Tomas Satoransky

Wizards Exploring Extension For Tomas Satoransky

The Wizards are making a push to sign Tomas Satoransky to a contract extension before he reaches restricted free agency in July, according to Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington, who hears from sources that the two sides have engaged in preliminary talks.

The interest in a new deal appears to be mutual, as Hughes reports that Satoransky is open to remaining with the Wizards long-term. Although the 27-year-old is in just his third NBA season and is still on his first contract, he technically signed a “veteran” contract as a former second-round pick rather than the rookie contract signed by first-rounders. That means he’s eligible to sign an in-season extension.

[RELATED: Players eligible for veteran contract extensions in 2018/19]

Satoransky, the 32nd overall pick in the 2012 draft, has developed into a reliable contributor for the Wizards over the course of 171 regular season games. Although he has primarily served as a backup point guard, Satoransky has taken on a starting role in each of the last two seasons due to John Wall‘s health issues.

Overall this season, Satoransky has averaged 7.0 PPG, 3.1 APG, and 2.4 RPG with a .495/.397/.813 shooting line in 41 games (21.6 MPG). Those numbers have increased to 10.1 PPG, 4.3 APG, and 3.4 RPG on .509/.429/.714 shooting in his 15 starts.

A player who signs a veteran contract extension is permitted to earn a starting salary worth up to 120% of the player’s previous salary of 120% of the NBA’s estimated average salary, whichever is greater. Since Satoransky is making just $3.13MM this season, he could get a starting salary worth up to approximately $10.6MM (120% of the estimated average salary) if he’s extended. Such a deal would max out at about $47.5MM over four years.

Spencer Dinwiddie signed a version of that extension last month, though Dinwiddie’s new contract is for just three years (and $34.4MM), rather than four. Of course, the Wizards – who already have $111MM+ on their books for 2019/20 – are under no obligation to offer Satoransky a full $10.6MM starting salary in an extension, so the actual terms would be a matter of negotiation. If the two sides can’t find common ground, Washington will need to issue a qualifying offer to Satoransky this summer to make him a restricted free agent.

Wizards Notes: Beal, Wall, Satoransky

The Wizards have shown no inclination yet that they have any interest in moving star guard Bradley Beal, but a pair of reports have given a clue of what the team’s asking price would be if Beal becomes available.

Rod Beard of The Detroit News tweeted on Wednesday that he has heard the Wizards would seek something like two first-round picks, a “young asset,” and another player in exchange for Beal. Sean Deveney of Sporting News reported something similar today, citing sources who say that Washington would want “two players and two draft picks” for Beal.

Building a deal for Beal might be tricky, since both the players and picks would have to be pretty valuable for the Wizards to consider moving their leading scorer — plus, a potential trade partner would almost certainly have to match Beal’s $25.4MM salary without including any unwanted multiyear contracts. We’ll have to wait to see if any club makes a viable offer to the Wizards in advance of next month’s trade deadline.

Here’s more out of D.C.:

  • In a column for The Athletic, David Aldridge compares the current Wizards to the 2015 Raptors, who were unceremoniously swept out of the first round by Washington. Despite calls to break up their roster, those Raps worked on surrounding Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan with more talent, and built a perennial 50-win contender. Given their salary commitments, the Wizards may have a hard time taking the same approach with Beal and John Wall, but Aldridge believes it’s possible.
  • Within that same article, Aldridge argues that the Wizards should make an effort to keep Wall’s minutes in check next season – and beyond – as they try to keep him healthy. That’s why re-signing RFA-to-be Tomas Satoransky is “a must, not a choice” in the offseason, per Aldridge.
  • As they did last season, the Wizards figure to make a concerted effort to move the ball around as much as possible on offense with Wall sidelined, writes Ben Standig of NBC Sports Washington. Standig points to Wednesday’s win over Atlanta, in which the Wizards racked up 29 assists on 43 field goals, as a prime example of that approach. “We’re definitely going to miss [John] and hate that he’s out. Definitely not saying that we’re a better team without him. That’s far from the truth,” Beal said after Wednesday’s win. “But reality is reality. We have to accept the fact that [John] won’t be with us this year and do our best to make a run at it.”
  • With Markieff Morris set to be sidelined until at least mid-February, the Wizards will have to make some tough roster decisions before the February 7 trade deadline, as Standig details in a separate NBC Sports Washington story.

