D.C. Sports Bog Live: Donovan McNabb, Redskins, Capitals, Wizards and more

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Dan Steinberg
Tuesday, April 6, 2010; 11:00 AM

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McNabb Insanity: What is the definition of insanity - repeating the same destructive behavior over and over? Why would we be buying what the Eagles are selling? There is no way a smart organization like Philly would give a division rival an edge. Plus, won't McNabb get killed behind this line?

Dan Steinberg: Hey people, sorry for the delay. Traffic, or something.Anyhoo, there's probably not much more I can say about the McNabb trade that hasn't already been said quicker and better by my colleagues, but I'll sure as heck try right until he comes on the TV.As for this, I share your concerns. People have described this as a win-win. It's hard for me to understand how an inter-division trade could really be a win-win. One has to be a bigger win than the other, which be definition makes the smaller win a loss. Since I'm scared of being wrong, though, I'm hedging my final assessment, certainly until after the draft.

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McNabb: Why did we get McNabb for draft picks? Couldn't we have traded Portis for Brady or one of the Manning brothers? Portis is that good, right?Sincerely, C. P.

Dan Steinberg: I'm pretty sure Jason Campbell would have yielded both Mannings.If this is the end of Jason Campbell in D.C., he won't really have a fond legacy. Sure, his longtime defenders will say "what could have been, with stability in the coaching staff and a better line," but he'll never have a chance here to turn "what could have been" into real success.

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Draft Picks: Can't the Redskins trade their second and third round picks a second time. I understand that there are people out there still buying the Brooklyn Bridge. If there are no takers for used Redskin second and third picks for this draft, why not package Landry, Haynesworth and Campbell together and trade them for someones real seventh round pick. I hear it is a deep draft this year.

Dan Steinberg: I guess you can't fault them for not having a third pick, since that went in the supplemental selection of Jeremy Jarmon a year ago. Jarmon showed some potential. We'll see.But the larger trend, which I wrote about this morning, is terrifying. Over the past decade, the Redskins have had 25 picks in the 1st-through-4th rounds. The Eagles have had 47. The Patriots have had 48. Those teams have won a lot more playoff games than the Redskins have.Now, the Redskins have 4 picks in April. The Eagles have 11, including five in the top 90.

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McNabb: Yeah, I'm not feeling this. Why do I think that in mid-November I'll feel that I would have much preferred that the team spend the second round pick on another O-lineman than a QB on the downside of his career?

Dan Steinberg: Plenty of Redskins fans are plenty excited, though. Even some longtime skeptics. And there have been plenty of comparisons between McNabb and a late-career John Elway, who really found success in his mid to late 30s with Mike Shanahan.It's just hard to erase the nagging feeling that Andy Reid and the Eagles make sound decisions, and they're the ones who have decided McNabb isn't the answer. On the other hand, the dude will have some motivation.It's also impossible for me to separate the move from the inevitable next-day email from the Redskins offering McNabb jerseys for sale. I guess you have to do that if you're in the business of making money, but I can't think about this trade without thinking about that e-mail.

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McNabb: So the Redskins big solution is to trade for an old, fragile, and no longer particularly mobile QB to play behind no O line? Oh, and he hasn't made it to 11 games in the past five years. His best days are long behind him. Hate to be cynical, but this seems to be a move to intended to fire up the fan base and sell jerseys after the debacle from last year. and judging from the comment sin the post, the fan base has largely bough tit hook, line and sinker. PT Barnum would have done well with the Redskins ...

Dan Steinberg: But those aren't the people submitting questions here, huh? What is this, the Burgundy Revolution chatline? Burgundy Revolution Anonymous? The war is over, brothers! We've won! Keep your weapons in the closet! Sheesh.The "he hasn't made it to 11 games in the past five years" is not encouraging. Jason Campbell is a sturdy dude, and that paid off, since he was getting hit ever 3.7 second last year. When Albert Haynesworth came here, the cynics all pointed out his history of missing games. However you judge his 2009 campaign, he only played 12 times, which is about his average over his career.

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NCAA: If you had been in Indianapolis, what would you have been looking for in way of stories/pictures?

