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Rashard Lewis says you can expect a whole new him next year

Sep 18, 2011, 2:05 PM EDT

Rashard Lewis Wizards Getty Images

Rashard Lewis has become the  standard punchline for any joke about bad long-term contracts. He was paid back when he was an elite scorer in Seattle (you know, back when Seattle had a team), then was converted in the Magic system to be their perimeter trigger. He stopped working in the post or on the drive and was primarily used as only a spot-up shooter, and last season his huge deal was swapped for Gilbert Arenas‘ huge deal (Lewis is still with the Wizards).

Hoopsworld caught up with Lewis in Las Vegas at the Impact Basketball events this week and Lewis says he’s working to get back to being a true versatile weapon.

“I’m trying to get away from being just a spot-up shooter,” Lewis told HOOPSWORLD. “My whole goal is to get back to attacking the basket, posting up and being a small forward like I was in Seattle. I’m not complaining about being a spot-up shooter in Orlando because it was great and I’ll do anything for the team to help win games. That’s how we won ball games, by spreading the floor and having Dwight [Howard] inside. Now, for me, I have to get back to being aggressive and attacking the basket as well as shooting the three.”

via NBA Saturday: Telfair Excited For Free Agency | HOOPSWORLD | Basketball News & NBA Rumors.

Lewis is 32 and has battled a myriad of injuries the last few years. So his ability to work in the post is questionable at best, much less work from the perimeter on drives. Still, with the extra time off from the lockout, it’s possible Lewis could surprise in Washington. Even if he can provide anything, he’ll still get comments about his contract. But as Lewis told J.A. Adande, it’s not like the players negotiate those contracts. The fact that Lewis is engaged, working out, talking about being a leader and trying to contribute says a lot about his character. He’s not just coasting out the rest of his career, even if he is overpaid.

  1. 00maltliquor - Sep 18, 2011 at 2:37 PM

    A whole new him, huh? Yeah, and my Raiders are gonna win the superbowl this season. I can see it now, 12 PPG, 4-5 REB and miss about 35 games (assuming it’s an 82 game season). Surprizingly, that wouldn’t be a bad year for him. Come and get me when the pigs start flying.

  2. goforthanddie - Sep 18, 2011 at 4:01 PM

    “He’s not just coasting out the rest of his career”

    No, he’s playing for his next contract.

  3. illmatic8582 - Sep 18, 2011 at 6:06 PM

    Will he have a sex change?

  4. cosanostra71 - Sep 18, 2011 at 6:43 PM

    Rashard has been trying to become a post player his whole career it seems like. I remember his first few years in Seattle the Sonics tried to make him play like a traditional PF. He struggled and a lot of people were ready to give up on him until they moved him to the three and he thrived.

  5. stinkfingers - Sep 19, 2011 at 12:20 PM

    As long as the new Rashard is still pounding LeBron’s old lady, I’m good with that.

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