Now they are basically tanking, though they have Beal, which amounts to holding Beal hostage. Players have only so many NBA minutes in them. It is such a shame that Beal — who led the league in minutes last season — might have to waste 3,000 more carrying this sorry roster.
In mid-December, Washington traded a young player (Oubre) for an adult in the room (Trevor Ariza) to save their unraveling season. Six weeks later, the Wizards gave up by dealing Porter.
Their payroll is so bloated, they had to pass on re-signing potentially useful players — Portis and Satoransky (above) — in favor of cheaper deals to Thomas Bryant (promising!), Ish Smith and Isaiah Thomas.
They didn’t have the flexibility to hunt blue-chip future picks in salary dumps the way Memphis and Atlanta did. Instead, they gathered fringe prospects and second-round picks in junior versions of those deals. That is something — a reversal of past pick hemorrhaging, assuming ownership does not mandate the sale of all those second-rounders.