Dan Steinberg: Just various ways to insult Duke, Coach K, Duke fans, Duke grads, Coach K's family members, and Barry Svrluga.

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Citizen's Bank Field, South: I know it's a result of having one team that has more of less stunk the past few years, and one team that has been very good in the recent past, but can I say yesterday's Philly invasion was worse than anything I've dealt with at the ballpark the last few years.From the perspective of management, a ticket sold is a success, regardless of who is buying it, but at some point, this situation has to play a role in the bad team atmosphere. Whether Lerner and Kasteen wants this to be America's team or some other nonsense, I hope if that is the case DC fans fight back. I know my right field section was probably at least 3/4 phils fans. They loved them some Jayson Werth, and Boz clearly captured that in his story yesterday.When the Nats took an early lead, any Nats fans nearby with the nerve to show some temporary excitement were cursed at or had trash thrown at them. The most fun I think the Phils fans had were cursing at nearby Yankees fans. I don't really have a question, just wanted to vent. Saw your wonderful post on it, and wish there was a better solution for it short term. Other than win. And smile when Jesus-pitcher is able to make Nats park a less hospitable place to visit.

Dan Steinberg: Yeah, I have no idea what the answer is to this one. The group sales question has been raised by lots of people, and somebody should look into it. Hopefully somebody other than me, since I'm sick of being the bad guy re: the Nats. As the Caps discovered during the dark days, there's really no good answer if you're bad and other people want to come. But D.C. people want to come on Opening Day. For that one glorious bright sun-shiney afternoon, there shouldn't be more of the bad guys in the stands.

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Bad Form: I have a feeling you are going to say 'meh' about this, but as a true Nats fan, I was offended at the President's classless act of wearing a White Sox hat on the mound and waving it in our faces afterwards. All baseball fans know that he's a White Sox fan. He didn't need to rub our faces in it yesterday. Bad form.

Dan Steinberg: Oh, I completely, completely agree. No "meh" at all from me. What purpose did that possibly serve? Honestly, I don't care if he wears a Nats jacket. He's not from here, he won't stay here when he's done, whatever. That's fine.But you're at a National League game, in front of local fans who know all of these things. No need to go out of your way to be obnoxious.

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Comcast Sportsnite: Danno - just want to give you props for your appearance on Sportsnite last week. I liked the way you stood up to Ivan - what's up with that guy anyway? That shot on Smokin Al not scoring was a low blow. And great job covering the Caps on the Bog...keep it up. Bog nation depends on you. Thanks!

Dan Steinberg: There's no reason for the rest of you to read this, but this is possibly the first compliment I've ever gotten from a stranger about my work on televison. Actually, no "possibly" about it. So thanks.The CSN stylist, Kim, told me I was dressing like I was still in high school, so I recently bought two new suits with matching shirts/ties. Maybe that's the answer. She said I finally look like a grown up.

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Brandan Marshall: Tell me you hear something cooking in the stove....McNabb to Marshall would be huge...adding Okung to that would be a great start for this regime.

Dan Steinberg: Ugh. And this is why these things will continue to happen.

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brodcasters: WASHINGTON NATIONALS: Why do we have to put up with these two buffons? Yesterday we heard more about the Phillies than the Nats. Why can't we have announcers like the White Sox on WGN? Homers all the way. What's wrong with MASN?

Dan Steinberg: Uh, I don't think Bob Carpenter and Rob Dibble are often criticized for not being homerific enough. Dibble refers to the Nats as "WE." Carpenter virtually guaranteed yesterday that the Nats wouldn't get off to a horrible start again. When the home team's down 10, it's probably a good idea to change the subject.

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Whoa, Nellie!: The Wizards could be involved in history if they lose to the Warriors tonight, giving Don Nelson the record for NBA coaching victories. Of course, it would also give the Wizards an edge over the Warriors for 3rd position in the draft lottery. Don't you think that Warriors are the West Coast version of the Wiz? Great basketball location (Oaktown), dedicated fans, a title in the '70s with a few subsequent runs, usually medicre if not incompetent management, and a history of making laughably bad draft picks! And both are going through the process of being sold to hopefully more competent tech tycoons (Ellison and Leonsis).

