Capitals

Dave Johnson: Better Effort Does Not Give Better Result

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Dave Johnson: Better Effort Does Not Give Better Result

Tuesday, March 16, 2010 11:49pm

Wizards vs. Nuggets Game Highlights & Postgame
By Dave Johnson
CSNwashington.comDenver----Insult and injury have often gone together for the Washington Wizards this season. It happened again when the Wizards lost Andray Blatche to a sprained left ankle and a game to the Denver Nuggets 97-87.With 6:48 to go in the fourth quarter Nene threw down an open slam dunk to give the Nuggets a 79-70 advantage which at the time was their biggest lead of the game. Nene was alone for the finish because Blatche had landed on Nenes foot and turned his ankle and ended up wreathing in pain on the baseline.It was the cruelest of finishes on a night when the Wizards gave themselves a chance at a big upset. Blatche, who is now listed as day-to-day with the injury, tried to play through after a timeout but was forced to the sidelines.Playing against an imposing Nuggets frontcourt including Nene and Johan Petro, Blatche excelled with a series of strong low post moves as he led the Wizards in scoring with 23 points. Blatche was the focal point of a Wizards effort that did not allow the Nuggets a single lead until almost halfway through the third quarter."We dictated how the tempo was played," said Wizards head coach Flip Saunders. "We got the ball inside and played off Dray. But when they turned the pressure up, we started taking some perimeter shots and quicker shots and not making them play defense and that fed into their ability to run and get in the open floor."Carmelo Anthony scored a game high 29-points and also grabbed 12 rebounds to lead the Nuggets. J.R. Smith provided the Nuggets boost off the bench with 17 points and 13 of those points in the fourth quarter when he was hitting shots even when he barely had a handle on the ball.Playing their fifth game in six nights, the Wizards seemed to surprise the Nuggets with a strong start. Al Thornton finished a break triggered by a JaVale McGee block of an Anthony drive to give the Wizards an 18-10 lead with 5:03 to go in the first quarter.Thornton finished with 16 points but guarding Anthony put him in foul trouble. Alonzo Gee, an undrafted rookie from Alabama who is on a ten-day contract, stepped in and not only defended Anthony well but scored 13 points with 10 rebounds and 2 steals."He is playing well. He is a guy who can play in this league I like the things he does," said Saunders. "We are going to resign him to another ten-day contract. He is athletic and he defends."In some ways it was amazing the Wizards not only led for most of the game but stayed competitive deep into the fourth quarter even though they missed 11 free throws. In addition the Wizards could never really get Randy Foye or Mike Miller involved in the offense.The Wizards losing streak is now nine games and is the longest since a nine game slide in January of 2001."We have a couple of days to lick our wounds. Well get a day of rest and then a practice and then we have a couple tough games," Saunders said. "We got better in situations tonight and that is a positive. We know how we have to play; it is just a matter of being able to bottle that."

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Capitals Faceoff Podcast: On to Vegas!

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USA TODAY Sports

Capitals Faceoff Podcast: On to Vegas!

The Capitals are the Eastern Conference Champions!

After dispatching Tampa Bay in Game 7, the Caps claimed the conference crown for just the second time in franchise history. But they're not done yet. Now it's on to Vegas to face the Golden Knights for the Stanley Cup.

JJ Regan and Tarik El-Bashir break down the Caps' win over the Lightning and look ahead to the matchup with the Knights.

Check out their latest episode in the player below or listen on the Capitals Faceoff Podcast page.

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Need to Know: The Redskins week that was—OTA report, fans excited about young D-line

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NBC Sports Washington

Need to Know: The Redskins week that was—OTA report, fans excited about young D-line

Here is what you need to know on this Friday, May 25, 62 days before the Washington Redskins start training camp.  

The Redskins week that was

A look at some of the most popular posts and hottest topics of the week on Real Redskins and NBC Sports Washington

Trades, misses and mistakes explain Redskins' dead cap—This post does a good job of outlining where the Redskins’ dead cap came from. It should be noted that dead cap is a part of the cost of doing business in the NFL and the Redskins have done fairly well managing it this year. Only about a dozen teams have less dead cap on the books than the Redskins $5.2 million. 

Tandler's Take—The best- and worst-case scenarios for the 2018 Redskins—I received some comments saying that my worst-case scenario, a 6-10 finish, is not low enough. Since we’re talking about events that won’t begin to happen for about three and a half months, I can’t really argue with them. But it’s just hard for me to see them dropping more than a game from last year when they were hit harder with injuries than any other team in the NFL. 

Pre-OTAs Redskins player one-liners, defense—An extension for Matt Ioannidis seemed preposterous a year ago, now it seems like a good idea. How many sacks for Lanier? When will Ryan Anderson get his first sack? Plus offensive player one-liners here

Redskins OTA practice report—QB Alex Smith sharp—You can’t tell everything from OTAs, but you can tell some things. Taking another look at this post, I gave a good, detailed look at the session, but I didn’t really mention the overall feel, which was fun and energetic. 

Tweet of the week

Certainly, Derrius Guice is the fan favorite of the rookie class. But the great reaction to this tweet shows that there is plenty of love for Daron Payne and Jonathan Allen, last year’s top pick. 

In 2016, the starting defensive line consisted of Ricky Jean Francois, Chris Baker, and  Ziggy Hood. The top reserve was Cullen Jenkins. They all had their good qualities and made some plays. But Baker was the youngster of the group and he turned 30 during the season. It clearly was a group on the decline. 

Two years later, the picture is quite different. Payne and Allen lead a younger group that will get better over the next few years. Matt Ioannidis, Anthony Lanier, Tim Settle, and Stacy McGee should round out the group. McGee is by far the senior member of the group at age 28. None of the others have celebrated his 25thbirthday yet. 

Fans should perhaps temper their optimism with the knowledge that potential doesn’t always develop into performance. But unlike years past there is something to look forward to. 

Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page, Facebook.com/TandlerNBCSand follow him on Twitter  @TandlerNBCSand on Instagram @RichTandler

Timeline  

Days until:

—Minicamp (6/12) 18
—Training camp starts (7/26) 62
—Preseason opener @ Patriots (8/9) 76

The Redskins last played a game 145 days ago. They will open the 2018 NFL season at the Cardinals in 107 days. 

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