Saunders: Arenas Looks Quick Again
Old 08-12-2009, 08:12 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Coach: Arenas has quickness back

WASHINGTON -- According to new Washington Wizards coach Flip Saunders, Gilbert Arenas looks good in the weight room and on a basketball court.

And that's good news for the Wizards. Because for all of Washington's offseason changes -- center-forward Fabricio Oberto, introduced at a news conference Wednesday, should be the final addition -- whatever turnaround will be made from last season's 19-win disaster figures to hinge on Arenas' health and production.

"There's no question, a player of his talent, when he's playing, he puts us from a team that's competing for the playoffs to a team that's an elite team in the playoffs. When you walk in the gym right now, you wouldn't think that he's hurt," Saunders said. "If he's at that ability when our season starts, we're going to be an elite team in this league."

Coming off three knee operations in 1 years, Arenas played in only two games late last season.

But Saunders traveled to Chicago last week and watched Arenas lift weights and play.

"He gets to wherever he wants to get on the court. His quickness is back," the coach said. "He's getting his scoring touch back, and he's getting his confidence back. He's excited about where he's at. He looks good. His weight is lower than it's been in the last few years. ... He feels he's got some things to prove."

Wizards president Ernie Grunfeld saw Arenas work out at Washington's arena Monday and said the three-time All-Star "was making shots, too. He was getting to the basket."

After making the playoffs four consecutive seasons, Washington took a step back in 2008-09, when starters Arenas, center Brendan Haywood (appeared in six games) and guard DeShawn Stevenson (32 games) all missed significant time.

While leaving his core intact -- the above trio and All-Stars Antawn Jamison and Caron Butler are still around -- Grunfeld brought in scoring guards Mike Miller and Randy Foye, along with frontcourt backup Oberto. Washington traded away the No. 5 overall pick in June's draft and reserve forwards Etan Thomas, Darius Songaila and Oleksiy Pecherov and let guard Juan Dixon go as a free agent.

The club probably will bring in an extra two or three players for training camp, Grunfeld said, but he added that the 14 players now under contract "in all likelihood" will be Washington's roster when the season begins.

"We feel we're a very versatile team. We have two or three players, at least, at every position," Grunfeld said. "We have a good blend of veteran players, young enthusiastic players, players that are in their prime who can carry you on a daily basis."

The 6-foot-10, 245-pound Oberto provides some frontcourt depth, defensive ability, toughness and experience. He averaged 3.6 points and 3.9 rebounds in four seasons with San Antonio. The Spurs traded Oberto to Detroit this summer as part of a five-player deal; the Pistons then waived Oberto.

Oberto helped the Spurs win the 2007 NBA title and Argentina win a gold medal at the 2004 Olympics.

"I like to see what is missing with the team and help that part," he said. "If I've got to play 'D' and not take a shot for 10 games, I'll do it."

Oberto, who is 34, had surgery this year aimed at correcting an irregular heartbeat.

"He's doing very well. He had his physicals this week; he passed everything," Grunfeld said. "We spoke to his doctors in Texas, and they feel very good about everything."
Gilbert Arenas of Washington Wizards has quickness back after surgery,. new coach Flip Saunders says - ESPN
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Old 08-12-2009, 08:18 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I hope Arenas gets healthy. He has a lot of talent and potential. However, now Arenas has more competition for the coveted title of best point guard in the league like Devean Harris, Tony Parker, Chris Paul, Deron Williams, Jason Kidd and Steve Nash.
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Old 08-12-2009, 08:34 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I hope Arenas gets healthy. He has a lot of talent and potential. However, now Arenas has more competition for the coveted title of best point guard in the league like Devean Harris, Tony Parker, Chris Paul, Deron Williams, Jason Kidd and Steve Nash.
you forgot Calderon
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Old 08-12-2009, 08:49 PM   #4 (permalink)
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LOL...
I'll believe it when i see it.

I have a feeling that as soon as he takes the hardwood this year, his knee will get mangled again.... that being said tho, i really do hope he does well... seems like a good guy
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Old 08-12-2009, 08:51 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Calderon is a solid all-star reserve point guard as of now but hopefully next year he will bring Arenas more competition averaging 15 and 10.
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Old 08-12-2009, 08:52 PM   #6 (permalink)
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This guy has had Knee problems for over 2yrs now. When that happens usually players are never the same. The only thing he has on his side is that he's only 27.
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Old 08-12-2009, 09:07 PM   #7 (permalink)
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This guy has had Knee problems for over 2yrs now. When that happens usually players are never the same. The only thing he has on his side is that he's only 27.
Yes some players can never recover from injuries like Peja Stojokavic or Antonio McDyess and will never be the same basketball player again. However, there are players like Dwyane Wade who come back from injury well. In case you were under a rock for a while, he was amazing in the olympics and the second best player in the league last year.
I'm also hoping that Arenas has a good recovery as he is one of my favourite players.
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Old 08-12-2009, 09:27 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Yes some players can never recover from injuries like Peja Stojokavic or Antonio McDyess and will never be the same basketball player again. However, there are players like Dwyane Wade who come back from injury well. In case you were under a rock for a while, he was amazing in the olympics and the second best player in the league last year.
I'm also hoping that Arenas has a good recovery as he is one of my favourite players.

Peja/McDeyess/O'Neal and there are alot more to list that have never been the same after a Knee injury let alone, one that has been re-injured twice and has linguered for two years. Usually the player is never the same, but time will tell. BTW, i hate Arenas almost as much as KG. He's one of the more arrogant, big mouthed morons in the league imo.
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Old 08-12-2009, 10:46 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Peja/McDeyess/O'Neal and there are alot more to list that have never been the same after a Knee injury let alone, one that has been re-injured twice and has linguered for two years. Usually the player is never the same, but time will tell. BTW, i hate Arenas almost as much as KG. He's one of the more arrogant, big mouthed morons in the league imo.
Gil's a prick but his story is kind of intriguing. At least he's got a little substance.

Either way, tough not to take this with a grain of salt. Two very serious knee injuries, not sure if he had surgery done both times, but the chances of him being the same player are miniscule. He's a guy that relies on speed, quickness, explosiveness, and the knee is absolutely the last thing you want to injure as a player of Gilbert's breed.
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Old 08-12-2009, 11:02 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Man if Arenas returns to his old form...watch out! Top 5 PG in the league easy.

If the Wizards manage to stay healthy I predict they'll be fighting the Raps and Hawks for 4th and 5th spot.
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Old 08-12-2009, 11:50 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Man if Arenas returns to his old form...watch out! Top 5 PG in the league easy.

If the Wizards manage to stay healthy I predict they'll be fighting the Raps and Hawks for 4th and 5th spot.
I think they'd run away with 4th.
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Old 08-13-2009, 09:37 AM   #12 (permalink)
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I hope Arenas gets healthy. He has a lot of talent and potential. However, now Arenas has more competition for the coveted title of best point guard in the league like Devean Harris, Tony Parker, Chris Paul, Deron Williams, Jason Kidd and Steve Nash.
Potential? The guy's like 27-28...and a 3-time all-star.
He's more of a SG than a PG.
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Old 08-13-2009, 09:42 AM   #13 (permalink)
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that team is just filled with 2's now.
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Old 08-13-2009, 12:30 PM   #14 (permalink)
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This will probably make Coran's and Jamison's stats drop, considering Arenas is a shoot first PG.
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