Washington Wizards Eastern Conference Semifinals Preview (Feat. Andrew Sharp)

Today on ZardCast, the pod looks ahead to the Washington Wizards’ Eastern Conference semifinal date with the Atlanta Hawks. CT and Duncan kick off the pod by talking about rapper representation for NBA playoff teams. Later, they’re joined by Grantland’s Andrew Sharp to talk about the vibe around the Wizards, the Randy Wittman revival, his inclusion in a Ted Leonsis blog and much more. In the second half of the show, Dave and friend of the pod Malcolm Johnson talk Otto Porter as a baby deer, the Hawks-Nets series slog, feeling on the Wizards (potentially) facing the Hawks, the lowdown on the Atlanta sports scene, a breakdown of Cavaliers-Bulls and much more.

The pod will return following game one of the Eastern Conference semifinals. Stay tuned and subscribe on iTunes.

Topics discussed include:

  • CT and Duncan kick off the preview podcast
  • The guys are recording before Atlanta and Brooklyn face off in game six, so the Wizards’ second round opponent is still TBD
  • Washington, Toronto, Brooklyn and Atlanta are all represented by rappers
  • They rank who is most likely best at basketball between 2-Chainz, Jay-Z, Wale, Drake
  • Paul Pierce is really into his roll as the grumpy old troll
  • The week off has surely been a positive for the Wizards
  • Next, they welcome Andrew Sharp from Grantland onto the podcast to talk about how it’s a marvelous time to be a Wizards fan
  • Andrew talks about the outpouring of positivity surrounding the Wizards and how it he’s cautiously optimistic going forward, taking it slow with the “team of destiny talk”
  • Differences between the Raptors and the Hawks, the Raptors were atrociously defensively
  • “We live in the age of the Randy Wittman revival”
  • Andrew runs down the rollercoaster of emotions that Wizards have gone through during the season
  • Ted Leonsis has been taking shots at Wizards’ bloggers, Andrew was recently included in a “Ted’s Take” post
  • The guys give their thoughts on the Wizards facing the Hawks. Duncan doesn’t buy into wake-up calls as it pertains to Atlanta, Andrew worries about the Hawks defensive discipline
  • Duncan asks Andrew about his ZardCast listening habits
  • Rockets-Emoji Gate is discussed to close out the interview
  • The pod shifts gears and Dave joins the pod, as does reporter and friend of the pod Malcolm Johnson
  • CT asks Dave and Malcolm where they fall on the Wittman scale of mastermind or bumbler
  • The guys look at the flaws of Wittman’s “this was my master plan” narrative—It seems he’s enjoying the story he’s running with to describe how things have transpired
  • Is Randy Wittman keeping his job a good thing? Tough to fire a successful coach unless you have good replacement to move forward
  • Malcolm is a big Otto Porter guy, loves watching him progress, breaks down what he’s been doing well. Dave says he looks like a baby deer, getting his legs out from under him
  • The Hawks-Nets series has been a slog
  • Do you feeling uneasy that the Wizards haven’t played in nearly a week? Dave and Malcolm say the more rest the better, no evidence longer rest hurts teams
    The guys discuss how they feel going into a second round series against Atlanta
  • CT isn’t tremendously worried about the Hawks, Malcolm likes the mindset of the team and doesn’t take stock in the Wizards regular season performances against Atlanta
  • Don’t forget about Nene, everyone
  • Malcolm gives the scoop on Atlanta fans after living in Georgia, says the fans are overwhelmingly fair weather and games are akin to a fashion show
  • D.C. fans are similar
  • If you’re look to beat the Hawks, you have to be looking ahead to potential
  • Eastern Conference finals opponents
  • The guys breakdown the other Eastern Conference semifinals — What kind of shape is Cleveland in? What impact does Kevin Love’s loss have? Can the Bulls topple the Cavaliers? How will Derrick Rose play? If the Wizards were to advance to the next series, we’re dealing with a different team, one we haven’t yet seen
  • The Clippers-Spurs series has been great!
  • Briefly touching on the state of professional basketball

You can reach us at: zardcast@gmail.com

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