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Rumor: the Wiz "have long liked Jeff Green"

In a piece examining the Wizards improbable playoff run and their future, Grantland's Zach Lowe discusses the futures of Trevor Ariza and Marcin Gortat in Washington and hints that Jeff Green could be a possible replacement.

Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

This whole thing reminds me of junior high.  Does she like me or does she like-like me?  Here's the tidbit from Lowe's article:

The Wiz may need to retain Bird rights on Gortat and Ariza so they can outbid suitors who would offer those players the midlevel exception. That wouldn't preclude Washington from going under the cap. The Wiz could keep Gortat and Ariza on their books unsigned, talk to Bosh/Melo-level players, and then renounce Gortat and Ariza if they strike an informal deal with one of the stars.

Washington could work the trade market to find a capable replacement for one or both guys - a proven veteran better than the minimum-salary stopgaps, but on a cheaper and/or shorter deal than Ariza and Gortat will get. The Wiz have long liked Jeff Green, who has just two seasons left on his current deal.

From Ernie Grunfeld's perspective, it makes sense.  Whether the Wiz are aiming to "sustain 'pretty good' success" or contend for a championship, Jeff Green is an affordable replacement (and in my opinion, an upgrade) to Trevor Ariza.  He's younger than Ariza, played his college ball at Georgetown, and has roots in the Maryland area.

But what do the Celtics get in return?  As Lowe points out, Washington is at a crossroads with very few assets to trade.  It's doubtful that Ainge would take a flyer on Otto Porter and I can't see the Wizards pulling off a sign-and-trade for Gortat even if they know he wants to leave.  I'm not even sure Gortat is the answer for the C's at C.  We're talking about a 3-4 year deal for a team that could still be a year or two away from a championship window.

Let's just chalk it up as just another rumor in what will be a rumor-filled next few months.

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