The Wizards said goodbye to all their five free agents, persons with knowledge of the situation told CSNmidatlantic.com, on Saturday before the 5 p.m. ET deadline to pare down the roster to the maximum 15 guaranteed contracts before their regular season tips Oct. 28 at the Orlando Magic.
From the beginning it was a long shot for any of them to make it on non-guaranteed deals, but there was a small window particularly in the middle where DeJuan Blair's spot was in question after his dismal 2014-15 season when he played sparingly and was out of shape. Blair, however, responded by dropping 30 pounds and averaging 13 points and 8.3 rebounds off the bench in the preseason.
Josh Harrellson: He has the size at 6-10 but what made him unique is the three-point range which would seem like a good fit for a team such as the Wizards that has put a premium on shooters to spread the floor. Harrellson didn't do anything to hurt himself and could find his way back into the NBA. As a "spread" five he could do for a team what Pero Antic did in contributing to the Atlanta Hawks' 60-win season. He scored double-digits in three of the seven preseason games.
Jaleel Roberts: When he arrived, it was with the future in mind and not this season. Roberts is raw and a true center at 7-1. He's a project and the Wizards have invested a lot of time in his development, first having in for Las Vegas summer league and then paying him to attend Tim Grgurich's private skills camp. More than likely, he'll be back at some point in the summer of 2016 to get another look. Roberts scored 10 total points in three preseason appearances.
Toure' Murry: He signed a series of two 10-day contracts late last season but an injury ruined his run. Then as part of the Wizards' Las Vegas summer league, a groin injury thwarted his progress. Murry thought he had a legitimate shot at cracking the 15 but he's similar to Garrett Temple in that he's a defense-first guard and not a shooter/scorer. By having Temple, retaining Murry wouldn't make much sense because of the redundancy. He scored 14 points in four games.
Ish Smith: The point guard's arrival here was a bit puzzling since the Wizards already have Ramon Sessions, who is bigger and a better scorer. Smith was the best point guard for the Philadelphia 76ers last season and easily could've secured a guaranteed deal of some sort there. If he's on the market next summer (Sessions is a free agent) then he could pan out. The timing wasn't right. He had 11 points and 20 assists in five games, missing one because of an ankle sprain.
Jaron Johnson: At 6-6 he has good size but he didn't have much of a chance to play. He appeared in six games but never more than seven minutes, scoring 12 points.
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