It's been a banner year for the Washington Wizards. They began the year as a darkhorse title contender before quickly settling to the middle of the pack as the trio of Gilbert Arenas, Caron Butler, and Antawn Jamison struggled to find chemistry. Then there was that whole "superstar brandishing guns in the locker room" thing, and the season officially took a turn toward disaster.
Since then, the Wizards have dealt Jamison and Butler and officially conceded the season to rebuilding. Now, Josh Howard, who arrived from the Mavericks as a building block in that rebuilding process, is out for the year.
He tore his ACL and crumpled to the floor during last night's Bulls-Wizards game. Grisly video here:
The loss means... Well, nothing, really. The Wizards have already conceded their season, and if anything, this just means that more young players will get an opportunity. It's certainly a setback for Howard, though, who's seen his productivity drop in the past few years, and was looking for a fresh start in Washington. After a stormy end to his tenure with the Mavericks, including allegations about his partying habits and poor shooting that ultimately cost him a spot in the starting lineup, the Wizards provided him an opportunity to get his career rolling in the right direction again.
After Monday night's injury, it seems he'll have to wait until next October to get that chance. When it rains, it pours. For Washington, for Josh Howard, and most of all, for Wizards fans.