4. JOHN WALL
If you want our take on Wall’s future, just go hit newsstands and check out Dime #70 when it drops later this week. For all the criticism he received last season, the dude still put up great all-around numbers, and in the final five games of the year, Wall averaged 14.2 points, 12.4 assists, 4.6 rebounds, and 2.6 steals, all on 46 percent shooting. He has it in him to become one of the most dominant floor generals in the league… simply, a bigger version of Rajon Rondo.
The problem with Wall’s expectations are that they don’t stem from him. Because Derrick Rose and Russell Westbrook have been so successful, Wall’s adequate start is deemed a failure. Rose was drafted onto a talented team that had made the playoffs in recent years while Westbrook latched on with a superstar. Neither one of them were drafted into a situation as desperate as Washington’s was. They still had Gilbert Arenas, still had Andray Blatche, and had no one to mentor or counsel Wall.
Washington has graduated from Clown U, and we expect Wall to do the same. He’ll be putting up 18/5/10 averages very soon. Need a taste? In April against Cleveland, Wall became just the fourth player in the last 25 years to throw up a 21-13-7-7 line.