Rockets Trade Westbrook To Wizards For Wall, First-Round Pick

8:04pm: The trade is now official, the Rockets announced in a press release.


6:58pm: The Rockets and Wizards have agreed to swap star point guards, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (Twitter link), who reports that John Wall is headed to Houston in exchange for Russell Westbrook.

The Rockets will also receive a first-round pick, per Woj. Shams Charania of The Athletic reports (via Twitter) that it’ll be Washington’s protected 2023 first-rounder and will be lottery-protected. Those protections will gradually decrease each year, and if it hasn’t changed hands by 2026, it’ll become two second-rounders, says Charania.

The deal involves two players on super-max extensions, notes Bobby Marks of ESPN (Twitter link). Westbrook will make $41.4MM and $44.2MM over the next two seasons with a player option in 2022/23 for $47.1MM. Wall is due $41.3MM and $44.3MM in the next two years, followed by a $47.4MM player option. His contract also includes a 15% trade bonus that will be voided because his salary is more than the league maximum for the upcoming season, Marks adds (Twitter link).

Both players issued trade requests to their respective teams in the past month. Westbrook’s was reported November 11 after he told Rockets officials he has been “uneasy about the team’s accountability and culture.” He expressed a desire to join an organization where he will once again be the lead playmaker, which presumably will happen in Washington.

Wall’s request came a little more than a week later, after news leaked that the Wizards had spoken to the Rockets about a possible swap for Westbrook. General manager Tommy Sheppard responded by saying the team had no plans to trade Wall.

Up until today, Sheppard and Rockets general manager Rafael Stone hadn’t discussed a potential Westbrook/Wall trade since October, sources tell Wojnarowski. However, the two GMs revisited the idea and had worked out a deal within hours, according to Woj.

In Washington, Westbrook will be reunited with Scott Brooks, who was his head coach with the Thunder from his rookie season until 2015. Brooks has always been a huge fan of Westbrook and they remain close friends, tweets Fred Katz of The Athletic. Westbrook is also close with Wizards assistant Robert Pack from their time together in OKC, according to Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated (Twitter link).

Westbrook, 32, spent one season in Houston after being traded there last summer. He averaged 27.2 points, 7.9 rebounds and 7.0 assists in 57 games, but his poor outside shooting was an issue for a team that places a heavy emphasis on the three-pointer. Westbrook shot just 25.8% from long range during the season and 24.2% in the playoffs.

In Houston, Wall will join forces with former college teammate DeMarcus Cousins, who officially signed with the Rockets on Tuesday. Wall was sidelined last season with an Achilles tear and hasn’t played at all since December of 2018. The 30-year-old was the top pick in the 2010 draft and has spent the past 10 seasons in Washington.

While the Rockets have now moved on from Westbrook, they don’t believe that James Harden – who also reportedly wants to be traded – will be moved before opening night, tweets Tim MacMahon of ESPN. According to MacMahon, Houston recognized that the market for Westbrook was limited, but would seek a “king’s ransom” in any Harden deal.

Meanwhile, in D.C., Bradley Beal has been the subject of frequent trade speculation for the last year or two, but the Wizards have insisted both publicly and privately that he won’t be dealt, and Beal hasn’t expressed any interest in a move. That stance seems unlikely to change before he gets a chance to assess his fit alongside Westbrook over the course of the ’20/21 season.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images. Luke Adams contributed to this story.

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167 thoughts on “Rockets Trade Westbrook To Wizards For Wall, First-Round Pick

  1. GoLandCrabs

    Fertitta “Chris Paul has the worst contract I have ever seen”. Goes on to trade CP3 for a worse contract in Westbrooks… Then trades Westbrook for an even worse contract in John Wall.

    • FreeTheFreeman

      This might actually be the bottom though, not sure there’s a worse one.

    • DrSeuss69

      lol should have kept CP3 but makes sense he didnt want to be there…Westbrick for a gamble on Wall returning to All star form is worth honestly

    • Sillivan

      Result
      Chris Paul for Wall
      Paul is better
      Playmaker
      Defender
      Shooter

      Why did Rockets offer 2 top 4 protected Firsts and 2 swaps for Wall?

