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Colin Cowherd doesn't deserve John Wall's forgiveness

Colin Cowherd doesn't deserve John Wall's forgiveness

Colin Cowherd's well-documented, years-long vendetta against John Wall may have finally come to an end yesterday. The radio host relunctantly apologized to Wall after some serious badgering by his guest, Bill Simmons. 

Take a listen. 

Funny that Cowherd complains about being bullied, which is the perfect segue into a quick recap of some of the most baseless, offensive and disrespectful things he's said about Washington's star point guard over the years. 

On Wall doing the Dougie, Cowherd's original rant in 2010:

Before the game started, he spent 34 seconds doing the Dougie. That tells me all I need to know about J-Wow. Then he opened his mouth later and confirmed it: not a sharp guy...

J Wow's 37-second 'Yo dawg look at me I'm the man [dance]', and his wild, out-of-control style ... He's gonna end up on the Iverson, Francis, Starbury: great stats, nine All-Star teams, never play with good smart players and an elite head coach. He's gonna drive people nuts.

It's not robbing the bank, it's that you planned it. It's not just doing the Doggie [sic] for 35 seconds, it's that you really thought before the game, this is gonna be super cool and people will like me. The wrong people...

My daughter's 10. Ten years old. She knows the difference between right and wrong ... The haves get it early, the have-nots never do. 

On Wall's father, who passed away of cancer when he was a child, also in 2010: 

I'm a big believer, when it comes to quarterbacks and point guards. Who's your dad? Who's your dad? ... Strong families equal strong leaders. Talent? Overrated. Leadership? Underrated...

I simply have a different opinion than you do on John Wall ... No, John Wall's an A+ talent. I don't think he's ever gonna be an A+ win-championships point guard...

You know, John Wall and [Michael] Vick are very similar. I'm not disputing their talent. I mean, Michael Vick and John Wall are fun to watch. But building my franchise around him, leadership position?

After Wall was ejected in 2011:

People think I’m the antagonist with John Wall. Great young talent, goes to the NBA, does the Dougie his first time out, which I thought was pretty repulsive and immature. John Wall has been at times brilliant, at times irrelevant, mostly irrelevant this year.

Comparing Serena Williams' dancing to Wall's Dougie in 2012:

It’s the big difference between the CEO of a company signing a huge deal, popping a cork and doing a three-second dance. I’ll give you that. I’m not giving first-day on the job barista guy walking into Starbucks, 'yo yo yo look at me'...

You’ve earned the right to celebrate as a great Olympic champion. Go for it. John Wall was idiotic.

After Wall's first playoff win in 2014:

By the way, the great John Wall -- who was the point guard of the future -- not in the top 15 most popular NBA jerseys, not in the top 10 most popular team merchandise, he’s not galvanizing America, this is his first playoff win.

Cowherd insisting he was right about Wall in 2015:

I don't blame him but these people that say there is no correlation between your environment and your leadership ... You're clowns. ... And through no fault of [Wall's] own, I think he's going to be a great talent, but boy he had a rough childhood and I don't know if I'm building my franchise around him...

He is a dynamic freaky fast talent who has matured has a ton, but walked into this league wildly immature with regrettable judgement, shown by the Dougie and five years later, the only thing I don't like about him is his judgement -- He's lousy late in games...

He's very Allen Iverson-esque ... When he's on, he's on, and he's great...

Once again, John Wall -- drip, drip, drip -- it doesn’t mean he’s the devil ... It doesn’t mean he doesn’t have talent. John Wall, college games, gang signs during games. The Dougie. Stupid. Turnover machine -- that’s a judgment stat. Paul Pierce calling him out, needs to work harder. Thrown off a plane, hanging with dopes. Poor judgment, poor choices.

And comparing Wall to Johnny Manziel in February of this year:

When I looked at Johnny Manziel: Money sign, in a bathroom in Vegas rolling up a dollar bill, all over Instagram ... You’re not mature enough. And so I said this all the time when I was critical about John Wall. What I said about John Wall is what I’ve said about Johnny Manziel: It’s not the talent. But I’m going to watch you, watch your background, look at your upbringing, look what you dealt with, and make some calls on it...

I don’t want my point guard in make-it-rain situations, kicked off flights. I don’t want that stuff. Johnny Manziel, I don’t want my quarterback doing this [gesture], money money money, signing autographs in college, putting his team in peril.

