Arrested Development?

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HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS — John Wall is struggling.

Maybe you’ve heard.

In addition to his shooting issues, he was taken to the shed Wednesday night in Chicago, not by Derrick Rose but John Lucas III, who had  25 points, eight rebounds and eight assists. No offense to JL3, but this was a new low for Wall, the former No. 1 pick who came into the league with “star” stamped on his forehead.

If it’s any consolation to Wall, he isn’t alone. A few other young-uns are finding it rough as they try to take that next step to being established and bona fide stars. And why is this? Maybe they played too many summer league games during the lockout.

Maybe they were overhyped.

Or maybe they just need time.

Whatever, here’s a sampling:

– DeMar DeRozan, 22 years old: Double D is shooting 41 percent and had three straight games where he didn’t get double figures. The Raptors were hoping he’d be at least a borderline All-Star this year, and he might still break out. But it’s coming very slowly at the moment for a guy with obvious skills. Here’s DeRozan on his issues, courtesy of Mike Ganter of the Toronto Sun:

“I just got to play better,” DeRozan said after an 11 point game that saw him hit just one of his first 10 field goal attempts.

“I take a lot of the (blame) when we’re not doing as well because I got to step up and start being consistent on both ends of the floor.”

The offensive drought is the biggest surprise as it was only five games ago that DeRozan was being praised for a more consistent jumper and his much-improved range on that jumper.

DeRozan sounds confident the offence will come.

“We still haven’t caught our rhythm yet,” DeRozan said. “We’re not flowing yet. We show spurts of it in games, but we just have to get everyone involved to where we are all feeding off each other. Sometimes we lean on (Andrea Bargnani) a lot. We need to be able to take the pressure off (Bargnani) and have everyone contribute from the starters to the bench.”

– Ekpe Udoh, 24: Who-do, you ask? Exactly. Udoh was the No. 6 pick in the 2010 draft and still hasn’t shown the Warriors enough to earn more playing time. His offensive game remains raw and the Warriors have a glut of similar-type players ahead of him on the depth chart. The Warriors haven’t been lucky with big men taken recently in the draft, having struck out with Ike Diogu (No. 9 in 2005) and Patrick O’Bryant (No. 9 in ’06).

– JJ Hickson, 23: Hickson hasn’t been terrible or anything and will get more time with the Kings now that Chuck Hayes is out with a bum shoulder. He just hasn’t turned into a rock-solid starter. And remember, this is the guy the Cavs refused to surrender in a trade for Amar’e Stoudemire two years ago. We all know what happened in Cleveland after that.

– Wes Johnson, 24: Talk about being lost in the shuffle in Minnesota, land of 10,000 swing players. Johnson only started the other night because Michael Beasley was hurt, and even then, Johnson didn’t do anything to suggest he’s about to break out. The Wolves would love for him to wrestle minutes away from Beasley, but Johnson can’t do that with 34 percent shooting.

– Gordon Hayward, 21: He’s shooting 39 percent for the Jazz and playing a position that demands a high-volume scorer. For someone who finished up well as a rookie last season, Hayward is off to an interesting start.

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28 Comments

  1. Drose-Kobe-Durant says:

    John Wall needs some popavich!

  2. Devon says:

    Agree that Hayward is in a major slump, but he’ll slide out of it.

    As for Wall, I think it is because the wizards are just bad…though he should be playing a TON better. I think he’ll pick it up too, but it is going to be a long season for him and the wizards.

  3. Wall needs a good PF or C says:

    The answer is king’s demarcus cousins, hey his intials are D.C
    They had great chemistry in college!

    john wall all star game highlights

  4. Brandon says:

    give derozan some time, he is a great player, now tht bargnani is injuered Derozan will be looked to carry the offence of this team

  5. Kevin says:

    “Johnson only started the other night because Michael Beasley was hurt”

    Guess what, Johnson started all 10 games for the Wolves this year…

  6. NBAer says:

    washington needs a development coach… someone who’d grind out with a losing team, just for the sake of developing players to be more mature and be ready for winning. Silas, Adelman, Nellie are such coaches. The likes of L. Brown, Phil Jackson, A. Johnson, and Carlisle are more of strategists that would be better with a complete team and taking them to the top (Avery not winning it though). Only Sloan and Pop are the coaches I see that are good at getting W’s while getting the best out of each player.

    Washington missed the chance of having Adelman… they still have a shot at Sloan.

  7. Brian says:

    I meant “and” Blake. They wouldn’t even do it just for Gasol.

  8. Brian says:

    Kobez, you’re an idiot if you think any team would trade Wall for Gasol or Blake.