    • CastielStrife

      Lol, you are so ridiculous. I’m going to start to post on every Cub article as they implode and take another 100+ years to win another title. :)

      • xxtremecubsguy89

        How am I ridiculous? This has nothing to do with you. It has to do with hwmvp’s ridiculous love for a franchise that hasn’t won in 26 years and his hate for Lebron and GS.

        • xxtremecubsguy89

          I’m a Cubs, Bears, and Bulls fan. Cubs won in ‘16. Bulls last was ‘98. I’m 32 and haven’t seen the Bears win. Sox won in 05 and honestly should’ve made the playoffs in 06. Hawks had a dynasty. Being a Chicago fan (minus the Sox) has been pretty fruitful in my lifetime. (Minus the Bears too). I give credit where credit is due. But when you have trolls say the same ignorant things every day about everyone but their team, it’s tiring. So I apologize if you’re a Rockets fan. I think both teams actually got better. But once again, my comment had nothing to do with 99.9% of Rockets fans.

          • goastros123

            I get where xxtremecubsguy89 is coming from. All fanbases have some ridiculous fans and some have more than others. Those ridiculous fans make the fanbase they’re apart of look rather silly at times. It what it is.

          • CastielStrife

            Okay, I understand. I just know that every article that could be considered negative for the Rockets I’ve seen you post. I didn’t know anything about your dealings with the hwmvp guy. I’ve seen him make some pretty crazy comments himself, but can we really blame someone for having blind loyalty to their team? Like I said though, I don’t know what all has went down between you two.

            Anyways, I agree that in theory it makes both teams better. The Rockets don’t really need another ball controlling player when they have Harden, they need a facilitator. The Wizards, however, could definitely use Westbrook in my opinion. Both players have to stay healthy and mesh with their teams, and Westbrook has a better chance staying healthy than Wall, but if they both do I agree that they both got better.

            I just turned 30 myself and I’ve only seen the one tainted championship, obviously being the Astros lol. So yeah, sucks. I was too young for the Rockets. I mean, the Dynamo have won if we want to count that lol, but we inherited that team. So yeah, as a fan I’m desperate for another championship I don’t care which of our teams does it even though baseball is my favorite sport. I was rooting hard for the Cubs in ‘16 because I thought it’d be pretty historical to see them win one in my lifetime.

            • goastros123

              I was born in 1992 so the Astros winning is the only time I ever got to see a Houston team win it all in real time. I own the 1994 finals on DVD, but it’s one thing to go back watch it years later and it’s another thing to watch it unfold as it was actually happening.

              • goastros123

                The Cubs winning was a cool moment. If my favorite isn’t gonna win, then I always cheer for the teams who have never won before or have a massive drought, such as a 25-30+ drought.

            • case7187

              Simple question why do you care what a person thinks or feels about something don’t you have better things to do instead of crying about it

    • Westbrook experiment failed. Houston was able to get a first-rounder back from everything they gave up so this is a nice come back by the Rockets.

      • The Howler

        To flesh this out Houston traded CP3 +4 1st Rd Picks for 1 season of Westbrook + Wall + 1 1st Rd Pick

        A net of 3 1st Rd picks for one season of Westbrook. Expensive experiment!

        • buttholesurfer69

          Facts – also why not wait a month and actually get to SEE Wall in action for a few weeks? In actual NBA games?

          Seems like a steal for Washington tbh

        • The greater matter is that they had two very useful players on max contracts, and now they have John Wall.

          Chances Wall turns down that player option? Zero. Likelihood the Wizards are having an epic party to only surrender a protected pick to get the Wall off their books? 47,100,000% yes they are.

  2. implant

    So the Rockets traded Paul, two first round picks and two kick swaps for Wall and a 1st. it’s amazing how quick Morey found another job

    • Count that baby and a foul!

      You can’t just omit a winning season and playoff birth with Westbrook on the team. That makes no sense. They traded for him got what tgey got and now moving to something else. Just as life goes.

