The Wizards began their preseason back in October in Dallas, but that didn’t count. Tonight does, finally pitting Washington against the team it partnered with for last year’s core dismantling trade that sent Caron Butler, Brendan Haywood and DeShawn Stevenson to Texas in exchange for Josh Howard (injured), along with James Singleton (gone), Quinton Ross (gone) and Drew Gooden (barely ever here before gone, too). Jeez.

Then again, how has Dallas fared? Playoffs last spring? Bounced. Butler out for the year. Haywood struggling to keep up behind Tyson Chandler. Oh right, Stevenson is the guy who has had the most success. Exactly what was projected from the trade, right?

Not that Dallas is a bad team, by any stretch. Far from it, having won four in a row. On a similar note, isn’t it finally time to stop talking about playoffs for Washington?

Meanwhile, we’ll have to see what the Wizards roster looks like tonight, given how much rotation there was last weekend due to injuries and illness. JaVale McGee tweeted Sunday that he was on his way to Dallas, which could mean Trevor Booker gets sent back to the bench. The return of Kirk Hinrich also could spell the end for Mustafa Shakur, and Nick Young left the Memphis game early with a calf strain.

And then, of course, there’s the thing with being 0-23 on the road, a blight so big and glaring that last week I said everyone on the team can share in the blame. Whether or not it’s directly connected, Wizards owner Ted Leonsis seems to be feeling the heat, as displayed by this “retort” and this analysis of John Wall, who clearly needs to hire a professional chef. Shouldn’t the Wizards have strongly suggested one before now?

[Update: Ted Leonsis says the Wizards have hired a personal chef for John Wall.]