Washington Wizards: The Irrationality of John Wall Fandom


Washington Wizards: The Irrationality of John Wall Fandom

Every Washington Wizards fan’s favorite player is John Wall. If they tell you otherwise, they’re either outwardly lying or work part-time as Nene’s personal calf masseuse.

Wall is basically light years ahead of any other player on the roster; what makes us so excited about Bradley Beal’s annual playoff run is essentially what Wall brings to the table 100 times a season.

In fact, every other player on the roster exists to serve one of Wall’s incredible attributes.

For Marcin Gortat, it’s to be the roll man to Wall’s otherworldly reads of screens. For Jared Dudley, it’s about standing in a spot behind the arc so Wall’s perfect dimes can find his hands in sync. For Otto Porter it’s about running the floor in transition to convert easy buckets while defenders are flummoxed by Wall’s breakneck speed. And for Alan Anderson, it’s about stretching his body to get up off the bench in a full suit and high-five the team after another clutch Wall jumper.

Realistically, Wall is the greatest player in modern franchise history.

Though Gilbert Arenas may have had a higher peak (3-time All NBA selection), he also played in a different era and with noticeably better teammates. For example, both Caron Butler and Antawn Jamison were all-star selections while it’s fair to wonder if Wall has ever shared the floor with a top-50 player.

Wall has led the Washington Wizards to two consecutive 2nd round playoff trips and for what it’s worth, both exits felt premature due to unforeseen and unfortunate circumstances.

Ultimately, the Wizards, and subsequently the fans, live and die by John Wall.

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While it’s certainly lot of pressure on his shoulders, he’s performed ably enough to reach status as an NBA superstar, an elite point guard, and a face of the franchise.

Frankly, this last point has made us a little sensitive when it comes to Wall.

His game naturally produces more glaring flaws than other top players, while some of his strengths are hidden by the box score.

This dichotomy produces an irrationality in John Wall fans that makes us over protective against outside commentary and overly critical of his mistakes, leading to a series of situations that produce wildly different reactions from those of us watching in the stands or from the couch.

Here are a few of my favorites, with most market research conducted by just examining myself, obviously.

Situation: The Wizards score 94 total points but somehow John Wall finds his way to 13 assists including a slew of ‘WTF’ passes to guys signed off the street (i.e., Rasual Butler, Garrett Temple, Glen Rice Jr., you know what I’m talking about).

Response: “DID YOU SEE THAT? Imagine Wall in a real offensive system that runs plays like a professional basketball team! All of you guys who hate on John Wall need to watch a full game of Wizards basketball and only once you’ve put yourself through that torture will you really appreciate what this man brings to the table.”

Situation: Wizards allegedly upgrade offense, adopting pace and space strategy. Yet Wall struggles through a series of lackadaisical games, wrought with poor shooting and careless turnovers.

Response: “HEY JOHN. WHILE STEPH WAS GETTING BETTER THIS SUMMER IT LOOKS LIKE YOU WERE JUST HANGING OUT WITH JAMES HARDEN. I don’t care that you probably have an ankle injury so debilitating it would have forced Nene into early retirement, why don’t you focus on the game rather than on which pose you should make in front of your Rolls Royce for that 11 pm Instagram picture??”

Situation: Despite his deep involvement in community work and other charitable efforts, Wall is left off the ‘NBA Cares’ montages. In addition, the newest iteration of the NBA Gametime App commercial is unveiled with Wall still noticeably missing while Paul Millsap somehow sneaks in.

Response: “Oh great, the NBA wants to highlight its players efforts in the community yet Wall can stroll into a homeless shelter, drop down a $400,000 check and still be avoided on TV. Speaking of which, how the hell do you want me to pledge my app-legiance to a product that refuses to acknowledge one of the best players in the game?

Paul Millsap? Seriously? I get it, talented player, great team but guess what – go out on to the street and ask if people want to come meet Paul Millsap. Then get back to me on how many more app-legiances his face is locking in. Morons.”

Situation: Wall has one of those nights where he’s just settling for jumpers, seemingly unable to find his way to the basket.

To make matters worse, the opposing point guard (usually of the #WizardKiller variety) is knocking down shots and getting into the lane with ease.

Response: “Here’s the hidden truth about Wall, man.

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None of you guys even realize this but he can’t dribble! In fact, he has no moves except for that stupid exaggerated crossover that only works if the defender has brought a mattress onto the floor and is actively sleeping.

All he has is straight line speed and even that is defendable.

How can we have an uber-athletic point guard who is unable to drive the lane?


Situation: One of your totally ignorant friends mentions the incredulous possibility that Kyrie Irving, is in fact, better at basketball than John Wall.

Response: “Hey bro, why don’t you get back to me when Irving does one of four things,

A. serves as more than a glorified DH for the Cavs,

B. wins 30 games without being flanked by the greatest player in the NBA,

C. plays in more than 50 games at a stretch without discovering a new ailment, and

D. averages more than 7 assists per game on a team that’s salary cap sheet looks more like a small country’s national budget.” (Terminates friendship immediately)

Situation: Wall turns the ball over, yet slows down in transition defense with the goal of adding another chase-down block to his collection.

Response: (If Wall succeeds) “Man what an amazing block! Seriously who else in the league at the point guard position can even dream of making that type of play? Yayyy!”

(If Wall fails) “YO get your ass back on defense properly, stop trying to make Sportscenter every night and dig down and make the right play. This is why you’re only a two-way player when you feel like it and not every night. I’m less than pleased right now.”

Situation: Wall has turned in a pedestrian performance, but makes one last play to seal the deal by preying on another hopeless soul.

Response: “Get the hell outta here, Reggie Jackson….max deal, gimme a break.”

Next: Why the Wizards Will Still Make the NBA Playoffs

Are you an irrational John Wall fan? Let us know in the comments section.