Stephen A. Smith: Time to blow up the Wizards

Chris Lingebach
November 07, 2018 - 12:26 pm
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When the Wizards are on Stephen A. Smith's radar, you know something's gone tragically wrong.

After a 119-100 loss to Dallas Tuesday night, the Wizards are off to a 2-8 start, good for the second-worst record in the NBA

"It all starts with me," Wizards coach Scott Brooks told The Sports Junkies Wednesday morning.

That's exactly where Stephen A. is putting the blame, too. 

"It's time for a blowup," the ESPN 'First Take' said, beginning a long, conspicuous diatribe. "It didn't work, Ernie Grunfeld. It didn't work."

Before we go further, it's only fair to Brooks, who is in his third season coaching the Wizards, to point out how Stephen A. in this rant managed to spare his old pal Ernie Grunfeld. In 16 seasons as president of basketball operations, Grunfeld has presided over 538 wins and 686 losses for a .439 winning percentage.

"And for those who don't know who I'm talking about, Ernie Grunfeld is the president of basketball operations," Stephen A. continued. "This conversation hurts me, because Ernie Grunfeld and I go back to his days with the Knicks. I've known this man for over 25 years. I love that man. But this is a disgrace taking place in the nation's capital.

"We've been talking. People have their opinions, of a negative variety, about what else goes on in the nation's capital. Thank GAWD they didn't contaminate themselves further by going over to the damn Verizon Center! What a disgrace that is taking place in the nation's capital!"

"You can say that again," Max Kellerman chimed in.

"Scott Brooks, gotta go! Gotta go!" Stephen A. assailed. "And listen, let me be very clear, I've known Scott Brooks. Like him. I'm not trying to say he can't coach. He is not the right man for this job. This job requires a heavy hammer. Scott Brooks is one of the nicest guys you could ever meet. The problem with that is, is that unfortunately you don't like confrontation, and with the Wizards, you need confrontation!"

Stephen A. then took some time to lather himself in the details of John Wall's contract, which jumps from $19.1 million this season to $37.8 million the next as his supermax deal kicks in.

"He's getting paid 37.8 next year, 40.8 the year after, 43.8 million the year after and then has a player option! A player option! Of $46.9 million!

"Not the worst contract on the team, by the way," Kellerman added, letting us all know he was still in the room.

"Now listen, I like John Wall. John Wall is an All-Star. John Wall can play," Stephen A. resumed. "Then this year arrived. For some reason, a man that struggled with his perimeter shooting comes back and is shooting worse! I don't give a damn about the (46.1 field goal percentage). He can't get to the hole with the ease that he used to. He's actually bigger! He looks out of shape! And that's a problem! So now you've got that as a problem. Then you've got him and Beal are not meshing, as a problem. It's contaminated Markieff Morris, who can play! Otto Porter, he looks comatose half the damn time! And oh, by the way, he's in the midst of ($106 million) contract!"

"I would say no, it's not the time to blow up the Wizards. It is not the time to blow up the Wizards. I disagree with Stephen A," Kellerman said. "The time to blow up the Wizards was at least a year ago."

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