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Sunday, November 20, 2016

The Wizards Winning Troubles



This season, the Washington Wizards clearly have some problems. They involve winning. They are now 3-9 and it seems as though as if some of the players are getting fed up with it. But why? How could this team, with playoff expectations coming into this season perform so bad. Well, let's take a look.

The suspect here is the bench, since Gortat and Beal have both spoke up on how the bench needs to step up. Gortat said that Washington's bench is, "one of the worst benches in the league right now". This happens to be true. Their bench players have been worse than their starters. But the starters are supposed to be more productive than the bench. That's why they start. However, not like this.

The Wizards starting 5 has been productive offensively as they are 6th in PPG and they are top 11 in defensive rating. The bench on the other hand is 29th in PPG and the WORST in defensive rating in the league. Clearly a difference, right?

So where is this all coming from? Enter, Trey Burke. Trey Burke was drafted as the 9th pick in the 2013 draft by the Minnesota Timberwolves. At the time, the Wolves had a surplus of point guards consisting of guys like Ricky Rubio, J.J. Barea, and Alexey Shved. The Wolves ended up trading Trey Burke to the Jazz for the 14th and 21st picks in the draft (Shabazz Muhammad and Gorgui Dieng). When Trey Burke arrived, he was the Jazz's new starting point guard and thought to be one of the leading candidates for the rookie of the year award. In 2013, Trey Burke would average 12.8 PPG through both the first and second season playing. However, guys like Rodney Hood and Dante Exum were starting to arise taking minutes away from Burke. Exum was a threat to Burke's starting role as Exum had an amazing defensive game as did Hood. However, before the 2015-16 season started, Exum would go down with an injury, which was thought to have solidified a starting spot for point guard Trey Burke. Wrong. Trey Burke didn't start in one single game in the 2015-16 season. Instead, Raul Neto and guard Shelvin Mack would get the role, and for one sole purpose: defense. Quinn Snyder was so upset with Burke's defense that he eventually didn't even play him. Shelvin Mack and Raul Neto weren't that great offensively, but they could do 2 things: Pass and play defense.

When Burke was traded to the Wizards, it looked like he could be a very solid backup to John Wall. They let Ramon Sessions walk over to the Hornets thinking that Burke was going to be their new backup. However, Burke hasn't been good for this team at all. The Wizards are at their worst when Burke is on the court and are at their best when he is off. Simply he hasn't been cutting it. Mostly at the defensive end. Ramon Sessions was probably one of the best backup point guards to have. Now they have a guy who isn't able to run an offense or play defense. To top that off, they lost Nene and others. There used to be a say where the Wizards had Trevor Ariza and Trevor Booker on their bench, but those days are gone.

So what can the Wizards do? They need a change. They must trade for someone. And they need a guy that can help them. Rudy Gay might be a good fit. Maybe DeMarcus Cousins, but how would that turn out. But at the least, they need to do what the Jazz did. Find a guard, any guard, that can run their offense on the bench. Bring Will Bynum back! I loved this guy! If there is anyone who can play good off the bench it's Will Bynum. But they desperately need a good bench point guard, because when John Wall heads to the bench, it's been chaos.