Mar 27, 2010, 7:00 PM EDT
Wizards President Ernie Grunfeld said Saturday that the team will not attempt to void Gilbert Arenas’ contract next year, saying “people forget that he’s still one of the best players in this league.” The Washington Post
Arenas was sentenced Friday to probation, but no jail time for charges stemming from his infamous altercation involving guns with Javaris Crittenton.
It’s interesting that the Wizards have come out and supported Arenas after this whole mess. He embarrassed the organization, brought weapons into the locker room, helped prompt the team to blow up the nucleus of Arenas-Butler-Jamison, and then laughed it off. He managed to slip away from jail time but it’s surprising to see the Wizards come out strong behind him.
So the core next year features Arenas, Josh Howard, Al Thornton, and mercurial Andray Blatche. Unless the Wizards luck out in the lottery, it’s hard to see how the Wizards will really be moving forward. That may be the most devastating result of this lost season for the Wizards. They’re stuck with the player who wasn’t playing that well and who submarined things for the club, and they’ve lost the glue locker room guys they had depended on for stability.
The Wizards will need Arenas to return to 2005 standards of shooting, ahem, as it were, if they want to try and climb back to respectability. The drama continues.