Just days before the start of the 2013 NBA season, the Washington Wizards and Phoenix Suns have made headlines due to a pretty big-time trade. According to ESPN, who first reported the deal, the Suns are set to send center Marcin Gortat to the Wizards for Emeka Okafor and a 2014 first-round draft pick.
Suns sending Gortat, lee, Brown and Marshall to Wiz for Okakor and 2014 1st round pick, source tells Y!
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) October 25, 2013
As Yahoo! Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski tweeted above, the Wizards will also get swingmen Malcom Lee and Shannon Brown along with point guard Kendall Marshall, the 13th overall pick in last year’s draft.
With getting rid of Okafor for Gortat, the Wizards finally have a legitimate center to go along with a team chock full of rising stars at the 1-3 positions. Last season in just short of 31 minutes per game, Gortat averaged 11.1 points and 8.5 rebounds per game to go along with 1.6 blocks.
Gortat is a complete center and should flourish on a team with a point guard like John Wall at the helm. Wall’s game demands a lot of attention, thus opening things up for his teammates. Oh, and a couple of those teammates just happen to be two fellows by the names of Bradley Beal and Otto Porter Jr — two very young and exciting players we can’t wait to watch this year.
With such a young and exciting lineup at the first three positions, Gortat will absolutely be an asset in the post. He’ll most certainly be able to up his averages from last year simply because of so much defensive attention on guys like Wall and Beal, specifically.
While Wall continues to improve and seeks to put himself in the upper echelon of point guards around the league, this team is automatically going to contend for one of those last couple of playoff spots this season. Now, with Gortat rounding out a starting five featuring some young, up-and-coming guys, the Wizards should be a lock for at least an eighth seed in a weaker bottom half of the Eastern Conference.
He may not be the most glamorous center in the league, but Gortat is consistent — and that is exactly what this team needs down low. The 6-foot-11, 240 pound big man will be a force for the Wizards this year, and may be exactly what this team needed. Look out for Washington, folks. They just got a lot better.