The Washington Wizards are off to a terrible start. They are 1-12, their superstar has been off (until today), and their clashing attitudes are getting in the way. Head coach Flip Saunders' frustration finally boiled over when JaVale McGee threw an alley-oop off the backboard to himself on a fast break. McGee saw the play as an opportunity to pump his team up. Saunders saw it as a flashy, self-serving highlight that was completely unnecessary. McGee was immediately benched and found himself there for most of the game.
“I told him that’s unacceptable,” Saunders said. “Maybe I’m too old-school, but you see that and the [lobbying] for the All-Star Game, that right there is where we have to get to where we identify with meat and potato basketball. Playing hard, setting screens, playing the right way, and not highlight-type play. We’ve said this many times. We have some players that look for highlights instead of substance.”
We know that his team was down, and we know he was showboating, but we don't find McGee's reason all that unbelievable. He was all alone, and his team needed something to get excited about. If it were Jordan Crawford doing that, it'd be different, but McGee is a seven-foot dunk contest participant, so he knows what he's doing. Plus, he needed to redeem himself after Chandler Parsons' almonds left a salty taste in his mouth.
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