Man what a game against the Thunder on Monday. If that wasn’t what all of us Wizards fans needed I don’t know what is? And what’s the best way to follow-up a 2-point victory over the league’s best team that saw our rookie Bradley Beal ice the game winner? A few days rest and the possible return of John Wall that’s how.
Saturday night’s game against the Hawks could be John Wall’s first game of the season, and even though pictures have surfaced of Wall being slightly out of shape, us Wiz faithful finally have a little pep to our steps and are getting real excited for the first time this season. While the playoffs are still out of the question barring a John Wall half season MVP campaign and a collapse by several teams, I’m starting to get that excitement back that I had at the beginning of the season. And that excitement would certainly multiply if Leonsis would go ahead and fire Grunfeld.
But Grunfeld is still in the picture and since he’s probably not looking around the league at cap friendly moves or moves that would actually benefit the Wiz, I sure am, so here are some trades that I hope Grunfeld or whoever else might be at the helm when he’s fired might entertain.
Nene and Trevor Ariza for Caron Butler and Lamar Odom: (Trade Machine)
This is a trade that I certainly see the Clippers entertaining. For us we need Nene to be a 30 plus minute big man and one that is usually the center of our offense when on the court. In LA Nene could be the primary backup to Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan and he would only be forced to play minutes in the upper 20s which is what he seems most comfortable with and what he’s actually able to do. Also Ariza is posting a better PER than Caron Butler and could easily slide in and take his role in the Clippers rotation. Butler is only playing a hair over 20 minutes a game and has seen his role diminish. A change of scenery might serve Butler well and what better place than a place where Butler used to call home for four plus seasons and averaged nearly 19 points a game.
Lamar Odom would be an oversight where we either reach a buyout with him or ship him to a third team for a future pick. While if we have an energized and dedicated Odom I would love to have him on our team, I don’t see us receiving that Lamar Odom. If he wasn’t happy in Dallas, he sure wouldn’t be happy in Washington. Still he clears close to 9 million in cap space for the following year which would be very nice.
This trade would get us out of Nene’s contract which we owe him $13 million each of the next 3 seasons and upgrade the small forward position. Butler would be our starter the rest of the season and next year he could either start or be one of the first men off the bench and mentor whoever we draft. Also in this trade I would like to see us give the Clips our second second-round pick in exchange for the Clips first rounder. Even if we couldn’t get the pick, I would be happy with this trade as-is.
Starting Line-Up After Trade
PG-Wall, SG-Beal, SF – Butler, PF – Seraphin, C – Okafor
Trevor Ariza and Jan Vesely for Andrea Bargnani: (Trade Machine)
It’s a well-known fact that the Raptors want to unload Bargnani. They also have been rumored to want more of a defensive presence (Ariza and Vesely) in return for the former first overall draft pick. Bringing in Bargnani would give us a true stretch 4 who can run with John Wall and company. I think playing alongside a defensive center in Okafor, Bargnani could really shine and give us some offensive firepower, because we all know where we rank in the league in offensive output (dead last).
While some people in the organization (Grunfeld) think Vesely can develop into a good player, I do not see it. Even if we wanted to keep Vesely and give him another season to try and develop, we could ship out Kevin Seraphin in place of Vesely if the Raptors wanted a true big man in return. Still I think Bargnani would be an upgrade over Seraphin, especially if Nene is still on our roster. That’s one of our biggest problems with our current roster; too many players play the same style and same position. The Wiz could really benefit from having a 7-foot big man that can stroke the three ball instead of a couple of under 7-foot big men who play best right under the basket.
Starting Line-up After Trade
PG – Wall, SG – Beal, SF – Webster, PF – Bargnani, C – Nene/Okafor
Nene for Stephen Jackson and DeJuan Blair: (Trade Machine)
This trade would simply be a cap friendly move. Again I doubt Big Shot Jack would want to play in Washington so this would be a buyout move again or add a third team to the deal and receive a future pick. This would get us off the hook for Nene’s contract as this is the last year of Jackson’s deal and Blair would give us a nice back-up big for a reasonable price that we should have drafted back in 2009. Like I said before, I love what Nene brings to the table but if he can’t stay on the court, we don’t need to pay him $13 million a year. In this situation he could either start alongside Tim Duncan or be the first big man off the bench. Still I think the Spurs could easily entertain this offer and would think hard about it.
Starting Line-Up After Trade
PG – Wall, SG – Beal, SF – Webster, PF – Seraphin, C – Okafor
Emeka Okafor, Jordan Crawford, Trevor Ariza and our 2014 First Rounder for Rudy Gay and Jerryd Bayless: (Trade Machine)
While at first glance this trade might be a bit of a stretch, it might actually be enough to get it done. Rumors have been swirling that the Grizzlies want to unload Rudy Gay and the team that is rumored to most interested (the Suns) couldn’t put a better package than this together.
Now a few factors would have to come together for the Grizzlies to pull the trigger on this trade. The first would be that no other team offers the Grizzlies an outstanding offer. The second would be that Ariza and Okafor re-structure their deals for next season. One of the reasons the Grizzlies want to trade Gay is because they want to lower their salaries to get them out of the luxury tax. This deal would actually cost them more this season, but Ariza and Okafor could re-structure their deals, which they might consider in order to play on a title contender. Also if this trade didn’t work out on the court, both of their deals would expire after the following season so they could cut them loose if need be.
While it pains me to put Steezy in a trade shipping him out of Washington, Rudy Gay would be one person that would be worth the pain. Crawford would give them a stronger scoring punch off the bench than what Bayless gives them plus they would be getting another first rounder in next year’s draft which draft experts are expecting to be a strong draft. I would also do this deal if instead of next year’s pick we swapped them first rounders this year. We are obviously looking for a wing scorer in this year’s draft, and Rudy Gay would certainly fill that bill. In Bayless we would be getting back someone to take Crawford’s place off the bench. Plus according to Hollinger’s analysis, who just happens to be an executive for the Grizzlies, it would add two wins for Memphis.
Starting Line-Up After Trade
PG – Wall, SG – Beal, SF – Gay, PF – Seraphin, C – Nene
These are all trades that are not out of the question and would improve our team going forward. Let’s just hope the Wizards brass has as much enthusiasm as I do to make this team better. Closer to the trade deadline I will revisit the trade market and give you all some updated trade scenarios depending on who’s known to be available and our current roster. But until next Wednesday, Stay Steezy Wiz fans!
And let’s hope we get to see Wall’s debut on Saturday!
*Got some other trades in mind? Share yours in the comment section*