The Washington Wizards were one of the busiest teams at the NBA Draft June 24.

Just hours before the draft began, the Wizards acquired former all-star guard Kirk Hinrich from the Chicago Bulls, along with the 17th overall pick, in exchange for cash.

With the draft’s first overall pick, Washington took University of Kentucky star John Wall, rated by many as the best player in the draft. The Wizards then traded their 30th and 35th picks to the Minnesota Timberwolves for the rights to 23rd pick Trevor Booker, according to ESPN.

Although Wizards coach Flip Saunders said he could not comment on any of the trade reports, sources close to the team said the Hinrich trade won’t be official until July 8, when Washington will have enough salary cap room to absorb Hinrich’s $9 million salary.

Hinrich is one of the more skilled combo guards in the league. He shoots well enough to play off the ball, but can also dribble well and engineer the offense as a point guard. He’s also a former all-defensive team selection, providing the Wizards with the best perimeter defender they’ve had in years.

With the addition of Hinrich, the rookie Wall will also have a savvy, experienced leader to learn from. Wall should also benefit from the trade for Booker, a six-foot-seven-inch power forward who plays hard for a player of his undersized frame. The Clemson product is known for hustling and running the court, and could score a lot of easy points playing with Wall, who distributes the ball well.


Perry Green

AFRO Sports Editor