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NBA Rumors: Wizards Might Wait Until Offseason Before Trading Bradley Beal, Per ‘ESPN’

Lorenzo Tanos - Author
By

Feb. 4 2021, Updated 6:25 a.m. ET

The past few months have seen Washington Wizards superstar Bradley Beal featured in a plethora of trade rumors, including several that would have him changing teams ahead of the March 25 deadline. However, a new report suggests that the shooting guard might be staying put in the nation’s capital at least until the end of the 2020-21 campaign.

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On Thursday, ESPN’s Tim Bontemps wrote that this year’s trade deadline is expected to be a “quiet” one, considering how many top-tier players found new homes in the 2020 offseason. With Giannis Antetokounmpo and Rudy Gobert respectively signing lucrative extensions with the Milwaukee Bucks and Utah Jazz, Beal is arguably the “biggest star” who could still be moved on or before March 25. However, Bontemps also noted that there haven’t been any signs that he is unhappy in Washington, despite the fact the Wizards are second-to-last in the Eastern Conference with a 5-13 record.

Citing an unnamed Western Conference executive, the ESPN reporter wrote that if Beal gets traded, the deal might take place during the 2021 offseason.

“I think it would have to be pressure from him and his agent to do so, and it sounds to me like that won’t happen until after the season, if at all,” the executive was quoted as saying.

A second Western Conference team official reportedly offered the same prediction regarding Beal’s odds of getting dealt by the Wizards before the deadline.

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“Zero [chance]. That’s what they keep saying. They’ve been adamant they’re not moving him.”

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As pointed out by Bleacher Report, Beal is currently enjoying his best statistical season since getting drafted third overall by Washington in 2012, with a league-leading 34.8 points per game. He is also averaging 5.1 points, 4.6 rebounds, and 1.2 steals and shooting a solid 48.5 percent from the field. However, the outlet suggested that he hasn’t quite meshed with offseason acquisition Russell Westbrook, who joined the Wizards via the transaction that sent John Wall to the Houston Rockets.

Although moving Beal elsewhere might turn out to be a “massive step back” for the Wizards in the short term, the publication stressed that trading him might give the team the players and/or draft picks it needs to return to contention. Aside from the possibility that they might be picking in the lottery in 2021, the organization has gotten encouraging results from its two most recent first-round draft picks — forwards Rui Hachimura and Deni Avdija. A few other youngsters, including Thomas Bryant and Troy Brown Jr., have likewise shown promise, though both have also been mentioned in trade ideas that could allow the Wizards to acquire another star player.

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