Wizards head coach Scott Brooks has recently incorporated some 2017 playoff games into his film sessions, in part to show the team's younger players what John Wall was like in his prime. It is one way for them to prepare for playing with Wall once he returns from injury, which is likely to be next season.
Bradley Beal has been watching those games and offering commentary to his teammates and, apparently, isn't impressed with the old version of himself. He joined Showtime's 'All the Smoke' this week and had some harsh words for the player he used to be.
Keep in mind Beal averaged 23.1 points and shot 40.4 percent from three that year, in the 2016-17 season.
"It's amazing to watch. I hate watching it because it's like 'I am f---ing trash.' I'm watching it and I'm like 'why are you hesitating on your shots? Why you ain't shooting? Why you ain't pass it right there?'... That dude from three or four years ago, that is not me today. I know that for sure," he said.
Beal spoke at length about his development into a multi-time All-Star. He said his constant improvement year-to-year has a lot to do with him watching players like James Harden, Damian Lillard and Klay Thompson continue to ascend, and realizing "it's either get with the program or you get left behind."
As for what he's focused on, Beal said it is being a consistent scorer "with efficiency." He wants to increase his volume as a scorer without leaving his shooting percentages to suffer.
He has been able to achieve that for the most part, this season averaging 30.5 points while holding a 52.0 effective field goal percentage. That is not easy to do, especially as a guard.
But don't let the efficiency talk lead you to thinking Beal is poring over the numbers, especially the advanced metrics. He also dropped a line on the show that may raise some eyebrows.
"Honestly, I'm not an analytical guy. I say F the analytics, just go hoop," he said.
That may be surprising to some, especially given Beal happens to show up well in advanced statistics. He's an efficient player who makes a lot of threes.
But it's also not surprising given many NBA players have shared the same opinions. Analytics have changed basketball in many ways, but they still aren't widely embraced by a lot of the players they benefit.
You can listen to Beal's full interview right here:
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