Wizards' Bradley Beal Doesn't Return vs. Pistons Due to Leg Injury

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistDecember 27, 2019

WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 04:  Bradley Beal #3 of the Washington Wizards walks down the court during the game against the Charlotte Hornets at Verizon Center on April 4, 2017 in Washington, DC. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement (Photo by G Fiume/Getty Images)
G Fiume/Getty Images

Washington Wizards guard Bradley Beal exited Thursday's loss against the Detroit Pistons with a leg injury.

"Right lower leg soreness," head coach Scott Brooks said when asked about the injury, per Candace Buckner of the Washington Post. "We’ll see how he feels tomorrow and evaluate it. He wanted to keep playing but the bottom line is we were down a big number, so it’s wise to let him sit out the rest of the game."

The 26-year-old has been a supreme talent since entering the NBA in 2012, but he has truly come into his own over the past few seasons.

Beal entered play averaging 28.3 points, 6.8 assists and 4.9 rebounds per game this season.

Last season, Beal enjoyed a career year with averages of 25.6 points, 5.5 assists and 5.0 rebounds per game. He also appeared in all 82 games for the second consecutive season.

Beal missed at least nine games in each of his first four NBA seasons, including at least 19 in three of them, but he entered 2019-20 having missed just five contests combined over the past three seasons.

The 2012 draft's No. 3 overall pick out of Florida played just 55 games in 2015-16, which contributed heavily to the Wiz missing the playoffs.

He has bounced back since then, though, and developed into one of the NBA's premier shooting guards from an offensive perspective.

He combines with point guard John Wall to give Washington one of the league's best backcourts, although Wall is on the shelf with a heel injury. The Wizards don't have another player capable of fully replacing Beal's production, and his presence will be sorely missed if he is out for an extended period of time.

Ish Smith and Isaiah Thomas will likely receive the bulk of the playing time in the backcourt with the likes of Isaac Bonga, Troy Brown Jr. and Jordan McRae also figuring into the mix.

If Beal's injury is anything more than a minor ailment, it is difficult to envision the Wizards doing much damage until he comes back.