NBA rumors: Wizards keeping Shabazz Napier?

John Wall’s return significantly elevates expectations surrounding the Wizards next season and will make the team’s offseason decision-making process that much more important. In the case of Napier and Bertans, Washington’s general manager Tommy Sheppard talked highly of both in a Q&A with Dave Johnson Thursday. “I think with [Napier and Bertans], when we acquired them not as rentals we acquired them to stay here,” Sheppard said. “I think the players that we acquired, they’re here to show that they can be here for the future. With Davis and Shabazz, they showed enough to us that certainly we would love to retain them. We plan to.”

More on Davis Bertans Free Agency

Washington will operate as an over-the-cap team this summer, even though it could technically carve out about $15 million if the cap hit its original 2020-21 projection of $115 million. Thing is: It’s probably not climbing so high now — and even if it did, the Wizards don’t want to dip so low below it. They are determined to bring back Dāvis Bertāns, a 27-year-old free agent who will likely command a multi-year deal. And to hold onto his Bird rights, which allow them to go over the cap to sign him, they need to keep his cap hold on the books, which adds another $13.3 million to the team’s cap sheet. And thus, the Wizards would be right up against the cap, enough so that there are intrinsic advantages for them to operate a little bit over it.
Fred Katz: Sheppard on Bertans: "When somebody tells me this is where they want to be, I take em at face value for that... His agent, Ted Leonsis and everyone on down, everyone in our organization has made it clear: 'Davis, this is a great place for you and you've been great for us.’"
One league source with knowledge of Boston’s plans said Bertans, who is shooting 42.9 percent from beyond the 3-point line on 8.4 attempts per game, was never made available by Washington. The source said reports that he could be acquired for two first-round picks were inaccurate. Also, the fact that Bertans is an unrestricted free agent this summer would have made Boston reluctant to surrender that bounty anyway.
David Aldridge: With the caveat that everything’s subject to change before the trade deadline, sources maintain there’s not much interest from Wizards in acquiring Tristan Thompson. Cost of re-signing the rising UFA F/C would be quite problematic for a team looking to keep Davis Bertans.
Although Bertans will become an unrestricted free agent this summer, Washington—or a team that trades for him—will hold his Bird rights. That means he can be re-signed while exceeding the salary cap for any amount up to the maximum salary. He is expected to command a $15-17 million average annual salary, according to several NBA executives who spoke with Bleacher Report.
How much the Wizards will actually entertain offers is unclear. He is one of their best players and the fact he has become one of the best catch-and-shoot scorers in the NBA is particularly enticing given the offensive style they like to play. Many believe Bertans could make $15 million or more annually on his next contract, but the Wizards could pay him that if they choose to with Ian Mahinmi's $15.5 million salary set to come off the books.
One name I doubt you’ll hear on the trade market: Davis Bertans. Some have speculated that Washington’s deep-bombing stretch forward could be on the market ahead of his unrestricted free agency, but all signals indicate the Wizards intend to re-sign the Latvian forward – who, at 27, is still young enough to be part of Washington’s next iteration. A further smoke signal – Washington’s recent 2-way signing of Anzejs Pasecniks. A 7-1 center who was a former first-round pick of the Sixers, Pasecniks had shown just modest production in the G League, but is a fellow Latvian who shares an agent with Bertans.
“Yeah, I’m happy here,” he told The Athletic. “(I’m) playing a lot. I’ve been enjoying it here. The family loves the city. I would definitely be happy to stay here for a longer time.” And as always, it’s not just about basketball. “(D.C.) is just more something closer to home, like a little international, European style,” said Bertāns, who is from Latvia. “There’s some history that not a lot of cities in the States have. And then when you’re downtown, everything is walking distance. That’s about it. My family loves it here. So, that’s a big part. … Happy wife, happy life.”
And according to Bertans’ longtime agent, Arturs Kalnitis, the appreciation is mutual. "Tommy [Sheppard] has done an incredible job of putting together this staff, team, and the players feel super cared about. It's been an all-around great experience," Kalnitis said in a phone interview last week. "After Davis' first two weeks with the team, he called me and said, 'This is great.' "Davis is super confident in Washington and this situation really allows him to showcase his abilities. If he stays in D.C. next season they'll have an even more interesting dynamic with John [Wall] healthy. Davis truly believes they can be a force in the East so I'm sure that will be a strong point for him," Kalnitis added. "Winning is important."
Sheppard was asked about Bertans and other players the Wizards brought in over the summer. He praised Bertans, spoke about other players, and then went back to the Latvian Laser to clear something up. "We have every intention of retaining him. He's the exact type of player we want to have in our organization. I think he wants to be here. Business will take care of itself," Sheppard said.
"There's so much chit-chat in this league that gets out there. Most of it is contrived by the teams that would love to have Davis. Well, guess what? One of the teams that would have to have him, has him. We intend to keep him. We're excited about his growth."
What will Bertāns commandeer on the open market? Opinions vary. “He will get between $15M and $20M (per year) this summer.” the former front office person said. “Most likely for a two-year deal. Don’t see him getting a four-year deal.” But a current GM didn’t agree. “He will not get 20M,” the GM texted. “(There’s) only six teams with space.”
The San Antonio Spurs announced on Wednesday that they have officially re-signed Rudy Gay and Davis Bertans. As always with team policy, the terms of their contracts were not disclosed, but Shams Charania of Yahoo! Sports reported the deal for Gay was worth one year at $10 million. The deal for Bertans is reportedly two years for $14.5 million.
Michael C. Wright: Official.
Davis Bertans: Happy to say that I’m staying in San Antonio for at least 2 more years. Thanks to @spurs for putting the trust in me and I can promise that I will pour my heart and soul to help this team win! Can’t wait for the new season.
Chuck Miketinac: Davis Bertan's agent, Happy Walters, said there were other suitors chasing Davis, and there would have been an offer sheet for a bit more money from an unnamed team, but Bertans thinks the Spurs are the best place for him going forward. More coming up at 9:45 on Max Sports.
Citing an anonymous source, the international basketball website Sportando reported Monday that Bertans has agreed to terms with the Spurs on a four-year, $20 million deal. The report, though, is premature, a league source, as well as a spokesperson for Bertans’ agent, said.
While it’s true the Spurs have shown heavy interest in retaining Bertans and are working toward hammering out a deal, no agreement has been reached, the league source said. A spokesperson for Bertans’ agent, Happy Walters, agreed, saying of the report, “It’s not true.”
Darren Wolfson: Corey Brewer and Davis Bertans are two more FAs that the #Twolves have planted seeds on. 2018 falls in line with 2016 and 2017 FA process that involved reaching out on dozens upon dozens of players.
Emiliano Carchia: The San Antonio Spurs have extended a qualifying offer to forward Davis Bertans, a source told Sportando
This rumor is part of a storyline: 46 more rumors
More HoopsHype Rumors
April 20, 2021 | 3:34 pm EDT Update