Southeast Notes: Satoransky, Toliver, Magic, Bacon

Wizards restricted free agent Tomas Satoransky has been thrust into the spotlight with John Wall opting for season-ending heel surgery, Chase Hughes on NBC Sports Washington notes. Satoransky takes over the starting point guard spot with Wall sidelined, with Chasson Randle, Ron Baker and Troy Brown Jr. in reserve. Coach Scott Brooks believes Satoransky can handle the pressure. “He’s ready for this,” Brooks said. “Tomas is going to get a great opportunity. He’s going to be more comfortable as the games go by.” Washington will need to make Satoransky a qualifying offer of $3.9MM to prevent him from becoming an unrestricted free agent.

We have more from the Southeast Division:

  • Wizards assistant coach Kristi Toliver is being paid like an intern due to NBA rules, Howard Megdal of the New York Times reports. Since Toliver plays with the Mystics, who are also owned by Wizards owner Ted Leonsis, the league determined that Toliver’s compensation must come out of the $50K allocated to each team to pay WNBA players for off-season work. Much of that had already been promised to Mystics and WNBA star Elena Delle Donne, so Toliver is only making $10K.
  • The Magic will aggressively pursue a point guard in free agency, Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders tweets. Orlando has been using journeyman D.J. Augustin as its starter this season with Jerian Grant as the primary backup.
  • The Hornets will likely bring back Dwayne Bacon with Jeremy Lamb injured, Rick Bonnell of the Charlotte Observer tweets. Lamb suffered a right hamstring strain on Monday. Bacon was assigned the team’s G League affiliate, the Greensboro Swarm, on Sunday. Bacon, a second-year swingman, has appeared in 17 games with the Hornets, averaging 5.5 PPG in 12.4 MPG.

Wizards Notes: Wall, Beal, Morris, Satoransky

The Wizards have three options now that John Wall has decided to undergo heel surgery that will sideline him for the rest of the season, writes Fred Katz of The Athletic. The most drastic choice, a complete renovation that would include trading All-Star guard Bradley Beal, appears to be the least likely, according to Katz. He states that teams have already called about Beal, but the Wizards haven’t shown any interest in moving him. Otto Porter could be the biggest name the front office is willing to part with.

If Washington opts to tank this season, Katz says the team already has an example from what the Grizzlies did last year. Memphis got rid of some of its marginal talent, endured a losing season and wound up with the fourth pick in the draft. The Wizards are only about $5MM above the tax line and may want to add draft choices after trading away selections in the Jodie Meeks and Jason Smith deals. The Lakers may still be interested in Trevor Ariza, who has a $15MM expiring contract, and Markieff Morris‘ expiring $8.6MM deal could also be in play. Jeff Green, who is playing for the veterans minimum, could easily be moved into a trade exception.

The most likely direction, Katz adds, is to keep the current group of players together and see if they can make a run at the playoffs. Washington is 4.8 points per 100 possessions worse with Wall on the court this year and 11.4 points per 100 possessions worse over the past 25 games, so his absence may not be that difficult to overcome.

There’s more Wizards news to pass along:

  • Washington played well enough without Wall late last season to earn a playoff spot, but Ben Golliver of The Washington Post argues that tanking is the best long-term strategy. His advice is to reduce the workload for Beal, who is averaging 36.6 minutes per game, and unload as many veterans as possible.
  • Morris will see a specialist for a lingering neck injury, according to Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington. Morris has been experiencing pain in his neck and upper back since being hit with an elbow in a December 16 game. Although he sat out two games this weekend, Morris remains optimistic about his prognosis. “It’s something where I think if it required surgery, they would have told me already,” he said. “I don’t think it’s that deep. I hope it’s not that deep.”
  • Wall’s absence will create more playing time for third-year guard Tomas Satoransky, who had 20 points in last night’s win over Charlotte. “Tomas is going to get a great opportunity,” coach Scott Brooks said in a tweet from the team. “He’s going to be more comfortable as the games go by. I think Tomas is going to excel in this. He’s ready for this. He had some moments last season that he saved our season.”