      • Well, one thing is certain…it didn’t take long for Westbrook to want to get away from the Rockets.

    • Rewane

      Morey was the biggest Chris Paul backer and only traded him because of pressure from Harden and Fertitta.

    • pandamonious

      Actually more like they essentially traded Lou Williams, Montrezl Harrell, Patrick Beverly, 3 1st round picks, gave OKC the right to swap two picks with them for John Wall and a future 1st. Good stuff.

  3. OrienGreene

    That’s kind of bizarre for both teams really. I suppose if Wall is healthy the Rockets get better. Wizards? I don’t even know what they’re thinking.

      • hiflew

        Wall has had one major injury in his career. The rest have just basically been bumps and bruises over a 10 year career.

        • Wall has played over 75 games 4 times in his career. The last three seasons he played 41, 32 and 0 games, respectively.

          • You can sugarcoat it any way you want, but Wall has definitely been injury-prone, especially the past three seasons, but also earlier in his career.

        • buttholesurfer69

          True but didn’t he tear his achilles and his acl i thought?

          Either way he hasn’t play in two years, is totally dependent on speed, and just turned 30. For all his faults I think I’d still easily take RWB

          • hiflew

            Just the Achilles. He’s been a little banged up before, but no true lingering major injuries until the Achilles in 2018.

        • Little_Dunker_45

          Thanks for the update I think the bigger news is tatsumaki can read

      • Cling to Harden as MVP in the past…that’s his legacy, because there won’t be a championship.

        • Courtside

          Maybe not even that, that first could turn into 2 2nds. They just had the 9 pick, imagine if Russ has an injury and Beal is gone. Those protected picks could hold.

    • sportznut1000

      Walls contract was the worst in the nba. Houston didnt “fleece” anyone. What if john wall never fully recovers and ends up in derrick rose territory? Then washington is lucky they only gave up 1 first rounder

    • 2022/23 season, the Rockets will be paying 2 guys $95m.

      2 guys in their mid 30’s.

  4. DeathbyDeathwest

    Does Wall have to pass a physical? When did that guy even play last?

    Don’t know what this means for Beal’s future.

  5. Well the Westbrook experiment failed. Houston thought getting younger and trading the massive Chris Paul contract would help but it kind of backfired so at least this way they get a first-rounder back. I would grade it a pretty good recovery.

  6. Luckylefty2

    The whole rockets organization is so impatient & indecisive. Had they stayed patient and kept the same team they had from 17-19, they would have been contenders for the next couple years. The only reason why they made this trade was because they fot a 1st round pick.

  7. raz427

    I think I mentioned this deal a month ago and someone said why would you do this if you’re the Wizards, well now you know, it’s DC, soon will be called brick city.

    • Did you enjoy seeing him do his off court activities? I’m sure he won’t be too busy playing basketball to continue many of those activities again in the coming year.

  8. I'm a starboy not a Dr...

    Beal signed off on this? One year with Westbrick and he will want out of DC…bank on it!

  9. Ironmonger835

    Wonder how long Wall will last until Harden drives him out of town also. He’s like the new Allen Iverson.

    • takeitback

      I don’t think the Rockets will be able to move Wall’s contract though. Much more likely that Harden gets moved at this point.

      • Count that baby and a foul!

        I think this almost garauntees Harden will be traded now. Wall/Harden backcourt is worst that West/Harden.

    • hiflew

      Except they are not anywhere close to the same player. Just because they are paid the same doesn’t make them alike in any way. Russ is a scorer, Wall is a passer. Wall can score and Russ can pass, but they are not what they specialize in.

      • Explosive point guards that can’t shoot, finish strong and both need the ball in their hands all the time… I’d say their games are very close.

  10. illowa

    time to tryn tear up the east. hope russ can find some semblance of chemistry with the rest of the washington team.

  11. phillyballers

    Gotta hand it to the Rockets. They’ve been at the center of trades involving 3 of the most “immovable” contracts in the NBA. Trading CP3 for Westbrook, Trading Westbrook for John Wall.

