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News » Washington Wizards Notes, Quotes 2008-07-26

Washington Wizards Notes, Quotes 2008-07-26

Washington Wizards Notes, Quotes 2008-07-26
--The Wizards finalized what had been expected for several weeks, signing free agent Gilbert Arenas on July 12 to a six-year, $111 million contact.

How much of a formality was it?

"Before negotiations even began, I talked to Gilbert on the phone and I said, 'Gilbert, you will never, ever wear a jersey other than the Wizards. Never,'" Wizards owner Abe Pollin related. "I know talent and I know what Gilbert can do. So I told him, 'Gilbert, we're going to pay you a lot of money and all you have to do is win a championship.'"

The Wizards haven't won a championship in 30 years.

--The Wizards went 2-3 in the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas despite employing a roster that included four players with NBA experience and first-round pick JaVale McGee.

F Andray Blatche led the team in scoring (17.6 points per game) and rebounding (6.8) and F Dominic McGuire put on a dazzling shooting exhibition (25 of 40, 62.5 percent), but in many ways the most intriguing prospect was Russian F Vladimir Veremeenko, a Wizards draft pick in 2006 who has played the last two seasons in Russia.

Veremeenko left Las Vegas scratching his head over American officiating, which he felt denied him a couple of nice drives to the hoop because of traveling violations.

"I don't understand because in Europe, I use that same move," he explained. "Here you can take three, four steps and they don't call travel. But that first step, they call it. So it is different here."

--JaVale McGee's mother, Pamela, was a star player at USC in 1983 and '84. They are the first mother-son combination to have played in the WNBA and NBA.

"Yeah, I guess it's pretty cool," JaVale admitted.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "I know what kind of pressure comes with it, but as long as you're winning and as long as I do my best, I don't think I'm going to get criticized too bad." -- Wizards star Gilbert Arenas, on the pressure and responsibilities attached to a $111 million contract.

Author: Fox Sports
Author's Website:
Added: July 26, 2008


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