Wizards

Quick Links

State of the Wizards: Players thriving under Brooks

State of the Wizards: Players thriving under Brooks

Top storylines

Brooks overseeing improvement on offense - In watching the Wizards this season, it's hard not to notice that many are having the best seasons of their career. John Wall is posting career-highs in points (23.1 ppg), steals (2.3 spg) and field goal percentage (46.4). Bradley Beal is also scoring more than ever (21.8 ppg) at a career-high field goal percentage (45.6). The same can also be said about Otto Porter, who is scoring 14.5 points on 54 percent shooting, both career-highs.

Marcin Gortat is shooting a career-high 57.5 percent from the field to go along with a career-best 11.6 rebounds per game. Even Kelly Oubre, Jr. can be included in that mix, as he is having a breakout year of sorts.

The Wizards as a team currently have their best offensive rating (109) since the 2007-08 season. Their 47.2 field goal percentage is their highest since 1996-97. 

So, is it a coincidence that all of these guys are taking their games to new levels? Surely there are multiple factors that play into each and every player's improvement. But I asked some of Brooks' players this week what he deserves credit for as a new coach and the consensus was that they like the changes he has made to their offensive system:

Wall: "He challenged me personally and challenged everybody else... He gets credit for it. He gives me the opportunity to excel by giving me the ball and letting me to be the point guard out there and run a lot of sets. I can be aggressive. I give a lot of credit for myself for doing what I had to do to get back from the surgeries over the summer, [too]."

Beal: "I think he grants everybody freedom. I think that’s great for us. I’m able to dribble and handle the ball. John is able to handle the ball. Otto is even able to handle the ball in pick-and-rolls. Even with bringing it up the floor. I think our freedom and our ability to just have a little bit of control. I think his plays are great. We do a better job of screening. Our flow is awesome. I think ultimately it’s just everybody improving their game. Us being able to spread the floor out just makes it difficult for the other team."

Porter: "The ball just moves. With John creating and doing the things that he does, it helps everybody else. The confidence that we have going forward is key for us. Everybody is getting touches. We’re playing good defense and getting steals. We’re running the break and just feeding off each other."

Gortat: "[For me] it’s just more minutes. It’s more minutes and at the same time, coach has really given me a chance to play and given me a lot of confidnece. He’s kind of just leaving me out there and leaving me alone consistently. Obviously, I’m just trying to do my job, but he is just letting me play and do my stuff. I’m going to come up with some crazy stuff. Sometimes I’m going to come up with some crazy stuff and some unnecessary stuff, but he knows that ratio of good stuff to crazy stuff is like three-to-one, so. He doesn’t have to worry about anything."

The Wizards are currently one game out of fourth place in the Eastern Conference after beginning the season 2-8 and battling numerous injuries, most notably to their biggest free agent acquisition, Ian Mahinmi. Brooks has done an impressive job helping his team stay afloat and along the way has overseen several players take their game to new heights.

[RELATED: Wall wears long wig in TV acting debut]

Eastern Conference standings

Stat line of the week: John Wall 1/10 vs. Bulls - 26 points, 14 assists, 6 rebounds, steal, block, 11-of-21 FG

[RELATED: Wizards players take stock at midpoint of season]

Quote of the Week

"You just woke a monster."

- Wall to Denzel Valentine in the Wizards' win over the Bulls after his three-point dance

Tweet (or Instagram) of the Week

Road ahead

Mon. - 120-101 win vs. Portland Trail Blazers
Tue. - OFF
Wed. - 104-101 win vs. Memphis Grizzlies
Thu. - 113-110 win vs. New York Knicks
Fri. - OFF
Sat. - 6 p.m. at Detroit Pistons (CSN)
Sun. - OFF

[RELATED: Wall and Beal not named All-Star starters]

Quick Links

Tomas Satoransky set to enter unpredictable free agent market for point guards

tomas-satoransky-dribbling-wiz-bucks-usat.jpg
USA Today Sports Images

Tomas Satoransky set to enter unpredictable free agent market for point guards

Of the Wizards' players set to hit free agency on June 30, one who has a good chance to return is point guard Tomas Satoransky. He and center Thomas Bryant are atop the team's priority list with Bobby Portis likely too expensive and Jabari Parker set to enter the market unrestricted.

Satoransky will be a restricted free agent, meaning the Wizards can match any offers made by other teams. And in talking to members of the Wizards' coaching staff and front office, they speak of Satoransky like he is part of their future.

