Otto Porter

Quick Links

With Wizards and Bulls squaring off, what are the early returns on the Otto Porter Jr. trade?

With Wizards and Bulls squaring off, what are the early returns on the Otto Porter Jr. trade?

Forty two days have passed since the Feb. 6 trade between the Wizards and the Bulls, a deal that started a new era of sorts in Washington with the departure of Otto Porter Jr., a former third overall pick who had stuck with the franchise for a second contract. 

Though the confusion of that first night, as the Wizards informed Porter just before a game against the Bucks, has passed, both teams are still sorting things out and evaluating what they have as the end of the season nears.

Porter won't play on Wednesday night due to a shoulder injury as the Wizards battle the Bulls in Chicago at 8 p.m. on NBC Sports Washington. But as these teams square off now over a month later, it seems like a good time to look at how the deal has gone for them so far.

Basically, neither team has really taken off. The Wizards are 8-9 since the trade and the Bulls are 8-10. Porter has put up strong numbers, but has missed time due to various injuries. Jabari Parker and Bobby Portis, the two players the Wizards acquired from Chicago, have also improved from their season stats while ostensibly benefiting from a change in scenery.

Porter averaged 12.6 points and shot 45.7 from the field and 36.9 percent from three with the Wizards this season. With the Bulls, he has put up 17.5 points while shooting 48.3 percent overall and 48.8 percent from long range. 

Perhaps most notable is the fact he's taking 13.4 total shots and 5.3 per game from three. Both would be career-highs if held for an entire season. For years, the narrative about him in D.C. was that he either wasn't aggressive enough to create his own shots or the Wizards failed him by not running plays with him in mind.

Parker has simply been much more efficient with the Wizards than he was in Chicago. He's averaging about the same amount of points - 14.8 compared to 14.3 with the Bulls - but his effective field goal percentage has raised from 51.4 to 60.7. The latter would rank seventh in the NBA if it qualified for leaderboards.

Portis is putting up 14.6 points and 8.4 rebounds, both of which would be career-highs if carried for a full season. And he's shooting 45.6 percent from three, well above the 37.5 percent clip he posted in Chicago this year.

Both teams, interestingly enough, have seen a surge on offense. The Bulls are 23rd on the season in points scored (105.3), but since adding Porter are ninth, averaging nearly 10 more points per game (115). The Wizards are seventh on the season points (114.4), but since the deal top the entire league with 117.5 per game. 

Defensively, it has been a different story. Both the Wizards and Bulls rank in the bottom third of the NBA in defensive rating. Both teams were bad at defending before the deals and haven't shown improvement.

This trade, of course, will ultimately be judged for what happens well beyond this season. The Wizards gave up a valuable asset in Porter, who is only 25 and is under contract for two more years, albeit at arguably a steep price for his production. His contract loomed large in Washington, but can be viewed differently in Chicago because of their otherwise cheap roster of young talent.

Parker and Portis are both likely to hit free agency this offseason, Portis as a restricted free agent. Parker has a team option, but at $20 million it is unlikely to be picked up.

The Wizards could keep both of them, one or neither of them this offseason. And whichever way they go will significantly affect the way the trade is evaluated. If they part with either, the financial flexibility they will then get will have bearing on how the deal is graded.

But for now, both teams seem to be doing well with the pieces they got. All three have improved their numbers in the short period of time they have played with their new teams.

MORE WIZARDS NEWS: 

Quick Links

Ted Leonsis: Wizards were planning a trade that would have kept John Wall, Bradley Beal and Otto Porter Jr. together

Ted Leonsis: Wizards were planning a trade that would have kept John Wall, Bradley Beal and Otto Porter Jr. together

This story has been updated with a correction of when Porter told he was being traded.

Coverage for Wednesday's Wizards game starts with the Outsiders at 6 PM, followed by Wizards pregame at 6:30 PM. Click here for more on how to watch.

On January 31, Washington Wizards owner Ted Leonsis said that his team would not be trading Bradley Beal, John Wall or Otto Porter Jr. prior to the NBA trade deadline in an interview with Washington area radio station WTOP.

Six days later, Porter Jr. was traded to the Chicago Bulls for Jabari Parker and Bobby Portis.

The trade was a ripple effect of the February 5 news that Wall, who was out for the season after undergoing heel surgery, tore his Achilles in a freak fall at his home and would be out for at least an additional 12 months.

It was a move that made sense, given the Wizards' cap space problems and the suddenly prolonged absence of Wall. But after publicly stating the Wizards' Big 3 weren't going anywhere, Leonsis understands why Porter would have felt blindsided. 

"I feel terrible 'cause I read the other day that Otto felt that we had lied to him," Leonsis said in an interview with WUSA9 this week. "And I understand that. We did tell him we weren’t going to trade him. We were going to keep our core together."

Drafted by the Wizards third overall in the 2013 NBA Draft, Porter was averaging a .457 field goal percentage and 12.6 points per game over 41 games, before his tenure with the team came to an abrupt end when he was pulled out of his pregame routine prior to their matchup with the Milwaukee Bucks. 

In the interview, Leonsis said that the team was actually preparing to make another trade that would have kept Wall, Beal and Porter Jr. together. 

"We actually had some other things that we were going to do, and another trade that would have kept the core together and given us flexibility."

Leonsis would not reveal who the Wizards were interested in trading for,but as life often does, the team was handed a curveball. 

"Man plans and God laughs," Leonsis added. 

MORE WIZARDS NEWS: 

Quick Links

What happened when Otto Porter was pulled from warmups? Scott Brooks talks trade deadline

What happened when Otto Porter was pulled from warmups? Scott Brooks talks trade deadline

This story has been updated with a correction of when Porter told he was being traded.

No one can say that the NBA trade deadline lacks excitement. With players like Dallas Mavericks forward Harrison Barnes learning of his trade mid-game, this years deadline was no exception. 

The Washington Wizards even got into the mix, trading Otto Porter Jr. to the Chicago Bulls for Jabari Parker and Bobby Portis. Someone had to deliver that news to Porter, who was drafted by the Wizards third overall in the 2013 NBA Draft, prior to their matchup with the Milwaukee Bucks. That person was head coach Scott Brooks. 

"Well, that was pretty tough because we go over our game plan or film session at 40 minutes on the clock," Brooks said Wednesday on 106.7 The Fan's Sports Junkies. "And Ernie [Grunfeld] called me with about 43 minutes on the clock so I had to jump off the phone with him and grab Otto before we meet with the team." 

One day prior, the Wizards announced that an already injured John Wall had torn his Achilles in a fall at his home and surgery would require him to be out for an additional 12 months. The trade, according to the Wizards' front office, was a ripple effect of that stunning news. 

Porter, who was averaging a .457 field goal percentage and 12.6 points per game over 41 games, saw his tenure with the team that drafted him at just 20-years-old come to an abrupt end shortly before game time.

"That was definitely awkward, but Otto handled it like a pro. I was very, obviously honest. I just said, 'Hey, there's some talks right now. We can not let you play in the game tonight. We're going to have to send you back to the hotel' and he handled it well like I knew Otto would. That guy is a pros pro. I've said it many times, he's no maintenance at all. He just wants to go out there and be a good teammate." 

Porter was quickly reunited with his former teammates when they visited the Bulls Saturday night. In the 134-125 win for the Wizards, Porter had 17 points and two steals.

MORE WIZARDS NEWS: