Last year, the Dallas Mavericks were a Kristaps Porzingis injury away from taking down the Los Angeles Clippers in the first round of the playoffs. This year, Porzingis was one of the main reasons why they lost to the Clippers.
Once deemed a rising star, Porzingis vastly regressed this season. He was hesitant to shoot, didn't make the most of his height advantage, took a step back in the defensive end, and wasn't a big presence in the glass.
That's why his trade value could be at an all-time low right now, thus making him a high-risk/high-reward for teams looking to add a star.
And, with the Washington Wizards pulling off a huge run late in the season to make the playoffs, Chris Crouse of Forty Eight Minutes believes that Porzingis could be a trade target for them:
"Kristaps Porzingis, who is reportedly frustrated with his situation in Dallas, is a name to watch. The front office continues to monitor Porzinigis’ situation, though the price tag will be a major factor in whether or not the Wizards can pull off a deal.
Westbrook, Bradley Beal, and Rui Hachimura are essentially untouchable in trade talks, a source tells FortyEightMinutes. It’s worth noting that Beal, who has the ability to hit the free-agent market next offseason, remains on the same page with the front office, as he’s been assured that they won’t trade him unless he requests it.
Deni Avdija is the kind of blue-chip talent that could be the centerpiece in a star-studded deal, though that same source indicated that it would take a substantial offer—like a deal for a true superstar—to pry him away from Washington. The Wizards remain optimistic that the former No. 9 overall pick will blossom into a top play-making wing and it’s likely that he’s on the roster to begin the 2021-22 NBA season.
Washington has the ability to put together an enticing package for Porzingis without including the four aforementioned players. The team’s first-round selection this season (projected to be No. 11, pending the draft lottery) and Davis Bertans would be a good starting point in negotiations."
Porzingis has reportedly grown tired of his situation next to Luka Doncic, the undisputed go-to guy at Dallas. The Wizards could use another scorer and an interior presence - assuming Porzingis starts using his size to his advantage.
As for the Mavericks, adding a sharp-shooting big like Davis Bertans could help solve some of their issues by giving Doncic another scoring threat on the perimeter, while a lottery pick and the chance of taking Porzingis' deals off their books makes it even more enticing.