Where Are They Now, 2009; Part 55
March 14th, 2009

Charlie Ward retired in 2004, and briefly became an assistant coach with the Rockets. However, he left that gig, and has instead found a place and a job that caters to his three biggest passions in life; basketball, American football, and Christianity. Ward is now the head football coach at Westbury Christian School in Houston, Texas, as well as an assistant coach on the basketball team. He also recently quarterbacked again, albeit only for a fun day. Question: if you were to ask Charlie Ward whether he regrets turning down an NFL career for his decent if underwhelming NBA career, what would he say? Genuinely intrigued by that.


Darius Washington signed with the Bulls for preseason, and played very well in one of the preseason games. He didn’t make the cut, though, and nor was he ever going to. Washington then signed with Ural Great Perm in Russia, where he is averaging 13.0 points and 3.6 assists per game in the EuroChallenge, along with 14.6 points, 3.1 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game in the Russian league. Did you know that Darius Washington is now a Macedonian citizen? Fun fact.


Pistons draft pick Deron Washington is averaging 15.3 points, 6.2 rebounds, 2.0 steals and 1.2 blocks per game for Hapoel Holon in Israel. He recently helped the team to win the Israeli Cup, but is only shooting 23% on the year from three-point range. So he still can’t shoot. But he’s also still an athlete who covers ground on both ends.


Darryl Watkins did not make the cut from the Spurs training camp, and then went to Tianjin in China. Everyone loves Chinese numbers, and a post on this subject may well be soon appearing, so until then wrap your lips around this bad boy: 20.8 points, 14.1 rebounds and 3.5 assists.


Jameel Watkins is also in China, playing for the Jiangsu Nangang Dragons. His numbers are highly comparable to the other Watkins, but slightly worse: Jameel averages 20.7 points, 13.5 rebounds, 4.6 fouls and 2.1 blocks per game.


Clarence Weatherspoon is not in China, but it would be great if he was.


Chris Webber now does TV work on both NBA TV and Inside The NBA, and is supposedly writing a book, presumably one about basketball and not metamorphic rock identification or anything. He also just had his jersey number retired by the Sacramento Kings. Fun fact: did you know that Chris Webber released an album back in 1999? You may well have done. But I didn’t. Genuinely intrigued by this, too.


Frederic Weis recently moved from Iurbentia Bilbao to ViveMenorca, both Spanish ACB teams. Weis averaged 2.3 points and 4.4 rebounds in the ACB for Bilbao, and has totalled 6 points and 19 rebounds in the 60 minutes that he has played for Menorca through three games.


Jiri Welsch is playing for Unicaja Malaga, averaging 7.6 points, 3.4 rebounds and 2.1 assists in the Spanish league, alongside 8.5 points, 2.6 rebounds and an insignificant number of assists in the EuroLeague. His stats from previous seasons can be found here, on his personal website, as can a deeply sinister picture of him looking like a recently goosed Frankie Dettori.


David Wesley was traded as an unguaranteed contract twice in the 2007 offseason, and was waived by New Jersey before the season began. He hasn’t signed since, and isn’t going to, either. Fun fact: did you know that David Wesley is Michael Dickerson’s cousin? No, me neither.


– Finally, you probably already knew that Bonzi Wells signed in China this season, and you probably knew that he has since left. And you probably knew that he stuffed the stat sheet in every plausible way during his time there. But you might not know the specifics, and so I’m here to oblige you with that.

On the season, in only 14 games, Bonzi averaged 42.1 minutes, 34.3 points, 8.9 rebounds, 4.1 assists and 3.8 steals per game. He shot 45% on the year, and 70% from the free throw line, and certainly wasn’t waived because he wasn’t producing. But a closer look at the numbers reveals a man who miiiiiiight not have been optimising his play. In those 14 games, Bonzi shot 156 three-pointers, which for maths fans out there is a shade over 11 attempts per game. This seems like it’s too many (‘ooh, you think?’), but particularly so for a man who hit them at only 33%, and who hasn’t shot the three-pointer well since a fluke season in 2001/02. (For comparison’s sake, Bonzi shot 50 three-pointers combined last season in 73 NBA games for the Rockets and Hornets, hitting 12. And he hit 11 combined the previous two seasons.) Bonzi started out with a bash, averaging 47 points through his first four games, shooting a Damon Stoudamire-like 57 threes in that span. But he scored only three points in a foul-plagued fifth game, and averaged a far more normal 32.2 ppg after that. The threes continued to go up, though, and with the foul-plagued fifth game excluded (in which he shot only three), Bonzi never attempted less than seven three-pointers in any game. I do not know why.

Bonzi Wells would be in the NBA right now, earning about $8 million, if Geoff Petrie had had his way. Something to consider.

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