Russell Westbrook may want out of Houston, but his enormous contract has made finding a trade destination difficult. John Wall is in a similar situation. According to The Athletic’s Shams Charania, he too wants a trade, but money makes finding one difficult. Both are owed $132.6 million over the next three seasons. They are both poor shooters that appear past their prime from an age and health standpoint. Unsurprisingly, few teams appear interested in taking on that much money for either player, so according to Charania, the Wizards and Rockets are discussing one with one another.
Wall, recovering from a torn Achilles tendon, may or may not be able to play at a high-level next season. In Westbrook, the Wizards would get a similarly athletic point guard with fewer health risks. Pairing him with Bradley Beal and the return of free agent Davis Bertans should vault the Wizards back into contention for a playoff spot. With Beal’s free agency looming in 2022, that could be an effective recruiting pitch.
But the Rockets are perfectly aware of this, and they wouldn’t give the Wizards Westbrook out of the kindness of their hearts. They’d be giving up the best player in the deal, and unlike most possible Westbrook trades, they wouldn’t be giving up the worst contract. According to Charania, the deal has not yet gained any traction because the Rockets want more assets than Washington has offered. That could involve draft capital, though with the Wizards surprisingly landing rookie Deni Avidja at No. 9 overall, those picks would probably have to come in the future.