  9. Brian says:

    “Maybe they played too many summer league games during the lockout.” Are you kidding me? These are young men in their 20s, so there’s no excuse about them being tired from playing summer league games. If they can’t handle the physical requirements of playing at his level in the early stages of their careers, they don’t deserve to be in the NBA. There are people working in physically demanding jobs requiring manual labor who would love to lace up a pair of sneakers and simply play basketball every day.

  10. chris says:

    What???! Wall to L.A. NOOOO WAY. I’m not even a L.A. fan and I wouldnt make that move espicially sacraficing Gasol and Blake. Wall is still learning the game, and will obviously be a great player in time. L.A. would probably go for a more experienced guard like they where trying to get in CP3.

    Also this article is kind of a low shot to the rookies, considering alot of the ones they are mentioning are on bad teams…but hey LBJ took a horrible Cleveland team, and put them on the map, so in a way they have a point ( kinda contridicting lol…)

    To be honest if Wall had a legit team he would be more talked about, for instence if Wall came to Dallas =D

  11. kobez says:

    Wall needs to go to LA…team him up with Kobez and Co.

    trade blake and gasol for him….

    • kobez sucks says:

      typical uninformed posters… the lakers would never trade gasol for john wall… no matter what situation they are in, also the wizards would not give up wall, who has a ton of potential for an aging PF/C when they dont have any starting quality PGs as it is besides him, and steve blake doesnt really fit that role

  12. jwall says:

    really?you stupid?…wall isn’t cocky. when has he danced during a game other the all-star week-end (when he was asked to dance!) or the season opener (when he wanted to hype up the crowd and even that was before the game)? and the reason he is struggling is cause everyone around him is also young and inexperienced…rose, rondo, and cp3 have talent around them! have you seen a john wall interview, the dude is as “calm and cool” as it gets. the recent taunting you are referring was a bs call and you know it.

    and half decent moves? you dumb in the head bro? his moves are just as good as any and most of them are the quickest you have ever seen…don’t give that bs

  13. mamso says:

    John wall is just too cocky… Everytime he makes a half decent move he starts dancing or doing something stupid… You don’t see a guy like rose, rondo, cp3 acting crazy after they make a nice move… Wall seems to be more focused on making highlights and points than he is on winning and getting better…

    He’s obviously a superstar in the making but all superstars have sort of “calm and coolness” around them and i just don’t see that with wall… The tounting after dunks, the dancing imo that just shows that he’s not 100% focussed.

  14. Twin says:

    Typically I would side with the players, but if you don’t put in the work then it will show on the court… If you can’t shoot, in the off-season get with one of many trainers and ex-sharp shooters and learn the craft! These spoiled players think just because they played one season in college and did “OK” that it’ll translate to NBA talent, well they were wrong!!! That’s why there won’t be anymore strong USA Olympic teams because of the failure to get better as a person and especially as a player. We lose games simply because everyone wants to be a slasher or a speed guy…Learn to shoot and teams like Germany, Argentina, Spain, Lithuania or Greece won’t continue to make the AMERICAN Superstars look horrible! No harm, No Foul, No disrespect but with the Talented Superstars we have there is no way we should lose to foreign countries…

  15. ghost says:

    john wall can teach you how to dougie

  16. shakenbake says:

    John Wall is a bust.

    • richard says:

      Your bugging, John Wall cant possibly be a bust if he is the best fast break player in the league. Everytime he gets a rebound he is intelligent enough to penetrate the defense and find holes in the fastbreak defense, scoring an easy basket. There’s no way possible that John Wall can be a bust unless you are referring to his shooting, which is slacking heavily.

  17. DARKR00 says:

    Look there taking shots at players that arnt in a great team with a decent roster, will take time for them to gel with other players. Give them time and the GM’s will reap the rewards

  18. 8boll says:

    so he’s in a slump right now. as far as i’m concerned that entire team is in a slump? so what he’ll come around. the dude is still far more talented than most players his age

  19. Sorry I thought the other one didn’t load

  20. the Wizards coach should be fired yo!

  21. The wizards coach should be fired yo.

  22. King James says:

    why there’s no comments here?..

  23. Xanadu worldpeice says:

    also jw dont give up man working at it hard work pays off remember this work hard now and play later thats what you call “food for thought”,,,,you will get once it comes to mind

    • Ol' woody says:

      What comes to mind is you have no idea what you’re talking about. You’re just saying all the stupid cheesy stuff anybody else could say. I would take a bet that says you hardly know a thing about basketball, or what “food for thought” means in general.

  24. Xanadu worldpeice says:

    john wall is on the wrong team he should be traded to new orleans