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Washington Wizards blitz NBA free agency

Washington targeted their own key free agents while securing a backup of the future for John Wall in rapid fire. Did the Wizards behave like a team with a plan or pull the trigger prematurely in failing to let the market play out?


Fans might quibble about results, but they certainly can't argue with the process. The Wizards behaved like a team confident in their roster construction, moving quickly to re-sign Martell Webster and Garrett Temple while acquiring backup point guard Eric Maynor with the bi-annual exception to replace the (presumably) out-bound A.J. Price. It's extremely doubtful the Wizards acquire a stretch 4 with only the veteran minimum to hand out, but that's really the only trick conceivably left to turn as Washington gears up for a playoff run.

The front-office hasn't yet let John Wall's stated need for a pick-and-pop partner dictate free-agent or draft strategy. Ernie Grunfeld focused on locking up a big piece of last year's offense, finding a superior facilitator to back-up John Wall and retaining a valuable defender in the backcourt. Passing on Nerlens Noel was a big surprise, but the Wizards certainly didn't reach for Cody Zeller. They chose the highest player on their board while solidifying their depth for a nascent run at the playoffs.

What benefit could there be in waiting? Maybe saving a year on Martell's contract? A few million between his and Maynor's deal? That's a solid maybe. So perhaps the Wizards might have been able to save enough money somewhere to sign Antawn Jamison, or whomever your choice might be for a value stretch 4 on the market. But that's armchair GM'ing. The Wizards opted for continuity while letting the prospective market for a value stretch 4 play out.

If the Wiz were going to let one perceived need languish a bit in this free agency period, I believe they picked the right one.

More from Bullets Forever:

Unveil the Wizard! Martell returns

Grading the Martell deal.

The Wizards' salary situation.

Next up: Garrett Temple.

Get to know Glen Rice Jr.