In the span of six years, Cowherd has insulted Wall's intelligence, family, leadership, decision-making and clutch performance. He has compared the three-time All-Star to a bank robber, then later to Manziel, who has been a failure in the NFL, not to mention a documented substance abuser with a criminal record. 

To hear Cowherd tell it, the Wizards star is an athletically gifted but mentally weak player whose bad upbringing cursed him with poor judgment and me-first attitude. That he danced the Dougie means he'll squander his talents and never achieve greatness.

At best, this hot take is uninformed (we won't waste time defending Wall's character, good works and loving family here). At worst, it force-fits one of the league's most dynamic figures into a lazy, racist trope of the black player who is physically exceptional but intellectually flawed. Stronger and faster, but immature and selfish -- dangerous to his team. 

Wall is not Iverson, nor is he Vick. But all three are victims of this narrative. Reduced down from individual to type. 

And that's why, no matter how many times Cowherd apologizes, he deserves no forgiveness from Wall. 

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Hawks All-Star Paul Millsap to opt out and enter NBA free agency, report says

Hawks All-Star Paul Millsap to opt out and enter NBA free agency, report says

What ESPN reported during the season will in fact come true, as Paul Millsap signaled his intentions to opt out of his contract with the Atlanta Hawks and become a free agent.

The newest report comes from Yahoo! Sports, who confirmed Millsap's plans. The 32-year-old will opt out of a deal worth roughly $21 million for the 2017-18 season as he aims for longer terms either with the Hawks or a new team.

Millsap, according to Pro Basketball Talk, could be in line for a contract that starts at $35 million per season. If he stays in Atlanta, that could be a five-year deal worth about $205 million. If he leaves to sign elsewhere, he could earn $152 million over four years.

It makes perfect sense for Millsap to opt out at this point given his age, the increase in the NBA's salary cap and the fact he's coming off another All-Star season. The 11-year pro averaged a career-high 18.1 points to go along with 7.7 rebounds per game this year in 69 games.

Millsap was the best player on a Hawks team that earned the fifth seed in the Eastern Conference. He can do just about everything well as a mobile big man who can shoot from the outside and work in the post. Last season he was named to the All-Defensive team, as well.

At this point odds are good he stays in Atlanta given their interest and the fact they can pay him more. But he will be one of the most highly sought after players in free agency. Either way, it's something to watch for Wizards fans as the Hawks are their biggest competitors in the Southeast Division. If anything, him leaving could mean less Millsap vs. Markieff Morris and we can all agree that is not a good thing.

[RELATED: Wizards hope to sign Wall to contract extension]

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Wizards hope to sign John Wall to contract extension this offseason

Wizards hope to sign John Wall to contract extension this offseason

The Wizards haven't reached out to John Wall yet, but they expect to discuss an extension this summer with the four-time All-Star since he was named to the All-NBA for the first time in his seven-year career.

An extension with Wall will be the top priority of the offseason in which Otto Porter is also a restricted free agent, league sources tell CSNmidatlantic.com.

Wall signed a five-year, $80 million extension in 2013 when the salary cap was just less than $60 million. The 2013-14 season was the final year of his rookie scale deal and then the last three years have been part of the extension. He has two years left.

After the collective bargaining agreement was renegotiated and approved earlier this year, a Designated Veteran Player Extension was added. It's another mechanism to help teams retain their own free agents because they can offer significantly more money -- and an extra year -- than another team that doesn't hold his Bird rights. 

[RELATED: How much did fatigue play a role in how the Wizards' season ended?]

That All-NBA selection means that Wall, who averaged a career-high in points (23.1), assists (10.7), steals (2.0) and field-goal accuracy (45.1%), qualifies for 35% of the cap instead of the standard 30% max. Previously, a player was required to be in the league 10 years to be eligible for 35%.

Wall can add up to four years of an extension on the two years that he has left for almost $170 million.

From league sources close to the situation, Wall wants to see a bigger picture plan on where the franchise is headed before committing for longer. The Wizards won 49 games this season and advanced to the conference semifinals for the third time in four years. 

The salary cap for 2017-18 is projected to be almost double of what it was four years ago at $101 million. Before settling on what to do with Porter's contract, the Wizards have to figure out if they can lock in their best player and go from there in the offseason.

[RELATED: John Wall knows what Wizards need to upgrade for next season]