John Wall Leaning Towards Season-Ending Surgery

DECEMBER 29, 2:35pm: Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN is now reporting that Wall is planning to undergo the season-ending surgery on his left heel, with doctors having recommended that he undergo the procedure soon.

DECEMBER 29, 2:27pm: Per Candace Buckner of The Washington Post, Wall is contemplating surgery on his injured left heel that would keep him out for six to eight months. Shams Charania of The Athletic adds that Wall has tried to battle through the pain, but it has become more significant, so he’s leaning toward having the surgery.

DECEMBER 28, 9:56pm: Wizards point guard John Wall will visit a specialist to examine bone spurs in his left heel, according to an Associated Press report.

Wall missed the Wizards’ 101-92 loss to Chicago on Friday. Dr. Robert Anderson, currently an associate team physician for the Green Bay Packers, will perform the examination, David Aldridge of The Athletic tweets. Anderson has performed operations on Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant, Cam Newton and Derek Jeter, Aldridge notes.

An extended Wall absence would likely extinguish any remaining playoff hopes for one of the league’s most disappointing teams. The long-term implications could be even more severe, since Wall’s four-year, $170MM super max extension kicks in next season.

Wall only played 41 regular-season games last season due to a knee injury. The heel injury has nagged Wall for several seasons, according to Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington. Coach Scott Brooks said the heel has gotten worse recently. Wall played the first game after Christmas in Detroit and scored 21 points but was limited for four points after halftime.

“He has good days and bad days like a lot of guys through,” Brooks said. “He has been able to manage it. … It has been bothering him, so it’s time to see a specialist.”

Washington can only hope that Wall’s heel issues won’t linger. He will make a projected $38.1MM in the first year of his extension, nearly double his current salary. Based on current cap estimates, his salaries will escalate to $41.2MM and $44.25MM for the next two seasons, completed by a $47.3MM player option for the 2022/23 season.

In his absence, Tomas Satoransky steps in at point guard. Washington traded away a rotation guard, Austin Rivers, in the Trevor Ariza deal with Phoenix.

Southeast Notes: Kidd-Gilchrist, Hornets, Satoransky, Waiters

Hornets forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist will likely exercise his $13MM player option this summer rather than testing the free agent market, Rick Bonnell of the Charlotte Observer opines in his latest mailbag. Kidd-Gilchrist has been moved to a reserve role this season and has an injury history, Bonnell notes. He’s also well-liked in the organization, Bonnell adds. Marvin Williams ($15MM) and Bismack Biyombo ($17MM) also have player options this summer.

We have more from the Southeast Division:

  • The Hornets have an open roster spot but Bonnell says there’s no rush to fill it. GM Mitch Kupchak likes the flexibility of having 14 players on the regular roster and it hasn’t been an issue from an injury standpoint through the first 30 games, Bonnell continues.  The opportunity to make a two-for-one deal means they probably won’t fill that spot with a free agent in the coming weeks, Bonnell adds.
  • The trade with the Suns for forward Trevor Ariza forced Tomas Satoransky out of the lineup but he now has a more defined role with the Wizards, Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington points out. Satoransky has become the team’s primary backup guard, guaranteeing him steady minutes. Satoransky played 48 minutes in a triple-overtime thriller against Phoenix on Saturday and 20 minutes in a loss to Indiana on Sunday. The Wizards traded Kelly Oubre and Austin Rivers for Ariza. “I think definitely it changes the dynamic of the game,” Satoransky told Hughes. “Those two were our first scorers off the bench, so now we have to adjust. Obviously, there is some bigger responsibility that I will have.”
  • Heat guard Dion Waiters has returned to practice but his surgically-repaired left ankle still causes him discomfort, Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun Sentinel reports. Waiters, who is signed through the 2020/21 campaign, hasn’t played this season but says he’s ready for action, though the ankle still feels “funny” at times. “Probably a couple of weeks, probably a couple of months,” he said of when he’d be 100%. “It’s how your body adjusts to it. As long as I continue to get treatment every day, take care of my body, and make sure I’m doing the little things, I feel like it’d be OK.”

