It appeared as if free agent DeJuan Blair was headed for the Washington Wizards — they liked him, he liked them. Those are good signs.
But so far, no contract.
He wants a multi-year deal (or a sign-and-trade with the Spurs so he can keep his Bird rights, but that’s not a likely outcome because teams aren’t going to give the Spurs a sweetener just to sign Blair). Alex Kennedy of Hoopsworld summed up Blair’s situation well.
If the sign-and-trade option falls through, Blair may have to take a one-year deal, play well this season and then try to secure the multi-year deal he desires next summer. The Chicago Bulls have been linked to Blair this offseason and seem like a realistic landing spot for him since they’re a top-tier team that has minutes to offer. The L.A. Clippers have expressed interest in Blair, but only have a minimum deal and limited role to offer the young big man.
The Wizards are still out there.
Blair is one of those guys who is going to sign pretty much at the league minimum, but at that price he provides some value — in 61 appearances last season for the Spurs he shot 52.4 percent and had a PER of 14.6, right at the league average. He fell out of the Spurs rotation because they had better players, but Blair can play.
Somebody should grab him.