Drew Gooden expects to re-sign for veteran's minimum, according to report

Rob Carr

It sounds like the Wizards' surprise midseason acquisition last February is expecting to stick around next season.

After helping the team tremendously after the trade deadline, Drew Gooden appears ready for a future in D.C. The veteran Wizards' big man is looking to re-sign for the veteran's minimum this summer, according to Marc Spears of Yahoo! Sports.

This is in large part by necessity. Gooden is a Non-Bird Free Agent because he spent the equivalent of one season with the Wizards before becoming a free agent. This means that the Wizards can only re-sign him for up to 120 percent of the veteran's minimum. Otherwise, they must dip into an exception to keep him. The same thing happened to Martell Webster last summer, which is why it took the mid-level exception to retain him.

From Gooden's perspective, signing another one-year deal, even at the veteran's minimum, will give him additional free-agent rights following next season, which may eventually lead to a higher salary. This is the same thing that happened to Andray Blatche in Brooklyn and helps explain why he opted out this year after accepting a small salary last summer.

It's also worth noting that Gooden is still receiving amnesty payments from the Bucks, and any new contract will cut into some of those thanks to a complicated NBA offsetting formula.

Given the way Gooden played last year, keeping him for the veteran's minimum is a no-brainer if that indeed happens. The Wizards still need more frontcourt depth, but Gooden certainly earned the right to return.

As for Harrington ... I'm looking forward to Coach Al in Vegas. I'm a little more skeptical about his ability to still play.

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