Xavier Cooks has officially signed his multi-year deal with the Washington Wizards, with the NBL's Most Valuable Player making the jump to the NBA after winning a second straight championship in Australia.
Cooks signed a four-year, $6.1 million contract, sources told ESPN, with the deal set to keep him in Washington through the 2025-26 NBA season.
Cooks, a versatile 6'8 forward, averaged 16.2 points, 7.8 rebounds, and 4.2 assists per game during the regular season for the Sydney Kings over the 2022-23 regular season. He would go on to win the Andrew Gaze Trophy for the league's MVP. He's the fifth player in as many seasons to sign an NBA contract following a stint with the Kings, joining Brian Bowen II, Andrew Bogut, Jae'Sean Tate, and Didi Louzada.
The 27-year-old helped lead the Kings to back-to-back NBL Championships, posting 19 points and 11 rebounds in the team's Game 5 decider on Wednesday.
"We welcome Xavier to the Wizards organization as a very intelligent, high-energy player that will add athleticism to our squad while being a great teammate," Wizards President and General Manager, Tommy Sheppard, said.
"He left a lasting legacy in the NBL to pursue his dream to play in the NBA and we feel he will be an excellent addition now and in the future."
Cooks went undrafted out of Winthrop in 2018 and played one professional season in Germany before signing with the Kings. He was named the Grand Final MVP during the Kings' championship-winning run over the 2021-22 season.
"My versatility is the big thing that's going to help," Cooks told ESPN in early March, of how his game will translate to the NBA.
"And my motor. I think if you play hard, that'll go a long way, so my ability to rebound the ball and push the ball in transition; especially the way the NBA's designed, it's such a fast-paced game that, I think my game is going to transition pretty well over there.
"The athletes are a lot closer to my athleticism than here in Australia. I'm definitely going to focus on putting on some weight; they have great strength and conditioning coaches and great individual coaches [in Washington], and the best resources to get better, so I'm excited to get to work."
The Wizards are 32-37 on the season, currently sitting in 10th place in the Eastern Conference.