The Houston Rockets and Washington Wizards Exchange All-Star Players

There was a blockbuster trade between the Houston Rockets and Washington Wizards, which took place on Wednesday. The trade has also changed the backcourts of both the Rockets and the Wizards.

Both the Houston Rockets and Washington Wizards Exchange NBA All-Stars

After only being with the Rockets for one year, Russell Westbrook was traded to the Wizards. Also, John Wall, who has spent his entire career with the Wizards, has been traded to the Rockets along with a 2023 protected first-round pick. This news was confirmed by Shams Charania, senior lead NBA insider/writer/analyst for The Athletic and Stadium.

Westbrook averaged 27.2 points, 7.9 rebounds, 7.0 assists, and 1.6 steals per game with the Rockets in the 2019-20 season. Furthermore, from 2016-19, the now nine-time NBA All-Star had three triple-double seasons with the Oklahoma City Thunder. This includes winning the NBA Most Valuable Player award in 2017.

On the other hand, Wall is a five-time NBA All-Star and averaged 20.7 points, 8.7 assists, 3.6 rebounds, and 1.5 steals per game during the 2018-19 season. However, Wall only played 32 games. The last time he played close to a full season was the 2016-17 season when he averaged 23.1 points, 10.7 assists, and 2.0 steals per game. He did not play for the whole 2019-20 season.

Overview of the John Wall and Russell Westbrook Trade

How John Wall and Russell Westbrook Will Fit on their New Teams

This trade is a big risk for both teams, especially the Rockets. Yes, in both cases, they are happy to get an NBA All-Star player. Wall will be part of the backcourt with James Harden and Westbrook will be in the backcourt with Bradley Beal. However, in Wall’s case, he has not had a full NBA season since the 2016-17 NBA season.

It is unknown right now if he can play a full season. Also, according to Jeremy Woo of Sports Illustrated, Wall is a ball-dominant guard, which might be a problem for the Rockets in the 2020-21 season.

Furthermore, Woo also added that Beal would be a better fit for Westbrook. However, Westbrook has had trouble advancing in the playoffs. When Kevin Durant left Oklahoma City, the Thunder became Westbrook’s team. They played well enough to make the playoffs but could not get past the first round. During the 2018 postseason, the Thunder were eliminated in the first round after losing to Damian Lillard and the Portland Trail Blazers in five games.

Russell Westbrook and His Lack of Success in the NBA Playoffs

The best a Westbrook-led Thunder team did was lose to the Utah Jazz in the Western Conference first-round during the 2017 postseason, despite having players such as Paul George.

They would lose in the first round again the following year to the Trail Blazers in 2018. It is important to note that the Rockets also get a 2023 protected first-round pick. However, nobody can predict how valuable that first-round pick a few years from now. Charania has some more details on the protected first-round draft pick.

Yes, he joined the Rockets and defeated the Thunder during the 2020 postseason. However, that team was Harden’s team as he has been there longer than Westbrook. Although, for a team like the Wizards, who have missed the NBA playoffs two times in a row, he might improve the Wizards’ standard of play next year.

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