Jeremy Hyman | WashingtonWizards.com
Welcome back Martell!
The Wizards officially announced that Martell Webster has re-signed with the team and according to his instragram account, he'll be here for the next four years. While the Wizards made it no secret they wanted Webster back, in this business you can never be sure of anything, so it's great news to hear this was finalized and made official. There was mutual interest between both Webster and the Wizards, which made this a perfect match for a long-term deal.
After signing a one-year deal last August, Webster had a career season in 2012-13, averaging a career-high 11.4 points points per game and making a career-high 139 three-pointers.
While the terms of the deal were not disclosed, other media reports have the deal worth roughly 22 million over 4 years (the full mid-level exception). Seeing what some other free agents have received this off-season, the deal seems fair for the kind of production the Wizards should get out of Webster over the next four seasons. Shooters like Kyle Korver and J.J Redick received similar deals and may be slightly better perimeter shooters (and maybe only by a slim margin), but Webster is far more athletic than the two of them and a much better defender. I think Webster can do a lot of things well besides be a knock down perimeter shooter making him a valuable asset to this Wizards squad.
Webster was also a big piece of the camaraderie in the locker room last season, which is why it's hard to simply justify any kind of dollar figures on numbers. Webster's presence was critical in bringing together the team and he was always a standup guy who would talk to the media after any tough loss.
After the Wizards took Otto Porter in the draft and with Trevor Ariza still under contract for one more season, some are wondering how they will find playing time for all of these forwards in 2013-14. Webster, who started 62 games last season, could find himself back in that starting "3" spot again next year or could be a sixth man and play valuable minutes off the bench. In today's NBA, there no longer are locked in positions and head coach Randy Wittman often references how he will start five basketball players, not numbers. Having all of this depth should allow Witt to play many different lineups, shifting Webster anywhere from the "2" to the "4" spot. We've seen teams play lineups with no true centers and five shooters on the floor, where the Wizards could throw a lineup of Wall, Beal, Webster, Ariza, and Porter all on the floor together. While this probably won't be the norm, in today's game it's all about matchups.
This team now has a lot of versatility, a lot of length, a lot of athletes, and is now poised to be a serious threat to make the playoffs in 2013-14.