It's official: The 2015 offseason will be the summer of the stretch four. The most important issue the Wizards need to address this summer is finding a power forward who can stretch the floor with their outside shooting.
Now that we know the order of June's draft, mock drafts are coming out everywhere and most are projecting the Wizards will try to address their need in the draft. Here's a quick sampling of what several prominent mock drafts expect the Wizards to do with the 19th pick:
- Kevin O'Connor, SB Nation: Trey Lyles
- Ben Standig, CSN Washington: Kevon Looney
- Chad Ford, ESPN: Bobby Portis
- Chris Mannix, Sports Illustrated: Kevon Looney
- Draft Express: Kevon Looney
- NBADraft.net: Kevon Looney
- Sam Vecenie, CBS: Jerian Grant
- Gary Parrish, CBS: Tyus Jones
- Zach Harper, CBS: Bobby Portis
- Ed Isaacson, Rotoworld: Montrezl Harrell
With the exception of the Grant and Jones picks, everyone else is either a stretch forward already (Portis & Looney) or will likely be pushed toward playing that role in the NBA (Lyles & Harrell).
While most everyone can agree stretch four is a position of need for the Wizards, the draft may not be the best place to address such an immediate, pressing need. With the 19th pick, it's going to be difficult to find someone talented enough offensively to make a difference right away and solid enough defensively that Randy Wittman can trust him with significant playing time.
With that in consideration, don't be surprised if the Wizards deviate from most of these mock drafts. The team will have a lot of holes they will need to address in a year when Nene, Ramon Sessions, Kris Humphries, DeJuan Blair, and possibly Paul Pierce's contracts come off the books. Using the 2015 draft to help fill one of those projected roles would help alleviate the concerns on where to retool without costing the Wizards much in the short-term, considering the Wizards probably won't have many minutes to dole out to a rookie next season anyways.