FanPost

Will the porridge in DC be just right for Porzingis?

James Dolan and New York were too cold, Luka Doncic and Dallas were too hot, will Bradley Beal and DC be just right?

Porzingis had undoubtedly not lived up to the max contract that Dallas gave him. Injuries were partially to blame, but I feel the predominant factor was the fit. According to a former Mavs executive, the team’s culture felt like NBA Mean Girls. Culture aside, Porzingis never really looked comfortable sharing the floor with Luka Doncic. The two did not have a good on-court rapport, and his sub-30% usage rate in Dallas reflected that. Furthermore, Rick Carlisle more or less squelched his post game. While Porzingis’s post-up stats in New York were not particularly impressive, just having that aspect as a threat or diversification could have unlocked additional opportunities for himself, as well as other teammates.

To be fair, Porzingis’s own personality likely didn’t do him any favors in terms of fit or culture in Dallas either. It’s unclear if Porzingis is also a diva and Dallas wasn’t big enough for two divas, or if the diva role was the part he had to play to force his way out of New York, but Porzingis definitely made life difficult for the Knicks front office after they ran Carmelo Anthony out of town.

Now Porzingis finds himself paired with another star teammate in Bradley Beal whose track record of creating on-court chemistry with other stars has been underwhelming. It is not encouraging that the Beal-Wall and Beal-Westbrook pairings were about as mediocre as the Doncic-Porzingis pairing. Doncic averaged a league-leading 37% usage rate during his time with Porzingis, which meant Porzingis was mostly relegated to spot-up shooting in Dallas’s offense. Although Beal’s 34% usage rate has also been high the past couple years due to Wall’s absence and Westbrook’s one-dimensional offense, Beal’s historical usage rate has been around 30%, which is interestingly similar to Carmelo Anthony’s average usage rate while he and Porzingis were teammates. It was during his time with Carmelo that Porzingis carved out a niche as a max potential player, so perhaps that is a point of optimism for the Wizards next season.

It remains to be seen whether Beal will continue to be ball-dominant now that he already has the supermax in the bag; there’s no financial incentive to game the stat sheet anymore. Beal has also never played alongside a knock-down shooter; defenders sagged off Wall and Westbrook, which often left him with limited options. Porzingis possesses a one-of-a-kind offensive repertoire and has the capability to exploit size mismatches. In his limited 17 games with the Wizards, Porzingis rediscovered his post-up game and seemed to be more involved and efficient than he was in Dallas. Furthermore, Porzingis has also yet to play with Kyle Kuzma, but he would likely take some pressure off Kuzma to consistently perform as the second option – they would be 2a and 2b.

How do you think Porzingis will fit in with the Wizards next year?

This represents the view of the user who wrote the FanPost, and not the entire Bullets Forever community. We're a place of many opinions, not just one.