At last, a Washington Wizards trade as the team acquired forwards Bojan Bogdanovic and Chris McCullough from the Brooklyn Nets.
In efforts to form the Washington Wizards into title contenders, Wizards’ General Manager Ernie Grunfeld completed a trade Wednesday afternoon that sends a lottery-protected first-round draft pick (2017), along with Marcus Thornton and Andrew Nicholson to the Brooklyn Nets for Bojan Bogdanovic and Chris McCullough, per Jeff Goodman of ESPN.
Despite giving up next year’s first-round draft pick, the Wizards add a scorer and a 22-year-old power forward, Chris McCullough to bolster one of the NBA’s worst benches. The Wizards also relinquish Andrew Nicholson’s multi-year contract worth $26 million. Eliminating Nicholson’s contract better positions the Wizards to ink the NBA’s leading three-point shooter Otto Porter to a long-term deal.
Bogdanovic averaged 14.2 points with the Nets this season along with the 11th most three-pointers made among the NBA’s small forwards. Prior to the All-Star break, the sharpshooter was in the midst of playing his best basketball of the season averaging 15.6 points and 5.4 rebounds in his last five games.
Below, from DownToBuck on YouTube, is complete highlights of Bogdanovic in a game from this month where he scored 22 points against the Charlotte Hornets:
Adding Bogdanovic, who shot 40 percent from beyond the arc in Jan., immediately strengthens a Wizards’ bench that averages just 32 percent from three-point range. Bogdanovic likely joins forces with Wizards’ Kelly Oubre Jr. and Trey Burke in the Wizards second-unit backcourt.
Wizards also gain former Syracuse basketball standout Chris McCullough, who played in 14 games with the Nets this season and averages 2.5 points with 1.2 rebounds. However, McCullough has spent most of the season in the NBA Development League where he scored 18.1 points per game, as well as averaging 7.7 rebounds in 31 games this season.
Below are highlights from McCullough’s career-high 37-point game last month on Jan 12 against Greensboro:
Following the trade, the Wizards team now consists of seven power forwards and centers, just under 50 percent of their roster.
With the Wizards sitting in third place in the Eastern Conference, the latest trade may be the move that put the Wizards in the conversation for this season’s NBA championship contenders.
The Wizards begin the second half of their schedule, first in a road matchup Friday against the Philadelphia 76ers before returning home to host the Utah Jazz on Sunday.