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Wizards Summer League roster includes Beal, Satoransky

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Wizards Summer League roster includes Beal, Satoransky

Denied a trip to the Las Vegas Summer League last year because of the NBA lockout, Jan Vesely, Chris Singleton and Shelvin Mack now have their opportunity for a full and "normal" professional offseason.First round pick Bradley Beal will make his debut in a Wizards jersey as will the Wizards second-round selection, Tomas Satoransky.The quintet are among the 14 players invited to the Wizards mini-camp starting on Monday before the team heads to Las Vegas. The entire roster, released by the Wizard son Friday,is listed below.Let's note the following: The Wizards will open summer league against Atlanta on July 13, their first of five games in six days. Players invited to the mini-camp will not necessarily travel with the Wizards to Las Vegas and others could be added. The only true class of 2012 rookies from American colleges on the roster are Beal and LaRon Dendy, a 6-foot-9 power forward from Middle Tennessee State and the last season's Sun Belt Player of the Year. All others have played at least some professional basketball.There was some mystery as to whether the 6-foot-7 Satoranky would show. Seeing as Wizards President Ernie Grunfeld said within minutes of drafting the combo guard that it could be multiple seasons before the Czech Republic product plays in the NBA, this could be our only chance to see him live on U.S. soil in quite a while.

Otherwise...not exactly a list of household names. - Steven Gray played four seasons for Gonzaga and as a senior averaged 13.9 during the 2010-11 campaign. - Shavlik Randolph entered college in 2002 with those high expectations one expectsfrom a Duke recruit.The 6-foot-10 forwardturned pro after three suspect seasons and later would be dubbed the biggest recruiting bust of the decade by Seth Davis (ht TruthAboutIt.net).- Earl Calloway averaged 9.6 points and 4.3 assists at Indiana...during the 2006-07 campaign. More recently he has played for Sevilla in Spain's ACB League, the same team as Satoransky. Something tells me the media will be asking Mr. Calloway questions about the young Czech.Truth is, this team is all about the trio of second-year players and the two rookies. Seeing if Vesely now has a semblance of a jumper, if Singleton's confidence has returned, if Mack can run the offense, how Beal handles his first taste of pro competition and simply what Satoransky is all about, that's what matters. Finding additional regular season help, bonus.

2012 Washington Wizards Summer League Roster

NumberPlayerPositionCollegeCountry3
Bradley BealGFlorida40Jeff Brooks
FPenn State51Earl CallowayGIndiana16LaRon DendyCMiddle Tennessee St.19Steven GrayGGonzaga30Ravern JohnsonGMississppi State22Shelvin MackGButler32Shavlik RandolphFDuke14Tomas SatoranskyGCzech Republic21Mike ScottFKent St.9Garett SilerCAugusta St.31Chris SingletonFFlorida State34Kim TillieCUtah24Jan VeselyFCzech Republic

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Natasha Cloud is tired of the Bradley Beal trade rumors

Natasha Cloud is tired of the Bradley Beal trade rumors

Mystics guard Natasha Cloud has had it up to here with trade rumors about Wizards guard Bradley Beal.

Beal has been a strong vocal supporter of the Mystics and the WNBA, in general. He works closely with Kristi Toliver, who, in her offseason, works as an assistant coach for the Wizards. His closeness with the Mystics has now manifested itself in Cloud voicing her opposition to Beal being traded on Twitter.

Beal is no stranger to trade rumors. Entering his eighth season, Beal has been connected to the Los Angeles Clippers, Boston Celtics and Miami Heat, among others. Given that his name is frequently tossed around in trade talks, it should come as no surprise that the Clippers made a run at him to pair with Kawhi Leonard.

Despite the frequent and recurring rumors, Beal hasn't been traded, and very likely won't be traded. He's a star and a legitimate piece around which to build a franchise. At the summer league in Las Vegas, NBC Sports Washington's Chase Hughes sat with Shaquille O'Neal to discuss what the Wizards should do in free agency. Shaq said that between Beal and John Wall, the Wizards are just a piece or two from breaking through.

I definitely think [the Wizards] should keep him. He's a great shooter, but if he’s a great shooter looking to go somewhere, L.A. has $32 million [in cap space]. ... He's definitely the cornerstone of this franchise. He and John Wall have always, almost always, been there. They just need another one or two guys.

