Wizards

Quick Links

G-Wiz of the Wizards was robbed in the professional sports mascot rankings, is the best in D.C. sports

G-Wiz of the Wizards was robbed in the professional sports mascot rankings, is the best in D.C. sports

The internet has many benefits as a learning tool, a way for people across the globe to connect and for some to pursue their dreams in ways not previously possible. But the internet also has its drawbacks. Sometimes things can be published for the entire world to see that are so fundamentally wrong that one must speak up. For the sake of those in society who don't have a voice, one must point out a correction to right an obvious and terrible wrong.

I am of course referring to the latest pro sports mascot rankings released by Deadspin on Friday afternoon. In light of Mr. Met being fired by the New York Mets for losing his cool and flicking off a fan, Deadspin compiled a list of the 70 best mascots in professional sports. It was a great idea.

The Deadspin staff came up with a rating system where each mascot was scored on a scale of 1 to 10. Ironically, Mr. Met came in first with a 9.13 rating. The Phillie Phanatic, a furry green native of the Galapagos Islands who represents the Philadelphia Phillies, came in second. The Phanatic probably should have been first, but that's an argument for another day.

Here's where they lost me and so many out there who enjoy the miming, dancing adult-sized muppets who entertain us at sporting events: G-Wiz of the Wizards is shockingly low.

They have G-Wiz all the way down at 64th with a 2.80 rating. It's just not right.

Look at G-Wiz's story and you find out why he is special. This isn't your ordinary mascot. 

[RELATED: D.C. area mascots snubbed in Deadspin ranking]

According to G-Wiz's official online biography, the Wizards' mascot first had dreams of playing in the NBA. He - the website refers to him as 'he,' which may settle some debates - actually tried out for the team, but they didn't have any room on the roster. So, instead of feeling blue and sinking into depression, G-Wiz channeled those emotions into an audition as the mascot. It was there that he found his calling. The rest is history.

Consider the credentials G-Wiz brings with him. According to his bio, "G-Wiz recovered from the rejection and focused on his school work. He graduated early with a PhD in Dancing, Bachelor of Science in Acrobatics and a Minor in Magic. Mamma and Pappa-Wiz were so proud of their son for all of his hard work."

The only D.C. mascot ahead of G-Wiz on the list is Screech of the Nationals. He's one spot ahead at 63rd. And in front of them are a few no-names that make you scratch your head and wonder why G-Wiz, who is famous for his belly-shaking, was snubbed behind them.

Raymond, the Tampa Bay Rays mascot? T-Rac of the Tennessee Titans? Slamson of the Sacamento Kings? Wow, a lion that dunks. So original. Never seen that one before.

Do any of those mascots have a PhD in dancing? I didn't think so.

Now, this is not to say G-Wiz should be atop the list. A top 20 ranking would probably suffice. But to not even have G-Wiz as the top-ranked mascot in D.C. is a slap in G-Wiz's furry blue snout.

G-Wiz is obviously the best mascot in D.C. The rest of them are all eagles. Screech is an eagle. Slapshot of the Capitals is an eagle. Talon of the D.C. United is an eagle. American University has an eagle. Too many eagles!

Georgetown University has an actual dog, which is awesome. It can ride a skateboard, and that is cool. But G-Wiz can ride a dirtbike. Can Jack the Bulldog do that?

It's time people give G-Wiz the respect he deserves. He literally doesn't have a voice, so somebody had to speak up.

[RELATED: NCAA Tournament 2017: Ranking best and worst mascots of March Madness]

Quick Links

Celtics and Sixers may go relatively unchanged this offseason, as stars have gone elsewhere

bensimmons.jpg
USA Today Sports Images

Celtics and Sixers may go relatively unchanged this offseason, as stars have gone elsewhere

The 2018 NBA offseason in just three weeks has become one of the wildest summers in the league's history between LeBron James signing with the Lakers, and all the characters that followed him, to DeMarcus Cousins surprising everyone to sign with the Golden State Warriors, to Kawhi Leonard getting traded to the Raptors.

As crazy as it all has been, two teams in the Eastern Conference stand out for so far doing very little, either by choice or circumstance. The Celtics and Sixers, the two teams most see as the favorites in the East, appear at least so far to be running it back with the same group of players.

This appears to be the Celtics' intention. After overhauling their roster last summer, they clearly see an opportunity to take a step forward as-is. Boston was one win away from the NBA Finals and will return Gordon Hayward and Kyrie Irving from injury. With James gone to the West, they can improve significanly just by keeping it all together.

Boston re-signed Marcus Smart and Aron Baynes. Their biggest addition this summer so far has been their first round pick, Robert Williams.

The Sixers, unlike the Celtics, didn't appear to plan on doing it this way. They wanted James and missed out. They reportedly had interest in Paul George and Kawhi Leonard, but both went elsewhere. There are no stars left to sign in free agency and the trade market may be drying up.

Philly made some minor moves like trades for Wilson Chandler and Mike Muscala. They may also have a deal for Kyle Korver in the works. They also had two first round picks in Zhaire Smith and Landry Shamet.

There's a chance the Sixers got better than people think, as many of the moves they made seem smart. But they didn't reel in a big fish and will probably come back for the 2018-19 season with a team very similar to the one that made the second round of the playoffs this spring.

The fact the Celtics and Sixers may stand pat is probably a good thing for the rest of the East. Both teams may improve naturally if they are healthier and if their young players continue to ascend. But neither made a game-changing addition, one that would solidify either as an unstoppable superteam in the conference. 

The West is overloaded with title contenders and All-NBA players. The East, meanwhile, is much more open and it may end up staying that way mainly because Boston and Philly have been quiet so far this summer.

NBC Sports Washington is on Apple News. Favorite us!

Quick Links

Wizards set introductory press conference for Dwight Howard

Wizards set introductory press conference for Dwight Howard

Wizards team president Ernie Grunfeld has stayed relatively busy this summer crafting his new-look lineup for the 2018-19 season. 

One of the team's key additions, Dwight Howard, is set to be introduced as a member of the Wizards on Monday. 

NBC Sports Washington will air the introductory press conference live at 1 p.m. while also streaming it online.  

Ernie Grunfeld and head coach Scott Brooks are both expected to be in attendance. 

The 32-year-old big man is coming off a 2017-18 season with the Charlotte Hornets in which he averaged 16.6 points and 12.5 rebounds per game. 

Since leaving the Orlando Magic after eight seasons in 2011, Howard has played for four different teams in the last six years. 

Howard is an eight-time all-star and a three-time defensive player of the year. 

 

RELATED LINKS: 

John Wall's take on Dwight Howard 

Wizards make Dwight Howard free agent signing official 

By the numbers: Is new Wizards center Dwight Howard still in his NBA prime?