The agent for Washington Wizards center Ike Austin said he believes the team wants to trade his client and that Austin would welcome the move.
Dwight Manley, who represents Austin, said he heard "from someone in Washington that Michael Jordan's first directive is to trade Ike.
"The right thing to do is put him in a place that is better for him that could also do something that is better for the team," Manley said. "We're just waiting for something to happen."
Wizards General Manager Wes Unseld declined to comment on whether the Wizards are shopping Austin and said there has been no directive from Jordan about trading Austin. Unseld said no one in the Wizards' organization has spoken to Manley about possibly trading his client.
Austin, who was acquired by Washington last summer from the Orlando Magic for four players, is in the second year of a three-year, $15 million contract. The Wizards hoped Austin would provide the physical inside presence the team had lacked in past seasons, but Austin was largely ineffective and was replaced in the starting lineup by second-year player Jahidi White Dec. 16.
Austin is averaging 7.7 points, 5.3 rebounds and 22.4 minutes per game, and his playing time probably will decrease with the recent activation of Lorenzo Williams off the injured list.
A league source said Washington has had talks with the Milwaukee Bucks about Austin, although few specifics were discussed. Another league source said the Los Angeles Lakers like Austin as a backup center and reserve power forward but they are not sure what they would offer as compensation for him.
In recent weeks, Austin has expressed his desire to either play more or be traded to a team where he could be more of a factor. Shortly after losing his starting job with the Wizards, Austin fired his longtime agent, Paco Bellassen, and hired Manley, who represents Utah Jazz star Karl Malone.