2019 NBA free agency tracker: Grades for every deal so far

Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images
Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images /
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NBA free agency
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Isaiah Thomas: 1 year, $2.3 million (Washington Wizards)

This is happy news for Isaiah Thomas, who will get his chance to play again after mostly being relegated to benchwarmer duty with a more competitive Denver Nuggets team. After making only 12 appearances and posting .343/.279/.630 shooting splits last year, IT will get ample opportunity to seize starter’s minutes on a team with an injured John Wall and a departing Tomas Satoransky.

With that being said … why on earth would the Washington Wizards prefer adding IT and Ish Smith rather than just keeping Satoransky? It’s not like Sato’s three-year, $30 million pact would’ve broken the bank with Jabari Parker and Bobby Portis likely on the way out. Smith and Thomas are cheaper, to be sure, but the difference isn’t significant enough to excuse letting legitimate NBA talent walk out the door.

Here’s hoping IT can rediscover some of that 2016-17 magic again up in D.C., because even though this minimum signing isn’t bad value on its own, it’s a mistake to think he’ll be an acceptable starter compared to the reasonable deal the Wizards could’ve kept Satoransky with.

Grade: C