Bradley Beal was one of the first superstar players to opt out of the restart of the 2019-20 NBA season, joining Washington Wizards teammate Davis Bertans.
The Wizards, who have the second-longest odds to crack a playoff spot while currently sitting 5.5 games behind the Orlando Magic for the eighth and final playoff seed in the East, could be making a trip to Walt Disney World only to see their playoff dream end after a few games.
Beal's agent, Mark Bartelstein, confirmed as much during an interview with SiriusXM NBA Radio:
“If they were legit championship contenders this year, I'm sure there would've been a little bit of a different conversation,” said Bartelstein. “It's just, you have to measure the risk and reward.
“I don't want to diminish the opportunity the Wizards have now. This is a big moment for them. To make the playoffs it would turn around a season where it was gonna be a rebuild in a lot of ways. I don't think that anybody thought they'd have a chance to be a playoff team.”
Beal opted out of the restart citing a shoulder injury that had been nagging him through early workouts, waiting until the last day before the team traveled to announce his decision.
Many were anticipating this was indeed why the second-leading scorer in the NBA was choosing to give this opportunity a pass. There's simply way too much risk and a fairly small reward to make it worthwhile for the Wizards star to make the trip.
The Wizards will play eight regular-season games to finish out the 2019-20 campaign, but their season could effectively be over after a few games if the Magic and Brooklyn Nets pull away beyond reach.