The inconsistency of Javale McGee's play often leads to comically corresponding opinions on his maturity, whichever way that particular needle happens to point. At Bullets Forever, we don't have nearly as pronounced a tendency to waffle back and forth (too much). A few of us are convinced he will never become the dominant player we need him to be and others contend he is already there. The majority are simply waiting to see if he can turn the corner, and are cautiously encouraged by the progress we see from year to year.
It's vexing after these few years to still be unsure of what we really have in him, and easier to forget he's younger than Trevor Booker. In a draft like this one, he would surely be in the conversation to go #1, and it confuses me to hear his name coming up so often in mad scientist gambits aimed at improving draft position. While Enes Kanter may be the nearest approximation of a sure thing for the Wizards in this draft (and not everyone agrees), this may be akin to trading Serge Ibaka for Kendrick Perkins PURELY in the sense that complementary skillsets are best when they complement each other. A new set of tires doesn't help your car if you traded your rims to get them, but the question as to what, exactly, Javale is to the Wizards remains unanswered, which is probably why this issue pops up at all.
We know that calls regarding Javale's availability in the free agent and trade bonanza of 2010/11 were met with chilly silence, so has he suddenly become expendable? To be honest, I don't think he's available for Minnesota unless David Kahn is willing trade Kevin Love, for Utah without Derrick Favors, or for Cleveland without an additional unprotected lottery pick next year. At the very least, Big Daddy Wookie is still a tantalizing center prospect, and with quality wings and guards being so much more available, don't expect him to get moved in anything less than a blockbuster. With any of those scenarios I mentioned above there would be other players moving in and out, but it's my opinion that nothing less than a major piece coming back will see Javale playing for anyone else next season.
But there's another angle to consider, les boulez bomber, for one, is concerned about culture fit, namely, whether or not McGee is showing us that he has the ethic you can lay a corner of the franchise's foundation on, and how that might give the Wizards the extra push they need to make him available. I consider this problem largely irrelevant, because while we are painfully conscious of it, when people look at Javale, much of his stock is still measured in potential. And seven foot shot blockers who can jump out of the gym, put on muscle every year, and are making slow but steady progress towards developing basketball IQ are worth more than a few draft spots unless they're dead certain Enes Kanter or whomever is worth the heavy price they'd pay. In addition, we're still too early into the John Wall era to give up on someone like Javale after one hectic, rebuilding season, culture fit or no. Personally, I'm huge on team culture...but I think the front office is determined to see one more season with JM before they make that call.
How much value do you think it will take to prise Javale McGee from Ernie Grunfeld's cold, dead fingers? I think there is zero chance we trade away the most valuable piece we have on the team (John Wall naturally considered untouchable) for anything less than what EG considers full value, which is almost certainly higher than another team is willing to pay. In other words, Javale simply doesn't have the reputation Anthony Randolph had for being a space cadet, and while the comparative lack of chemistry he has with John Wall doesn't make him untouchable, he hasn't suddenly become more expendable, either. Unless Ernie finds himself able to hit a homerun, Javale McGee isn't going anywhere.