Small forward Trevor Ariza will get paid a lot of money next season to be a difference maker for the Washington Wizards. In fact, the 28-year-old picked up his $7.7 million team option because he believes the Wizards are headed in the right direction. In order to help the Wizards win he plans to be the ultimate team player and do whatever is asked of him from the coaching staff.
“I’m going to compete. That’s what you’re going to get from me — competition,” Ariza said, according to the Washington Post. “I’ve done throughout my whole career. Just go out there and play. Not any particular position, just whatever the coaches ask of me, I try to do.”
Many thought Ariza would test out free agency this summer. However, he decided against it due to several factors.
“This is a business,” Ariza told the Washington Post. “And with the way the free agents thing went this year, I don’t think it was a good year to be a free agent. But you know what, I’m just here to play basketball, ready to go, just work on my game and try to help the team win.”
Ariza saw his production drop off a bit from previous seasons, but that is expected when his playing time is down. The nine-year veteran averaged 9.5 points, 4.8 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 1.3 steals and 26.3 minutes per game in mostly a backup role.
The thing is Ariza does not care if he starts or comes off the bench. As long as he is helping the team win games, he will be happy.