In arguably the biggest trade deadline move for a player not named James Harden or Ben Simmons, Kristaps Porzingis was traded from the Dallas Mavericks… to the Washington Wizards? There had been talk about Porzingis being traded at the beginning of the season, but not to the Wizards. That truly came out of left field, so let’s break down the trade, and grade each team.
The official trade goes as follows: Porzingis and a second-round pick will head to Washington in exchange for Spencer Dinwiddie and Davis Bertans. I think Dinwiddie could be a solid contributor for the Mavericks. He’s a solid point guard who can create for himself and his teammates. He hasn’t been the same since coming back from a torn ACL, but situation also played a factor into his production. Dinwiddie just didn’t fit well in Washington, and there wasn’t the best chemistry between him and other teammates, such as Montrezl Harrell and Bradley Beal. While it was clear Beal and Russell Westbrook didn’t work out, most thought that Dinwiddie and Beal would be a much better pairing. However, Dinwiddie went from a 20 points per game scorer to a guard who played heavily off-ball. It’ll be interesting to see how he plays with Luka Doncic, who’s even more ball-dominant then Beal. This will either work really well or backfire horribly for the Mavericks.
As for Davis Bertans, the Mavericks have absolutely no idea what they’re doing. I’ve listened to multiple different analysts on TV and all over the internet, with many proclaiming that Bertans will be a huge help to the Mavericks, with his spacing and three-point shooting. They know his stats haven’t looked the greatest, but they attribute this to a lack of playing time and consistency.
Are you kidding me?
Bertans is washed. I doubt these analysts have watched over 60 Wizards’ games in a season, like I usually do. From seeing enough of Wizards basketball, I can tell you with 100% confidence that this isn’t just about consistency. While there are nights Bertans will rarely get on the floor, there are other nights where he will play near 30 minutes or sometimes more; and he still goes something horrendous like 2 of 12 from three. Half the time Bertans is wide open, and he still misses those shots. In addition, another horrible thing about Bertans is that other than shooting and spacing, he does nothing for a team. He’s weak compared to other 6’10” players in the league, has absolutely no post game, can’t dribble, pass, and most importantly, play defense. Do you know how difficult it is to watch Bertans get blown by again and again? There’s a reason Bradley Beal said last year this team couldn’t guard a parked car. A large part of that was because of Bertans.
Get rid of his shooting and spacing as he becomes less and less of a threat from the outside, and there’s no reason Bertans belongs on an NBA basketball court. Unless the Mavericks have watched countless Wizards’ games and know what they’re doing, they’ve made a huge mistake. All of the reasons I pointed to above make Bertans’ 5-year, $80 million contract one of the worst in the entire NBA.
I’m not sure if the Wizards won or lost this trade either. I know I just got through ripping the Mavericks for picking up Bertans, but I’m a little bit mixed about Kristaps Porzingis. I’m excited because I know he’s been an All-Star and can play at a very high level; but he’s also injury prone. Being 7’3″ isn’t easy, especially when you’re on the court with some of the world’s best athletes night after night.
Porzingis has a large contract that due to his past history he probably doesn’t deserve, but nonetheless, his time in Washington will boil down to a few things: chemistry with his teammates and his health. The Wizards have locker room issues, as detailed by Bertans after he left the team, and Porzingis is another forward/center coming in alongside Kyle Kuzma, Rui Hachimura, Deni Avdija, Thomas Bryant, and Daniel Gafford. This is one of the problems with having too much depth; not everyone gets enough playing time.
What do you think of the KP trade? Let me know in the comments below, don’t forget to follow the NBA Blog, and as always, have an awesome day!