A Peek Into the Wizards’ Future

April 9, 2013

Wizards players Bradley Beal (from left) Nene and John Wall are all signed for next season.

The Washington Wizards have just four games remaining on their schedule — including tonight’s home tilt against Miami. They have already been eliminated from the playoffs for their fifth-straight season, and an interesting offseason awaits. The Wizards will add another young player through the NBA draft lottery, which will force them to make crucial decisions on a crowded roster with some big salaries. Here’s how things stand right now.

Will Be Back

John Wall (Signed through 2013-14)

Uh, he’ll be back — and likely with a max contract.

Bradley Beal (Signed through 2015-16)

His great rookie season was slowed by injuries. He and Wall will be the linchpins of the franchise.

Nene (Signed through 2015-16)

Three more years of a healthy Nene at a healthy cost is fine with the Wizards. But three more years of an injury-plagued Nene at $13 million per season would put the team in a deep bind.

Emeka Okafor (Signed through 2013-14)

The center recently indicated that he wouldn’t opt out of his deal to become a free agent, a wise move considering the Wizards are on the hook for more than $14 million, which Okafor would not command on the open market.

Trevor Ariza (Signed through 2013-14)

He’s been a steady contributor to the lineup. Washington can use his defense and scoring ability, but his expiring contract ($7.7 million) could make him appealing to teams in a trade.

Trevor Booker and Kevin Seraphin (Signed through 2013-14)

Both players have shown flashes. However, Booker’s high-energy play has been hampered by injuries, and Seraphin is still a raw talent after three seasons in the league.

Chris Singleton (Signed through 2014-15)

Another frontcourt player who has a nice skill set but hasn’t shown enough on the court for the Wizards to truly be comfortable with him going forward. Still, his defense is solid enough to keep him around.

Return in Question

A.J. Price and Garrett Temple (Free agents)

Both of these unrestricted free agent guards have provided valuable minutes, and both are 26, so it’s a toss-up as to whom the team might keep. But it does seem that only one will return.

Cartier Martin (Free agent)

Martin’s been part of the Wizards off and on for four seasons, but it’s likely they’ll let the forward walk and potentially sign him to a 10-day contract when in need of a solid reserve, as they’ve done in the past.

Martell Webster (Free agent)

This will be the Wizards’ toughest decision. Webster has been one of the biggest surprises in the entire NBA this year, and it figures that a team will throw a large, multi-year contract at the 26-year-old. Webster’s off-court presence is huge, but are his numbers a contract-year aberration?

Say Goodbye

Jason Collins and Leandro Barbosa (Free agents)

There’s zero chance these throw-ins to the Jordan Crawford deal will return.

Is There a Way?

Jan Vesely (Signed through 2014-15)

The only real “can-we-get-rid-of-this-guy?” slot on the roster. Vesely has been an absolute disaster. It looks like the Czech forward will never live up to being the sixth pick in the 2011 NBA draft.

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