This is why the Wizards are doomed to be the Wizards. They continue to make the same major mistakes, promoting the wrong people to the biggest roles, and then they express surprise when they fail. Blatche is the latest example – albeit a big one – of the Wizards incorrectly identifying something special in some players. And as long as Blatche maintains a prominent position, team president Ernie Grunfeld deserves criticism, because Grunfeld should have ended Blatche’s bad act long ago.
Even by Blatche’s blockheaded standards, his selfish post-game rant exhibited a stunning new level of obliviousness. That Blatche’s latest incident occurred on the night his captaincy was announced, well, you just couldn’t make this stuff up. The Wizards plan to have rotating captains this season, so Blatche may not have the job again. But the damage has already been done.
Essentially, Saunders did a poor job in the 90-84 loss, Blatche surmised, because “you can’t keep having me pick and pop and shooting jump shots,” he told reporters in the locker room. “Gimme the ball in the paint. That’s where I’m most effective at. I’ve been saying that since training camp. I need the ball in the paint. I don’t want to be the pick-and-pop guy I used to be because it’s not working for me.”
Blatche wasn’t made available to speak to reporters on Tuesday, but in typical fashion remarked on his Twitter account: “Every body need to shut up I didn’t call out my coach or team mates I said I had a bad game need it n the post instead of jump shots.”
First, let’s address the absurdity of Blatche directing the spotlight at himself. Regardless of Saunders’s playcalling, Blatche missed eight of 13 field goal attempts and finished with just 11 points. He had no offensive rebounds among eight total for the team.
For the Nets, forward Kris Humphries had 21 points and 16 rebounds, including seven offensive. New Jersey had 10 more offensive rebounds than Washington and a 20-rebound advantage overall.
Apparently, Washington’s captain was too busy pouting about his lack of post-ups to work harder at rebounding.
Granted, a 20-rebound deficit is on Washington’s other players and the coaching staff, too. But Blatche is expected to set the right example. That’s the responsibility Blatche assumed when he accepted the captain’s gig. It’s called leadership.
A guy listed at 6 feet 11 and 260 pounds plays 39 minutes and doesn’t grab one offensive rebound? And then he wants to analyze Saunders’s performance? It’s called lack of self-awareness.