top of page

Buyers? Sellers? What Are the Wizards Going to Do? Washington Wizards Trade Deadline Primer.

Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

Just a few weeks ago, if you asked anyone what the Wizards plans should be at the deadline, the answer would be simple. Sell, sell, sell.

The Wizards have now gone 13-6 over their last 19 games, and have vaulted into the 9th seed in the conference, hovering just a game back of the 8-seeded Atlanta Hawks, making the question much more difficult to answer with less than a week until trades close on February 9th.

While injuries and other issues caused the team to get off to a bad start, they are looking like one of the best Wizards teams we've seen in a long time, leading me to believe that management may be looking to obtain veterans to make a playoff run in the near future. They seem intent on keeping the core of Bradley Beal, Kristaps Porzingis, and Kyle Kuzma together, and will hopefully surround them with the right talent to make some noise in the loaded east.

Without further ado, let's break down the Washington Wizards trade deadline.


The Wizards have had the same basic needs for a while now, defense and three-point shooting. While they have a very solid team, most of their roster is average or below-average defenders. They also currently stand at 21st in the league in 3 point shooting, so clearly something needs to change. 3&D players are by no means easy to find, but there are a few players who fit Washington's needs that will be available at the deadline.

  1. Jae Crowder- After having a falling out with the Suns following their disappointing exit to the 2022 playoffs, Crowder has been away from the team all season while looking for trade options. Crowder is a career 35% three point shooter, which is not elite, but it's difficult to find a wing like Jae who can shoot the ball on offense, while also being a good defender. He was the part of two straight finals runs with the Heat and Suns, and is a battle-tested veteran that DC could use. Crowder's deal is expiring and he's reportedly looking for long-term security, meaning the Wizards may have to be willing to extend Crowder to trade for him.

  2. Josh Richardson- Another former member of the Heat and Celtics, Josh Richardson is also a great 3&D player. He's making 36% of his 3s while taking 5 a game, but on the Celtics, where he was given more open shots, he made a staggering 44% of his triples. At 6-5 with a 6-10 wingspan, the 29-year-old is capable of being disruptive on the defensive end, and would be a big help in a backcourt lacking defense.

  3. Matisse Thybulle- While Thybulle is not the best offensive player in the world, far from it, he has proven to be an elite defensive player, very similar to former OKC guard Andre Roberson. Before the season started, Thybulle was generally seen as untouchable, or at least very hard to get, but while Thybulle's defense has stood out for his entire career thus far, the Arizona native is in the midst of the worst year of his career, averaging career lows across the board, including minutes per game. He has become stuck at the end of Doc Rivers' rotation, and the Sixers will likely be looking to deal the 2023 RFA before February 9th.

While none of these options are perfect for what Washington needs, they all fit specific needs, and would help the Wizards improve without giving up too much in return.

Lets take a look at the assets the Wizards have to pull off a trade.


Untouchable: Bradley Beal, Kristaps Porzingis

Not Likely be Moved: Kyle Kuzma, Corey Kispert, Daniel Gafford, Deni Avdija, Johnny Davis.

Expiring Contracts: Will Barton (14 million), Kyle Kuzma (13 million), Taj Gibson (1.9 million)

Valuable Multi-year Contracts: Monte Morris (2 years/19 million), Delon Wright (2 years/16 million)

Other tradable players: Anthony Gill (2 years/ 3.5 million), Vernon Carey Jr(1+1 years/ 1.7 million), Isaiah Todd (2+1 years, 3.4 million)

Tradable Draft Picks: Wizards 2024-2030 First Round Picks (cannot deal picks for consecutive years as it would violate the Stepien Rule) 18 Second Round Picks from 2023-2030.

Washington clearly has a few valuable contracts. Notably Delon Wright, Monte Morris, and Will Barton. With annual salaries of 7, 9, and 14 million respectively. Mid-level salaries like this are extremely important when you need to match salaries to acquire other players. Their first round picks will likely fall in the 12-20 range for the near future, meaning they have a decent amount of trade value.

The expiring Barton is likely to be bought out if not traded, meaning the Wizards will be looking for someone to take on his contract before the trade deadline.


While the Wizards have some assets to make a big move, and could certainly use the help, I think it's most likely they let the deadline pass without making a serious move. They are trying to save cap room to afford a large extension for Kyle Kuzma this summer, and it wouldn't be surprising to see GM Tommy Sheppard let the deadline pass. The Rui Hachimura deal to bring in Kendrick Nunn may be all we see.

If they do opt to pursue a trade, a name to keep an eye on is forward Will Barton, as his contract is the best for salary-matching, and combined with draft capitol he could net Washington a solid addition to the bench.

Don't expect much from Washington this February, but keep an eye on Jae Crowder, Josh Richardson, and Matisse Thybulle as possible additions.

Follow @WizardsD1strict on Twitter for Wizards news and updates!


bottom of page