Washington Wizards: The John Wall Era is Over

Washington Wizards John Wall (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
Washington Wizards John Wall (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /

Arguably the greatest player to ever put on a Washington Wizards uniform has been traded. The John Wall era is over in D.C.

Less than two weeks after the Washington Wizards tried to squash trade rumors involving John Wall, it happened. John Wall is no longer a member of the Washington Wizards.

Wall and a protected 2023 first-round pick are on their way to the Houston Rockets. In exchange, the Wizards will be getting Russell Westbrook. The protections are actually pretty impressive given Wall’s injury history and allow the Wizards to retain first-round picks in each of the next two drafts. Check out the details from Shams Charania of The Athletic.

In what has been a relatively quiet offseason for the Wizards, this move is a franchise changer. Wall, who was drafted number one overall by the Wizards in 2010, has been the face of the team for a decade. He leaves as the franchise’s career leader in assists and steals and ranks fourth in all-time scoring. Even though we haven’t seen Wall play in nearly two years, this still hurts. Maybe even more so because of the time away, because of the redemption tour that was to come, because of the ‘what if.’

But we’ll never get to see that redemption tour. At least not in a Wizards jersey. The John Wall era is over in Washington, D.C. There is no doubt that this is Bradley Beal’s team now. However, Beal still has quite the running mate despite losing Wall.

The Wizards just traded away one of their franchise’s greatest players, but they got back the closest thing to John Wall that they could. You could argue, they got back something better. Wall has a great resume after ten years in the league. Westbrook, a nine-time All-NBA recipient and the 2016-17 MVP, has an objectively better one.

While Wall has missed the last season and a half of basketball, Westbrook is coming off an All-NBA season. There are legitimate critiques of Westbrook’s game — like him being one of the least efficient volume shooters in NBA history –, but there’s no denying he’s productive. Although, he is older than Wall (32) and has a similarly expensive contract ($132 million over the next three years).

Westbrook isn’t the triple-double machine he was in his MVP days, but he averaged 27.2 points, 7.9 rebounds, and 7.0 assists in a brand new system with the Houston Rockets last season. Although he’s joining a new squad in D.C. during a shortened offseason, he’s rejoining a familiar coach. Wizards head coach Scott Brooks was Westbrook’s coach in Oklahoma City until Brooks was fired in 2015.

The John Wall era is over in D.C. Now, let’s see what the future holds…