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Monday, August 14th, 2006 at 11:12 am  |  14 responses

And Then There Was One…

Gilbert Arenas heads home.

by Lang Whitaker

Two weeks ago while I was in Vegas, knowing that Team USA had to make two cuts, I predicted the players to be let go would be Gilbert Arenas and Bruce Bowen. I predicted it twice, actually, here and here.) I had no inside information about this, it was a gut feeling developed solely from watching Team USA practice and play exhibition games. We all know how terrific Gilbert is within the context of what the Wizards do, but he really was a visibly odd fit in Coach K‘s system. (And I love how I’ve since seen, even today, it written elsewhere that these were the two most likely guys to go. You think? Where’d you read that?)

Anyway, today it was announced that Gilbert has suffered a “groin strain” and will be withdrawing from the team. Hmm…

For the sake of Wizards fans out there, I hope he isn’t badly hurt, because if a “strained groin” is enough to keep him out of the next three weeks of action, it must be a relatively serious injury. I think the more likely scenario is that they all realized Gilbert wasn’t going to fit with the team, at least not this summer, and they found a way for Gilbert to leave with everyone’s dignity intact.

Who’s next? They’ve got one more exhibition (late tonight), and then they’ve got to dumb another player. I still think Bowen is the most logical suspect, but again, I wouldn’t be surprised it ends up being Chris Bosh, who like Gilbert has just looked out of sync thus far.

:: photo via Wizznutzz ::
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  • http://www.slamonline.com Marcel Mutoni

    I feel bad for Gil. He’s one of the good guys in the League and seemed really excited about the chance to rep his country.

    Good thing he’s young, he’ll get another crack and this is just another motivational tool for him. Next year he’s gonna be even more of a beast.

  • http://thehype.wordpress.com Hype

    I was thinking about the ‘making up the injury’ so everyone’s cool because no one’s going get too mad at them cutting Gilbert. Hmm..so when/if they cut Bowen, will they also include the tag line of: “Bruce Bowen is hurt.. somewhere.. look, we needed a final cut okay?”

  • Gilbert0

    Not surprising. I love what Arenas does in the league but he was kind of superflous to requirements with the team they assembled. He wasn’t going to take minutes from Paul or Hinrich as he is not a pure passing point and the sg position was taken care of. I feel bad for him as well because he seemd genuinely enthused about the Team USA thing.

  • Alex

    I feel horrible reading this news. Gilbert is one of my favorite players in the league. I love the wya this kid plays, respects the game, and carries himself off the court (including Memorial Day weekend). He seemed thrilled to get the chance to represent the country and its unfortunate that he wasn’t up to par. Hopefully he uses this to destroy teams next year.

  • Daniel

    If you’re going to make up an injury, “groin strain”? I guess it’s pretty unverifiable except to a select few, but still, who wants to be that guy? Bring back Nintendoitis, I say.

  • Delicious J.

    As much as I hate to say it.. because I love Bosh (reppin Dallas) and hate Bruce – but I hope Bruce stays on. Bowen fills a more important need on the US roster.

  • DD

    Like everyone, a “groin strain” seems a bit too convenient to get the lineup in order, but Gilbert has suffered from one several times before (and pretty seriously) so you can imagine why he’d be concerned. Check out the “news and notes” at the bottom of the article below, you can see how many times the injury has kept him out during his short Wizards career.

    http://stats.washingtonpost.com/nba/playerstats.asp?id=3540

  • http://slamonline.com Lang Whitaker

    Yeah, talking to Gil out in Vegas, he was really excited about the whole thing. But he was really caught between the point and the off guard positions. The Team USA asked him to concentrate on playing the two, and I think if he’d been hot the last few weeks we’d have a different story here.

  • bigb

    who ever write this article is dumb…even if the groin injury is not serious, u hav to stay outta sports for at least 3 weeks (rest), it doesnt hav to be like he said “relatively serious injury” to keep him out..and we all kno gil has had this type of injury b4…so no suprise if he had to b out of the team…

  • Vyse

    Ego for the win! “See, guys! I TOLD you it’d be Arenas!”

  • Sam

    I think Arenas should have stayed on. I mean come on what has Bowen done he still has not scored one point he gets like 30 seconds a game and he is just too old. Also what about Battier what has he done? Absolutley nothing he is just another sorry player from Duke. They need to cut Bowen or Battier, Beacause when Chris Bosh is on the floor he actually helps the team and shows some energy out there.

  • Sam

    Much Love to Elton Brand from Duke But thats about it.

  • G

    damn, and i was just about to nominate him for the “Official Team USA World Championships 2006 Linkstigator”.

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