Wizards Notes: Wall, Satoransky, Morris

The Wizards overcame a 24-point deficit against the Clippers on Tuesday night to avoid entering Thanksgiving on a low note. Despite the impressive comeback win though, Washington is still just 6-11, and the fact that the club fell into a 24-point hole to begin with is a reason for concern, as Bradley Beal said after the game, per Tim Bontemps of ESPN.com.

“That’s why everything is not fixed,” Beal said. “At the end of the day we can’t be naive and say we won after being down 20. We were getting our asses kicked. We have to take a step back and realize we still have a lot of things to fix. We won tonight, but we have to keep it going and know that if we get down to Toronto [on Friday night], the same result might not happen.”

It’s been an eventful week for the Wizards, who had a contentious practice last Thursday and will reportedly listen to trade inquires on just about anyone. We relayed several more Wizards updates on Tuesday, writing that the Hornets have inquired on Beal, John Wall wants to finish his career in D.C., and the Wizards are trying to move on from various distractions.

We’ve got more news out of Washington to pass along today, so let’s dive in…

  • Within Bontemps’ article (linked above), he notes that several executives told him on Tuesday that finding a trade partner for Wall would be “difficult at best.” One exec was more blunt: “If they can get anything for Wall and don’t do it, they are idiots.”
  • With Wall’s value being questioned, head coach Scott Brooks vehemently defended his star point guard after Tuesday’s game, per Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington. “John, he’s been taking hits. Let’s face it,” Brooks said. “You hear all the reports that he’s heavy. The guy has 7% body fat… He’s in great shape. I like the way he plays. He plays hard.”
  • Brooks intends to find more minutes for backup guard Tomas Satoransky, who played a key role in the Wizards’ comeback on Tuesday, according to Hughes. A restricted free agent at season’s end, Satoransky has been one of the club’s most effective bench players over the last couple seasons.
  • Responding to reports that detailed the heated comments made during last Thursday’s Wizards practice, Markieff Morris expressed his distaste for the leaks coming from within the organization, as Hughes writes in another article for NBC Sports Washington. “It’s f***ed up what’s going on,” Morris said. “The comments that’s coming from the locker room, that’s f***ed up.”
  • In a column for Sports Illustrated, Chris Mannix explores what the Wizards need to do to fix their issues, and whether longtime GM Ernie Grunfeld can be trusted to make those moves.

Southeast Notes: Brooks, Satoransky, Bacon

Despite a rough 3-9 start for the Wizards this season, Candace Buckner writes for The Washington Post that head coach Scott Brooks doesn’t appear to be at risk of losing his job as a result of his strong relationship with the front office and the support he has from his players.

Buckner also points out that it doesn’t hurt Brooks that he is owed $21MM over the remainder of his contract as the team’s roster soars past the luxury tax. Furthermore, Brooks oversees a coaching staff that doesn’t have assistants with much coaching experience in the league, making it more difficult to put one in charge on an interim basis. Finally, Bucker notes that Wizards’ owner Ted Leonsis has practiced patience when it comes to making changes regarding basketball operations.

With that being said, should the Wizards continue underperforming, there will likely be significant changes made to the organization.

There’s more from the Southeast division:

  • With the aforementioned struggling Wizards looking for solutions at any turn, Ben Standig of NBC Sports Washington writes that an increased role for Tomas Satoransky may be part of the solution. The team’s ball movement increased when Satoransky was running the point briefly last season, which may be the way to get everyone involved in the offense.
  • New Hornets‘ head coach James Borrego may have more complicated rotational decisions to make moving forward, as Rick Bonnell of The Charlotte Observer points out that sophomore wing Dwayne Bacon has stood out in the recent playing time he has received.
  • Ben Nadeau of Basketball Insiders continues the series of “Areas of Concern” for the Southeast, as he tackles the issues plaguing each team in the division.

