Reading the reports about how players who are traded to the Wizards don’t want to play in Washington, and listening to the guys on sports talk radio, you would think that the NBA team which plays in the Verizon Center near Chinatown in Downtown D.C. is a disaster in the making.

How’s that consistant with a 3-1 record since the dismantling began?

The 108-99 victory over Minnesota to start the 4-game span shouldn’t be considered too impressive.  The Timberwolves are the last place team in the Western Conference.  They’re not a good team, so a victory over them doesn’t mean much.

The victory over the Denver Nuggets gave me hope.  The Nuggets are the second seed in the Western Conference, winning two thirds of their matches.  Somehow, the Wizards managed to hold Carmello Anthony to 23 points a night after he scored 40 on LeBron James and the top-seeded Cleveland Cavaliers.

Sure, maybe the Nuggets weren’t expecting much from the Wizards, and they got shocked by a lesser team.

My excitement dropped back down a bit when the Wizards lost to the Toronto Raptors, the #5 seed in the Eastern Conference.  I figured that I was mistaken in my hopes that the winning ways were now part of the culture for D.C.’s NBA franchise.

Then tonight, against the Chicago Bulls – the #6 seed in the Eastern Conference, the Wizards renewed my hope with a 101 to 95 victory.

As I looked for the box score to find out how the victory was accomplished, I was expecting a big night from Josh Howard.

When I saw that Josh Howard had gotten injured, my heart sank.  You see, I hadn’t looked at the box score yet, and I figured that Josh Howard played a huge role in the Wizards’ victory.

Then I saw that Howard only had 7 points in as many minutes due to injury.

I don’t know that they could get to the #7 seed in the playoffs, but in my estimation, they’d have to get at LEAST to that spot in order to have a chance at moving on to the second round this year.  I’m not saying that the Wizards would win a playoff series.  Don’t get me wrong, in order for this season to be a success, the Wizards don’t have to move on to the second round of the playoffs.  That’s something  something that the Wizards aren’t accustomed to in their history – even when they had Gil Arenas playing at the top of his game alongside fellow All Stars Antawn Jamison and Caron Butler.  I’m just excited because – despite all the pessimistic talk I’m hearing about the NBA team in my hometown, no matter how the talking heads want to say the Wizards suck… I have hope that the Wizards might make things interesting the remainder of the season – fighting for a playoff spot.

Laugh all you want, but until the Wizards go on a losing streak which takes them out of contention for the #8 spot in the Eastern Conference, I’ll hold out hope.

In fact, I’m going to try to make it to a Wizards game before the season is over.  Maybe I won’t pay a bunch of money to sit down low, but I want to try to be there.

I realize that being 14 games below .500 (a winning percentage of 50%, for those who don’t know the lingo) will be hard to overcome.  I know they’re 7 games behind Charlotte for the last playoff spotI want to watch as Andray Blatche continues to grow into a legit starter in the NBA.  I want to see what Al Thornton’s capable of.  I want to see the rest of the roster to get glimpses of what they’re able to do, a preview of what we might see in seasons to come.