2015 Washington Wizards

Written by Paul Banks of the Washington Times, David Kay and Peter Christian of the The Sports Bank. Send Paul an e-mail here: paulb05 AT hotmail DOT com.
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Washington Wizards (Last Year: 46-36)

2015-16 Projected Depth Chart:

C: Marcin Gortat/DeJuan Blair

PF: Nene Hilario/Kris Humphries

SF: #Paul Pierce/Otto Porter/Martell Webster

SG: Bradley Beal/Garrett Temple

PG: John Wall/Ramon Sessions

NBA Free Agents:

#SF-Paul Pierce (PO)

PF-Drew Gooden (UFA)

C-Kevin Seraphin (UFA)

PG-Will Bynum (UFA)

SF-Rasual Butler (UFA)

2015-16 Team Salary: Approximately $70.3 million

NBA Offseason Team Needs:

1. Convince Pierce to Stay: “This is why I’m here” is what Pierce mouthed after knocking down a few huge shots for the Wizards in the postseason, and he nailed it. Pierece was signed last summer to provide experience, leadership and someone who won’t back down from the big moment. While he is nearing the end of his NBA career, Pierce is still a very valuable asset in Washington. He holds a player option worth $5.5 million next season, and since the Wizards don’t have the cap flexibility to find a suitable replacement in free agency, they need to hope Pierce wants to stay one more year in the District.

2. Frontcourt Depth: With Drew Gooden and Kevin Seraphin both free agents, the Wizards need to add another body or two inside. The team should be able to retain Gooden at an affordable rate if he wants to return, but expect Washington to target some size when it selects 19th in the 2015 NBA Draft.

3. Bench Scorer: Rasual Butler was actually the Wizards’ second-leading bench scorer during the regular season behind Kris Humphries, but Butler disappeared in the playoffs and is a free agent. Ramon Sessions is a solid backup to Wall at the point, while Garrett Temple brings versatility and Otto Porter has the makings of being a terrific role all-around role player, but the Wizards need to find some offensive punch to bring off their bench. This becomes even more pressing of a need if Pierce decides to opt out.

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