After dropping their fifth straight game Thursday, Washington is reportedly interested in dealing for Minnesota Timberwolves shooting guard Kevin Martin.
Martin is owed $14 million over the next two seasons but could be a valuable asset to a team looking for scoring punch off the bench. Dallas, Washington among the possibilities
The Wizards, for all their tantalizing and mouth-watering offensive potential, are a staggering bottom-half team (17th) in scoring, and a consistent, reliable scorer off the bench has been a major need for this team all season long. Martin could fill that role, despite his reputation as a weak defender.
The 10th year player, with a career scoring average of 18 points per game, is averaging 20.5 points so far this season. He missed 34 games from mid-November through the end of January due to a broken wrist, but hasn't missed a beat scoring-wise since his return.
So, what would the Wizards have to offer the Wolves and how are relations between the two sides?
Well, that gets tricky. The Wizards have a bargaining chip in Otto Porter, who would fit in with Minnesota's rebuilding process around Andrew Wiggins and the team's young core. But would the Wizards want to trade away a potential piece of their own future for a 32-year old rental? There's also Martell Webster's large contract paying him through the 2016-17 season, though the final season is not guaranteed, which could be something to keep an eye on with Webster struggling big time this season.
Also, doing business with Flip Saunders, Minnesota's head coach and President of Basketball Operations, may be a difficult task after what he went through during his tenure as Washington's coach from 2009 to 2012. When his current team played Washington earlier this season, he expressed his happiness for the blossoming of John Wall while juxtaposing that with his frustrations of having to deal with knuckleheads like JaVale McGee and Andray Blatche due to the team's disinterest in surrounding Saunders with a more well-organized group of players.
If Grunfeld could pull this off without putting the team in too much of a hole for the future, I'd be really pleased. He hit a home run in dealing for Marcin Gortat last season, despite losing a first-round pick in the process, but can he do the same again? Martin could solve a lot of problems offensively. He'd be another wing scorer to spread the floor for Wall and doesn't need to create his points off the dribble. Having that reliability would be huge. Those players, a la Louis Williams and Jamal Crawford, can decide games by themselves once they get hot.
And we've lost more than our fair share of games to players like them. Martin could be the guy who finally provides that for us.
We'll see what magic Ernie Grunfeld's got up his sleeve to get this team a potent scorer off the bench that it needs.