By Mark F. Gray
After Wizards guard Javarris Crittenton was sentenced for his misdemeanor gun possession charge, the organization was quick to distance itself from the third year player and have chosen not to pick up the option on his contract. The team issued a statement saying how they were disgusted with his behavior and how it dissapointed the franchise and the community.
Its is clear that the team’s president Ernie Grunfeld is in damage control mode right now because the players he brought in are the ones that are most responsible for their embarrassing underachievement. I propose bringing him up on felony charges of fraudulent construction of an NBA roster. The offense is punishable with a refund for season ticket holders and a five year sentence as GM for the New Jersey Nets or L.A. Clippers. Sorry, the Clippers rolled the Wizards last Sunday so I would argue he should be banished to the Jimmy Hoffa burial ground in upstate New Jersey.
For a team whose motto remains “Character, Committment, Connection” the architect of the Chinatown mess has constructed a roster with characters who aren’t committed to winning after the embarrassing off court fiascos and subpar performances have left this basketball savvy community with no reason to connect with them anymore.
In fact, I had a conversation over the weekend with a couple of high school educators from Montgomery and Howard counties respectively who told me there was no way they could justify taking their children to Wizards games anymore. They cited the mixed messages it would send by supporting their favorite basketball team who is not winning and embracing “thug behavior from role models” which makes it difficult for them to sell their children and students on right from wrong.
Meanwhile, Grunfeld contines to hide behind organizational releases that distance the franchise from the players he signed, traded for, extended, or overpaid. The mess is his responsiblity and he needs to finally address it publicly. Grunfeld has been so far out of sight since the season has gone in the tank you’d think he’s changed his last name to Bin Laden.