After the Washington Wizards traded for Russell Westbrook in place of John Wall, no one expected them to jump off the book as a championship contender. Still, what has transpired has almost been brutally unfair.
The Wizards are dead last in the Eastern Conference with a 2-8 record, which poses a topsy-turvy scenario for a team that was destined to at least climb back into the playoff picture this season. Still, many preseason experts predicted that the trade for Westbrook would lead to utter dismantle and confusion for Washington, and that’s definitely been the case.
If their poor play continues, the easier solution would be for the front office to rid themselves of Westbrook after taking such a horrible gamble on the former MVP. That obstacle will be difficult to climb over though. Westbrook wasn’t the easiest player for the Houston Rockets to move this offseason, and if not for Wall’s speculated gang affiliation, the trade may have never happened.
Trading the former MVP right after obtaining him could take months and honestly may not be able to occur this season unless the Wizards offload additional assets to a willing team. On the other hand, they may not have a choice with Bradley Beal. Beal has been more than patient and understanding with the Wizards organization throughout all their downfalls, but this may be the last straw.
If anything, Beal could always go the Anthony Davis route and practically force his way out of Washington. The idea of that creates a real issue for the front office, though, seeing as how his value declines at the thought of him demanding a trade publicly. Be that as it may, there’ll be an unlimited number of suitors around the league anxious to inquire about Beal’s services. Watching him drop a 60 piece on the Philadelphia 76ers should aid in his stock.
Westbrook’s desire to be moved from Houston in order to play “his game” has been the exact demolition cause of the Wizards thus far. The 32-year-old’s style of play focuses on stat-padding to be quite frank. While both he and former teammate James Harden have always implored that style, it’s never led to championships. He’s also giving up 5.3 turnovers per game despite his production while continuing his poor shooting slumps.
Beal quite honestly could already be exploring his alternative options if the season continues to go awry. Those decisions go well past just this season. He was without Wall for more than a season, and ultimately lost him before they could join forces on the court again this year. The Wizards haven’t been to the playoffs in the past two seasons, and their last appearance came in a 2018 first-round exit to the Toronto Raptors.
Their current roster doesn’t really stand for much outside of Beal in terms of instant championship aspirations. The young pieces they have show promise for the future but do nothing to assist the 27-year-old Beal that’s in the midst of his prime.
No, in no scenario do the Wizards want to trade Beal to put an end to their current discombobulation. But as it stands, they may not have much of a choice in the future.