John Wall is in position to take over East after signing extension

If John Wall was concerned about things like stealing headlines and being the center of attention in the sports world for a day, he could had those things with his announcement of signing a supermax extension with the Wizards.

People questioned why he hadn’t signed the offer made some weeks ago by his team of seven years and whether he was unsatisfied with his level of exposure in the nation’s capital, but his decision to announce the agreement on the same day we learned of Kyrie Irving’s trade request shows that his number one priority was winning.

Wall intimated in the past that he needed to see what moves the franchise made and how the offseason shook out. Aside from re-signing Otto Porter to a large deal, and effectively handcuffing the franchise’s ability to bring in marquee free agents for the next few years, Washington made minimal roster changes. But as a top-4 seed in the East and a conference semi-finalist last season, the Wizards, behind Wall, Porter and Bradley Beal, should be a contender to reach the NBA Finals if Irving’s trade request is met.

Irving may or may not be moved, but the turmoil in Cleveland won’t easily be settled, especially with LeBron James’ pending free agency next summer. The top of the Eastern Conference looks ripe for the picking and Wall realized he’s in as good a position as anyone to benefit from a possible Cleveland collapse. The Celtics are probably the next best team in the conference, but the Wizards aren’t incapable of beating them in a seven-game series – not with Wall, arguably the second best player in the conference, locked in for the next six years.

The Big Ticket hanging it up

He oozed passion. He intimidated opponents and teammates alike. He went from the young sensation out of high school to the fiery veteran leader of an NBA championship team. Now, Kevin Garnett is calling it quits after 21 seasons.

Easily one of the best power forwards to ever grace the hardwood, Garnett had more than a few good game against the Wizards and never short-changed the fans in D.C. His career-high vs Washington is 31 points, which he did twice, both games in D.C. On Jan. 12, 2002, a 25-year old Garnett led the Timberwolves to a 108-100 win over the Wizards in a game Michael Jordan led with 35 points. That game came a year after Garnett’s 31-point output resulted in a loss.

Garnett’s best game against Washington may have been a 25-point, 19-rebound, 8-assist, 4-block performance on Jan. 8, 2005. That was another game in Washington that the Timberwolves lost. Gilbert Arenas scored 40. Overall, Garnett had a 28-19 record vs the Wizards/Bullets.

KG impacted both ends of the floor and always required the best from whoever he was playing against – or it was going to be a long night. Garnett is one of the greatest players of all time, and for his dedication to the game of basketball, the memories, and all that he left on the floor each night, Crown on the Rock says thank you, Kevin Garnett.