Washington Wizards Trade Ideas: Why Rajon Rondo Would Be a Good Fit

Dec 28, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Bulls guard Rajon Rondo (9) dribbles the ball against the Brooklyn Nets during the second half at the United Center. Mandatory Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 28, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Bulls guard Rajon Rondo (9) dribbles the ball against the Brooklyn Nets during the second half at the United Center. Mandatory Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports /

Washington Wizards failed to address their need for a backup point guard in the off-season and Rajon Rondo might be available to help.

Even after their 10 wins in December, it’s apparent that the Washington Wizards must find a way to improve their second unit.

Back-to-back losses in Texas – first against the Houston Rockets on Monday and then again versus the Dallas Mavericks on Tuesday – have made it clear that the Wizards will never gain serious momentum without retooling the bench.

Washington has become over-reliant on their starters, such that they’re logging too many minutes and are only afforded short periods of rest throughout games.

The focus of the team’s offseason was to revamp the bench, giving the team the necessary depth to compete for a top spot in the Eastern Conference, but the Wizards still aren’t set at a single position, including point guard.

Coming off double-knee surgery, John Wall is top-10 in minutes played and is carrying the team on both ends.

Neither Trey Burke nor Tomas Satoransky have become consistent contributors for Scott Brooks‘ team, putting even more pressure on Wall to deliver on a nightly basis.

Last Friday, Rajon Rondo was benched during the second half of Chicago’s loss to the Indiana Pacers and then benched completely when Chicago lost to the Bucks on Saturday.

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Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg informed Rondo that Michael Carter-Williams would be the starting point guard on Saturday night against the Bucks.

After Saturday night’s loss to Milwaukee, Rondo informed the media that he planned to meet with Bulls GM Gar Forman about his role going forward with the team.

Rondo also provided details about his Saturday morning meeting with Hoiberg and why he was kept out of their rotation.

“[Hoiberg] told me that I’ve been looking slow the last five games,” Rondo said.

“He asks me all the time, ‘Am I healthy?’ I responded, saying that I think this is the best I’ve ever felt this part of the season, so we’ll see how it goes.”

Rondo disagreed with Hoiberg’s assessment that he’s been slow.

In response to his recent benching, Rondo confirmed that he will “absolutely” seek a trade if his role doesn’t develop.

On Monday, Hoiberg ran with Carter-Williams at the starting point guard spot in Chicago’s matchup against Charlotte, and Jerian Grant as his backup. Grant played 26 minutes in Chicago’s defeat of the Hornets.

For now, it appears like Rondo’s time in Chicago will be ending relatively soon.

With that said, the Washington Wizards aren’t strangers to having Celtics on their roster.

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Both Paul Pierce, who helped lead the Wizards to the conference semifinals in 2015, and Rondo were integral parts of the 2008 Celtics championship team.

While Rondo wouldn’t be playing the same role, he would be filling a void at the backup point guard position.

At this point in his career, Rondo can’t be asked to put up All-Star numbers.

He’s averaged just over 7 points and 7 assists this season, putting up a triple-double against the Cleveland Cavaliers last month.

Last season, Rondo led the league in assists with the Sacramento Kings.

Given his recent run-in with the Bulls’ coaching staff, Rondo’s trade value is at an all-time low – so low that the Bulls could potentially waive Rondo, giving the Wizards a chance to swoop in.

But if the Bulls do opt to trade the guard, they won’t receive anything of value in return.

Rondo’s salary hovers a little above $14 million and only $3 million is guaranteed next season. Thus, the Wizards would only have to pay for the remainder of this season and $3 million for the next.

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Washington is in desperate need for a leader on the second unit and Rondo might be able to provide that. His role as a backup guard would be reduced, but the dynamic would be similar as a starter, as Rondo would be the go-to creator for the Wizards’ second unit.