The Washington Wizards came within a game of advancing to the Eastern Conference Finals last year, dropping a tough Game 7 to the Boston Celtics in Boston.
However, the Wizards still have their young core of stars in place, led by point guard John Wall and shooting guard Bradley Beal, among others.
Still, this team is going to need some help before the end of the year if it is going to go further in the playoffs than last season.
Fortunately, there are already a few viable trade candidates out there, should the Wizards decide they don't want to wait until 2018 to make a move.
With plenty of teams looking to tank for a shot at the No. 1 overall pick, there are a few veteran players who could be available for the right price.
Here are a few players who the Wizards should take a long look at before the calendar flips to 2018:
Robin Lopez, Chicago Bulls
The Wizards' front-court depth is certainly an issue, much as it was last year, so addressing it will be a top priority before the trade deadline.
If they don't want to wait until February, though, Lopez could be available much sooner, as the Bulls are a team that will almost certainly try to tank for the No. 1 overall pick.
Lopez has emerged as a talented post player in recent years and would be a good fit in either the starting lineup or coming off the bench for the Wizards.
After last year's playoff run with the Bulls, Lopez also has plenty of recent postseason experience, another thing that will make him appealing to Washington.
Eric Bledsoe, Phoenix Suns
In light of recent comments made by Bledsoe about the Suns, Phoenix is actively looking to trade the disgruntled guard.
Yes, the Wizards have a strong backcourt already, with starters John Wall and Bradley Beal forming a talented tandem. Still, there are depth concerns there, as the team lost Brandon Jennings and Bojan Bogdanovic this offseason.
Adding Bledsoe to the second unit with Tim Frazier and some of the team's other guards would only make the team stronger.
And, since the Suns are motivated sellers, he likely could be had for much less than market value.
Michael Beasley, New York Knicks
Beasley could be an intriguing option, as the Knicks aren't expected to compete for the playoffs this year.
Much like Jennings last year, Beasley could be a low-risk, high-reward option for the Wizards' second unit. As he's only on a one-year contract, the Wizards wouldn't be making any long-term commitment to the mercurial forward.
The Knicks haven't used Beasley much this year, so he'll be eager to get out of the Big Apple if he doesn't start getting more playing time.
The Wizards could do a lot worse than taking a flier on a player who averaged 12.8 points per game for the Houston Rockets only two years ago.News Now - Sport News