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Houston Rockets guard John Wall opts into contract, sides likely to work on buyout

Vincent Frank

Houston Rockets guard John Wall did not play a single game with the team last season as the two sides failed to come to an agreement on a role.

This led to speculation that the All-Star would either be bought out or dealt ahead of the February 10 NBA trade deadline. That never came to fruition.

Facing a deadline later this month to exercise his $47.4 million player option for the 2022-23 season, Wall has reportedly done just that. According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, Wall and the Rockets are now working together on a resolution in the near future.

It seems to be highly unlikely that Houston will be able to trade Wall and his bloated contract. Once one of the better players in the NBA, the 31-year-old Wall has seen injuries derail his career. He’s played in a total of 72 games since the end of the 2017-18 season. This leads us to believe that a buyout could be in the cards.

Related: John Wall and the highest-paid NBA players

Analyzing the John Wall contract situation with the Houston Rockets

Houston-Rockets-John-Wall
Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

It was back in February that Houston engaged in trade talks with the Los Angeles Lakers that would have sent Russell Westbrook back to the Rockets in exchange for Wall. These talks fell apart when Los Angeles pushed back against giving up a first-round pick to Houston in the trade.

This is the difficulty of moving Wall’s contract in today’s NBA landscape. Sure expiring deals have some value to them. With that said, Houston is not going to take on another bloated contract in return for Wall without acquiring draft pick assets. The team is in the midst of a long-term rebuild. This wouldn’t make any sense.

  • John Wall stats (2020-21): 20.6 PPG, 3.2 RPG, 6.9 APG, 40% shooting, 32% 3-point

As you can see, Wall played pretty well in his last action back in 2020-21. Contending teams would have interest in him on the buyout market. That now seems to be the likeliest scenario here.