April 03, 2009
WASHINGTON, DC -- The Washington Wizards (18-59) won their own make believe NBA championship Thursday night with a devastating all-around team effort to defeat the 60-win Cleveland Cavaliers 109-101 and take the series 1-0.
Gilbert Arenas, playing his second game of the season in his return from knee surgery, had 11 points with 10 assists and six rebounds in 33 minutes. Brendan Haywood, also playing his second game of the season and making his first start after recovering from a major wrist injury, added 12 points and 10 rebounds. It was all very Willis Reed-like.
"This one's sweeter than the one in '75," Arenas said. "The road that we took to get here was as tough as we ever had it. Guys persevered, we had great performances from one to 12."
"Finals MVP" Darius Songaila jumped and spun around as he punched his fist in the air and then hugged several teammates after contributing 17 points on 6-for-8 shooting off the bench. Caron Butler stood at center court with both arms raised triumphantly as the rest of the Wizards danced around him.
The Wizards will look to defend their "title" Saturday against the Heat. Tickets are still available.