Ernie's Horrifically Bad Decisions

  • Drafting Oleksiy Pecherov with the #18 Pick of the 2006 Draft. In this draft Grunfeld passed up on Rajon Rondo and Kyle Lowry
  • Trading for a 1st round draft pick in 2007 from the Memphis Grizzlies and then the following year giving back the pick involving a 3 team trade with the New Orleans Hornets. This resulted in obtaining Mike James and Javaris Crittendon(one half of gungate)
  • Trading the #5 Pick in the 2009 Draft for Mike Miller and Randy Foye. Trading this pick Grunfeld passed up on the likes of Stephen Curry, Ricky Rubio, and Brandon Jennings
  • Passing on DeJuan Blair in the 2nd round of the 2009 Draft for Jermaine Taylor whom was traded to the Houston Rockets for cash considerations
  • Giving a 4 year extension to a 32 year old Antwaan Jamison for $50 Million
  • Signing an injured Gilbert Arenas to $111 Million for 6 years whom already was unlikely to play for a while from a career threatening injury (edit via ThePGPhenomenon - Bullets Forever Member)
  • Giving a 4 year contract extension worth $28 Million to a lazy locker room headache in Andray Blatche
  • Drafting Jan Vesely with the #6 Pick of the 2011 Draft. In this draft Grunfeld passed up on Nikola Vucevic, Kawhi Leonard, and Klay Thompson (edit via tloop - Bullets Forever Member)</
  • Trading Rashard Lewis for Emeka Okafor and Trevor Ariza. These 2 contracts are worth a combined $43 Million for the next 2 years for "veteran presence". Also, this trade helped the New Orleans Hornets tremendously. Once the Hornets obtained Lewis they bought out his contract freeing up cap space. It was not hard to figure out the Hornets intentions and Grunfeld should have obtained a draft pick in that trade
  • Overpaying for the rights to keep Etan Thomas with a contract of $38.6 Million for 6 years (input via ThePGPhenomenon - Bullets Forever Member)
  • Ernie Grunfeld as Washington Wizards GM has never drafted a player which became an All-Star after using 18 draft picks (input via ThePGPhenomenon - Bullets Forever Member)
    • UPDATE – John Wall became the starting PG in the 2015 NBA All Star Game. Currently, using 22 draft picks Grunfeld now has only one player which he has drafted become an All Star
  • European scouting being a big failure under Ernie Grunfeld. Owner Ted Leonsis made it a point to invest more into European scouting. After this was said Grunfeld is still inept in this department (input via thewiz06 - Bullets Forever Member)
    • Drafting Oleksiy Pecherov with the #18 Pick of the 2006 Draft. In 2 seasons he averaged 3.9 points and 2.2 rebounds. No longer in the league
    • Drafting Vladimir Veremeenko with the #48 Pick of the 2006 Draft. Traded to the Chicago Bulls later on in the draft and never played a minute. No longer in the league
    • Drafting Jan Vesely with the #6 Pick of the 2011 Draft. Currently averaging 2.2 points and 2.5 rebounds per game. Currently has more personal fouls than points
    • Drafting Tomas Satoransky with the #32 Pick of the 2012 Draft. Currently overseas and played in the 2012 NBA Summer League whom did not look very impressive
      • UPDATE – Passed up on proven college prospects especially Draymond Green who is currently playing a significant role on the Golden State Warriors averaging 11.8 PPG and 8.1 RPG
  • Fostering a toxic basketball culture which led to on the court and off the court issues. As fans we can see some examples of this such as going behind the back of Flip Saunders or the coddling of Andray Blatche and Gilbert Arenas. A better perspective is from Jay Glassie. Glassie, a former beat reporter of the Washington Wizards gives a better view of the frustrating environment here
  • Ernie Grunfeld's obsession with long and/or athletic players. Players that he thinks has potential yet are very much projects that rarely/never pan out
    • Peter John Ramos - Standing 7'3 whom was nicknamed "Party John" was drafted in 2004. Averaged 1.8 points and 0.7 rebounds in 6 games. In and out of the D-League and was eventually released in 2006
    • Andray Blatche - Standing 6'11 and whom was drafted in 2005 showed positive signs while backing up Antwaan Jamison for 4 seasons. Blatche, who's career started off rough being charged with sexual solicitation of an undercover police officer averaged 9.9 points and 5.4 rebounds in his seven seasons. After his contract extension became a huge disappointment due to fighting teammates, complaining, lack of defense, pouting, weight issues, etc. Blatche was amnestied in 2012
    • JaVale McGee - Standing 7'1 McGee was the most physically gifted player Grunfeld has drafted. McGee covered all the basis for an Ernie Grunfeld draft pick being long, athletic, and showing potential. Sadly, IQ was not apart of Grunfeld's draft decision. Throughout his time as a Wizard it was 20% flashes of greatness and 80% painful mind crushing headache. His flashy blocks could not hide his poor individual and team defense, constant goal tending, lack of boxing out, poor picks, ball hogging and stopping offense, etc. I can go on for days so I'll just leave this video here. McGee averaged 8.6 points, 6 rebounds, and 1.8 blocks as a Wizard. Grunfeld passed on Ryan Anderson, Serge Ibaka, and Nicholas Batum
