Jordan Crawford Deserves More Playing Time for Washington Wizards

Benjamin E. ChunCorrespondent IIFebruary 7, 2012

CHICAGO, IL - JANUARY 11: Jordan Crawford #15 of the Washington Wizards drives against Kyle Korver #26 of the Chicago Bulls at the United Center on January 11, 2012 in Chicago, Illinois. The Bulls defeated the Wizards 78-64. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

After a late surge during his rookie season that surprised and delighted fans and team personnel alike, Jordan Crawford came into this season with high expectations from the Wizards organization.  

If that wasn’t hard enough to deal with, Crawford came out over the summer and said that he believed he was going to be better than Michael Jordan.  

With the pressure turned up, Crawford struggled out of the gate this season as he adjusted to playing fewer minutes off the bench behind more established scoring guard Nick Young.  

Despite Crawford’s inefficiency on the offensive end, he is one of the only players on the Wizards roster with the ability to create his own shot off of the dribble.  

Under new coach Randy Wittman, Crawford has been more aggressive on defense and has come off the bench to score in double-figures in the past six games.  

With pretty much no chance at a playoff berth and an interim coach, the Wizards need to be using this season as a maturation process for the youngest team in the league.  

Crawford showed flashes that he could be one of the cornerstones of the franchise last season and it is important that he continues to get solid playing time in order to further develop into a more efficient sixth man.   

Wittman would be wise to limit Crawford’s shot count and emphasize picking and choosing good shots when making plays for his teammates.  

With incumbent starting guard Nick Young becoming an unrestricted free agent after the season, it is pertinent that Crawford gain as much experience as possible this year in the event that Young leaves in free agency.  

Crawford has a unique skill set that goes beyond his scoring abilities and a confidence that crosses over into arrogance that needs to be channeled. 

His playing style could be best described as chaotic and for Crawford to ever fulfill the potential he has shown, he will need more time to tinker and learn how to be controlled yet explosive. 

Ultimately, the Wizards have lacked passion and intensity throughout most of the season and Crawford’s infectious energy and gritty play is a step in the right direction for an organization that has had little to cheer for.