Celtics Trade Rumors: Bradley Beal a 'Prime Option' If Kyrie Irving Leaves

Kyle Newport@@KyleNewportFeatured ColumnistJune 18, 2019

WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 09: Bradley Beal #3 of the Washington Wizards dribbles the ball against the Boston Celtics in the first half at Capital One Arena on April 09, 2019 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 Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Rob Carr/Getty Images

Washington Wizards guard Bradley Beal is viewed as a "prime option" for the Boston Celtics should six-time All-Star Kyrie Irving leave in free agency this summer, according to The Athletic's Jordan Brenner.

Brenner noted that a source said Washington would need to "strongly consider" packages of Jayson Tatum, Marcus Smart and a protected pick for Beal or Smart, Jaylen Brown and two future first-rounders should Boston put either package on the table.

With John Wall limited to just 32 games due to injury this past season, Beal stepped up and put together the most productive season of his career. He established new career highs in points (25.6), assists (5.5), rebounds (5.0) and steals (1.5).

Although his 35.1 percent from beyond the arc was a career low, the two-time All-Star shot 47.5 percent overall, the second-best mark of his career.

Not only has he put up strong numbers, but the 25-year-old has done a good job of staying healthy in recent years. He has not missed a game in either of the past two seasons, and he's been sidelined for a total of five games the last three years.

Beal is playing out a reasonable contract for a player of his caliber. He is owed $27 million next season and $28.8 million in 2020-21.

Any team interested in Beal may have to be open to taking on more than just his contract, though. Per Brenner, Washington may look to package Beal and Wall—whose four-year, $170 million extension kicks in next season—together in a trade.

Though it bowed out in the second round this past season, Boston made it within one game of the NBA Finals in 2018 without Irving and Gordon Hayward. With Adam Himmelsbach of the Boston Globe reporting that Irving has "essentially ghosted" the Celtics recently, the team could be in the market for backcourt help in the coming weeks.