If there is a general manager out there waiting for Bradley Beal to force his way out of Washington — hypothetically one a two-hour train ride north in a Pennsylvania city — he may want to move on and look elsewhere.
With a double-overtime win against the Celtics Saturday — where Beal scored 36 — the Wizards improved to 5-1 on the season, and that has Bradley Beal professing his love for playing in the nation’s capital.
Bradley Beal, on the 5-1 start after being patient in the offseason: “I want to win with D.C.”
— Chase Hughes (@ChaseHughesNBCS) October 31, 2021
“I always say I want to win. I want to be productive and I want to win with D.C. We’ve done that, obviously, so far. Granted, we’re only scratching the surface…”
Beal then talked about the Wizards having this record despite playing “like crap” at points. “Just imagine when everything starts clicking, when everybody’s gelling, when everybody’s healthy. It’s going to be scary.”
Beal has consistently said he would prefer to win in Washington than leave to join a superteam. The Wizards put a four-year, $181 million contract extension in front of Beal this offseason but he’s not likely to sign it; he can get a five-year, $242 million contract from the Wizards next summer. The risk is he becomes a free agent at that time and can bolt Washington; however, the buzz in league circles has been that he is happy and is not looking at pushing his way out of town.
Especially with the Wizards are winning.
The Wizards have thrived because of their offseason additions. Spencer Dinwiddie has brought stability to the point, providing needed secondary playmaking while averaging 19.8 points and 4.8 assists a game. Montrezl Harrell is bringing his Sixth Man of the Year energy off the bench and averaging 19.3 points a game, Kyle Kuzma is pitching in 15.5 a game and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope is adding 9.5 points and quality perimeter defense. There is now a balanced and more versatile team around Beal.
The Wizards also have been a little lucky. Their +4 net rating would suggest a 4-2 team, and remove garbage time (as done at Cleaning the Glass) and it falls to a +3 net rating. Luck will balance out over time.
But this is still a much better, much more dangerous Wizards team — one Beal has no plans of leaving anytime soon.