The Wizards are making a move to revamp their bench, but it comes at a price. Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical and Candace Buckner of the Washington Post are reporting the Wizards are acquiring Bojan Bogdanovic and Chris McCullough from the Nets in exchange for Andrew Nicholson, Marcus Thornton and a lottery-protected 2017 first round pick.
Bogdanovic should provide instant support for the Wizards’ bench. He’s averaging 14.2 points per game and shooting 35.7 percent from deep, despite playing on a Brooklyn squad that offered very little support offensively. He’ll help space the floor with the second unit and gives the team another shooting option in late game lineups. He is a restricted free agent this season, but now that Nicholson is off Washington’s books, that should give the team more room to re-sign him this summer along with Otto Porter.
It’s not an ideal trade, but like many trades we’ve seen the Wizards pull at the deadline in recent years, it helps them resolve some of the problems they created. It would have been nice to see the Wizards net someone a little better than Bogdanovic with their first round pick, but the salary relief they get from unloading Nicholson’s deal is no small matter. Chris McCullough could potentially prove to be a useful piece as well.
The Wizards’ biggest trade chip is off the board, but they still may be able to make another move or two before the trade deadline. They still have their second round pick and Trey Burke’s expiring contract which they could package to net an upgrade before Thursday’s deadline.
UPDATE: The trade is official. Here is what Ernie Grunfeld had to say about the move in the Wizards’ press release:
Bojan is a very good shooter and a talented overall scorer whose versatility gives us an added dimension as we gear up for the stretch run. He is a proven starter that will provide us an added boost off the bench and allow us to be creative with our lineups.
We feel Chris is an intriguing prospect as a first-round pick who was recently named a D-League All-Star. He has high potential and we look forward to our staff continuing his development.
We thank Andrew and Marcus for their professionalism and their contributions to our team. We wish them both the best moving forward in their careers.