Brandon Jennings played only 36 games with the Wizards including the playoffs. That's not even half of a regular season schedule. But though his time was brief, it was very memorable.
It's not often you could come up with a best moments list for a player who spent that little time in one place, but for Jennings you can. Here are the five best moments for Jennings during his time with the Wizards in honor of him signing with China Shanxi on Friday:
5. "John with the shades"
Jennings and John Wall had a decorated history of not liking each other dating back to their days as high school phenoms. But it didn't take long for the two to get along once the Wizards signed Jennings as a free agent on March 1. In the second week of April, Jennings penned a long letter in The Players' Tribune about Wall and why he should be considered for MVP. He also told a great story of how he first learned of Wall as a prospect in high school.
Jennings later read passages from his letter in a video for CSN:
4. Game 2 vs. the Hawks
This was Jennings' best moment that took place on the court and within the confines of actual gameplay. With the Wizards needing a lift in the fourth quarter of Game 2 of their first round playoff series against the Hawks, Jennings went on a run where he accounted for eight consecutive points, three on made shots and another on an assist to Jason Smith:
3. Ejection No. 1
It took Jennings just three games (three games!) to get ejected as a member of the Wizards. His first dismissal came in Phoenix on March 9. Smith laid a hard screen on Suns guard Tyler Ulis. Former Wizards forward Jared Dudley then got in Smith's face. Several players converged, including Jennings who was tossed and later fined for pointing in a way that the refs thought looked like a gun. Little did we know that was just the start of Jennings getting himself into scraps for the Wizards.
2. "He's a young boy, so I had to do some vet moves."
Jennings' second ejection was amazing not just because of the incident itself, but his quotes afterwards. First, Jennings was tossed for scrapping with Celtics guard Terry Rozier on a series of plays during Game 3 of the Wizards second round playoff series against Boston. The two got tangled in a shoving match and both were tossed. Jennings essentially baited Rozier into confrontation:
There were many, many good quotes that came from that dustup, including Jennings' explanation for what happened:
"He's a young boy, so I had to do some vet moves and try to get into him mentally. It actually worked," Jennings said of Rozier. "As long as I can get the edge. If I can get you to not think about playing basketball and you want to do other things, I feel like I won. That's what I did."
The great quotes didn't end there. Jennings had been ejected after teammate Kelly Oubre, Jr. was already tossed for shoving Kelly Olynyk to the ground. The story of Jennings and Oubre running into each other afterwards was hilarious:
"That's my brother. It's kind of like we are on the same string some times. Third quarter, I took a shower because it was intermission and I came out the shower and he was just sitting there at his locker. I'm like, 'Oh, you too, bro?' It was one of those moments, one of those bro moments... Kelly's my young boy, so it's kind of like: when Kelly gets kicked out, I'm probably next. Probably the organization is like 'listen man, we've got these two crazy dudes coming off the bench and we don't know which one is gonna get kicked out tonight.'"
1. "Any drama, I'm with it."
As good as that whole incident was, and it was very good, Jennings' most memorable moment has to be his shove of JaVale McGee late in a Wizards' loss at the Golden State Warriors in March. McGee took a three with less than a minute left and the Warriors up by 22 points. Jennings did not like that one bit and pushed him down to the floor:
Jennings, of course, then delivered with some excellent sound bites in the locker room afterwards, saying that if McGee had gone to the rim "it probably would have been worse" and of confrontation in general "any drama, I'm with it." That push then ignited a wide-reaching debate on the unwritten rules in basketball, something Jennings found hilarious.
For a guy who played just a few months with the Wizards, Jennings sure left his mark. He will missed most by the reporters who got to cover him and his amazing quotes.
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