    Was it a mistake trading Westbrook for Wall? No.

    The mistake was not trading Westbrook to the Hornets before the agreed to terms for Hayward. Batum + Zeller + a future 1st for Westbrook. Then turning around and dealing Batum + Zeller to the Wizards for John Wall’s trash contract and another 1st, recouping picks.

  12. hiflew

    Rockets with a steal here. Wall has always been a better PG than Westbrook. Westbrook is a better shooter, but Wall is a much better passer and floor general. If he can mesh well with Harden (or whoever they trade Harden for) the Rockets might not even need to rebuild for a couple of years.

    • A steal? Wall has a massive contract and significant recurring health issues. I’d say it’s more of an even swap, and won’t really improve either team overall.

      • hiflew

        Westbrook has a massive contract as well. In fact the contracts are virtually identical. What this does is give Washington a second scoring option which they needed and should make them at the very least a very tough first round matchup in the playoffs. Houston back to the more productive Harden pairing with a pass-first PG instead of a score-first PG. Basically Houston traded Chris Paul for a 6 year younger Chris Paul. As long as Wall’s health holds out, I believe Houston got the better end of a potential win-win trade.

        • hiflew

          Plus, as a UK fan I am freaking thrilled to see Wall and Boogie back together again, even if they are both past their career peaks it will be so much fun for me personally to see them play together again.

          • If both can stay healthy at all, it’s a tall order to ask it to happen for both at the same time. I would say enjoy any minutes they may be on the court together, because the odds are against them being plentiful.

            • hiflew

              Thank you for your needless negativity, I’ll file it away in the appropriate place. Have a nice day.

        • Yes, $47m in 2023. How ridiculous.

          Houston got a first-round pick. Big deal. This deal only works for them is if Wall retires due to injury.

    • whiplash

      Westbrook a better shooter? A better finisher at the basket but not a better shooter.

    • hiflew

      Meh. A Westbrook/Beal combo will get a decent seed in the East. That 1st rounder will likely be in the late teens. The 1st rounder is more than likely going to be by far the worst of the 3 players.

      • hiflew

        Even 3 years down the road, Washington should still be a playoff team. Either that or the protection likely won’t let the pick change hands anyway.

  13. Tatsumaki

    So they got 3 firsts for roco and westbrook? Nice. Little mini rebuild. Adding wood and cousins too? Rockets look better than last year easily.

  14. Jamespfunk

    Interested in seeing what kind of protection the wizards put on that 1st rounder they are sending.

  15. When teams swap 132 mm contracts, it’s not principally motivated by a protected 1st round pick. Both guys wanted out, and each team wasn’t enamored enough with their guy to argue about it. The 1st is just in recognition that Wall is coming off a serious injury and hasn’t played for a season and a half.

    This deal demonstrates that each player (under his current contract) had substantial negative value, with Wall’s negative value slightly exceeding RW’s.

  16. CastielStrife

    This isn’t the trade I wanted, namely because Wall can’t stay on the court. That being said, I am glad Westbrook is gone if only due to the fact that our chemistry would be way off this season with our two stars wanting out. I would have rather got out from under Westbrook’s contract and maybe taken a bloated expiring contract for just this next season, but I doubt a trade like that existed where both parties would agree. So I think this works out about as well as a Westbrook trade could at this point. Who knows what goes on with Harden behind closed doors, but I’m curious whether the moves the Rockets have made will convince him to stay or if he still wants out. If he still wants out, get him out of here. If not, let’s see if Harden and Wall can gel and if, most importantly, Wall can stay healthy for one season. It’ll be interesting nonetheless.

  17. Marty McRae

    That Rockets roster is now: Harden, Tucker and a whole bunch of maybes and probably nots. Can’t see them finishing higher than 6th, but could easily come last if Harden is gone.

  18. zakvikes

    This automatically makes the Wizards a 6th seed at worse in the East, probably better. Westbrook is no slouch and can carry a team. As long as Beal is ok with playing off ball this has the potential to work.