Wizards Notes: Leonsis, Beal, Satoransky, Brown

A couple of recent comments by Wizards owner Ted Leonsis suggest he is running short on patience with the team’s 1-7 start, relays Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington. Leonsis, who attended Saturday’s debut game for the G League’s Capital City Go-Go, responded to a comment from NBA Commissioner Adam Silver about increased scoring around the league. “They just have to play us,” Leonsis said about teams wanting to score more points.

Leonsis was still frustrated after watching his team surrender 79 points in the first half — and 134 overall — in Friday’s loss to the Thunder. “When you score 125 points and you’re losing by 25, it usually says you need to play a little bit of defense,” he said afterward. “Right now, we really have to get a structure in place and especially defend the three-ball.”

Leonsis issued a “no-excuses” ultimatum to the organization before the start of the season, making it clear that he expected a title contender. Hughes notes that Leonsis has a right to want a return on his investment after giving the team a $133MM payroll, a highly paid head coach and a newly built, state-of-the-art practice facility.

There’s more today out of Washington:

  • The Wizards are paying the price for years of failing to make bold moves, writes Michael Lee of The Athletic. They traded away a lottery pick in 2009 and passed on the chance to get Stephen Curry; they let a team leader in Paul Pierce get away and replaced him with Jared Dudley; and they refused to admit that last year’s problems went beyond John Wall‘s extended absence with a knee injury. An unidentified scout predicts major changes in Washington once the season ends, saying, “April 9, “That’s it for these guys.”
  • All-Star shooting guard Bradley Beal says the team has to ignore the negativity in order to turn the season around, Lee shares in the same piece. Beal is putting together his best season, posting a 23.1/4.0/3.8 line through eight games, but it hasn’t translated into victories. “I’m a leader of this team,” he said. “I’ve been here for seven years. I refuse to have any type of ship sinking. I can’t let it sink without fighting.”
  • Hughes offers several suggestions for coach Scott Brooks to shake things up in a separate story. His ideas include changing the starting lineup, giving more minutes to Tomas Satoransky or rookie Troy Brown and offering Jason Smith or Thomas Bryant a chance to crack the rotation.

Southeast Notes: Howard, Satoransky, Hornets, Ellington

It appears new Wizards center Dwight Howard may miss all of training camp, head coach Scott Brooks told reporters, including Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington (Twitter link). Brooks had indicated that Howard would miss time as he deals with an ailing back.

Howard, 32, signed with the Wizards in the offseason after he was acquired by the Nets and subsequently bought out. The eight-time All-Star is with his fifth team in seven seasons as he looks to build on a solid season with the Hornets in 2017/18. Playing in over 80 games for the first time since the 2009/10 campaign, Howard averaged 16.6 PPG and 12.5 RPG for Charlotte.

Check out more Southeast notes below:

  • As he enters his third season in the NBA, Wizards point guard Tomas Satoransky knows that nothing is promised as he has seen his role vary each season, Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington writes. “That’s what these two years have taught me, never be sure of your situation or position,” he said.
  • Tony Parker admitted that it’s weird to don a uniform that isn’t the Spurs’ black and white for the first time in his 17-year NBA career. As Scott Fowler of the Charlotte Observer writes, Parker will need time to adjust to the Hornets, but this is the role he wanted. “This is a guy who’s a six-time all-star, a four-time NBA champion, been in NBA for 17 years and he’s in a new environment,” head coach James Borrego said. “New head coach. New teammates. New locker room. New city. And now coming off the bench — all that is new for him. … But Tony has bought into this role.”
  • Hornets rookie Devonte’ Graham was acquired by Charlotte from the Hawks after Atlanta selected him in the second round. As he looks to make an impact for the Hornets, he believes that Charlotte is the right place to do that, Tom Sorensen of the Charlotte Observer writes.
  • Wayne Ellington entered free agency this past summer knowing exactly what he wanted and where he wanted to be, Anthony Chiang of the Miami Herald writes. “I knew what I wanted,” Ellington said. “The Heat have always expressed that they wanted me back.”