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Draft Day Trades #2 - Washington trade Kuzma for a rookie Point Guard


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Heat

Heat

+2 players ($23.5m),
Cap Impact - $355K

-4  Wins

-25.72  MPG

+2.22  Off.

-4.36  Def.

Wizards

Wizards

+3 players ($16.4m) +1 pick,
Cap Impact - $2.6M

+4  Wins

+25.72  MPG

-2.22  Off.

+4.36  Def.

The Wizards will go into the 2024 NBA Draft after their first season of full rebuild, after trading Bradley Beal to the Suns in the 2023 offseason and picking Bilal Coulibaly in the 2023 Draft. Besides Coulibaly, the only other young player that should be seen as a (potential) high-end starter is Avidja. In an ideal world, the Wizards would try to grab a high-usage guard to give the keys with their high pick. However, in this class, the likes of Topic and Dillingham don't seem to be regarded as worthy of a top 3 pick. With the 2nd pick in the upcoming draft, the Wizards will likely have their eyes on three potential prospects for them to select and add to the wing duo:

  1. Alex Sarr

  2. Zac Risacher

  3. Donovan Clingan

All of those prospects do have not enough self-creation to demand high usage in their first year, which will create a gap in usage on their starting lineup. When we look at the current draft class, some interesting guard prospects can fit well with the 3-man young core that the Wizards are projected to have and that can take advantage of the void on a high-level guard prospect for them to develop. A couple of young high-upside guard prospects are projected to be available in the 10s during the draft, and those names are:

  1. Jared McCain

  2. Isaiah Collier

  3. Bub Carrington

To accomplish that, the Wizards have Kyle Kuzma as a very interesting trade chip. Teams on the brink of the lottery and that want to make win-now moves might see Kuzma as a potential starting-level forward to improve their rotation and their chances of making the playoffs next season. With that in mind, a few teams that fit the criteria of needing a starting forward and having a pick in the middle of the first round are Sacramento, Miami, Philadelphia, and Cleveland. Here are some of the trade packages that might make sense to those teams:

  1. Harrison Barnes, Sasha Vezenkov, and 13th pick for Kuzma and 26th pick (trade with SAC)

  2. Caleb Martin, Duncan Robinson, Josh Richardson, and 15th pick for Kuzma and Kispert (trade with MIA)

  3. Paul Reed, 16th pick, and 2 future second-round picks for Kuzma (trade with PHI)

  4. Caris LeVert, salary fillers, and 20th pick for Kuzma (trade with CLE)

After trading to draft a very promising guard, the Wizards would have a 4 man young core that can make a lot of sense together: with a high-usage offensive guard (that they trade into the 10s for), 2 two-way wings (Deni and Bilal), plus the selection they make with their 2nd overall pick (Risacher, Sarr or Clingan).

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