The Wizards traded for Nene expecting veteran leadership, and he’s certainly lived up to it by being one of the most outspoken players in the locker room. If something isn’t going right, Nene has always been candid with the media (especially about his nagging injuries, but that’s a different story) and it was no different after last night’s loss to the San Antonio Spurs where he seemed to be rather upset at some of the younger players on the team.
They kicked our butts in the most classy way — playing the right way,” Nene said, fuming following the clinical destruction of the Wizards by the selfless Spurs. “It’s crazy, that’s what makes me mad. Our young guys think they’re so smart. But if I was young, I would watch video of that game for one week to see if I could learn something, because the way they play is how you’re supposed to play..
Nene continued to vent about the loss:
They don’t think about stats. We still think about stats. Our young guys must take their heads out their butts and play the right way, because I’m getting tired of this.
Even though he’s spent the last few seasons playing for the Wizards, it’s pretty obvious that Nene isn’t fond of losing especially coming from a winning team in Denver. Nene held Tim Duncan to just 1 for 12 shooting from the field, but he wasn’t particularly great offensively which is an area the Wizards need him to stay consistent.
I honestly don’t think Nene wanted to throw some of the younger players under the bus, but this just might be a way to fuel the team before returning home to face the Cleveland Cavaliers on Saturday. If the Wizards want to make the post season, they’ll have to start stringing together a few wins sooner rather than later. Washington’s next 10 of 12 games will be against opponents who are also below .500, so they should be able to straighten out their record.
The Wizards sense of urgency has definitely increased and it’s evident in the players’ reactions to losing. Nene may have been a bit too candid after the loss, but I’m sure it’ll motivate the younger players heading into next game.