First and foremost, thanks to @freshxdesign for suggesting writing this after a brief Twitter convo. In the social media age, we have so much exposure to athletes via Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and whatever is next to surely come out in the next six months. Our faithful leader, John Wall, is a pretty regular tweeter. But if you follow his timeline, you'll see that the homie loves the ladies and loves to party. A lot. Is that a big deal? Should we be concerned? Is his personal life any of our business?
By all accounts, John Wall checks out as a good kid. No known or public troubles with the law. Marketable. Good with the media. He's a 21-year old (his 22nd birthday is actually September 6) with money, fame, and groupies. Why do we care that he parties at night? Maybe the bigger question is why SHOULDN'T he party at night?!?!? Well, I tend to not take athlete tweets too seriously. Too many fans expect the stars of their favorite teams to eat, sleep, and sh*t their respective crafts. Not only is this stance not realistic, it's not fair. These people, are, in fact, people. They work hard, but should be given allowance to play as well. So this is a non-issue, right? Well, somewhat.
Playing devil's advocate, the Wizards have a loooong history with partying (Webber? Strickland?). In recent years though, when we think of Wizards and partying, we, right or wrong, automatically think of Andray Blatche. Our perception of 7-Day Dray was that he was more dedicated to his extra-curricular activities than to basketball. He often played out of shape and lacked effort on the court, but he was an all-pro at clubbing. So with all of this baggage with Dray, is it fair to think of him when we see John Wall's summer tour of nightclubs and jownts? I'd say no. BUT, it can lead you to ask some questions.
How come he doesn't tweet nearly as much about workouts he's had? Is he doing the pickup game tour like last year, or is he doing more structured things? After seeing conflicting reports about how well he did on the USA Select Team, but seeing nothing but glowing reviews on Kyrie Irving, shouldn't we be seeing or hearing more about progress he's making? Hell, after last season, where we expected a big jump and, while there was improvement, there wasn't what we probably unrealistically expected, shouldn't he be showing more dedication? Has he become OK with losing?
I can say that I give Jimmy the benefit of the doubt and not read into or judge his tweets. To add to this, Kevin Seraphin tweets about Snaky, and all kinds of random things. Booker is a TV and movie buff. We know this from their tweets and they're not in the gym at 3 in the morning like Gilbert used to be, so is this all just one big double standard? I'm going on faith that the guy really cares about improving and honing his craft, and while he doesn't tweet about it as much as we may like, he really is working on getting better as a point guard and a leader. However, if we get to the upcoming season and he still hasn't shown improvement in the obvious areas to which he is lacking, this conversation could potentially gain some steam. Is John Wall truly dedicated to being a star in this league? I hope we don't have to legitimately ask this question. I hope I'm just writing this because it's late and I felt like rambling. I hope this doesn't become the elephant in the gym.
UPDATE: I was careful to write things like we don't see "as much" about work that Wall has done because, to be fair, we did see a number of positive things earlier in the summer in addition to being on the USA Select Team. Per comment from @BenAgent0 below, I should mention that we have seen numerous tweets and comments from NBA players and others that his jumper has improved, and we were all giddy when Michael Lee reported back in July that he had been working with shot guru Dave Hopla. Thanks.