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Stephen A. Smith goes after Wizards after loss to Lakers, misses mark

Stephen A. Smith goes after Wizards after loss to Lakers, misses mark

The Wizards losing to the Lakers on Wednesday night put them in the unenviable position where LaVar Ball got to throw salt on their wounds and say 'I told you so.'

He's a noted loudmouth and many were rooting for the Wizards to shut him up, but they couldn't.

It gets worse. Now ESPN's Stephen A. Smith, who has a lot in common with Ball as a controversial trash-talker worthy of Wrestlemania, is taking shots.

Smith went on a rant Thursday morning with the sort of passion and histrionics he is famous for. His gripe: the Wizards look like fools for not backing up their trash talk.

Yes, the Wizards were the ones who did the talking in Stephen A.'s eyes. Seriously?

LaVar Ball started the entire saga by saying the "Wizards better beware" on Sunday, three days before the game and before the Wizards had even played the Denver Nuggets, their previous opponent. All the Wizards did was respond, and who can blame them? 

Set aside the irony of Stephen A. Smith criticizing anyone for firing back in a war of words for a second.

Let's take a look at his rant:

RELATED: PAUL PIERCE SAYS WALL IS BEST POINT GUARD IN NBA

The fact of the matter is, Wall didn't really take much of a shot at all. Wall told NBC Sports Washington that he thinks Lonzo is a "nice kid" and doesn't blame him for his father's actions. Wall said he would show "no mercy" in an interview with the Washington Post ahead of his battle with Lonzo Ball, but was he supposed to say otherwise, that he would show mercy against the rookie?

That doesn't make any sense at all. And Smith should know better messing with the Wizards. Markieff Morris is watching.

 

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Utah Jazz make guard Rodney Hood available, would Wizards be a fit?

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Utah Jazz make guard Rodney Hood available, would Wizards be a fit?

Momentum is building towards Utah Jazz shooting guard Rodney Hood getting dealt before next month's NBA trade deadline. Marc Stein of the New York Times reported on Saturday that multiple teams have already expressed interest in the four-year pro:

Hood, 25, is on an expiring contract and would provide scoring for a team in the market for offense. He's averaging 16.7 points this season on 41.3 percent from the field and 38.6 percent from three.

Hood isn't a very efficient player, but he can stretch the floor. He's also big for his position at 6-foot-8 and is a very good free throw shooter (86.2%).

The Wizards could use help at the shooting guard position with Bradley Beal logging heavy minutes. They have an improved bench after making several upgrades last offseason, but shooting guard Jodie Meeks has yet to establish a consistent role in their rotation due to his low shooting percentage.

The Wizards don't necessarily need offensive help, but Hood could help take pressure off of Beal. He could also play in lineups with both Beal and John Wall.

It's unclear what the Jazz want in return for Hood and whether the Wizards could make a worthy offer. If Utah is taking the longview to build for the future, that could mean a first round pick and the Wizards have already parted with their last two.

Regardless, if the Wizards decide to target shooting guards in the next few weeks, expect Hood's name to come up.

RELATED: DID THE WIZARDS' TEAM MEETING BACKFIRE?

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Wall: A few teammates didn't respond well to recent team meeting

Wall: A few teammates didn't respond well to recent team meeting

Do NBA seasons even count if an emergency team meeting hasn't taken place yet? 

In what's becomming an annual right of passage for underperforming NBA teams, the Wizards recently held a team meeting to address some of the biggest issues that have been dogging them all year. 

While these meetings typically act as motivating springboards that help bring teams together, the Wizards' recent family therapy session might have done the opposite. 

Enter John Wall. Wall, who's already publically voiced concerns over the team's (lack of) effort this season, recently spoke about how the meeting might have rubbed some of his teammates the wrong way:

"At our team meeting, I think a couple guys took it in a negative way," Wall said after the team's win in Detroit. "It hurt our team. Instead of using it in a positive way like we did in the past and using it to build our team up, it kind of set us back a bit."

That's certainly not a ringing endorsement from Wall, and definitely not something you want to hear after a team meeting. Currently, however, the Wizards are back to their winning ways, coming off a nice road win in Detroit. So maybe it worked! 

RELATED: MUST-SEE MOMENTS FROM THE WIZARDS' WIN IN DETROIT