Friday, March 27, 2009

Saved by Zero? Probably not.

There was a commercial running like crazy a few months ago for Toyota. You might have seen it. If not, check it out really quickly:

The point of this whole exercise is that in this entry, Zero stands for Agent Zero. A lot of people have been asking whether they should pick up Gilbert Arenas, former scoring savant. News has broken that he'll make his 2008-09 season debut Saturday, so here's our take on how to handle the situation.

Here's what we know:

  • Arenas will not play in back-to-back games - This happens twice the rest of the season. The Wizards play on March 28 & 29, then again on April 1 & 2. From the looks of things, Arenas will play Game 1 of back-to-backs.
  • Arenas is coming off a series of knee surgeries - Regardless of the health of Arenas' surgically-repaired knee, he'll have to get used to trusting his body in NBA-paced action. Yes, he's practiced plenty and appears ready to perform, but the mental side of his return should not be understated.
  • Arenas has not played in an NBA game for about year - Borrowing from the previous bullet, we really don't know how quickly Arenas will take to get back to 100 percent. The efficiency of his running, cutting, jumping and simply setting up for jump-shots off the dribble will all be part of the transition back to NBA prominence. Will it happen immediately? Likely not.
  • Remember, it's late March - Yes, the Wizards want to get Arenas some minutes to help build team chemistry before the end of the year, but how much is Washington willing to risk? They made a huge investment in Arenas, and there's absolutely no way they screw with the future of their franchise.
So, with all of those factors in play, what do you do? Basically, if you have a dead spot on your roster and you play in daily league (12 teams or more), go for it. If you play in a weekly league, he's really not worth your time, as the Wizards have by far the worst playoff schedule the rest of the way (Week 23 - 3 games; Week 24/25 - 4 games).

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