    • PhillyPhan69

      ???? Huh? Bucks, Heat, Celtics, 76ers, Nets, Raptors should all top the Wizards (although covid absences could hurt every team depending on luck) and the Hawks and Pacers too…I would say wizards battle with Magic/Pistons? For the 9-10 spots…but time will tell

      • buttholesurfer69

        IDK I’m interested to see RWB in the East.

        That said, I could see WAS being a feel good 4 seed w/ Beal and Russ in top form…..or down with the Cavs and my Knicks at the top of the Lotto

  19. frankm

    I dont get why Wiz payed lopez 8m
    Could have used that money better
    Whiteside signed for min
    Could have had a potential top 4 team in east if everyone healthy

  20. j_butte

    If Wall is 100% he’s a better fit in Houston but Russ is still the better player. If both guys stay healthy both teams will be better this year.

  21. qbert1996

    Somebody should really check on hardenwestbrookmvps… Although knowing him, he already deleted that account and changed it to hardenmvp-wallir

  22. stretch123

    Wall is the better fit next to Harden if he can get healthy. Wizards, not too sure what they’re doing. Westbrook will drive Beal insane with his playing style and I think it’s now inevitable that Beal ends up with either Miami, Boston, Denver or Dallas for the 2021-2022 season.

    • x%sure

      Beal has reputation for not liking Wall in charge, but Westbrook will be even harder to deal with and less predictable.

      RW should be a forward, not take over the offense with the HC a big fan. I doubt Leonsis knows what he’s in for. Beal will want out.

      This should put WAS into the playoffs but longrun, it’s nothing to build with.
      The Rockets are more of a mess than before. 2 PGs, and no, that was less of a problem with RW.

    • OrienGreene

      DC might be pretty good. Westbrook, Beal, Bertans, Rui, and Hamilton might fit together better than many think. Especially is Avidja is as advertised. I am not talking championship contender, but that team can win more than it loses.

      • PhillyPhan69

        I am not sure how much this elevates them, but they should at least be competitive and fun to watch

  23. Lakers1

    Hardenwestbrookmvp now researching new handle names.. would it be wallharden or just hardenmvp

  24. buttholesurfer69

    Grades:

    HOU: B-
    Sure it may be better than taking Randle and Wayne Ellington from the Knicks, but Wall being MIA for two years is concerning. If they end up dealing Harden this season this is an F.

    WAS: B+
    As barren as the RWB market was you have to believe the market for Wall was probably somehow more pitiful. Ultimately RWB is the better overall player if not the better fit next to Harden. Having said that if Beal is traded this year this is also an F.

  25. mcdusty49

    Where is my guy? Want to hear about how Houston won this deal and are now primed to unseat the much weaker Lakers team that got lucky with a soon to be declining LeBron

  26. For the wizards I don’t like this move. Because Russell Westbrook is not a good fit alongside Bradley Beal in the backcourt and also Westbrook is an high usage player that would be taking a lot of shots away from this team. For Houston I may not like move. However they needed to make trade in order to get rid of Westbrook contract by matching his salary in trading him for John Wall did just that. John Wall will be a much better fit the rockets than Westbrook even though Wall has heath issues and on the Brightside they also got a first pick. So far not that bad of trade for the rockets.

  27. Simmons>Russ

    Great deal individually for Russ, Wall and Cousins but bad deal for Harden and for Beal.

    Russ now gets to have more say and feel like he owns the team again, plus playing in the east he should along with Beal make that team a playoff team possibly.

    As for the Rockets they get worse but I like Wall and Cousins linking back up and both coming back from huge injuries that could be a good story and if both come back strong could be a good thing for Rockets. Also if they plan on trading Harden they have atleast got abit of something to build with again not just two stars wanting out.

    Could see this setting up another big move by either team. Harden may still want out and Wizards might try add a third star.

    What about James Harden and PJ Tucker for Paul George, Marcus Morris and Luke Kennard.

    Clippers backcourt of Beverly and Harden have played together, Harden and Kawhi as a duo would be crazy. Tucker and Ibaka at the 4 and 5 add some defence and spacing. Would make the battle of LA crazy.
    Houston would do alright too with Wall Gordon PG13 Morris Cousins and then some younger depth with Kennard and Wood.

