Wizards

How a Beal trade could put Wizards in control of the draft

Wizards

Bradley Beal fell short of making the All-NBA team this season and the Wizards are excited about the prospect of pairing him with a healthy John Wall, but that hasn’t stopped the rumor mill from predicting how many different ways Washington could trade the shooting guard before next season.

Though it’s unclear how motivated the Wizards would be to trade Beal after he signed a two-year max extension in October 2019, one team that would have the assets to make an intriguing offer is the Golden State Warriors. Bleacher Report’s Grant Hughes proposed a trade scenario Saturday that would put the Wizards in a pivotal spot ahead of this winter’s NBA draft.

Hughes suggested the Wizards trade Beal to the Warriors in exchange for Andrew Wiggins, Eric Paschall and the No. 2 pick in this year’s draft, while also noting Washington could push for the Warriors’ rights to the Minnesota Timberwolves’ 2021 first-rounder to complete the deal.

“Andrew Wiggins' salary is an albatross, but Wall's is already dragging the Wizards' prospects down,” Hughes wrote. “The theory here is that the Wizards are going to be bad regardless and that getting a high lottery pick and an all-rookie first-teamer is worth the price of acknowledging this is a rebuild—albeit one made more difficult by Wall's contract.”

The Wizards already have the No. 9 overall pick—the same draft position they used to take Rui Hachimura last year—but adding the second pick would make them the only team with two selections in the top 15. While there is no clear choice for the Timberwolves with the No. 1 pick, adding any of James Wiseman, LaMelo Ball or Anthony Edwards would give Washington a significant piece to build around.

 

Not to be forgotten are the acquisitions of Wiggins and Paschall.

Wiggins, who the Warriors traded for at the deadline this season, is signed through the 2022-23 season at about $30 million a year. He’s averaged 19.7 points per game in his career while managing to avoid any major injuries. Paschall was drafted by Golden State in the second round last year and proved to be a steal, making the NBA All-Rookie First Team behind a scoring average of 14 points per game.

It would be an enticing scenario, though one that would force the Wizards to concede they won’t be ready to contend by the 2020-21 season. But if any team has the assets to entice Washington to hit the reset button, it’s the Warriors.