Washington Wizards: 15 greatest draft steals in franchise history

Bradley Beal, Washington Wizards. (Photo by Will Newton/Getty Images)
Bradley Beal, Washington Wizards. (Photo by Will Newton/Getty Images) /
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Kevin Porter, Capital Bullets
Kevin Porter, Capital Bullets. (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images) /
  • Six seasons w/Bullets (1972-75, 1979-83)
  • 2x NBA assists leader (1974-75, 1980-81)
  • 395 career games w/Bullets
  • 10.6 points, 6.6 assists, 1.6 rebounds, 1.3 steals per game w/Bullets

Kevin Porter played more than half of his 11-year NBA career over 12 seasons with the Bullets. He was originally drafted by Baltimore No. 39 overall back in the 1972 NBA Draft as a third-round pick out of Saint Francis University. This would be the last season the NBA franchise called Baltimore home, going by the Capital Bullets in 1973-74 before becoming the Washington Bullets in 1974-75.

While the name of the franchise was ever-changing, the Bullets were one of the better teams in the NBA during the 1970s. They made the NBA playoffs each year during Porter’s initial run with the team, culminating in an NBA Finals appearance in 1975. Sadly, that resulted in a 4-0 sweep at the hands of the Golden State Warriors, who were actually the underdogs in the series led by forward Rick Barry.

Though Porter would lead the NBA with 8.0 assists per game in 1974-75, he would be traded to the Detroit Pistons for future hall of fame point guard Dave Bing. Porter would continue to put up solid assist numbers over the next five years, but never achieved the same regular season success away from the nation’s capital.

Porter only made the NBA playoffs once with Detroit during his two stints with the team that was briefly split by 74 games with the then-New Jersey Nets in 1977-78, the same year Washington won its only NBA championship to date. Regardless, he still was one of the better distributors in the league during that span, leading the league in assists in back-to-back years in 1977-78 with the Nets and 1978-79 with the Pistons.

Porter would eventually make his way back to Washington, signing with the club that drafted him out of Saint Francis as a free agent in 1979. He played three more years in the NBA over four seasons with the Bullets before retiring in 1983 at age-32.

Overall, Porter averaged 10.6 points and 6.6 assists per game with the Bullets over two stints. He may have never been an NBA All-Star or an NBA champion, but Porter is one of the greatest Washington hoopers of all-time, thanks to his ability to share the basketball. Being a former third-round pick out of a small school best encapsulates his status as a draft steal by Washington.