ORLANDO -- Aside from the regular-season about to begin for the Wizards in less than 24 hours, the clock also is ticking on coming to terms with Bradley Beal on an extension to his rookie deal. But just as in July, August and last month, the situation remains unchanged, CSNmidatlantic.com has been told by multiple persons with knowledge of the situation.
Beal, a No. 3 overall pick in 2012, is entering his fourth year. He’s eligible for a four-year deal and wants a max deal or something very close to it. Harrison Barnes, who comes of the bench for Golden State, turned down a $64 million extension and decided to table talks until after their season. The Wizards seemed inclined to give Beal a max extension a season ago but he had a sub-par 2014-15 season by averaging 15.3 points -– only a shade above the 13.9 he averaged as a rookie –- and had a stress reaction in his lower right leg for the third year in a row.
The production hasn’t been enough, particularly for a shooting guard in today's NBA where they also have to be able to manufacture offense from the foul line which isn't a strength for Beal. He averages 2.7 attempts for his career, and has slightly decreased in his trips since his rookie season.
The Wizards seem willing to wait until next summer if Beal sticks to his high asking price, when he becomes a restricted free agent. They'd still reserve the right to match any offer he gets in the open market if Nov. 2 passes without an agreement. Discussions would then be tabled for the rest of this season.
Perhaps being in a contract year will help Beal rise to the next level, but health is a big part of it. He broke his left wrist before last season and never could quite get on track. He could take guaranteed but short money now (for instance, a three-year deal with the last being an option) to give him security or he can wait until the new national TV contact kicks in for 2016 which will create a much larger pot.
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