    • The Human Rain Delay

      It would take a helluva lot more for HOu from the clips but I like the fit- Morris would not be in there as well –

      Hou would want something lasting outside of George , prolly Zubac-

      Harden Tucker for George Lou Zubac I think makes a lot more sense for Hou- They can then prolly re-flip Lou

      Still think Pelicans (if they wanted) , then Nets have the best packages but Ive thought the George angle as well

      • Simmons>Russ

        Yeah don’t think Clippers would have enough to offer really…
        but the i mean Wall Gordon PG Morris Cousin with Kennard and Wood that says win now and also an eye for the future. You’d be asking a lot of Wall amd Cousins to return back to health but potentially you’d have an elite ball handler and playmaker with a sniper shooter, a great two way player, a no nonsense PF that plays both ends and then a nice centre. Plus a good young bench. It would be a playoff team might make a first round series win but wouldn’t make it past a top top team.

        But more from the clippers perspective the idea of Harden and Kawhi sounds crazy good. The leagues best scorer with one of the leagues lock down defenders who can give you 20 easy. Would be a great offence and defence duo. Then the fact Hardens played with Beverly and his defence and shooting is a nice fit, Tucker with his shoes would suit LA perfectly and then Ibaka at the 5 just brings them all together. He can also shoot it and block shots. The rivalry with the Lakers would be so elite. Harden and Kawhi vs Bron and AD then the supporting crew Beverly Tucker Ibaka Jackson etc vs Schroder KCP Kuzma Harrell etc it would make for a legendary playoff series

  28. harden (mvp),wall, and wood

    100 comments. And they say the Rockets are no longer relevant.

    • Count that baby and a foul!

      OMG! No tou didn’t throw Wood in there. Lol!! You are putting waaaaay too nuch stock in a guy who was a waiver pick up 15th man atvthe start of lastvseason and had a hot 20 game streak longest of his career and I am a Wood and Piston’s fan. Think you should pump thebreaks on him a bit he will need timetoadjust to being a featire playernow.

      • Count that baby and a foul!

        Not to mention his defense is very bad and likely will not improve considerably. You will notice that quickly!

    • Lakers1

      Wanted to see what u changed your name too.. gotta incorporate booogie in the name

    • hiflew

      As one of the few guys on these boards that is not constantly picking on you, I am happy that we can now root for the same two guys (Wall and Boogie). I still don’t like Harden and likely never will, but I want Houston to succeed now.

      • qbert1996

        Nobody picks on him. If anything he brings it on himself with his outlandish takes involving the Rockets like this one.

        • hiflew

          He occasionally brings it on himself, but most of the time people attack him even when he makes the most innocent comments. Like this one. He’s not attacking anyone or anyone’s team. He just made a throw away meaningless comment and yet you jump on like he just threatened to blow up a bank or something. Lighten up, the guy is harmless.

          • Courtside

            He gets picked on because he never owns being wrong. He said all season that Harden and Westbrook would show everyone, when they didn’t he made excuses.

            It’s not hard to say, “hey I had a bad take, sorry for anyone I went off on”

          • mcdusty49

            He became innocent after he started getting it thrown back in his face…his blind hatred of the Lakers was so egregious it made a lot of people come after him

  29. KnickerbockerAl

    I wouldn’t mind Westbrook on my team. But wouldn’t give up more than 1 pick and expiring contracts. According to workouts players have said Wall looks good. He looks a little overweight, stronger. But looked good playing. I mean they don’t really play D in workouts. But you can see how he moves and stops. Wall is a better mix for Harden. But eventually he will want out. Harden is not a team guy. By TD Harden will be gone cause he’ll want out. Westbrook wanted out. Even though his numbers were good last yr. He wants no part of Houston. Wall played with Cousins at KU. Washington is a playoff team, I like Rui. So that pick won’t be high. Houston is taking a chance on Wall. Shows you how bad Westbrook wanted out. So ask yourself why every star who played with Harden wanted OUT.
    I been saying Westbrook was gone since before the Bubble.

