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Report: Davis Bertans Traded to Wizards; Spurs Open Cap Room for DeMarre Carroll

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistJuly 6, 2019

San Antonio Spurs forward Davis Bertans (42) in the second half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, April 3, 2019, in Denver. The Nuggets won 113-85. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
David Zalubowski/Associated Press

The San Antonio Spurs are trading veteran forward Davis Bertans to the Washington Wizards, according to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski.

Bobby Marks of ESPN noted the move allows the Spurs to get enough salary-cap space to complete the three-year, $21 million deal for DeMarre Carroll, which Carroll's agent confirmed to Wojnarowski.

Bobby Marks @BobbyMarks42

San Antonio would create a trade exception from sending out Davis Bertans to Washington. The exception would allow the Spurs to take back DeMarre Carroll in a sign-and-trade. https://t.co/b6R5kvNnqM

Marks and The Athletic's David Aldridge provided the cap consequences from the Wizards' side:

Bobby Marks @BobbyMarks42

Washington is right at the luxury tax with the addition of Davis Bertans but have the flexibility of $8.9M in non-guaranteed contracts- including the $5.7M contract of Jonathon Simmons. There is $1M guaranteed with the balance becoming protected if not waived by July 8.

David Aldridge @davidaldridgedc

Bertans, with a $7M expiring deal, will go into the traded player exception ($8.6M) that the Wizards had for Markieff Morris after dealing him to OKC at the trade deadline.

Acquiring Bertans is a shrewd move for Washington. The 26-year-old Latvian doesn't make the team drastically better but does address a clear hole on the roster. Before this move, the Wizards were looking at Mo Wagner or Rui Hachimura as their starting power forward.

Bertans averaged 18.1 points and 7.9 rebounds per 100 possessions for the Spurs in 2018-19, according to Basketball Reference. He also shot 42.9 percent from beyond the arc, which will help a Washington offense that ranked 26th in three-point percentage (34.1) last season.

However, Bertans is on an expiring contract. He's making $7 million in 2019-20 before becoming an unrestricted free agent, which adds some level of risk. 

Assuming Bertans gets a larger role than he had in San Antonio, he could play himself into a healthy raise next summer, forcing the Wizards to either pay up or let him walk in free agency. This would basically be the Bobby Portis situation all over again. Portis agreed to a two-year, $31 million deal with the New York Knicks last month, per Wojnarowski, leaving the Wizards with little to show from the Otto Porter Jr. trade.

A career year for Bertans could also work in Washington's favor in that he'd become an obvious midseason trade target for playoff contenders.

The cash-strapped Wizards deserve credit for finding a way to strengthen their roster at little to no cost.

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