Wizards Waive John Butler Jr.

DECEMBER 8: Butler has officially been waived, the Wizards confirmed today. As we outlined in a separate story, Jules Bernard has filled the two-way opening created by Butler’s release.

DECEMBER 7: The Wizards are waiving forward/center John Butler Jr., a league source tells Josh Robbins of The Athletic (Twitter link). Butler is on a two-way deal with Washington.

According to Robbins, if Butler clears waivers, the plan is for him to sign a NBA G League contract with the Wizards’ affiliate, the Capital City Go-Go. He would remain an unrestricted free agent if that comes to fruition, as NBA deals take precedence over G League contracts.

Butler went undrafted last year after one college season at Florida State. He signed a two-way deal with New Orleans, but was waived after 10 days, and caught on with Portland shortly thereafter. He spent all of 2022/23 — his rookie season — on a two-way contract with the Trail Blazers, appearing in 19 games while averaging 2.4 points in 11.6 minutes per contest.

The 21-year-old re-signed with Portland on a two-way deal in July, but was waived on October 20, just before the ’23/24 season began. He caught on with Washington a few days later, but didn’t appear in any NBA games for the Wizards this fall.

Butler has appeared in nine Showcase Cup games with the Go-Go this season, averaging 7.2 points, 3.8 rebounds and 2.0 blocks in 22.7 minutes.

The Wizards have 15 players on standard contracts, but they’ll have a two-way opening once the move is official.

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