Like the rest of the NBA, the Wizards' free agency plans are on hold until Carmelo Anthony and LeBron James announce where they will take their talents next season. That's because free agents like Trevor Ariza are waiting for the market to be set and for teams to make firm offers. In the meantime, Washington ponders the various wing options regardless of whether Ariza stays put or not.
Free agent: SF Brandon Rush, Utah Jazz. Unrestricted.
2013-14 salary: $4.0 million
Vitals: 6'6", 210 pounds. Turns 29 on July 7.
Career averages: 8.3 points, 3.3 rebounds, 1.1 assists, 43.6% FG, 40.9% 3FG. Last season:2.1 points, 1.2 rebounds, 0.6 assists, 33.3% FG, 34.0% 3FG.
The fit: This sleeper candidate came up in recent days among those talking Wizards for two simple reasons: Rush can get buckets and he won't cost much. The 13th overall pick in the 2008 draft, Rush played only 40 games the past two seasons due to a torn left ACL. In the three seasons prior with Golden State and Indiana, he shot at least 41 percent from beyond the 3-point arc. Rush averaged 9.8 points for the Warriors in 2011-12 while sinking a career-high 45 percent of his 3's.
Chances of becoming a Wizard: Ernie Grunfeld struck gold in 2012 when he took a risk on an injury-prone swingman who was a high first-round pick in Martell Webster. Now, even if Ariza re-signs, Washington could use another option because of Webster's recent back surgery. Considering the success Ariza and Webster have had spotting up in the corner's for 3-point looks on passes from John Wall, Rush should be intrigued about the Wizards if asked. He also might/should be cool with a one-year deal (he also might not get more than that) if there is playing time opportunity. That's a possibility with the Wizards depending on Ariza's contract, Webster's recovery and the growth of Otto Porter and Glen RIce. Jr.
NBA Free Agent profiles