While the world wonders where NBA free agents like LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Carmelo Anthony and Chris Bosh will wind up, the Washington Wizards just gave out $60 million to a guy most people couldn’t pick out of a lineup. On Tuesday, the Wizards re-signed center Marcin Gortat to a five-year deal, worth $12 million per season.
During the 2013-14 season, Gortat averaged 13.2 points, 9.5 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 1.5 blocks in 32.8 minutes per game. He played in 81 games, and shot 54.2 percent from the field. Those are decent numbers, but not for a $12 million per year guy. It wasn’t even like it was Gortat’s best season, that came in 2011-12 with the Phoenix Suns, when he averaged 15.4 points and 10.0 rebounds per game in 66 contests.
Additionally, Gortat’s PER was an average 17.66 last season. That placed him 19th among NBA centers, barely above DeJuan Blair (17.33) and below lightly-regarded players like Robin Lopez (17.68), John Henson (17.97), Kris Humphries (18.28) and Andray Blatche (18.85).
Gortat is a complementary piece at best and shelling out $12 million for him will hinder what the team can do in the future. The Polish pivot will be entering his eighth season in 2014-15 and expecting him to get much better than he is now would be hoping for a lot.
Maybe Gortat will surprise and all of a sudden have a massive statistical explosion. But I don’t see that happening, and in three years the deal the Wizards made on Tuesday will likely look foolish.