Worst free agency signings in NBA history: 18. Ian Mahinmi, Washington Wizards
The Washington Wizards are one team that’s struggling for cap space with 2019 NBA free agency right around the corner. They’re roughly $7.19 million under the cap with the free agent period approaching. One of the reasons is the current contract Ian Mahinmi has been on as he enters the final year of his deal.
Mahinmi signed a four-year, $64 million deal with the Wizards back during the 2016 NBA free agency period. Since then, he’s been more of a burden than an asset for them. Mahinmi appeared in just 31 games during his first season in Washington, missing the season’s first 14 games due to a knee injury.
It was assumed he could be brought into to man the starting center spot after doing well with the Indiana Pacers during the 2016-17 NBA season, but injuries have restricted him to 142 of a possible 246 games. In his final season with the Pacers in 2015-16, Mahinmi averaged 9.3 points and 7.1 rebounds per game along with 1.1 blocks per contest.
At roughly $16 million per year, the return on Mahinmi has been relatively low, as he’s started in just six games through three seasons and produced 4.8 points and 4.2 rebounds per game.
Luckily for Washington, Mahinmi is entering the final year of his contract. The Wizards have since drafted Gonzaga Bulldogs forward Rui Hachimura and Tennessee Volunteers forward Admiral Schofield. They’ve also transitioned big man Thomas Bryant into the fold. It’s a cautionary tale for them, as they’re looking to improve what they currently have on the roster.