Wake-up call: 'Mutual interest' regarding Garrett Temple

Wake-up call: 'Mutual interest' regarding Garrett Temple
June 30, 2014, 1:00 am
Share This Post

While the Wizards enter Monday with two key decisions on their hands -- whether or not to extend qualifying offers to Trevor Booker and Kevin Seraphin so they remain restricted before free agency opens Tuesday -- they're likely to bring back Garrett Temple and haven't ruled out re-signing Chris Singleton, three people with knowledge of the situation have confirmed with CSN Washington.

The priority isn't as high on Singleton, who had the worst season of his three-year career by appearing in just 25 games, averaging 3.0 points and shooting 37.3%. The Wizards declined to pick up the fourth-year option on the 6-8 forward's rookie contract before the 2013-14 season. He played at Las Vegas summer league last year and didn't show the progress they'd hoped to see, opting for too many fadeaway jump shots rather than playing bigger. 

Singleton, a first-round draft pick in 2011, might not have any takers in free agency, and just because the Wizards declined his option doesn't mean he can't come back. They could offer him a minimum deal to fill out the bench. For Singleton, it would allow him to stay on an NBA roster even though he might not play much.

Temple is a slightly different case. There still is "mutual interest" on both sides, CSN was told two weeks ago and again Sunday night by another person with knowledge of the situation. He only averaged 1.8 points but appeared in 75 games, but coach Randy Wittman values his locker room presence, work ethic and Temple's acceptance of his role. He was logging more minutes per game as a reserve until the Wizards acquired Andre Miller on Feb. 20 in a trade, which in turn relegated Temple to spot duty. 

Temple is a decent ball-handler, solid defender at 6-6 and played for the veteran minimum at $884,000. If he develops a more consistent jump shot, that could get him more time. His defense showed vs. the likes of Kyrie Irving of the Cleveland Cavaliers, who had problems beating him off the dribble to get clean looks. Temple entered Game 5 of a first-round series vs. the Chicago Bulls. He only played 18 seconds but his length forced Jimmy Butler to miss a layup to clinch the series. 

The Wizards have six unrestricted free agents and are making an all-out push to retain Marcin Gortat and Trevor Ariza. Drew Gooden is expected to re-sign and the Wizards have notified Miller's agent that they intend to pick up the $4.6 million option on his deal. Glen Rice, who has a partially guaranteed year at $816,000, will be back and get more of an opportunity to play especially with the back injury to Martell Webster. 

So if Booker and Seraphin are allowed to walk, that opens two roster spots. It would be three holes to fill without Singleton. He's not the ideal fit, but could be in case of an emergency.