Drew Gooden was included in the Mavericks/Wizards trade to make the salaries work, but he may not end up playing basketball for Washington. According to Yahoo! Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski, Gooden will “likely negotiate a buyout” with the Wizards. Wojnarowski reports that the Nuggets, Bucks, and Bobcats are the most likely suitors for Gooden, and that a return to the Mavericks is still in play.
Gooden is capable of scoring in a variety of ways and has shown flashes of strong play, but the former #4 overall pick has never quite put all of his skills together. He’s never been a very efficient scorer at the NBA level, and his defense has been somewhat of an issue. Gooden’s greatest strength is his rebounding. Gooden has been effective on the boards, and is currently in the top-10 in rebound rate among power forwards. It makes sense that teams helmed by Larry Brown and Scott Skiles are looking at Gooden, as both coaches value the ability to control the boards.
Gooden will never live up to his potential as a top-5 pick. However, he can still contribute to a quality team, and could be a nice discount pickup amidst all the big trade rumors.