Dan Steinberg: That's probably a nice comparison. The "Clippers of the East" thing has always rubbed me the wrong way, because where's the history of love for the Clippers? Where's the title legacy? The Clippers are second fiddle in their own town (in a basketball sense). If the Wizards won even a little, they'd be embraced in a totally different way.So call em the Warriors of the East, I guess.

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Nats Apathy: Salutation Bog,So yesterday I went with my buddy to a well-known downtown grill to catch an inning or two of opening day. ESPN was on all the TV's at 1 PM, 5 minutes before first pitch. The bartender was unaware that it was opening day for the Nats. So, I asked him to change the channel to MASN. I was met with a blank stare. He fumbled around with the remote for a bit, then handed it to us and told us to find the channel ourselves. How bad is the apathy for the Nats in this town that you have to a) ask for the game to be put on and b) find the dang channel yourself.Also, there's a lot of noise in the Nats blogosphere that Phillies fans were able to get large blocks of tickets before they went on sale to the public. Consequently, tickets sold out in 6 minutes when they went on sale to the public. Of course this resulted in the usual Nats stadium opposing team fan-takeover. Have you heard anything about that.

Dan Steinberg: That's horrific.Though my good friend Dave McKenna, currently on paternity leave from City Paper, recently was in a Foggy Bottom bar and had to request the Caps be put on the television. In a lot of cities, you don't have to make the request.Note to area bartenders: an easy way to curry goodwill from the locals is to put their games on your televisions.(Side note: I had sort of forgotten the number for MASN on my cable system before Spring Training began.)

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Hats off President Obama, literally!: Dan,So many things about opening day baseball in Washington should bring nothing but absolute bliss, especially with the most amazing weather we've had in early April in years, the cold brews pouring (before they ran out) and a new team with it's share of the lead of the NL East, albeit briefly. What ensues however just has me with the worst taste in my mouth this morning; what felt like more Philly fans than National fans, the president wearing his white sox cap, and of course a thrashing that's sure to repeat itself through out the year.......... Any thoughts on yesterdays experience?!?! Is there any hope for National fans?

Dan Steinberg: Well, all evidence -- aside from front-office rhetoric -- still argues in favor of a significant on-field improvement this season. Maybe not enough to get 'em out of the cellar, but it should be enough to keep them from picking first in the 2011 draft. The Phillies are actually pretty good, as is Halladay.As for the fans and the prez and all the rest, nah, I've got nothing for you. Maybe if the country elected Martin O'Malley or Bob Ehrlich....

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Nats to Skins: What's the ratio of Redskins questions to Nationals questions that you've received during this chat? For the record, please count this as a Nationals question.

Dan Steinberg: I don't feel like scrolling down to figure it out, but I can say that our Redskins blog got more than 13 times the traffic of our Nats blog yesterday. In some markets, you'd assume a trade for a QB would be roughly analogous to Opening Day. In this market, you deserve to be pelted with rotten green peppers if you feel that way.As for the Caps fans insisting the clinching of the Presidents' Trophy should really have been the lead story.....Well, and the top-rated show in America shouldn't be a singing competition featuring tone-deaf 17 year olds.

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Annapolis: I'm tired of that mis-use of the definition of "insanity" ... the actual definition has nothing to do with "doing the same thing over again and expecting a different result." People hear that and repeat it because it's easier than looking it up. Look it up. It starts with "A deranged state of mind ..." Which still, of course, applies here.

Dan Steinberg: I can't even remember if the original question was about a new Nats season, or the Redskins trading draft picks for a past-his-prime vet, or logging on here with the expectation of finding genuine sports insight from the host.

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I survived a day with Phillies "fans": Boz had it right in the paper today: Philly fans are classless (and as I Caps fan, I'm sadly familiar with the fact that it's not just limited to Philly baseball fans). They're an obnoxious, rude, and generally unpleasant group. It was like being at the worlds biggest drunken frat party at times.But I stuck it out! But I might have been one of the few Nats fans to do so. Worse than the Philly fans was the general disinterest of my fellow Nats fans. Yeah, the Nats are bad. Yeah, they don't exactly inspired a lot of hope. But it's Opening Day: stand up and cheer! The lack of vocal support for our team was almost as pathetic as the fact that the Nationals willingly sold large blocks of group seating to Philly tour groups prior to tickets going on sale to the public.

