Today, I am here to analyze the potential fit of the Wizards’ role players to see if it is worth calling Washington up to make a deal.
While Beal and Porter Jr. would be nice upgrades to the Rockets roster, it appears less likely than the Rockets making a smaller trade for depth pieces. With the Rockets thin on the bench, a few players could make some sense.
Rivers joined the Wizards this offseason in a trade that sent Marcin Gortat to Los Angeles and has not been the player the Wiz have been hoping for. Rivers is averaging just 6.6 points per game compared to the 15.1 PPG he averaged in his final year with the Clippers.
The one huge positive Rivers brings is that he has familiarity with Chris Paul. He played parts of three seasons with CP3 in LA and often would be paired with him in the backcourt. He’s also a career 35 percent three-point shooter, but has been cold to start the year, shooting just 31 percent.
Rivers also costs the team a little north of $12 million this season as he approaches unrestricted free agency this offseason. The cost is high, and just for a rental, Rivers might not be worth the price.
Morris has spent his entire career as a power forward, but at 6’10”, Morris would fit in as the team’s backup center. He would be an upgrade to Nene, who has been hurt to start the year and could possibly go to Washington in any potential trade. He would also be an upgrade to the team’s current backup center, Isaiah Hartenstein, who has shown promise but has not provided enough trust to play in a potential playoff rotation.
As a Rocket, Morris would provide size and strength off the bench. He’s also an above-average defender who can guard three through five. He’s a traditional power forward that has yet to play in a non-traditional system like the Rockets, so it’s uncertain if he would flourish in Mike D’Antoni’s system.
He can shoot the three, but he’s better inside and could help in PnR situations with CP3 or Harden. It’s tough to tell whether this experiment would work and whether the Rockets would want to take the risk with Morris or not.
Morris is making just $8.6 million this season and is off the books next year, so this would be a six-month rental if the Rockets acquired him today.
Kelly Oubre Jr.
Oubre Jr. is the most interesting of the Wizards’ bench players and he might also hold the highest price.
The Houston native is averaging a career-high 12.1 points per game in his age-23 season and can help the Rockets immediately on the defensive wing.
His 3-point percentage is down this season at an abysmal 28.9 percent, but last year he was taking more threes and shot 34.1 percent, so the potential for being the Rockets’ 3-and-D guy is there.
Oubre Jr. could start on about half of the teams in the NBA, but the Rockets are not likely one of them. He’d start for the Wizards, but Otto Porter Jr. has blocked his path to the starting lineup after being drafted two years before him and signing a mega contract two offseasons ago.
His restricted free agency and Porter’s placement in the team likely spells the end of Oubre’s time in the nation’s capital, so the Wiz might want to move him so that they can get at least some form of compensation for him.
There’s a decent chance Oubre wears a new uniform for 2019-20 and that the best of his career is still in front of him. The Rockets make some sense as a potential destination, and then Daryl Morey will get to decide if he’s worth keeping after this year.
Often the most overlooked Wizards bench player, Satoransky might actually be the one player on this list that makes the most sense for the Rockets.
The Czech guard has played sparingly for Washington this season, averaging a mere 13 minutes per game. But last year, Satoransky played a decent amount, starting 30 games with John Wall injured. He averaged seven points and four assists per game last season.
I believe the Wizards are completely misusing Satoransky. Although he has point guard tendencies in him, he has potential as a player on the wing, but is often roadblocked by Bradley Beal and Otto Porter Jr.
Last year, he did not qualify for 3-point percentage because he did not take enough shots from downtown. However, when he shot the ball, it would go in at a very good rate: 46.5 percent.
Yes, Satoransky shot 46.5 percent from three last year. This year, he’s shooting north of 40 percent. Yes, it’s a small sample size but with the Rockets, the team could incorporate him in a way that he is showcasing one of his biggest strengths: his outside shot.
He’s also the cheapest among any of the players listed in this article in terms of money and trade value. A Nene-Satoransky or Chriss-Satoransky swap would suffice. No picks needed, just a one-for-one swap.
Satoransky would give the team one more scoring option off the bench, which is something the team could use. He’s also 6’7” which could put him on the floor at 1-4.
Overall, Satoransky probably makes the most sense for the Rockets and could work in a 1-for-1 swap. Any players above would likely need to include a player and a pick in a larger deal. There are several combinations of these four players that would work with the trade chips the Rockets have. However, if the team were to include Rivers or Oubre Jr. in a deal, a pick would likely have to go back to Washington, and there are probably better deals that are worth dealing a first-round pick for.