Barring a trade to clear roster space or make a significant upgrade, the Wizards' "drama free" offseason is over. The plan was set in motion the second the Wizards traded for Emeka Okafor and Trevor Ariza, punting on any sort of free-agent splash for at least another year. The emergence of Martell Webster further limited the Wizards' options, since they would have to use their biggest free-agent resource (the mid-level exception) to re-sign him.
Nevertheless, we can now look back at how the summer has played out around the league and evaluate whether the Wizards used the tools at their disposal well. Let's jump in.
- Used No. 3 pick on Otto Porter
- Traded the No. 38 and No. 54 picks to Philadelphia for the No. 35 pick. Selected Glen Rice Jr.
MID-LEVEL EXECPTION: MARTELL WEBSTER
The Wizards ended up spending the entire mid-level exception to retain Webster, signing him to a four-year, $22 million contract with the fourth year partially guaranteed if Webster doesn't play in at least 180 games (60/year) in his first three years.
At the time, I was worried about this deal. I love Webster's contributions, but was worried about giving him a four-year deal given his past health issues. But as the summer has played out, it's become harder to find reasonable alternatives. Here are the role-playing wings that signed deals this summer:
- Kyle Korver: Four years, $24 million.
- Tony Allen (not a shooter): Four years, $20 million.
- Gerald Henderson (R, not a shooter): Three years, $18 million.
- Chase Budinger: Three years, $16 million, third year player option.
- Corey Brewer (not a shooter): Three years, $15 million.
- Matt Barnes: Three years, $10 million, third year partially-guaranteed.
- Carlos Delfino: Three years, $10 million, third year partially-guaranteed.
- Earl Clark: Two years, $9 million, second year non-guaranteed.
- Dorell Wright: Two years, $6.5 million.
- Andrei Kirilenko: Two years, $6.5 million, second year a player option.
- Mike Dunleavy: Two years, $6.5 million.
- Francisco Garcia: Two years, veteran's minimum, second year a player option.
- Omri Casspi: Two years, veteran's minimum, second year non-guaranteed.
BI-ANNUAL EXCEPTION: ERIC MAYNOR
Here's where I think there's more room for second-guessing. The Wizards signed Maynor on the first day of free agency, despite him not being that much better than A.J. Price. Meanwhile, here are some backup guards that went for the bi-annual or less elsewhere.
- Devin Harris
- C.J. Watson
- Nate Robinson
- Darren Collison
- Pablo Prigioni
- Toney Douglas
- Ronnie Price
- John Lucas III
- D.J. Augustin
- Beno Udrih
- Earl Watson
- Shaun Livingston
- Jordan Farmar
- Aaron Brooks
- And, obviously, A.J. Price
Some of these (Harris, Collison, Farmar) were unique circumstances, but there was plenty of quality available (I like Robinson, Udrih and Douglas, in particular) for less than what Maynor got if the Wizards let things play out a bit. Hopefully, there's some growth that Maynor can show that the others can't.
It's hard to find a more useful piece for the price than Al Harrington. No complaints here.
UPDATE: Forgot about Garrett Temple. I preferred bringing him back to A.J. Price because of positional versatility, so I am in favor of that use of resources.
Was there a reasonable alternate path the Wizards could have pursued with these exceptions? Let us know in the comments.
More from Bullets Forever:
- NBA free agency 2013: Getting to know Al Harrington
- What does Al Harrington bring to the Washington Wizards?
- All aboard! Washington Wizards prepare to leave rebuilding phase behind
- Bullets Forever summer skill checklist: Martell Webster
- Commissioner for a day: Change All-Star Weekend, make European play easier and more