When the Wizards won the draft lottery, and the right to draft their PG of the future John Wall, the speculation about Gilbert Arenas' future in Washington began almost immediately. John Mitchell of MSNBC.com writes that the Wizards are totally comitted to moving forward with Wall, and are looking to drop Gilbert Arenas any way they can.
According to one source with intimate knowledge of the team's plans, the Wizards front office, headed up by President Ernie Grunfeld, doesn't want Arenas - released earlier this month from a Washington DC halfway house after serving 30 days for a felony gun conviction - anywhere near Wall, whom the team has already decided it will select with the top pick in the June draft. After Arenas was convicted Grunfeld traded away four starters.
One can certainly understand why the Wizards would investigate moving Gilbert Arenas. Suspension and injury have cost Arenas the majority of the past three seasons. But Mitchell suggests that it isn't Gilbert's past that makes the organization want to move him, but rather his future, most notably his impact on John Wall.
One source tagged Arenas as "the reason why a core of players that reached the playoffs" on multiple occasions had to be broken up, "and it was entirely due to what he did. He poisoned the team. He is a cancer."
Members of the Wizards' organization have been adamant that the team will keep Arenas as soon as the questions began after the draft lottery. Mitchell reminds us to take whatever the organization says with a grain of salt.
Don't be fooled by this. Grunfeld will continue to speak highly of Arenas because as a rule no general manager speaks negatively about a player he is trying to move for fear of looking as though he is about to conduct a fire sale. Secondly, although Arenas is a three-time All Star, he has undergone three knee surgeries and appeared in just 47 games over the last three seasons.
The Gilbert Arenas speculation will likely continue through the entire summer, up until the beginning of training camp. Check this thread for any breaking news on Arenas' future.