According to reports, unrestricted free agent center Ian Mahinmi has agreed to sign with the Washington Wizards. The deal will pay him $64 million over four years. It cannot officially be signed until the end of the NBA’s moratorium period on July 7th.
Shams Charania of The Vertical broke the news on Saturday evening:
Free agent Ian Mahinmi has agreed to a four year, $64M deal with Washington, league source tells The Vertical.
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) July 3, 2016
Report: Ian Mahinmi Agrees to Contract with Washington Wizards
Mahinmi’s contract will take him through the end of the 2019-20 season. No player or team options in the deal have been disclosed yet, if any exist.
Mahinmi, a 29-year-old Frenchman, averaged 9.3 points, 7.1 rebounds, and 1.1 blocks per game last season for the Indiana Pacers. He racked up career high numbers across the board last year, including assists and steals, as well as the categories mentioned above. He also started all 71 of the regular season games in which he played, by far a career high. Mahinmi only started 21 total games in his career before last season.
Mahinmi will bring rim protection and rebounding inside for the Wizards next season. His defense is much improved, as he now does a better job of hedging out on ball handlers and getting back to his man on pick-and-rolls. Mahinmi also has a surprisingly good finesse game. He can screen for a guard, roll to the rim, catch a pass in traffic, and either loft a soft jump hook into the basket or kick the ball to shooters spotting up on the perimeter. This will make Mahinmi extremely effective playing with John Wall, who will undoubtedly be the best passer that Mahinmi has ever played alongside. Mahinmi’s improving court vision from the interior will help open up shooters such as Bradley Beal and Otto Porter.
Mahinmi may begin the season in a reserve role for the Wizards, playing behind Washington’s incumbent starting center, Marcin Gortat. However, if Mahinmi continues to develop his game and provides his team with consistent production and energy, he may find himself in the starting lineup by the end of the season. Mahinmi will look to help Washington make the playoffs in 2017, as the Wizards fell just short of the postseason in a disappointing 2015-16 campaign.
Mahinmi is going into his ninth season in the league. He previously played for the San Antonio Spurs and Dallas Mavericks, but he never really thrived until his recent time spent with the Pacers. Mahinmi was selected 28th overall by San Antonio in the 2005 NBA Draft, but it took him a few years to come over from Europe to the NBA.