Each time Wizards president Ernie Grunfeld or head coach Scott Brooks refer to their team's future, they include Otto Porter's name despite the latter just days away from being a restricted free agent.
He does not yet have a long-term contract, but the Wizards remain hopeful they can come to an agreement that will continue his development alongside other young players like John Wall, Bradley Beal, Kelly Oubre, Jr. and Markieff Morris.
Porter, who turned 24 earlier this month, could receive as long as a five-year deal with the Wizards.
"We've said all along that we want to keep our core group of young players together and Otto is an important part of what we're trying to do," Grunfeld said. "When free agency starts, we'll see what we can do and work things out to keep him here."
If that process does see Porter hit restricted free agency, the Wizards will have to first make a qualifying offer of 125 percent of his 2016-17 salary, which was $5.9 million, by the June 30 deadline.
That would put his QO at around $7.4 million. He could then seek offers in free agency with the Wizards holding the option to match and retain his rights. Once Porter receives an offer, they will have 48 hours to make their decision.
The NBA's free agency moratorium, which allows teams to negotiate deals with players, begins July 1. Players can then be signed beginning on July 6.
How much Porter is asking for is not clear yet, same with how much he will ultimately receive.
The NBA salary cap's significant increase last offseason and new rules have made it so there are few comparisons to draw. Bradley Beal, who was also a third overall pick like Porter, signed a maximum contract of five years and $128 million last summer, but he is and was a more acccomplished player than Porter. This past season Porter averaged 13.4 points, 6.4 rebounds and shot 43.4 percent from three.
Wall's contract future was also addressed by Grunfeld this week as he addressed the media before and after Thursday's NBA Draft. Now that Wall was named All-NBA following the 2016-17 season, he is eligible for an extension worth four years and about $167 million.
"At the appropriate time, we will sit down with John. We want John to finish his career here," Grunfeld said.
"He's a franchise guy. Him and Bradley have done a great job of improving and leading this ballclub, so we want John to finish his career here."