Leonsis: Wizards will 'never, ever tank'

Ben Krimmel
January 17, 2019 - 2:06 pm
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Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

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Wizards owner Ted Leonsis isn't interested in tanking.

Speaking to reporters from London, Leonsis said the Wizards' first goal is to make the playoffs and added criticism of tanking, the strategy the Sixers made into an art form with "Trust the Process."

"So, you know, that process is pretty risky in and of itself," Leonsis said. "I don’t think you can tell players, coaches, staff: ‘Don’t make the playoffs and tank!’ We will never, ever tank."

"Bradley Beal has told me, 'We have enough. We're gonna make the playoffs. We're not gonna let you down,'" Leonsis told the media Thursday. "So who am I to change the goals?"

"We said, 'No excuses.' It would be easy to say we have so many players out injured, but we're not going to do that. We're not letting anybody off the hook," he said.

"We got to make the playoffs," Leonsis said. 

He also said he was aware of the anti-Ernie Grunfeld backlash on social media, but pointed to the Capitals' Stanley Cup win as evidence that change is not always necessary.  

"Yes, I see all the things on Twitter. I read everything. I’m not all that happy with our performance, but you have to make non-emotional (decisions), what’s right for the franchise, what’s right for the team," Leonsis said.

The Wizards went on to beat the New York Knicks, 101-100, in London to improve to 19-26 and currently sits three games behind the Charlotte Hornets in the loss column and the final Eastern Conference playoff spot.

Forty-five games down, 37 games to go in the 2018-19 season.

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