Eastern Notes: Bertans, Free Agency, Parker

As we reported earlier this week, it may be difficult for the rival teams to pry Davis Bertans from Washington, as the Wizards are strongly considering keeping the big man through the season and re-signing him this summer.

GM Tommy Sheppard believed that Bertans was “one of the top 3-point shooters in the league last season” when he dealt for the big man this past offseason, Jackson Filyo of NBA.com relays. The team thought that Bertans was someone who would add depth to the frontcourt with his “shooting ability, basketball IQ and work ethic.

It’s turned out to be one of better under-the-radar moves as Bertans has been pacing the NBA in threes. Over his past six games, the Latvian Laser has 36 triples, which tops the league over that stretch. Washington doesn’t play again until Saturday. Perhaps time away is the only thing that can cool Bertans off.

Here’s more from the Eastern Conference:

  • One executive tells David Aldridge of The Athletic that the Wizards‘ game plan has increased Bertans’ stock as a trade chip and a 2020 free agent. “The way Washington is using him will certainly increase his value,” a longtime NBA front office executive, currently unaffiliated, said via text. “The [3-pointer] in today’s game is a huge commodity now. I think he is a mix between [Kyle Korver and [Ryan Anderson].”
  • One former front office executive (in that same piece) tells Aldridge that Bertans could make a substantial raise on his current $7MM salary in free agency this summer. “He will get between $15M and $20M (per year) this summer.” the former executive said. “Most likely for a two-year deal. Don’t see him getting a four-year deal.” It’s worth noting that one current GM thought that valuation was high, given how few teams will have cap space this summer.
  • Hawks forward Jabari Parker has no hard feelings toward the Bulls despite his tenure in Chicago not working out as planned. “I just had to move on, but that never changed about how I feel about my city because I have more street cred than that organization period,” Parker said this week, per Eric Woodyard of ESPN.com (Twitter link).
  • Ira Winderman of the Sun-Sentinel wonders if Bam Adebayo is the second star the Heat have been looking for. The center is having his most efficient season as a professional and is a top contender for the Most Improved Player award.
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