    • Jan Vesely - Standing 6'll Vesely was drafted as a Small Forward to be a running mate for John Wall. Literally a running mate because his best (and maybe only) attributes are running and jumping outside a good basketball IQ. During John Wall's injury and not being able to play early in the season Vesely has shown that as of now in two seasons that he needs time in the D-League. He struggles on the court and at one time had more fouls then points. Already lacking the skill to be a Small Forward he is being converted into a Power Forward/Center. In his new role he is struggling in that as well
    • Oleksiy Pecherov - Standing 7'0 Pecherov was seen as the next Dirk Nowitzki in the eyes of Grunfeld. Sadly was just known as looking like Stewie from Family Guy. In three seasons he averaged 3.9 points
  • Terrible player development from refusing a big man coach for JaVale McGee after requesting one to not forcing Andray Blatche into better basketball shape
  • Trading away Jordan Crawford whom turned himself into one of if not the best Wizards assets on the roster for absolutely nothing. Terms were agreed with the Boston Celtics to trade Crawford for Leandro Barbosa and Jason Collins (both on expiring contracts) at the 2013 trade deadline. This would be fine if Crawford did not raise his value while John Wall and Nene were out extensively with injury and Bradley Beal still developing. Averaging 13.2 PPG with an explosive month of January (19.1PPG, 6.1APG, 5.1RPG), Crawford's stock rose tremendously. With the return of Wall, Beal's play (2 rookie of the month awards), and Garrett Temple's solid play Crawford's time diminished from cut minutes to DNP's. Crawford sulked on the bench which in turn brought his value down. If Crawford were to get traded fans expected something worth while in return due to Crawford's play. In return Ernie Grunfeld let the Celtics fleece him. With Grunfeld holding the upper hand due to the Celtics in need of a PG (Rajon Rondo is out for the season) all Grunfeld got in return was a player out for the season (Barbosa - ACL injury) and a player who has produced more fouls then points in 6 of past 7 seasons. This was suppose to be one of the Wizards best assets. If this is all we can get for Crawford what does that say for our other assets that are not named Wall, Beal, and Nene?
  • Signing Eric Maynor within the first seconds of the 2013 opening of free agency. Wizards were in desperate need of a backup PG and signed him in the first day of free agency when there were a number of better options around the same price such as Will Bynum, Nate Robinson, CJ Waston, Darren Collinson, John Lucas III, Mo Williams, and etc
  • Drafting Jordan Clarkson a Point Guard which could act as a Combo Guard in the 2014 NBA Draft. A Wizards team in desperate need of guard depth trades Clarkson away for cash considerations to the Los Angeles Lakers. Clarkson is currently averaging 10.2 PPG and 2.8 AST for the Lakers
  • In a failed effort to sign Kevin Durant in 2016, (when everyone knew KD was not coming to Washington except for Ernie) Ernie signed these 3 players which yet again set the Wizards back for years to come
    • Signed Ian Mahinmi for 4 years, $64 million. A career average of 5.1 points and 4.3 rebounds. One of the worst contracts in the league right now next to....
    • Signed Andrew Nicholas for 4 years, 26 million. A career 6 points and 3 rebounds.
    • Signed Jason Smith for 3 years $16 million.

15 Responses to “Ernie's Horrifically Bad Decisions”

  1. Whitman is also clueless and must go

  2. Spot on! Every year, you can see who should be drafted, and every year they disappoint!

  3. I've been looking for a website like this for years.

  4. His draft history has been terrible with every team he has been in charge of.

  5. The Rashard Lewis trade wasn't that bad. Ariza played well for us while Rashard was a total bum. And we had the cap space to take on the salary.

    I'll never forgive Ernie for the 2009 draft and the second round of the 2012 draft. We could have had Draymond Green (whom I wanted him on draft day), Jae Crowder, or Kris Middleton. All those guys went right after our pick.

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  9. Yeah Ernie must have been reincarnated from the Browns draft room board.

  10. This needs to get updated but I am fully supportive of the ideas expressed by this website. Don't forget that Ernie traded so many picks in the past few years that the Wizards have not had a single pick in the last 2 drafts.

    1. A Depressed Wizard FanMay 4, 2018 at 9:26 AM

      Will update this weekend


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