There were reports earlier in the week that the Washington Wizards were willing to work with Bradley Beal on a potential trade should they opt to go into rebuild mode.
The three-time All-Star shooting guard has been in D.C. since they selected him No. 3 overall in the 2012 NBA Draft. But with former Los Angeles Clippers GM Michael Winger running things for the Wizards, a divorce seems all but inevitable.
According to a report from Chris Haynes of Turner Sports, Washington has now granted Beal and his representatives permission to talk to other teams about a potential trade for the high-scoring off-guard.
Haynes notes that Beal and his agent are expected to speak with two Eastern Conference contenders in that of the Milwaukee Bucks and Miami Heat about a trade.
As we previously reported, the Sacramento Kings and Golden State Warriors out west are two teams who have been linked to Beal. Meanwhile, there’s seemingly a lack of interest from both the Boston Celtics and Philadelphia 76ers.
Miami’s inclusion shouldn’t be considered too surprising. Despite earning a trip to the NBA Finals this past season, front office head Pat Riley and Co. are expected to go big-game hunting during the summer. Meanwhile, Giannis Antetokounmpo appears to be open to the idea of the Bucks adding Beal to the mix.
Bradley Beal decreased trade value and potential packages
Beal, 30, signed a five-year, $251 million contract with the Washington Wizards last summer. The deal calls for a cap hit of $46.74 million in 2023-24 with that figure increasing to $50.2 million the following season.
This complicates things from Washington’s perspective. ESPN’s Brian Windhorst noted recently that many will be “very surprised” at how little the Wizards receive in return for the high-scoring shooting guard.
It’s interesting that Beal has proven to be among the best all-around scorers in the game. He averaged 29.0 points on 47% shooting in the three seasons leading up to the 2022-23 campaign. Apparently, Beal’s contract is the biggest issue.
As for the teams mentioned above as potential landing spots for Bradley Beal, there’s a ton of different packages Washington could end up with that would meet the requirements of the NBA salary cap.
To start, Miami could offer up former Sixth Man of the Year Tyler Herro as a centerpiece. It would also have to include Duncan Robinson and his salary ($18.7 million for next season) to make the finances work.
The Bucks’ package would have to be centered around Khris Middleton should he opt into his $40.3 million salary for next season. As with Miami, draft capital would also be heading to the Washington Wizards.
Sacramento has Kevin Huerter ($15.6 million) and Richaun Holmes ($12.0 million) as cap fillers to make part of the finances work. Former lottery pick Davion Mitchell and other draft compensation would also likely head back to Washington.
As for the Warriors, they are likely to be beyond the second luxury tax threshold next season and are looking at a record-breaking payroll for a North American professional sports team. It’s in this that both Jordan Poole and Andrew Wiggins would have to be part of a package heading back to the Wizards.
This is why things are a bit complicated. It’s all about Bradley Beal’s contract, not his performance on the court.
This article was originally published on Sportsnaut.com and is republished here with permission.