Dan Steinberg: And as Jim Riggleman might ask you, other than that, how was the play, Mrs. Lincoln?The only part of this that makes me uncomfortable is the implication that "D.C. fans" are of a nobler breed. At a ballpark? Sure, undoubtedly. But go to FedEx Field sometime. It'll make the world's biggest drunken frat party look like a Mormon revival.

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Patient Redskins Fans: From Q&As and blogs, I get the strong impression that Redskins fans -- on the whole (there are obviously exceptions) -- are more patient than the organization. Many fans seem to WANT the team to rebuild the slow way, through the draft, not by overspending money or draft picks on veterans. When in history has that ever been true before, in any city? Sports owners seem to long for a patient, loyal fan base. Snyder has one. Yet he keeps acting desperately, as if he thinks everyone will give up on the Redskins if they don't win now. Strange.

Dan Steinberg: Well, there are 90,000 seats to sell. And some QB jerseys.But I agree. I've said many times: this is the rare, rare, rare fan base that wants a draft filled with anonymous beefy linemen rather than skill-position stars. This is the rare fan base that craves a 6-10 year as part of the big build back up to the playoffs. There's at least a one-year grace period, if not for ticket sales, for expectations.But heck with that. The Future is Now, chaps.

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Speaking of question ratios ...: Are you not getting any questions about the NCAA championship? Or do you just not feel like talking about it?

Dan Steinberg: I'm not getting any questions about the NCAA championship.I was at the Caps game last night and didn't get home until the under-8 media timeout in the second half. But those last eight minutes were pretty good. Still, I didn't feel anything near the agony that I read about online, people who were all-in for Butler and were just crushed by the result. I just moved right along to charting past Redskins draft picks.

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Re: buying blocks of tickets: You don't need to be special or a season ticket holder to get advance purchase notices from the Nats. Just sign up on mlb.com. geesh. No conspiracy.

Dan Steinberg: As long as you have the answers, I'm curious what the minimum number of tickets to be a "group" is?Just got an email from a long-time reader who works near the parking spot for many of those Philly buses. He reports that some of the fans left the game early to hang out by the buses."Strong smell of the green stuff filled the lovely DC air," he wrote me.

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Good thing at Nats Park: The draft beers that I bought on Saturday and Monday, from four different stands (all on the RF side) were really cold.

Dan Steinberg: Anything new on tap?

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Philly Fans & Nats Park: Regarding the previous post on this topic, one possible solution for the Nats until they can win enough to attract mostly all Nats fans to their games is for MLB to schedule a team like the Braves for the Nats home opener. Braves fans don't 'travel well' and wouldn't scarf up big sections of group tix like passionate Philly fans. It is embarassing to have the Philly fans take over the Park and the President dissing us also. I think the Lerners just care about butts in seats. I was a bit appalled that they 'paid' the Red Sox to stop by on their way north to play their last spring season game at Nats stadium on Saturday. Smart business, but kind of bad form for Nats fans. Once again I felt like a visitor in my own stadium. Geesh.

Dan Steinberg: Yeah, that's the one thing I've thought of. Better yet, schedule the Marlins. Or the Pirates. There's no rule that the Opening Day opponent has to be in the division, right?

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Nats/Caps: Who is the most defensive fan base in town, Nats or Caps?

Dan Steinberg: Oh my goodness, the Caps, and it isn't even close. I mean, they're not in the same universe. I'm right there with them, but Caps fans literally scan the national clips just trying to find slights. Nats fans more cover their eyes, I think.

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What??: (Side note: I had sort of forgotten the number for MASN on my cable system before Spring Training began.)Dan, are you trying to say that you don't watch all of the many, many Atlantic 11 eligible teams on MASN over the winter?? Such as the Big South Game of the Week? For shame, Commissioner, for shame.

Dan Steinberg: I thought about this when posting that response, but dangit, it's the truth. Almost every night you can see either the Wizards or the Caps, and that takes precedence over Mount St. Mary's vs. AU. Sorry, MASN spokespeople.

