Jordan Crawford was traded to the Washington Wizards late Wednesday in a deal that sent Kirk Hinrich to the Atlanta Hawks. Mike Bibby also went to the Wizards, giving Washington just a touch of cap relief, as both Bibby and Hinrich are signed through the 2011-12 season. Still, because Hinrich is a better player than Bibby, the Wizards needed some incentive to make the swap. That came in the form of Crawford, the No. 27 pick in the 2010 NBA Draft, and a 2011 first-round pick that will land in the high teens or low 20s.
Crawford starred at Xavier, averaging more than 20 points per game, before making himself eligible for the draft. But he's certainly most famous for his dunking ability, and in particular his dunk on LeBron James during a Nike event that led to some wild conspiracy to keep video of said dunk a secret.
But on the court, Crawford looks like be a solid complementary scorer at the two-guard. In Washington, that spot is currently manned by Nick Young, who has exploded this season, averaging 17.5 points per game on about league-average shooting efficiency. Crawford hasn't played much in Atlanta, just as Young had trouble staying on the floor his rookie season under Eddie Jordan. But in those limited minutes, Crawford has shown to be similar to Young in relying primarily on long jumpers -- three-pointers, mostly -- to get his offense. Both can get to the rim; Young's dunks are almost as famous as those of Crawford. But they like to shoot first.
Young will be a restricted free agent at season's end. If the Wizards won't or can't keep him, Crawford will be there waiting in the wings. If Washington decides to make Young the starting two-guard for the near-future, Crawford will be there waiting for his opportunity, just as Young did before him.