Anthony Edwards on why he should be Rookie of the Year: I'm scoring the ball at will

You’ve been ballin’, though. You averaged around 24 points a game in March and 23 points a game since the All Star Break. But you aren’t the clear cut choice for Rookie of the Year. What do you think? Are you the Rookie of the Year? Anthony Edwards: Everybody be askin’ me, I just tell them the same thing: Whoever picking the trophy, whatever it’s called, if they think I am, then yeah. If they don’t, then cool. I’m just here to play basketball. I’m tryin’ to be the best that I can be. I think you’re the Rookie of the Year! Tell me why you might be. Edwards: Well, I’m playing at a really high level right now. Like, I’m playing at a really, really high level. I’m scoring the ball at will. I’m getting a lot of steals. I feel like I’m really fun to watch. See, you don’t know if I have a Rookie of the Year vote. I might need some convincing. We know you’re fun. We see it! What else is it? Edwards” Ain’t too much I’mma do convincin’ wise and talkin’ wise. I just like to go to the court. I don’t really do too much talkin’.
Cool, glad we know some baseball guys. You’ve said before that your favorite team as a kid was the Thunder, because of Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant. You’ve played both those teams now, is that still true? Has your perception of those two changed at all? Anthony Edwards: Nahhhhh. As far as Durant being my favorite player? Nah. Hell nah, that hasn’t changed. He’s still my favorite player.
Did you guard [Kevin Durant]? Anthony Edwards: ….nah I ain’t guard him. You happy you ain’t guard him? Edwards: I ain’t gonna say I’m happy I didn’t. But, he’s like seven feet. I’m 6’4”, I can’t really do too much. What about Russell Westbrook? You had 21 against the Wizards. Edwads: Yuh, Yuh, Yuh, Yuh, Yuhhhhhh! I love playing Westbrook. Fasho! ‘Cuz, I can guard him. That’s my matchup. They always put me on Westbrook. Yeah, I had fun with that.