Top 15 NBA Free Agents: Bradley Beal
Bradley Beal had another injury-plagued season, playing only 55 games due to injuries to his right fibula, left shoulder, pelvis, nose, and a concussion. Despite those injuries, Beal still managed to average 17.4 ppg, 2.9 apg, and a 76.7% free throw average. The Wizards under-performed this past season, partially due to Beal’s absence, but also because of a lack of effort, and a lack of team chemistry mainly due to the head coach. The Wizards’ brass appeared to fix that with the hiring of Scott Brooks, who has a reputation for good team chemistry, and making sure everyone knows what to improve on. With a new head coach, and a declined offer to play for Team USA in the 2016 Rio Olympics, Beal himself has stated he is going to “get into the best shape of his life”, so next season will be a very important one for everyone involved. The Wizards have been very quiet when it has come to making moves this offseason, and it seems like the focus is on adding another piece of the puzzle before resigning Bradley Beal. Due to Washington possessing Bird’s rights to Beal (meaning they can go over the cap to resign their own players), Beal is oddly enough the last free agent that the Wizards will resign due to this situation. There have been murmurs about Kevin Durant or DeMarcus Cousins, but neither appear likely to head to the nation’s capital to put on the Wizards’ jersey. Trying to add another piece may potentially hurt their chances of resigning Beal, if only because other suitors will come calling July 1st, and because of the raised salary cap, a number of teams could offer a max contract to Beal. Luckily for the Wizards, because he is a restricted free agent, they can match any offer given. Teams that have been briefly mentioned but unlikely to actually pursue Beal have included the New York Knicks, the Philadelphia 76ers, and the Minnesota Timberwolves, among others.