NBA Rumors: Latest on John Wall, Delonte West and Beno Udrih
Wall, the former No. 1 overall pick, is looking to lock down a max contract to stay in D.C. for the foreseeable future, and all indications are that the process is going smoothly.
Meanwhile, volatile guard Delonte West may be finding a new NBA home after missing last season due to his release from the Dallas Mavericks. West may be teaming up with Beno Udrih, as the two have drawn the interest of the New York Knicks.
Below is a closer look at the ramifications of Wall's deal and the effect it will have in Washington moving forward, as well as how well West and Udrih would fit in the Big Apple.
John Wall's Max Extension Progressing as Expected
It's good news for Wizards fans, as ESPN insider Marc Stein reports that the max contract Wall is negotiating should be signed by the end of the week:
Hearing Wizards' max deal w/@John_Wall remains on track to be finalized by week's end. Aug. 1 press conference was target reported last week— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) July 30, 2013
According to Michael Lee of The Washington Post, it should run for five years and $80 million.
Does John Wall deserve a max contract?
If not for this forthcoming extension, Wall could have hit the market following the 2013-14 campaign as a restricted free agent. He is due to make nearly $7.5 million this coming season, per Spotrac.com.
A full year with Wall healthy and Beal developing in his second season should make for an exciting time in D.C. hoops. Wall is only 22 years old and is one of the most electrifying open-court players in the Association.
TNT's Steve Kerr is skeptical that Wall is deserving of such a lucrative deal, though:
Wow- a max deal for John Wall? Im happy for him, but to me, Wall fits into the Curry/Holiday/Lawson 4 yrs/40-45 mill range.— Steve Kerr (@SteveKerrTNT) July 26, 2013
While Wall has never made an All-Star team or guided the Wizards to a winning record, he is just now getting an adequate supporting cast around him. Plus, he posted stellar numbers this past year, putting up 18.5 points, four rebounds and 7.6 assists per game.
If he improves substantially—and he should given his age and upside—there's no telling where Wall's ceiling could be. Should that materialize, he should justify the max contract he is rumored to be close to signing.
Delonte West and Beno Udrih to the New York Knicks?
Ian Begley of ESPNNewYork.com reports that the Knicks are indeed interested in bringing West to play under the bright lights of Madison Square Garden:
The Knicks have had "conversations" with representatives for free-agent guard Delonte West, a league source confirmed. The team has not offered West a contract and, the source cautioned, there is no guarantee that an offer is coming.
The Knicks have three open roster spots, so they have room to bring West in, if they choose. GM Glen Grunwald said recently that the team is open to adding a backup guard and a big man. West could fill the void at backup guard.
It appears far from a slam dunk that New York will bring West in, especially if West and Udrih are competing to be the guard the team brings in.
With that said, West is a versatile combo guard who can either run the point effectively or work off the ball as an effective 2-guard. His perimeter defense is also an asset, and he can guard even more sizable shooting guards.
Chris Haynes of CSNNW.com originally reported the Knicks' preliminary interest in West, but noted that the Memphis Grizzlies were also considering bringing him in.
As for Udrih, the cap inflexibility New York is experiencing is making it difficult to acquire him. According to Stein, the Knicks want him for the veteran minimum:
Hearing: Knicks can only offer minimum, but I'm told they're trying hard to convince free-agent PG Beno Udrih to take it and come to NYC— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) July 31, 2013
Udrih is a solid if not spectacular backup, although he did put up 10.2 points and 6.2 assists per game for the Orlando Magic in 2012-13 after being shipped from Milwaukee at the trade deadline.
It seems as though the 31-year-old point guard may be just a bit too far out of the Knicks' price range. Should the team take a flier on West, they could definitely get him for the minimum, and he could even emerge as a valuable contributor next season.
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