Citi Open: Blake, Stephens headline Monday's slate

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Citi Open: Blake, Stephens headline Monday's slate

Serving up our daily preview for the 2012 Citi Open...Monday'sheadlines Perennial Washington participant - and 2003 champ - James Blake opens the night session on the Stadium Court against Spain's Pablo Andujar, one of two ATP seeds playing on Monday. Based on his performance year to date, this might be the once chance to see the 32-year-old Blake, who has a 1-8 record on the ATP Tour this season. At least thelone victory came two weeks ago in Atlanta. Andujar, the No. 5 seed, won his second career ATP event this year. France'sJeremy Chardy, the No. 6 seed, faces Edouard Roger-Vasselin in the final match on the Stadium Court. Fiveseeds are scheduled for action on the WTA side, including Sloane Stephens (3)and Coco Vandeweghe (7) along with fellow American Melanie Oudin. The 19-year-old Stephens - thehighest seeded American in the field - opens the night session on grandstand court 1against Sesil Kararantcheva while Oudin, who burst onto the scene with a stunning run during the 2009 U.S. Open as a 17-year-old, does the same on the other Grandstand court. If both advance, Oudin and Vandeweghe would play in the second round. No. 2 Chanelle Scheepers, Barbora Zahlavova Strycova (5) and Olga Govortsova (8) alsoopen their respective tournament's on Monday.Looking back The women's draw began playSunday with No. 6 seed Iveta Benesova defeating Kai-Chen Chang, 6-3, 6-2Notes...Top seed Mardy Fish's scheduled 2012 debut comesTuesday against Bjorn Phau. Other seeds slated for Tuesday action are No. 2 Alexandr Dolgopolov, No. 4 Tommy Haas and No. 8 Sam Querrey, who enters Washington coming off a tournament title in Los Angeles.

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Wizards/Bullets Best of the Best: (1) Wes Unseld vs. (16) Juwan Howard

Wizards/Bullets Best of the Best: (1) Wes Unseld vs. (16) Juwan Howard

CSN is running a bracket to determine the best player in Wizards/Bullets franchise history. There are 16 players in a four-round tournament. The first round will be voted on by fans, while the rest will be determined by our analysts. The winner will be revealed during an hour-long special called 'Best of the Best' on Friday, July 14 at 7:00 p.m. on CSN.

Here is today's matchup...

No. 1 WES UNSELD vs. No. 16 JUWAN HOWARD

Wes Unseld

Years with franchise: 13
Stats: 10.8 ppg, 14.0 rpg, 3.9 apg, 1.1 spg, 0.6 bpg, 50.9 FG%
Accolades: Hall of Famer, NBA champion, 5-time All-Star, All-NBA, MVP, Rookie of the Year, Finals MVP, All-Rookie

Summary: The second overall pick out of Louisville in 1968, Unseld immediately made a profound impact on the franchise. They made the playoffs in his first season and the NBA Finals in his third. That was the first of four finals appearances in nine years with Unseld manning the middle. He was a driving force for their lone NBA championship in 1978 when they beat the Seattle Supersonics.

Unseld was known for his rebounding, outlet passes and hard screens. He helped engineer the franchise's glory days with 12 playoff appearances in his 13 NBA seasons. After his playing days, Unseld served many roles for the franchise including general manager and head coach.

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[RELATED: PHOTOS: Top 20 NBA free agents]

Juwan Howard

Years with franchise: 7
Stats: 18.4 ppg, 7.4 rpg, 3.3 apg, 1.0 spg, 0.3 bpg, 47.8 FG%
Accolades: All-Star, All-NBA, All-Rookie

Summary: Howard played the first seven of his 19 NBA seasons with Washington. The first three were with the Bullets before they changed their name to the Wizards. The fifth overall pick out of Michigan in 1994, Howard made the All-Rookie team by averaging 17 points and 8.4 rebounds. Alongside his college teammate Chris Webber, Howard and the Bullets made the playoffs in 1996-97, the only postseason appearance for Washington from 1988 until 2005, a span of 17 years. Howards' Bullets met Michael Jordan's Bulls in the first round and were swept in three games.

Howard was later traded by Jordan once he took over in the Wizards' front office. He shipped Howard to the Dallas Mavericks in an eight-player deal. In that trade the Wizards acquired five players including Hubert Davis and Christian Laettner.

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Report: 'There isn't a real price that will make Kirk Cousins happy' with Redskins

Report: 'There isn't a real price that will make Kirk Cousins happy' with Redskins

Following a slew of reports that cast doubt on the Redskins reaching a long-term deal with Kirk Cousins, ESPN's Dianna Russini tweeted Tuesday that the impass is not about money. 

If the report is true, then Washington has run out of good options for retaining Cousins in the long term.

It's possible the team could use a third-straight franchise tag to keep him next season, but the price tag around $34 million would be astronomical for one season.

The transition tag would be worth in the neighborhood of $28 million. 

Russini doesn't elaborate on the reasons behind her report that Cousins wouldn't be happy in Washington regardless of price. But it's important to note that both teams and players have incentive to create leverage in contract negotiations through the media. 

The Redskins have until July 17 to reach a long-term deal with Cousins. 

MORE REDSKINS: Backup center again a question mark for the Redskins