It's still unlikely that Beal is playing in anything other than a Wizards uniform on opening night, but if he is, expect to hear from Cloud about it. 

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Drew Gooden, Justin Kutcher to highlight NBC Sports Washington Wizards broadcast team

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Drew Gooden, Justin Kutcher to highlight NBC Sports Washington Wizards broadcast team

Drew Gooden was nearing the end of his second 10-day contract with the Wizards in the 2014 season when he went off for 21 points against Brooklyn. 

It was a game that changed his career, led to being signed to the team for the remainder of that season and ending his career as a Washington Wizard two years later. “My career was totally reborn as a veteran leader on the Washington Wizards,” he said. “And that’s something I never would have thought would come full circle.”

And now? Gooden will serve as the game analyst on NBC Sports Washington’s Wizards broadcast this season. NBC Sports Washington announced on Wednesday he will join new play-by-play announcer Justin Kutcher as part of the Wizards' game broadcast team. Chris Miller will return in his role as sideline reporter.

“It’s a dream and I never thought in a million years I would have retired a Wizard and that out of all my teams that I played for, that Wizards would be the favorite organization that I played for, never thought I would be a color analyst for NBC Sports Washington,” Gooden said. “All of this is a dream.”

And while Kutcher may not have the same playing resume that Gooden does, he promises to bring the same passion Gooden does to broadcasts.

During the early days of his career, Kutcher wasn’t just the voice of (and practice player for) the Boston University women’s basketball team. He was such a passionate fan that he was the one making the most noise on the team bus after a big win or a big loss. Now, after decades in the business, he’s not sure he’ll go to that extreme – but Wizards fans can expect him to be “a fan who’s calling the game,” he said. “I say that about myself all of the time. I think of myself as just this incredibly lucky person that gets to call a sport that I love. When I have a reaction, it’s a genuine reaction. So, I’ll keep everything professional, but I’ll get excited.”

Kutcher has 17 years of experience as a play-by-play announcer, having spent the last seven years at Fox Sports where he led national coverage of NCAA basketball and football, the NFL and MLB. Prior to FOX Sports, Kutcher served as a play-by-play announcer for ESPN for four years. During that time, he led live coverage for a variety of sports, including basketball, football, baseball, softball, volleyball and hockey, across professional, college and high school leagues and conferences. He also appeared on studio shows during his tenure with ESPN. In addition to FOX Sports and ESPN, he has also called collegiate events for CSTV, now CBS Sports Network, for two years, as well as BTN, and contributed to MLB.com digital programming.

“I have known Justin since he was a runner for us at FOX Sports,” said Joe Buck. “He’s gone from working hard behind the scenes to one of the best, young voices in sports. Wizards fans are getting a great broadcaster and a better person .”

Here’s five more fun facts about Kutcher and Gooden.

1.    Kutcher’s worked the past five Westminster Dog Shows. “I get more ticket requests for that than any other event I go to,” he said. But, at first he wasn’t sure he was going to stick with it. The first year, he said, was a little tough. “I called my dad after it airs and he said that it was my mom’s favorite thing that I’ve done.” But, he stuck with it. And now? “I love it,” he said. 
2.    His favorite thing in DC is … the breakfast at Ted’s Bulletin. “They have a breakfast burrito that I get, I eat two of them at a time and people can’t believe it,” he said. Oh, and also his family. His family in the area includes a 3-year-old nephew, who when asked for real estate recommendations in the area, declared “you can live at our house!”
3.    Meanwhile, you can find Gooden at his favorite crab shack. “Quarterdeck in Arlington is my favorite, favorite restaurant,” he said. In the two years he’s known about the crab spot, he’s eaten there, he estimates, “800” times. 
4.    Good news for Wizards fans: He thinks the Wizards will be a team everyone sleeps on – and that’s great for them. “They’re going to have the opportunity to surprise a lot of people early,” he predicted. 
5.    Kutcher expects Rui Hachimura to … “be one of the steals of the draft.” Kutcher covered the new Wizard as a play-by-play announcer during Hachimura’s college career. “I would not be surprised if you see Rui average 15-18 points per game and close to 8 rebounds per game. I think he’s that type of player, he’s a really good kid, when I saw the Wizards drafted him I said that’s a great, great pick,” he said.