salary: $69.399 million
12. New Jersey Nets Salary: $68.964 million

Luxury Tax Threshold $67.865 million

13. Washington Wizards Salary: $67.757 million ($108,000 away from the tax!)
14. San Antonio Spurs Salary: $67.493 million
15. Indiana Pacers Salary: $67.178 million
16. Detroit Pistons Salary: $67.162 million
17. Toronto Raptors Salary: $67.052 million
18. Los Angeles Clippers Salary: $64.527 million
19. Minnesota T-wolves Salary: $64.375 million
20. Sacramento Kings Salary: $64.364 million
21. Chicago Bulls Salary: $64.153 million
22. Seattle SuperSonics Salary: $63.521 million
23. Milwaukee Bucks Salary: $62.702 million
24. New Orleans Hornets Salary: $60.844 million
25. Utah Jazz Salary: $59.201 million
26. Golden St. Warriors Salary: $58.586 million
27. Orlando Magic Salary: $56.543 million

Salary cap $55.63 million

28. Memphis Grizzlies Salary: $55.630 million
29. Atlanta Hawks Salary: $54.531 million
30. Charlotte Bobcats Salary: $52.875 million

Does spending more than the luxury tax cap mean you get a guaranteed playoff team?
NO = New York, Miami, Philadelphia, New Jersey

Does spending less than the luxury tax mean you can't get to the playoffs?
NO = San Antonio, Detroit, New Orleans, Golden State, Utah, Orlando and oh yeah Washington

Posted by: Anonymous | February 25, 2008 5:42 PM

I forgot to attribute the salary list: I found lists on Dallas News, on ESPN and hoopshype. If we rely on the ESPN trademachine info as updated after all the trades, that would be a more reliable source. For example it now shows Dallas payroll at > $104M.

Posted by: Anonymous | February 25, 2008 6:20 PM

Something extra for all you Wire fans on this blog:

The guys who wrote Freakonomics have a blog, if you want to find it just type 'Freakonomics blog' into Google. There are a few entries (like 7 now I think) from Suddhir Venkatesh, who if you read the book you will know that he did a lot of sociological work with drug lords and various street gangs. On the blog, he watches the Wire with drug kingpins from 'a major American city' (he's earned their trust at this point) and writes their observations. Some pretty cool stuff if you're interested.

Posted by: andy | February 25, 2008 6:46 PM

"Does spending less than the luxury tax mean you can't get to the playoffs?
NO = San Antonio, Detroit, New Orleans, Golden State, Utah, Orlando and oh yeah Washington

Posted by: | February 25, 2008 05:42 PM "

Yeah, too bad instead of drafting good players, or hiring good coaches, Les BouleS draft players such as Jared Jeffries, Jarvis Hayes, and Kwame Brown and put them in situations where they don't develop and don't succeed. Or, they get rid of quality players like Rip Hamilton. Or, they hire coaches like Leonard Hamilton, Gar Heard, and now, Eddie Jordan.

It's a catch-22. You either spend money and get proven star free agents who can gel well with the current staff, or you hire competent people who draft well and competent people who can coach players.

In order for Les BouleS to win, they must spend to get quality free agents, because none of their recent drafts have brought players that panned out. And, the recent coaches have done a piss poor job in developing their talent in house.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 25, 2008 6:59 PM

"Second time around guys tend to listen to the doctors and trainers. Remember, Gil had never really been hurt before so the last time was all new to him.

Posted by: GM | February 25, 2008 05:09 PM "

I guess you weren't around when Gilby pulled his abdominal muscle and was out for an extended period early during his tenure here.

Or, when Gilby didn't skip the all star game to rest up his dislocated clavicle which ruined his shooting last season.

I guess you were only around for his current two knee situations. One was for his torn MCL, and then his current microfracture surgery for a malformed bone/tendon.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 25, 2008 7:04 PM

Are the Wizards considering bringing in Jamal Magloire who was just waived by New Jersey?? I think he would be a good fit for a club that is short handed bench and Etan Thomas might not be able to play this season. Shouldn't cost the team much $ and they should still have the vet exemption salary spot available to offer.

How long can this team continue playing with a 8-9 man roster night after night with bringing in someone to help, at this point even a 10-day guy from the D-League would help.

Posted by: Ben Canada | February 25, 2008 8:40 PM

Nevermind what happens tonight, these jerseys look so much better than the ugly gold and black ones.

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 25, 2008 9:44 PM

LOL!

SWADAGGGERRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!!!!!!

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 25, 2008 10:28 PM

If I haven't said it before, DeShawn Stevenson you are alright in my book. Mea culpa for all the bad stuff I said about you b4.

The only thing that is frustrating is that this win proves that the losses to Golden State, the Knicks and the Cavs could've been avoided. I only saw the last minute of the game, did EJ do a better job this time. I liked seeing Haywood out there late (and taking a big charge I might add).

Posted by: George Templeton | February 25, 2008 10:41 PM

On a larger scale, Jordan wants to win now. Like any coach who signed a two-year extension with a team option for the third year last summer, the continuity line gets old.

"But I understand Mr. Pollin's standpoint," Jordan said. "We want to stay within a certain budget for the Washington Wizards. We're not going to be like four or five or six other teams that can do anything it takes to win. Those are decisions we made within the organization. It doesn't bother me. There are times when you say, 'How come we can't get this guy?' But then you say, 'These are the parameters the organization has set.' "

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/02/16/AR2007021602210.htm

Posted by: DC Man88 | February 26, 2008 4:38 PM

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