NBA Basketball

Gortat doesn't want trade from Wizards, despite desire to play for Magic

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WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 12: Marcin Gortat #13 of the Washington Wizards looks on against the Orlando Magic in the first half at Capital One Arena on January 12, 2018 in Washington, DC.

Rob Carr / Getty Images Sport / Getty

The Polish Hammer is committed to the Washington Wizards and playing out the remainder of his contract in the nation’s capital, even though he may want to finish his career elsewhere.

After discussing how he foresees himself retiring at the end of the 2018-19 season, and that he’d like one last run as a member of the Orlando Magic, Wizards center Marcin Gortat needed to clear the air on his short-term plans.

“I want to play in Washington,” he said Friday, according to NBC Sports Washington’s Chase Hughes. “Just because I want to finish my career in a year-and-a-half doesn’t mean I don’t want to play in Washington. I think everything today was blown away a little too much.”

Gortat recently told The Orlando Sentinel’s Josh Robbins he would love to join the Magic “for maybe two or three months, or maybe half a season at least,” before hanging up his kicks for good. The 33-year-old played in Orlando for four seasons from 2007 through 2011 before being dealt to the Phoenix Suns, who then moved him to Washington in October 2013.

The Wizards currently own the fifth-strongest record in the Eastern Conference at 24-18, with Gortat averaging 9.2 points and 8.2 rebounds across all 42 games. While he admitted Friday he was frustrated earlier in the season with his shaky performances, the near-7-footer is content with how he and his team have fared as of late.

A fourth postseason appearance in five years feels like a given for Washington, so if Gortat is going out, he wants to try to go out on top.

“Unless the team wants to trade me, at this point in my life and my career I feel good here playing with John (Wall) and Brad (Beal),” he said. “I have a year-and-a-half. I want to make a run with this team to the Finals and give 110 percent to the team. After that, I already hit the 10 years mark and have a full pension and I will be done.”

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