On Wednesday night, Bradley Beal poured in 47 points, but the Washington Wizards still lost by 18 to the New Orleans Pelicans. It was the 10th straight 40-point outing for Beal that ended in a defeat — an NBA record — and after the game he admitted he was frustrated with how things are going in D.C.
Given his talent and team situation, it’s only natural that Beal trade talks were a trending topic in the aftermath of all that. But while every team around the league would snap at the opportunity to acquire the scoring machine, he won’t be on the move any time soon.
Beal has repeatedly pledged his loyalty to the Wizards, and during an appearance on ESPN’s The Jump on Thursday, Adrian Wojnarowski reported that teams don’t get the sense there’s any opening for a deal right now.
Here is Wojnarowski’s explanation of the situation:
Right now, Bradley’s focus with the Wizards is just on trying to get this season turned around, and trying to get this team on track. Beal when he signed that extension, adding on a couple years to his deal — remember he’s under contract next season, 2021-22, has a player option for 2022-23 — he knew that there was going to be a period that they needed to see growth.
He wanted to see where the Wizards could go as an organization: John Wall was coming back, they brought in Rui Hachimura, Thomas Bryant, that was a significant injury losing him for the season. This wasn’t the team they envisioned going into the year. The one thing with Beal and the relationship he’s had with that organization is he’s not impetuous with what’s going on. He has been extremely loyal. I think people were surprised when he decided to do that extension given where the team was.
Now, the trade deadline is March 25, that’s less than two months away. You talk to other teams who are all over the league monitoring the Beal situation closely and looking for any inkling to think that he might be coming available. And teams will typically know before anybody else does, before we even report it, that there’s an opening there. And none of them sense that now.
Things change, but right now he’s trying to get this team back on track. But there’s no question that his future, his long-term future, is very uncertain there.
As Wojnarowski mentioned at the end, the fact that Beal is committed to the Wizards right now doesn’t mean he still will be in a few months. The team has the worst record in the league at 3-11, the Russell Westbrook addition does not appear to be working out and it’s hard to see a path towards significant improvement in the near future.
It’s very easy to see how Beal could eventually get tired of trying to do everything himself in D.C. and request a trade. Until then, however, contenders looking for the final piece to their championship puzzle are just going to have to wait.
Courtesy: CBS Sports