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News » Washington Wizards Getting Inside 2009-06-30


Washington Wizards Getting Inside 2009-06-30


Washington Wizards Getting Inside 2009-06-30
Despite sporting the worst record in the Eastern Conference, the Wizards did not go into the draft thinking they needed to rebuild.

Because players like Gilbert Arenas and Brendan Haywood lost virtually their entire seasons to injuries, the front office believes that the team will more closely resemble the one that made four consecutive playoff runs when training camp resumes rather than the atrocity that masqueraded as a professional basketball team in the 2008-09 season, so the plan was to retool rather than rebuild.

With that mindset, the Wizards dealt their way out of the first round, trading the fifth overall pick to Minnesota and getting in return veteran forward Mike Miller and combo guard Randy Foye.

"We're excited about what we did," president of basketball operations Ernie Grunfeld said. "We want to get back to where we were, get back to the playoffs, and when we get there we want to make some noise and bring some excitement to the city. I think these two players are going to help us reach our goal."

Both players have one year remaining on their contracts, so the Wizards are hoping that they'll come in and play at the top of their games, thus producing a double benefit for the team and the players, who will be looking for bigger contracts this time next season.

Both players were brought in to be a part of the rotation from Day One. Miller has proven to be a lethal shooter who should help spread the floor for his teammates in a role off the bench. Foye is a good defender whom the Wizards envision playing both guard positions alongside Gilbert Arenas, whom he will likely start alongside if Arenas is healthy.

The cost was minimal for the Wizards. They were finally able to move the contract of unproductive center Etan Thomas, Darius Songaila, who never lived up to his $23 million contract, and Oleksiy Pecherov, a one-time first-round pick who has given no indication that he even belongs in the league since the Wizards made him the No. 18 pick in the 2006 draft.

The Wizards traded the draft rights to Jermaine Taylor to Houston at the 32nd pick.


Author: Fox Sports
Author's Website: http://www.foxsports.com
Added: June 30, 2009

 

 
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