Should Washington Wizards Trade For Atlanta Hawks’ Josh Smith?

By Michael Terrill
Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

According to NBA sources, the Washington Wizards are one of several teams interested in trading for forward Josh Smith. Should the Wizards make an offer to the Atlanta Hawks for Smith?

I personally believe it would not be a wise decision for Washington to try and make a deal for the 27-year old. First off, Smith is an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season, which means there is a good chance another team, more specifically a contender, will sign him this summer. Not to mention, Washington has a 15-36 record and are ranked third last in the Eastern Conference standings. What purpose does it serve to acquire Smith?

There is a very slim chance the Wizards make a miraculous run for the third spot in the conference even with a half of a season remaining. If they had a better record and thought the playoffs were a realistic possibility I could understand why management would make the trade, but the postseason is not going to happen in Washington this year, so the deal would make zero sense.

The Wizards also have to extend point guard John Wall’s contract sometime soon as all that is left on his deal is a $7.5 million team option for next season. It would be ludicrous for Washington to not extend Wall as he is clearly the future of the team and someone the organization must build around. Since the Wizards only average 15,878 fans per game, one of the worst attendance records in all of basketball, there is definitely no money in the budget to extend Wall while also re-signing Smith, if that were even an option at the end of the season.

Smith is having a fantastic season as usual as he is averaging 17.4 points, 8.6 rebounds, 4.1 assists, 2.1 blocks and 1.2 steals per game while shooting 46.0 percent from the field and 35.4 percent from beyond the arc. The eight-year veteran would clearly be a great addition to the team, and would make them a lot better in the future if he stuck around. However, Smith is most likely going to seek a maximum contract and while some team will pay it, the Wizards are certainly not one of them.

Let’s just say after all of this, Washington still wants to test their luck and take a stab at Smith. The unfortunate part about it is that there are so many other teams in the running, such as the Milwaukee Bucks, that can offer much more for Smith then the Wizards can. If Atlanta is giving up one of their top players, they are going to make sure they get the proper compensation in return.

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