Grade the Trade: Pacers land NBA Champion for 2 players in mock deal

In this mock trade, the Indiana Pacers would land Kyle Kuzma from the Washington Wizards.

Indiana Pacers, Kyle Kuzma, Washington Wizards, NBA Trade Rumors, Buddy Hield, Jarace Walker
Indiana Pacers, Kyle Kuzma, Washington Wizards, NBA Trade Rumors, Buddy Hield, Jarace Walker / Scott Taetsch/GettyImages
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Grade for the Washington Wizards

It’s been a brutal season for the Washington Wizards. The only reason they aren’t more widely viewed as the worst team in basketball is because the Detroit Pistons tied the NBA record for the most losses in a row.

Jordan Poole has been rough all year, and the Wizards are currently sitting at 6-29 on the season, which places them in 14th place in the Eastern Conference.

That said, Kyle Kuzma has put up some pretty solid numbers. Combine that with his fair contract (following an extension this summer), and he could be one of their best trade chips.

The return they’d get back in this deal would be solid, though Buddy Hield likely wouldn’t stick around. Washington would be better off rerouting him to a third team.

Jarace Walker is an intriguing piece for the Wizards to take a chance on. He hasn’t earned much playing time in Indiana this year, but he was a top-10 pick in the 2023 NBA Draft for a reason.

He would have to fight with Deni Acdija and fellow rookie Bilal Coulibaly, who the Wizards picked one spot ahead of Walker in the draft, for playing time, but Washington could probably find room for everybody.

It’s not a terrible return for the Wizards, especially when coupled with a first-rounder, but they could probably do a bit better for Kuzma.

Grade: C+