Refuting a rumor that spread like wildfire Monday morning, the Washington Wizards have no intention to deal the No. 3 pick in Thursday's draft to the Chicago Bulls for small forward Luol Deng, Michael Lee of the Washington Post reports.
The proposed deal, which would have sent Deng to Washington in exchange for the No. 3 pick and big man Emeka Okafor, was first reported by ESPN.com's Marc Stein earlier Monday. He said the two sides had entered "exploratory talks."
However, it appears those talks either didn't last very long, or never quite happened. While the Wizards have spoke with multiple teams about trading their top pick, as Lee reports, he says the team couldn't find a strong package and intends to simply draft someone with the selection.
Because Deng and Okafor are both projected to hit free agency after the 2013-14 season, any trade would've likely been considered shortsighted by Washington. The Wizards need long-term upgrades to their organization, but acquiring the 28-year-old Deng would be a clear win-now move.