Bradley Beal Says Asking for Trade from Wizards Was 'The Easy Way Out'

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistJanuary 24, 2020

Washington Wizards guard Bradley Beal (3) gestures during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Detroit Pistons, Monday, Jan. 20, 2020, in Washington. The Wizards won 106-100. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)
Nick Wass/Associated Press

Bradley Beal's desire to win with the team that drafted him played a major role in his decision to stay. Appearing on Chris Haynes' Posted Up podcast, Beal explained why he signed an extension with the Washington Wizards.

"Honestly, I thought that was kind of the easy way out," Beal said. "It'll feel more meaningful and powerful knowing that I grinded it out doing it in D.C. It's pretty much my team—I'm the franchise here—so it was kind of destined for me to kind of mold it from here."

There was speculation over the summer that Beal could force the Wizards' hand, as he had two years remaining on his deal.

Candace Buckner of the Washington Post reported in July there was a "growing belief" around the league that Beal wouldn't stay in Washington for the rest of his career. However, he signed a two-year, $72 million extension in October that runs through the 2022-23 season. The deal also ensured he couldn't be traded during this season.

Beal has taken over as Washington's franchise player with John Wall out of action because of an Achilles injury he suffered in January 2019. The 26-year-old is averaging career highs with 27.8 points and 6.4 assists per game this season.

The 15-29 Wizards are still retooling their roster and waiting for Wall's return, potentially not until next season.

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