John Wall is apparently not sure if he wants to stay with the Washington Wizards long-term. After a long season and a tough playoff loss to the Boston Celtics in seven games no one will blame him for needing some time to think about his future. But in the end, Wall absolutely must sign a super-max extension with the Wizards once he gets the chance.
After being named third-team All-NBA last Thursday, Wall is now eligible to sign a “designated veteran player extension” starting in July. That deal likely would pay somewhere around $36 million per year and be for four years. It would start in the 2019-20 season because of the two years left on Wall’s current contract. The Wizards will almost certainly make him that offer as soon as they’re able to.
Wall is set to make $18.06 million next season and $19.16 million in 2018-19. But here’s the kicker: if he makes another All-NBA team sometime in the next two years, he would be eligible for a five-year DVP extension. So he could either take the four-year extension this offseason, or bet on himself over the next two years and make that deal even bigger.
The thing is, Wall can sign a huge extension with Washington either way and he won’t be able to do that elsewhere. Regardless of when he does it, signing an extension with the Wizards is really his only choice. I get the urge to chase titles elsewhere, but there’s no way he can’t turn down that kind of money. It’s basically double what he’ll make next year.
Wall is a four-time All-Star but this was the first time he’s made an All-NBA team. He’s 26 and just finished his seventh NBA season and it was by far his best. Wall notched career-highs in points (23.1), assists (10.7), steals (2.0), field goal percentage (45.1) and PER (23.28). His stock will never be higher, which means he should seriously consider taking the extension in July.
The Kentucky product reportedly wants to hear a long-term vision for the franchise before he thinks about committing. But with Bradley Beal locked in for four more seasons, Otto Porter Jr. likely to land an extension this summer and reasonably-priced veterans like Markieff Morris and Marcin Gortat under contract, the Wizards have a solid foundation. Wall isn’t going to find a much better situation on the open market.
The Wizards are going to belong to the triumvirate of Wall, Beal and Porter for a long time. That’s the vision. It’s his team and that trio has a chance to be special for years to come. The sooner Wall buys into that, the sooner the front office can try and put the pieces in place to put the team over the top.