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Serious talks open for Bradley Beal's contract extension


Serious talks open for Bradley Beal's contract extension

LAS VEGAS -- Now that the most of the heavy-lifting has been dealt with in free agency, the Wizards will begin serious talks with Bradley Beal regarding a contract extension, CSNwashington.com has confirmed with two people with knowledge of the situation.

Contacted early Sunday, agent Mark Bartelstein said actual negotiations with Wizards president Ernie Grunfeld will go forward as early as this upcoming week. "We had to get past that first nine or 10 days of free agency. With that chaotic period over, Ernie and I will talk and see where we are," Bartelstein told CSN.

Beal is going into the final year of his rookie scale contract that pays him $4.7 million for 2015-16. The sides have until the start of the season to work out a deal and if they don't talks will be tabled until next summer when Beal becomes a restricted free agent.

The shooting guard is coming off an uneven season when he missed 19 games because of multiple injuries, including his third year in a row with a stress reaction in his lower right leg. Beal averaged just 15.3 points but flourished again as the Wizards' leading scorer in the playoffs when he helped lead them to the East semifinals for the second year in a row. 


The free-agency period opened July 1 and the Wizards' priority was re-signing Paul Pierce, who left for the Los Angeles Clippers. They moved to compensate for his loss by negotiating a trade for Jared Dudley and bringing in Alan Anderson and Gary Neal as free agents and retaining the services of Drew Gooden. 

Until now, both sides regarding Beal's extension have been collecting information in what is more of an exploratory stage before sitting down to discuss details.

Beal would likely command a max deal or something close to it based on what has taken place in the market this summer -- Wes Matthews, four years and $70 million max -- so it might be prudent for the Wizards to secure him sooner to put the issue to rest. Of course, if they plan on matching whatever Beal is offered as a restricted free agent maybe there's not as much urgency.

But based on what the Wizards did two summers ago, when John Wall was eligible for an extension going into the final year of his rookie deal, they moved quickly. They took care of their own free agents and roster voids first and then moved on to Wall's extension which was a max of five years for $80 million.  

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Wizards Tipoff podcast: Phil Chenier tells stories ahead of his jersey retirement

Associated Press

Wizards Tipoff podcast: Phil Chenier tells stories ahead of his jersey retirement

On the latest episode of the Wizards Tipoff podcast presented by Greenberg and Bederman, host Chase Hughes was joined by Bullets/Wizards legend Phil Chenier ahead of his jersey retirement set for this upcoming weekend on March 23.

Chenier looked back on his playing and broadcasting career and told great stories. He also shared some memories of the 1978 championship as the franchise gets ready to honor its 40th anniversary.

You can listen to the episode right here:

You can download the podcast on Apple Podcasts right here and on Google Play. If you like the show please tell your friends!

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Cavaliers coach Tyronn Lue stepping away from team to deal with health issues

USA Today Sports Images

Cavaliers coach Tyronn Lue stepping away from team to deal with health issues

An undiagnosed illness has convinced Cleveland Cavaliers head coach Tyronn Lue to step away from the team indefinitely, the team announced on Monday. Assistant coach Larry Drew will take over in the interim.

Lue, 40, is hoping to address his health issues in time to return before the year is out. According to a statement on the team's website, he has been under the weather for quite some time.


Here is what Lue said on the matter in a press release:

I have had chest pains and other troubling symptoms, compounded by a loss of sleep, throughout the year. Despite a battery of tests, there have been no conclusions as to what the exact issue is.

While I have tried to work through it, the last thing I want is for it to affect the team. I am going to use this time to focus on a prescribed routine and medication, which has previously been difficult to start in the midst of a season. My goal is to come out of it a stronger and healthier version of myself so I can continue to lead this team to the Championship we are all working towards.

That is scary stuff and certainly much bigger than basketball. But the surprising news happens to come at a crucial time in the Cavs' season. They are currently third in the Eastern Conference with only 13 games remaining before the playoffs.


The Cavs are just a half-game ahead of both the Wizards and Pacers in the standings. They will also have to reincorporate All-Star Kevin Love, likely sometime this week. 

That is a lot for Drew to deal with while Lue recovers and it adds another wrinkle to a Cavs' season that has been characterized by change.


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