  30. mike.honcho

    A win for both teams, since both players verbally wanted out.

    ROCKETS improved though. All signs indicate that the ROCKETS will abandon their previous small-ball gameplay – Wall will be the better PG for this return to a more traditional offense.

    ROCKETS getting (back) some picks this offseason is a win in itself.

    Russ gets to play for Scott Brooks again, who knows, WIZARDS might make some noise this season.

  31. hiflew

    Arthur Hill. You made a mistake in your copy. If the first rounder has not been awarded by 2026, the pick becomes two SECOND rounders, not two first rounders. Although that would be a pretty sweet exchange.

  32. The Human Rain Delay

    I like it for everyone –

    If wall can have a Paul 2020 season he can be flipped for another first next year if they enter re-build (trade Harden) Thats essentially getting 2 first for West and out of the contract free essentially by next year

    I think they give it a go first half then make a call on Harden at the half break – Hardens suitors will always be available- Hou’s been a pretty smart org the last qrter century, theres light at the end of this tunnel they just gotta get every ounce of value they can from whats left

  33. formerlyz

    how was this deal legal for Washington under the hardcap after they signed Robin Lopez? They used more than the taxpayer midlevel to sign him. Westbrook costs $103k more than Wall

    not sure how to evaluate it until we see John Wall, which means Washington is a little more known, and Houston is now a little unknown. I had them in the 9 spot (likely fighting for one of the bottom 3 spots in the playoffs) heading into training camp. Now, I’m not so sure, although I’m personally a big John Wall fan. I just dont know what his fit with Harden will be if he is still going to play the same way, especially with Wall coming off an injury like the achilles, and not having played in almost 2 years. I would assume it would be similar to what they’ve been doing, if he is close to healthy, and Harden plays the same way

    Washington has shooting around Westbrook, which should be interesting to see, although I’m not sure what their rotation will be to get their few better defenders on the floor. I could theoretically see them in a few different spots in the 7-12 range

    • Luke Adams

      A hard cap doesn’t mean a team isn’t allowed to add ANY more money. It just means they’re hard-capped at the tax apron amount ($138.928MM in 2020/21). Wizards still have plenty of wiggle room below that line.

      • formerlyz

        trade didnt work in one of the trade machines, so was just wondering. thanks. I think I misread their total team salary, and thought it was slightly over the hard cap apron, rather than the tax apron

  34. KnickerbockerAl

    Washington will make out better. Cause Westbrook is still on his gm. People talk about his injuries. But he’s never had a serious one. Never a major ligament or joint. He had a muscle and hand injuries. And then nagging injuries. That most players get. Wall had a major injury. Considering speed was his specialty. It has to affect his game. Not saying he can’t come back. Just speaking truth. He may have to adjust some. I find him more similar to Chris. So should be better mix with Harden. IMO no star can play with Harden. Cause it’s always about him. He don’t share the wealth unless he has no choice. That’s not a team game. It’s why he will never win. He is only concerned about his status. Harden will probably be traded by TD. I see Wizards making the playoffs.
    I still say best place and deal would have been Philly. For both teams. Surprised they didn’t try to get in on Westbrook trade.

    • PhillyPhan69

      Westbrook and Philly would be a horrible fit…not sure why you think that would be good?

      • KnickerbockerAl

        He can score on anyone. He’s a triple double machine. Plays both ways. He’s a bigger star than anyone on Sixers. Moving him for Harris. Gives them a true PG running team. He makes everyone better. Cause he takes pressure off of Ben and Embiid. He will get Embiid easier shots. And Ben is more dangerous on the wing. Nobody wants to win more than Westbrook. With Sixers he can spread that. He’s never won a ring. So he would very motivated with Sixers talent. He avg 27, 7 ast, 8 reb and people talk like he’s done. 9 time all star. 9 time all NBA team. He’s been in 106 playoff gms. He’s a 30% 3PT FG not great but not terrible. 33% is considered good. With Sixers his efficiency goes up. Cause of talent around him. He and Ben would would fast break teams easily. I just see a better OKC team. That he and KD took to Finals and playoffs all those yrs. Sixers and Westbrook can challenge for a ring thru his contract (3yrs). I just see a good mix there. Also moving Ben to wing is huge to me. Bron ran team from wing for yrs. I see a much better mix of talent. And Westbrook is very talented. Last yr on a down yr they say. He was responsible for 41-45 pts a gm. As a PG playing with a ball hog like Harden. Imagine what he does with stars who share the ball. He could have another triple double yr. Always been a fan. Even MJ has said he is closest to him.

