I’m not exactly a fan of NBA Trade Deadline coverage that leads up to Feb. 6. For every trade that happens, there are 1,000 rumors that never really materialize.
But when you’re covering a team that’s not among the best in the standings with some potentially game-changing assets, you know that the rumor mill will be loud for those players. The Wizards are one of those teams that aren’t among the NBA’s best, and they have a player who is in demand by others.
Davis Bertans was the Wizards’ steal during last summer’s free agency and trade period. He is averaging 15.4 points a game while making 43.4 percent of his threes (and MAKING 3.8 PER GAME!). I know that Bertans is out due to a quad injury though he should come back pretty soon with the active roster down to 15 players once again. But his eye-popping stats are enough to make other teams interested in him.
According to Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington, the Boston Celtics and Denver Nuggets are two teams that recently inquired about Bertans’ availability. They join the Los Angeles Lakers, Atlanta Hawks and Philadelphia 76ers as teams that made an initial call.
For now, Wizards General Manager Tommy Sheppard isn’t interested in trading Bertans away, even though the fourth-year forward is on the last year of his current contract. Sheppard wants to re-sign Bertans, but there is a risk that Bertans could leave for nothing this July.
Like Ben Mehic mentioned last month, they should focus their efforts on re-signing Bertans, a steal for the organization. We can play the ESPN Trade Machine we want ALL DAY. It creates wacky situations that aren’t even worth my time. All I can say is that Lakers and Celtics fans won’t hesitate to create a Bertans trade package on the trade machine that hands the Wizards more uncertainty toward building a long-term vision like Marcus Atkinson wrote earlier today.
There are some things that the trade machine can’t do. It can’t put a value on team chemistry or the environment surrounding a team that is looking to improve for the future. Trading away players, even well-performing younger ones for the sake of trading them is counterproductive.
Let’s just keep Bertans for the season since he is apparently happy to be in D.C. and sell him the vision of what the Wizards can be in the future.