Still, nothing can be assumed and especially in a year in which many teams have money to spend. As Kevin O'Connor of the Ringer noted this week, there is more cap room available this summer than the previous two combined. That could lead to 2016-level contracts where role players get paid like starters and average starters get paid like stars.

What will make Satoransky's market interesting, though, is the fact there are some much bigger names available at his position. At point guard, teams with the most money can go after All-Stars like Kemba Walker, Kyrie Irving and D'Angelo Russell. There is then a robust second tier that includes Malcolm Brogdon, Terry Rozier and Ricky Rubio. Then you have Derrick Rose, Elfrid Payton, Patrick Beverley, Darren Collison and Rajon Rondo.

It is a great year to be a free agent, but maybe not the best year to be a free agent point guard. The position class is absolutely loaded.

Satoransky, though, will still draw plenty of interest and among the teams expected to check in on him are the Mavericks, Pacers, Magic and Celtics, NBC Sports Washington has learned.

The Celtics have already been tied to Satoransky by Keith Smith of Yahoo Sports. But they also have their sights set on some of the bigger fish at point guard with rumors tying them to Walker, in particular.

The Utah Jazz were also expected to pursue Satoransky, but their trade for Mike Conley Jr. has taken them off the list. The Phoenix Suns could also emerge as a suitor, though they are being linked to higher profile free agents at this point.

Both the Wizards and Satoransky expressed interest in a contract extension midway through the 2018-19 season, as NBC Sports Washington reported, but those talks didn't get much further. The Wizards ended up putting a lot of things on hold once they drifted out of the playoff race and ultimately fired team president Ernie Grunfeld.

With senior vice president Tommy Sheppard serving in the interim, though, Satoransky has a big proponent calling the shots in the Wizards front office. Sheppard scouted Satoransky before the Wizards drafted him and was key in convincing him to leave Europe for the NBA.

Satoransky likes playing in Washington and recognizes an opportunity at point guard with John Wall set to miss most of next season due to Achilles surgery. But he also recognizes this as a chance to earn the biggest payday of his career.

How much money Satoransky will ultimately receive is hard to predict. Those in his camp are apprehensive to throw numbers out there because even they aren't sure. He wants a long-term deal and his fit in the rotation is a big consideration, according to someone familiar with his plans.

One potential comparison could be Raptors guard Fred VanVleet, who makes just over $9 million per year. Though VanVleet is arguably better, Satoransky is hitting the market with more money to go around. 

Many have tried to project Satoransky's market in the past few months. Soon we will find out just how valuable he is.

MORE WIZARDS NEWS: 

Quick Links

Washington Wizards extend qualifying offers to Portis, Bryant and Satoransky, not Dekker

Washington Wizards extend qualifying offers to Portis, Bryant and Satoransky, not Dekker

The Wizards extended qualifying offers to three free agents on Wednesday: Thomas Bryant, Bobby Portis and Tomas Satoransky. Washington did now, however, extend a qualifying offer to Sam Dekker. 

The Washington Wizards reportedly extended a qualifying offer to Thomas Bryant after the center's breakout 2018-19 season, according to Fred Katz of The Athletic. 

After he was picked up by the Wizards off the waiver wires from the Lakers, Bryant worked his way into the Washington lineup by late November. 

With the Wizards he averaged 6.3 rebounds and 10.5 points while he shot a league-high 68.5% on two-pointers. Bryant also shot 33.3% in the three-point range and 46.6% from three-to-10 feet. 

But Bryant also made a big impact with his energy and enthusiasm while the Wizards struggled to compete, making him a favorite amongst his teammates and Washington fans alike. 

Back in April, Bryant expressed a serious interest in staying with the Wizards. For that article, click here.

Washington also extended offers to Bobby Portis anad Tomas Satoransky, as reported by Chase Hughes and Yahoo Sports' Keith Smith.

Last season with the Wizards, Portis shot 39.3% and averaged 14.2 points and 8.1 rebounds per game. Like Bryant, Portis also expressed that he enjoyed playing in Washington, but also said he wanted to make more money. For that article, click here

Satoransky averaged 8.9 points a game in the 2018-19 season, while he shot 39.5% in threes. 

While Washington made qualifying offers to three of its free agents, the Wizards declined a qualifying offer on forward Sam Dekker, as reported by Chase Hughes. 

Last season Dekker averaged 6.1 points per game, while he shot 47.1% in field goals. 

MORE WIZARDS NEWS: