The idea of Bol Bol has been better than the player Bol Bol ever since he came into the league in the 2019 NBA Draft. A 7'3 player who can move like a guard, has ball skills, and protects the rim? Sounds like the modern prototype of an NBA player.
That has not, however, come to fruition at all. Bol is now in his fifth season in the league, and except for a brief stretch with the Orlando Magic at the beginning of the 2022-23 season, he has failed to live up to the expectations. He doesn't play with enough intensity, power, and effort to make a huge difference on either end of the floor. Despite his size, he doesn't have the strength to hold his own against most forwards or centers in the league. He plays with finesse more than physicality, shooting a lot of jumpers. And those have not gone in at a good enough clip to warrant playing time. So far this season, he has only appeared in four games for the Phoenix Suns.
The combination of his physical tools and skill set is still very alluring. He is still only 24 years old. He has a connection to Washington, DC thanks to the four seasons his father Manute spent in Washington in his playing days. Perhaps a low-stress environment where he is given a larger role and consistent playing time is what he needs.
There is a decent chance Bol will never evolve into a rotation-level player in the NBA. He may be out of the NBA as soon as next season. But what do the Wizards have to lose? There were enough flashes in the first two months of Bol's season last year that he is worth a shot. Phoenix is not going to ask much in return anyway, so it's a low-risk, high-reward move for Washington.