April 21, 2008
Fast Breaks: Cavaliers-Wizards
By Marty Burns
Game 2   Leaders
Cavs lead series 2-0   Points Rebounds Assists
116 86
James, Ilgauskas
• Is Gilbert Arenas (right) hurting the Wizards?

It seems a fair question to ask after his dreadful Game 2 performance helped set the tone for Washington en route to an embarrassing blowout loss.

Arenas had just seven points (on 2-of-10 shooting) to go with three assists and three turnovers in 24 minutes. Perhaps still bothered by his knee and wrist injuries, he showed no explosiveness while misfiring badly on several shot attempts. He also picked up some dumb fouls.

But the real problem was that he continued to play as if he was The Man. He took a bunch of bad shots early that seemed to suck the life out of his teammates.

During the 69 games Arenas sat out to rehab his knee, the Wizards learned to play together as a team. Antonio Daniels spread the ball around, and guys like Andray Blatche, Roger Mason and Nick Young chipped in off the bench. Now, with Arenas back, it's like they're all standing around in a fog waiting for Agent Zero to take over.

Arenas is a good player. His heart might be in the right place. But somebody needs to tell Arenas that he's not helping his team if he's injured and not able to play to his level. After all, the Wizards were a pretty good team without him this season.

• The Cavs continued to show that size does matter. Zydrunas Ilgauskas, Ben Wallace, Anderson Varejao and Joe Smith are causing Washington all sorts of problems with their length around the basket. Cleveland is getting tons of second-chance opportunities, and the Wizards can't seem to get anything inside. Washington is helping them out, too, by settling for too many outside shots.

• Brendan Haywood deserved to get tossed for that flagrant foul on LeBron James, but he does not deserve any further punishment. If Haywood does get suspended for Game 3, however, the Wizards will really be in trouble. They don't have any true big men other than Blatche, and he seems to be too young to understand that this isn't the regular season anymore.

• DeShawn Stevenson's little finger-licking display after hitting a rare three-pointer in the third quarter was pathetic. Apparently it didn't matter to the eight-year veteran guard that his Wizards were getting blown out by 16 points at the time. Plus, Stevenson is the last guy who should be showboating since he has done nothing offensively in the first two games -- or over the past two seasons against Cleveland.


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