The Wizards continue to have a very nice off-season. They lost Trevor Ariza but brought in more versatile scoring with Paul Pierce, they retained Marcin Gortat, they got some quality depth up front with Kris Humphries, Otto Porter has looked much better at Summer League, not to mention Bradley Beal and John Wall are still developing.
Now you can add DeJuan Blair to that list.
The Wizards are going to add a nice bench big to their list with a little help from Dallas. Blair himself confirmed it on twitter:
Marc Stein at ESPN broke the story and J. Michael at CSNWashington.com confirmed it.
With Dallas bringing in Tyson Chandler and Greg Smith to the front line, there wouldn’t be minutes for Blair. It is likely a second round pick headed back to Dallas in the deal.
For Washington, they pick up a big man who played 15 minutes of solid ball for the Mavericks each game last year, scoring 6.4 points a game with a good .557 true shooting percentage and grabbing 17.5 percent of the available rebounds when on the court. He is a great role player off the bench.
Washington might be the third best team in the East on paper heading into the season, and one with a year of playoff experience under its belt (plus it added Pierce, who has a ring).
Trevor Booker, before teams could legally contact him or his agent about him, said he’d received a lot of free-agent interest.
That, after a small snag, foretold his free agency.
Booker received a larger contract than most expected, and logically, that was driven by competition.
Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports:
Free-agent forward Trevor Booker has agreed to a two-year, $10 million deal with the Utah Jazz, a league source told Yahoo Sports on Tuesday.
The Wizards declined to give Trevor Booker his $4,677,708 qualifying offer – a one-year offer necessary to make him a restricted free agent. Still, the Jazz gave him an even larger salary on a longer contract.Maybe Utah just that much smarter than Washington, but it should be telling that the team that knows Booker best didn’t value him at $4,677,708 for one year. The Jazz should make their own evaluations, but they should consider outside factors – including Washington not extending a qualifying offer – as part of the equation.All said, Booker is a solid backup big man. He averaged 6.8 points on 55.4 percent shooting and 5.3 rebounds in 21.6 minutes game. At 26, he’s experience enough to help the Jazz if they’re surprisingly good next season and young enough to contribute down the road should their rebuild expectedly take multiple years.The Wizards should be OK. Nene and the recently signed Marcin Gortat are back, and Kris Humphries slides in to replace Booker. Restricted free agent Kevin Seraphin, whom Washington extended a qualifying offer, could also return.
When Nene is healthy, the Washington Wizards have a powerful front line with him and just re-signed Marcin Gortat. But what they need is some depth behind those guys (especially Nene) to keep the minutes down and their health up.
Enter Kris Humphries.
A guy who takes a lot of ridicule for his off-the-court life from fans (remember the Kim Kardashian saga), on the court he is a rock-solid reserve big man — an efficient scorer who doesn’t use much offense, he’s strong on the glass and he provides a real physicality. He is going to the Wizards, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports.
Free-agent forward Kris Humphries has agreed to a three-year, $13 million deal with the Washington Wizards, league sources told Yahoo Sports.
The Boston Celtics are finalizing a sign-and-trade agreement with Washington to fit Humphries’ deal into the salary cap, sources said. The Wizards can send Boston part of the trade exception earned with Houston in a recent sign-and-trade deal for Trevor Ariza.
The third year of Humphries’ contract will be a team option, a source said.
At that price this is a good signing.
Humphries scored just 8.4 points a game in 20 minutes a night for Boston last season (he started 30 games for them), but he did it with an efficient .558 true shooting percentage. He grabbed 16.9 percent of all the available rebounds when on the court. He’s a solid defender.
He will provide much needed depth for the Wizards.
Washington has had a very nice off-season re-signing Gortat,replacing Trevor Ariza with Paul Pierce and seeing young players such as Bradley Beal and Otto Porter develop. They are going to be a team to watch in the East next season.
Beyond Vitor Faverani (injured midseason) and Joel Anthony (too old to fit into the Celtics’ long-term plans), Boston didn’t have a true center last season – a fact Celtics coach Brad Stevens made no effort to disguise.
Power forwards Kris Humphries, Kelly Olynyk, Brandon Bass and Jared Sullinger took turns manning the pivot, a decent stopgap for a tanking team, but not a long-term solution.
So, it’s clear the Celtics could use a center. Sullinger’s father, Satch Sullinger, explains just how big a priority that is to Boston.
Satch, via ABC 6:
“Next year, I think he’s going to get finally get to play his true position of power forward. And so, at that point, he’s going to come home and he’s going to trim down and shed some pounds, so he gets a quicker step and a little more mobility. Because they’ve kind of promised him that they’re going to get a center.”
Sullinger has played well when healthy, 13.3 points and 8.1 points per game last season. If he loses weight, that could help him avoid injury.
Getting a center – both due to him and the reverberations throughout the lineup – would help the Celtics. Enough to make the 2015 playoffs? Depends on the center.
If Boston wants to rebuild patiently with another lottery pick, a center wouldn’t be a huge priority, because missing one would serve that purpose. Perhaps, this indicates the Celtics want to win next season – but that might depend on the results of the lottery.
To be fair, because of the crisp Bulls passing there was nothing Boston’s Kris Humphries could have done.
The ball started with Joakim Noah at the free throw line whipping a quick pass to Jimmy Butler, who quickly finds Taj Gibson and at this point there is noting Humph could have done.
Noah makes a good playmaker for the Bulls.