With reports of the Houston Rockets and John Wall seeking to find a new landing spot for the five-time All-Star, many have begun to question where Wall could be headed. For starters, most teams already have a point guard, but also not many teams have the cap space to absorb Wall's supermax contract, which has him owed $91.7 million through 2023.
Then there's the injury history, which has caused the 31-year-old to miss 195 games over the last four seasons, including 32 last season. In spite of being away from the court for two years, Wall played as well as one could have expected in 2020-21, as he averaged 20.6 points, 6.9 assists, and 3.2 rebounds, while also providing leadership to a young Rockets team that was hampered by injuries.
But where exactly could Wall be headed, and how realistic is it that he gets traded? ESPN's Zach Lowe provided a potential destination for Wall during Tuesday's episode of The Jump.
"The Thunder, just because they have a gazillion dollars in cap room. They are like a point guard rehabilitation farm system at this point, they might be realistic."
ESPN's Zach Lowe cites Thunder as potential landing spot for Houston Rockets guard John Wall
The Oklahoma City Thunder present an interesting possibility, for a multitude of reasons, as Thunder GM Sam Presti has become well-acquainted with the Rockets' front office throughout his tenure as OKC's executive. But if there's one thing we know about Presti it's that he values draft picks, specifically first-round draft picks, which we've heard the Rockets don't want to get rid of in any potential Wall trade.
Lowe further explained some of the challenges the Rockets could have in moving Wall.
"What do rebuilding teams not like to do? Give up draft picks.
And I think that's the issue the Rockets are going to face. By the way, John Wall is still a solid player.
I thought his comeback last year was a nice story, but he's owed $100 million almost over the next two seasons. To find a home for that contract for that player is going to be really hard, even though he is still a solid player.
The big albatross contracts around the league have either been bought out, like Blake Griffin for instance, or are on teams that don't really need John Wall or would need to be incentivized to take John Wall. I think Houston is in a tough spot here.
The LA Clippers could cobble together a bunch of picks and players to get John Wall, I'm not really sure it makes any sense for them.
Sixers, I don't really see it. It's just going to be tough for Houston to find a home for him."
These exact drawbacks are why it would seem like a buyout would be the most ideal outcome, but we've heard from Wall's representation that he doesn't want to take a buyout, as understandably so, as his days of raking in over $40 million annually are likely over, although he has a ton of basketball left. Not to mention the fact that he's had to overcome significant injuries to his lower extremities.
Either way, the Rockets are in no rush to identify a landing spot for Wall, so don't expect anything to materialize soon.