NBA Rumors: Bradley Beal-For-Lonzo Ball Trade Could Make Pelicans ‘Bona Fide Contender,’ Per ‘Bleacher Report’

Bradley Beal #3 of the Washington Wizards reacts after scoring Boston Celtics in the first half at Capital One Arena on April 09, 2019 in Washington, DC.
Rob Carr / Getty Images

When they officially traded the face of the franchise, Anthony Davis, to the Los Angeles Lakers this summer, the popular belief around the league was the New Orleans Pelicans would then unload their veterans and undergo a full-scale rebuild. However, more than a month since the Davis blockbuster deal, the Pelicans still haven’t shown any sign that they are planning to trade veteran point guard Jrue Holiday, hinting at the possibility that they could try to compete for a playoff spot in the deep Western Conference in the 2019-20 NBA season.

If the Pelicans really intend to remain competitive, it will not be a surprise if they try to acquire a superstar before the February NBA trade deadline. One of the potential trade targets for the Pelicans is Bradley Beal of the Washington Wizards. According to Preston Ellis of Bleacher Report, adding Beal to the core of Jrue Holiday, Zion Williamson, Brandon Ingram, and Derrick Favors would turn the Pelicans into a “bona fide contender” in the Western Conference next season.

“The Pelicans would become a bona fide contender with Beal. A lineup of Jrue Holiday, Beal, Brandon Ingram, Zion Williamson and Derrick Favors with endless depth would make New Orleans arguably one of the teams to beat in either conference. Armed with four capable starting ball-handlers, the Pelicans could further space the floor by moving Zion to the 5 in small-ball lineups and pushing a small-ball unit with JJ Redick in three-guard lineups, making one of the NBA’s faster half-court offenses.”

In the proposed trade deal by Bleacher Report, the Pelicans will be sending a trade package including Lonzo Ball, Darius Miller, E’Twaun Moore, Nickeil Alexander-Walker, a 2020 first-round pick, and a 2021 first-round pick to the Wizards in exchange for Beal. The deal works on ESPN‘s NBA Trade Machine. If the trade becomes a reality, it will definitely help both teams in filling up the needs to improve on their roster.

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Bradley Beal won’t make the Pelicans an instant favorite to win an NBA championship, but if he manages to build good chemistry with their core players, New Orleans will undeniably become a team to watch out for in the Western Conference next season. Beal would give the Pelicans an All-Star caliber shooting guard that can efficiently play alongside other NBA superstars. Last season, Beal posted incredible numbers, averaging 25.6 points, five rebounds, 5.5 assists, and 1.5 steals while shooting 47.5 percent from the field and 35.1 percent from beyond the arc.

Meanwhile, in exchange for Beal, the Wizards would be acquiring two young and promising talents in Lonzo Ball and Nickeil Alexander-Walker that could help them speed up the rebuilding process. If the Wizards finally decide to take a different route, they could use one of the first-round picks that they could potentially receive from the Pelicans to unload the injured John Wall and his lucrative contract.