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Sec 114, Row E: I was offended by the Nats "choice" to sell blocks of ticket to Phillie tour groups. But I was more offended by the Nats players for rolling over and taking it. When Philly fans can drown out the cheers of the home lineup, I really think the team needs to man up and take it to the opponent. But really, from the top down, this is a loser franchise.

Dan Steinberg: Well, I'm not sure it's realistic for baseball players to "try harder" to spite a visiting fan base. I don't think the sport really works that way. Maybe -- maybe -- you could make the argument for certain other sports, but baseball is about mathematical equations I don't understand, and individual matchups.Now, if you're saying the players should have charged into the stands and dumped rosin and pine tar on the heads of Phillies fans, maybe I could get down with that.

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Nantz and Kellogg: What games were they watching over the weekend? From Nantz stating the score incorrectly to Kellogg saying Matt Howard embellished being cleared out by Brian Zoubek, it was one error or incorrect statement after another. Why were those two announcing the final four?

Dan Steinberg: Nantz is like Wasa crackers; you can sample him a few times a year, and it's entirely unmemorable if a bit unpleasant, but you can stomach it.Kellogg is horrific. Just horrific. I thought Howard actually did embellish that a little bit, but I was far more outraged when he insisted the no-call was correct at the end of Butler-Michigan State. I mean, Hayward admitted he got all-hand.

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DC Sports Teams: Which DC teams' fanbases would you say have the greatest percentage reading you? The Redskins have a lot, but their whole fanbase is so huge it may only be 20% or so. Meanwhile, the DC United, with a much smaller fanbase, might be near 70%.

Dan Steinberg: But I never write about D.C. United any more.I'd say the Caps. They're incredibly into social media and the web and the blogs, and they're very good at disseminating the links.

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Mayan Calender: Shanahan must realize that he has until the end of the 2012 season to win or there will not be a second chance. With the end of the world as we know it coming in December 2012, which correlates with the end of the Mayan Calender, he cannot rebuild the Redskins over a 4-6 year period. Though he still needs offensive linemen now.

Dan Steinberg: Is there any rule against trading 2013 picks now? Just unload those suckers. Maybe you could use some of them to entice Shaun Alexander out of retirement.

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Eagles: Let's not go hog wild about the eagles decision making. Better than the skins, yes, but eagles waited until this year to get decent receivers for McNabb. Eagles wildly over paid for FA Jevon Kearse. It is a QB driven league, and eagles have had a stellar QB for past ten years, as have most of the temas that win consistently. Denver and the niners seemed to make excellent decisions until Elway and Montanta/Young moved on.

Dan Steinberg: This is a fair point, but we've seen the Eagles win plenty of games without McNabb. I guess this year will be the test.

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The DC sports scene: Even as a Caps fan of 30-some years who has complained about media coverage of the team in the past, it's ridiculous that people think the President's Trophy clinch is a bigger story than McNabb, or Opening Day. The real question and concern about the DC sports scene: If the Caps are still in the playoffs next month when "Donovan McNabb's first minicamp as a Redskin!" happens, please tell me the Caps will be the bigger story? Other than on 980 of course....

Dan Steinberg: Well, will more people care? No. More people will care about the Redskins.Will the Caps lead the local sports coverage? Yeah, I'd guess they will.But the Redskins blog on our site will absolutely get more traffic that day. Sorry.

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Are there Washington fans?: Went to your dump of a park yesterday. How did it feel to be over run with Philly fans. At least you can say you had one sell out this year. Good Luck with McNaab. Your gonna need it. Think we'll use your draft pick to move up this year.

Dan Steinberg: Random capitalization? Spelling mistakes? Use of the word "dump?" Yup, it's a Philadelphian! Welcome to Washington, sir!Look, no one argues the Nats are good. No one. No one argues it feels good to be overrun with Philly fans. So I'm not sure who you're arguing with. Now go home and watch all those Eagles championship parade videos.

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Yes, I think it's a good move: Short-term, I think this works fine, ASSUMING the o-line is somewhat improved and McNabb stays healthy. If that doesn't happen, it wouldn't matter if you have Campbell, Grossman, or God at q-back, it's another lousy season.

