Bradley Beal is set to be the next star to be traded this NBA season after James Harden forced his way out of the Houston Rockets a couple of weeks ago. The case for Beal is even harder than Harden's, as his team doesn't have any hope to compete this season regardless of how well he plays every night.
Everybody has started to pick where Beal should land next, with some naming the Los Angeles Clippers and Lakers, as well as the Miami Heat, but there is one team that could really use Beal's services and reach the next level this campaign. Those the Golden State Warriors, a team with ups and downs this season that could use Beal's scoring talent to compete this year.
Jonathan Tjarks of The Ringer has dropped an interesting idea for the Dubs in order to land Beal, which three options for them to unlock negotiations with the Wizards, who will have plenty of offers for their star player. The Warriors are among the best options for the player this season.
The points of contention would be how many other future first-rounders and pick swaps Golden State would have to include, and which salaries they would send to Washington to balance the deal. The only pick the Warriors can’t add is their 2021 first-rounder, which is already owed to the Thunder if it falls outside the top 20. The number of additional assets the Wizards could get would depend on what kind of deal they take. Here are three potential versions:
1. Kelly Oubre Jr. ($14.4 million)
Oubre and Wiseman for Beal would be the simplest trade for both teams. Oubre, who started his career in Washington, is in the last season of his contract and the Wizards could then walk away with no future financial obligations. Oubre has struggled mightily in Steve Kerr’s read-and-react motion offense, averaging 12.1 points and 1.3 assists per game on career-worst shooting percentages from the field (37.3) and 3-point range (23.3). Losing him would be a blow to their defense, though, and his poor shooting would be less of an issue next to Beal if the Warriors go with one of the other versions of this trade.
2. Andrew Wiggins (29.5 million)
This deal would net Washington a haul of draft assets similar to what New Orleans and Oklahoma City recently received. Wiggins is playing the best basketball of his career in a more limited role in Golden State, averaging 17.8 points per game on 46.9 percent shooting. But he’s still the most expendable of their max contracts.
3. Klay Thompson ($35.4 million)
The most mind-bending scenario. It would be a huge gamble for the Wizards given that Thompson will have three seasons left on his max contract after missing the first two with a torn ACL and Achilles. But, if he does return to anywhere near full strength, they could flip him for additional assets down the road. Even a relatively limited version of Klay would fit anywhere.
It would be interesting to see if the Warriors are interested in landing Beal and what they're willing to give in exchange for the player. He has been ballin' in the last 10 games and the Wizards haven't won a single game over that span. He's not available yet but when he is, he will have a say on what team he will join and the Warriors can be a very appealing option for him.
As Tjark explained, Stephen Curry needs to have more firepower on the roster, as he's trying to remain competitive in a Western Conference that gets harder every season. Having Beal as a teammate would be great for him but the last word doesn't belong to him. Beal is frustrated with his team and the general thought around the league is that it won't take long before he requests a trade.