Happy Super Bowl Sunday! Let’s talk a bit about the Washington Wizards as they head toward the NBA Trade Deadline next Thursday.
The Wizards will stay the course past the Trade Deadline
The NBA Trade Deadline is on Thursday, Feb. 7 at 3 p.m. ET. There is no shortage of rumors. For example, Anthony Davis wants out of the New Orleans Pelicans, and the Lakers are keen to uniting the Brow with LeBron James. And in the Eastern Conference, Kyrie Irving is wavering on his commitment to the Celtics past this season.
The Wizards have disappointed this season and are just 22-30 in the 2018-19 season. They are 10th place in the Eastern Conference and 2.5 games behind the Miami Heat for the eighth seed in the playoffs. On Saturday, they played the Eastern Conference-leading Milwaukee Bucks and lost 131-115. Giannis Antetokounmpo came back and played like European superstars do. Dominant yet fundamental.
The most disappointing loss however was a 116-113 stinker against the Cleveland Cavaliers on Jan. 29. The Wizards need to win games against those clearly outside the playoff hunt ... yet that’s exactly what this team keeps doing.
There have been rumblings about the Wizards being willing to trade anyone on the roster, especially in the first month of the season. However, owner Ted Leonsis proclaimed earlier this week that none of the Wizards’ top players: John Wall, Bradley Beal or Otto Porter would be traded. In other words, the Wizards will stay the course.
Patience is a virtue in sports and many are tempted to make knee-jerk decisions after a win or loss. But the Wizards have declined for the second season in a row. They are in salary cap prison where Ian Mahinmi is still on the books for $16 million next season and Wall’s super max salary of about $38.1 million starts kicking in then as well. If Wall were healthy all year and playing at a high level, then his supermax wouldn’t seems so bad. But he hasn’t.
It is possible that the Wizards will make the playoffs if they somehow get on a big winning streak over the next couple months. But even if they get the eighth seed in the playoffs, it’s hard to see them winning a single game against the Bucks in the first round.
Bradley Beal makes the All-Star Game!
The Wizards haven’t won enough on the court, but Bradley Beal has taken another step forward with his game. He’s an All-Star reserve for the second consecutive season. And given how consistent Beal has been as a passer and rebounder, there’s a very good chance he will be an All-NBA player after this season as well.
If that happens, it will be interesting to see if the Wizards offer Beal a super-max contract extension.
Highlight of the week
The Wizards lost to the Bucks on Saturday. But Tomas Satoransky got a poster dunk on Brook Lopez early in the contest.
NSFW#WizBucks | #DCFamily pic.twitter.com/O6lz5oyzwy— Washington Wizards (@WashWizards) February 3, 2019
Alright, that’s all I have. Enjoy the rest of your weekends and your Super Bowl parties everyone.