Dan Steinberg: Positivity!Art Monk being the spokesman for the Donovan McNabb trade on CSN? Why is Art Monk there? I'm confused.

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McNabb Injuries: Dan,I'm as skeptical about the McNabb deal as the next person, but the question earlier re:his durability had some questionable facts. From Pro Football Reference, here are his Games Started since his rookie year in 1999: 6, 16, 16, 10, 16, 15, 9, 10, 14, 16, 14. After he became the full time starter in 2000, he's only started less than 14 games in a season 2 times. His last 3 seasons may actually be the most durable he's been in his career over a 3 year span - despite the line being arguably worse. There are definite reasons to not like this trade but McNabb's durability I think should not be an issue.

Dan Steinberg: Jeez. Anonymous chat contributors are not always 100 percent reliable. Although, hell, maybe YOU'RE lying. Is there anyone who can tell me how many games McNabb has started? Maybe I should go to Wikipedia or something.(And apologies.)

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Mr. McNabb and the future of the Redskins: Dan, I just wanted to let you know that everything will be OK with the Redskins.I know it's a little early, but I've already added McNabb to the 'Skins in Madden 2010. I've also added Willie Parker and LJ and created a player named Okung. I just wanted to tell you everything works out fine.I played in All-Pro mode and won every game. I even took into account LJ's inevitable domestic dispute, docking him a few games. We are golden. McNabb even set new records in yardage, TDs, and rushing for a QB.All of these naysayers clearly haven't tested their theories like I have. So, Dan, spread the word for me if you could. Thanks!

Dan Steinberg: See, more positivity.Monk: "We just have to wait and see how it all plays out." Now there's a novel take. That's sort of my life philosophy right there.

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Wizards: Speaking of the Warriors, Stephen Curry comes to town tonight. With the Post's recent reporting that the Wiz are unlikely to pick up Randy Foye's option this summer and Mike Miller's impeding free agency, it's pretty safe to say that trading least year's lotto pick -- and passing on Curry in the process -- was a complete disaster. Do you find it at all amazing that Ernie Grunfeld has not taken ANY public responsibility for the disaster he created? Is there any way Leonsis doesn't can him?

Dan Steinberg: That's not really his M.O. I'm not sure that's anyone's M.O., in terms of standing up and saying "Wow, I screwed up that last draft, didn't I?" I mean, they obviously thought they were in win-now mode. I think if you own a team and you're dying, that's not an unreasonable moded to be in. Blowing it up and having to preside over a bottom-four team for a second year in a row is taking some sort of responsibility.But yeah, you could have gotten something shiny and special with that pick, huh?

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Rocking the red: Is it possible the Nats are unconcerned about the semi-annual Philly invasion because both teams' fans wear red and white? If you ignore the chants and don't look too closely at the jerseys, it looks like a stadium full of excited Nats fans. Maybe it'll take Nats Park being 3/4 full of another team's colors before the Lerners realize something is wrong?

Dan Steinberg: you read Boz's column this morning, he reported that Ted Lerner heard the fans chanting, but didn't know they were chanting "Let's Go Phillies" early in the day.

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C-A-P-S CAPS CAPS CAPS!: I know alot of people have been a little nervous with the way the Caps have been playing as of late (8 of their last 14 games have gone to overtime)...Do you think this is more a factor of having little to play for right now and waiting for the playoffs or do you think there should be some concern going into the playoffs about this team?

Dan Steinberg: Well, they've won one playoff series in the post-lockout world. Several of their stars have seemed to shrink in clutch situations. Of course there should be concern. It's hockey; regular-season excellence is no guarantee of post-season success. you worry.

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Elkridge: (To paraphrase a famous presidential debate): Sir, I knew John Elway. I watched John Elway WIN a Super Bowl. Sir, McNabb is no John Elway.

Dan Steinberg: Vice presidential debate, right?And I think Dan Quayle is doing a chat on WaPo.com today. Or maybe yesterday. Either way, go ask him about this.Anyhow, I'm going to go watch the McNabb presser now. I'm guessing there will be a horrific shortage of local news organizations providing live quotes. Should be exciting.


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