Bradley Beal is currently under contract for $34.5 million next season with a player option for 2022-23. As such, it would be natural to assume that his place with the Washington Wizards is set in stone for at least the next two years.
Unfortunately, that’s just not the way things work in the NBA anymore.
This past week, rumors of Beal wanting out of D.C. bubbled up to the surface again. Obviously this isn’t a new phenomenon. He was linked to a blockbuster deal with the Los Angeles Lakers that has yet to come to fruition, and is constantly mentioned in some capacity as an available option.
That said, there is something that feels more serious about the speculation this time around.
According to Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report, Beal has quietly expressed a desire to at least give serious consideration to moving on from his current situation.
“‘He knows he has to make a decision before the draft,’ one source with direct knowledge of Beal’s thinking told Bleacher Report. For the past year, people familiar with Beal’s dedicated relationship to the Wizards have consistently rebuffed the notion he had interest in playing elsewhere. Yet a second source close to Bradley Beal, when contacted by B/R, confirmed the situation is now fluid,” Fischer reported.
There is now even a list of teams that Beal would welcome a trade to.
“Beal does not have a proverbial list of preferred destinations, but it was mentioned by multiple sources that he would welcome joining teams such as Boston, Golden State, Miami or Philadelphia,” Fischer added.
Jason Dumas, also of Bleacher Report, then added this tidbit:
Source: If Brad Beal does in fact move forward and request a trade, Boston would be a preferred destination to play with longtime friend Jayson Tatum and compete for a championship.
— Jason Dumas (@JDumasReports) July 24, 2021
The Wizards have made their asking price for Beal perfectly clear. Now it’s time for the potential suitors to step up and meet it. If they do, it wouldn’t be all that shocking to see the 28-year-old get dealt before the NBA Draft. If they don’t – the Wizards will happily retain him until they’re able to get something better down the line.