  35. x%sure

    This trade is silly, like it was made in the spirit of,
    Why not, We tried everything else, This saves our FO egos, Better this than receiving players of less stature in a trade even though they could have better helped us.

    HOU now has 2 egotistical PGs who rarely leave the middle of the offense. Someone will have to step aside. I do like the Wall + Cousins angle but Harden won’t be the only one wanting out.

    WAS now has their precious guy, Beal, no longer setting the tone, although he has been playing with a PG. Also, they look more like a play-in team now. I had them there anyway but that did not seem to be a consensus.

  36. siggers84

    It’s a bad trade for both teams. Houston were would be better with a defensive guard with Harden again like Beverley was.

    Beal needed a facilitator like Chris Paul.

    And the main thing they should be doing is trying to get rid of these terrible contracts.

  37. brewpackbuckbadg

    Is that a typo near the top of the article? Does it become two firsts or two seconds?

      • brewpackbuckbadg

        Thanks. I am guessing everyone thought that was it but I suppose there could be some sort of penalty for having to wait that long. I am surprised GMs don’t add in pick swaps (with protections if that is possible) as an alternative either.

  38. julyn82001

    Some of these brat athletes and their big money contracts! Pretty real but unbelievable nonetheless…

  39. clubber_lang84

    let’s say Wall returns to 100% for discussion sake. Which is honestly better?

    Harden, Wall, and Wood
    Harden, Paul, and Capella

    I guess Eric Gordon and Boogie is a pretty solid bench but I don’t see it.

    • harden (mvp),wall, and wood

      Chris Paul and Capela will be missing more games than Wall and Wood do.

  40. hoosierhysteria

    Harden will be moved. Wall is OTH….and he could never shoot. Clippers should move Choker George. Harden for George and fill in the spare parts. Rockets new owner doesn’t know what he doesn’t know about basketball. He needs to stay in the kitchen.

  41. Appalachian_Outlaw

    I get the attempts to immediately grade this trade. However, I don’t think anyone really can until we all see what Wall is now.

    For the record, I like Wall and think he’ll play well off the injury. If he does, Houston wins because they got him and a pick. He’s not an ideal fit alongside Harden but it’s probably at least workable.

    I don’t like Westbrook’s game at all, also for the record. That said, if Wall shows to be finished, the Wizards win the trade because they at least get something for their money.

  42. bknowledge

    Salaries work for a swap with the Nets: Harden and Tucker for LaVert, Dinwiddie, Jaret Allen, and Taurean Prince. If the Nets can throw in a few first rounders. In other circumstances, Houston could get a lot more for Harden but it’s not a terrible haul…LaVert has some star potential.

    • harden (mvp),wall, and wood

      A few, like 4 or 5 first rounders? Whatever the most allowable is?

    • formerlyz

      Been saying for a couple of months that Houston should try to trade Harden to someone dumb like the Knicks, but that doesnt seem likely…If they do move him to the Nets

      Caris Levert, Spencer Dinwiddie, Deandre Jordan, Bruce Brown, Rodion Kurucs, Nets 2022 1st round pick, 2021 Phoenix 2nd round pick, 2021 Atlanta 2nd round pick, 2024 Nets 2nd round pick

      just for Harden

      makes sense…Harden and Kyrie on the same team….ROFLMAO

  43. harden (mvp),wall, and wood

    Great job, 161 comments. Everyone loves reading great news about the Rockets!!

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