Oct 5, 2013, 12:30 PM EDT
The Wizards have suffered far more than their fair share of injuries recently, making it difficult to climb out of the five-year funk that has let the team out of the postseason picture.
Wizards owner Ted Leonsis expects to see improvement this year, and is placing pressure on his players to produce results. While injuries have been a very real issue for the team to deal with, Leonsis says that he no longer wants to hear that as an excuse.
“We have 13 healthy players and the one thing I’m not allowing anybody to do is use injuries as an excuse,” Leonsis said at a news conference. “We have 15 players under contract. Two can’t start the season. That means we have 13. That’s all you can dress anyway.
“Last year, there was a pass given. We didn’t have Nene and John Wall, our two best players. Understandable.” …
“We’ve retained our players. We’ve added a lot of players. We’ve spent a lot of money. And I expect us to be a playoff-caliber team. …That’s the pressure I’ve placed on the organization.”
Had I been at this press conference, I would have asked Leonsis a follow-up to his “no using injuries as an excuse” statement, and it would have gone something like this: What does that even mean?
If guys are legitimately injured, that’s not an excuse. It’s an actual reason that they are unable to play. You can’t possibly live up to expectations if your best players are constantly missing time due to injury — just ask last year’s Lakers about that.
Things should indeed be improved in D.C. this year, and the team has an outside shot of making the playoffs if all the right pieces fall into place. But injuries would derail that dream rather quickly, and Leonsis more than most should be aware of that unfortunate possibility.
- Kevin Love says Timberwolves owner should focus on his own team following trade to Cavaliers 0
- Iman Shumpert excited to play in triangle offense because he won’t just have to stand in the corner 3
- Timberwolves owner: Kevin Love might regret trade because he’ll be third banana with Cavaliers 44
- Anthony Davis and Kenneth Faried lead Team USA in final World Cup tune-up 19
- Thunder trade Hasheem Thabeet to 76ers 34
- From late-arriving to a LeBron James favorite, Kevin Love comes full circle 15
- Clippers trade Jared Dudley and first rounder to Bucks for Carlos Delfino and Miroslav Raduljica 22
- Report: Cavaliers trying to trade for Nuggets’ Timofey Mozgov 25