Over the past 39 games I've been able to make a clear distinction between players that I believe are "core" and the subsequent players that are "crumbles". My core players are the the seven guys playing under their rookie contracts: John Wall, Trevor Booker, Kevin Seraphin, Jordan Crawford, Jan Vesely, Chris Singleton, and Shelvin Mack.
To me these seven players represent where the Wizards are going, the players they want to build the franchise around, and hopefully the guys that will lead this organization back to success. Sure there's only one John Wall caliber player in the bunch, but we've seen tremendous growth from Booker in year two, Crawford has shown amazing flashes at times, and I am a believer that both Jan Vesley and Kevin Seraphin will have earned much more significant roles on the team next season.
It's not OKC, but it's what they're building in the DMV!
Obviously if there's a "core", there's got to be the "crumbles", and it's not shocking to know that Andray Blatche, Nick Young, Rashard Lewis, and maybe even JaVale McGee are not in the team's long term plans.
It is in my estimation that this Wizards team is only three players away from getting out of the NBA's basement and stop being the butt of league wide jokes. I believe that based on the seven "core" players the team isn't nearly as far away from taking that next step as many others, but they are still three players away. Three players, 275 days, and the Wizards are a completely different franchise!
Acquiring Player 1 of 3: The Draft
With a record of 9-30 it's pretty safe to say that the Wizards are nearly a lock to have a top 6 pick in the draft this year, with the very high probability of a top 4 pick. The 2012 draft class was well hyped leading into the season, but to date has yet to live up to its billing, and that's assuming that everybody is leaving early.
Anthony Davis obviously looks like a very good player, as do others, but to me this looks very much like the 2009 Draft with Blake Griffin #1 and everybody else. There were other good players to come out in '09 like James Harden, Tyreke Evans, Ricky Rubio, Steph Curry, etc... All good players and amongst the top options on their teams, but not a class with multiple top 40-50 players A repeat of the '09 draft is what I see from the potential '12 class. Prospects like Andre Drummond, MKG, Harrison Barnes, Jeremy Lamb, T-Rob, and others all have bright future's, some maybe even all star potential, but none other than Davis is a true "can't miss" player in a draft where many expected more from the likes of Drummond, Sullinger, and Barnes.
No matter how the lottery plays out, the Wizards top pick will net them another very good player, and probably a player that will be expected to start and contribute immediately, especially since it's pretty much a non-existent PG class. Whichever player they draft, in whatever spot the lottery (David Stern) gives them, that player will provide the team with another "core" player.
Acquiring Player 2 of 3: Free Agency
The Wizards should have cap freedom this summer. It could be more, it could be less, depending on how they decide to play out the contracts of Lewis and Blatche, not to mention the trade deadline, but either way, they should have enough money to bring in a talented FA during the off season.
The top player on my wish list would be Nic Batum as I'd be really happy to lock up a versatile wing player that's just entering the prime of his career, especially one like Batum that can stroke the three!
Acquiring Player 3 of 3: The Unknown
The final player aka "the third" is a mystery for now. Perhaps a trade will bring in that player, perhaps it's another player from the draft, maybe even a second free agency signing....who knows? There's a chance that this player might not even come to DC until next year. But this third player will need to provide strength where there is weakness and most likely complement, rather than dominate. The final piece!