Washington Wizards: Bradley Beal puts trade rumors to rest

Say it louder for the people in the back! Bradley Beal wants to stay with the Washington Wizards.

It’s hard to remember a time when Bradley Beal and the Washington Wizards weren’t wrapped up in trade rumors.

And even after Beal signed an extension before the season began, fans were still convinced that Beal’s time in Washington was nearly up. It certainly didn’t help that he was growing visibly frustrated as the losses piled up despite his herculean scoring performances. Beal may have signed an extension just a few months ago, but does he really want to stay in D.C. and keep losing? Has he finally had enough?

Apparently not. In an interview with Marc Spears of The Undefeated, Bradley Beal put all the trade whispers and rumors to rest, making it clearer than ever that Washington is where he wants to spend the rest of his career.

I can sit here and say, ‘Yeah, I can go to Boston, I can go to Toronto, I can go to Miami’ … I can go everywhere everybody wants me to go. But what would that look like? It wouldn’t necessarily be my team to where now I’m in a situation in Washington where I’m being built around.

I know I’m going to have to take these bumps and bruises. I knew this last summer. I knew this, hell, the summer maybe even before that. You just got to grind it out and stand true to who you are.

This is some of the best news Washington Wizards fans have heard all season, and it should come with a sigh of relief given Beal’s recent body language. I’m not sure anyone’s looked as miserable after a 50-point performance as Beal did after his 53 points vs the Chicago Bulls. Even though the extension should have eased anxiety around an early exit from Beal, that hasn’t exactly been the case this season. This should do the trick.

What’s remarkable about Beal’s quote here, though, is not just that he expresses a desire to stay in D.C. It’s the fact that he is able to define and explain exactly why it is he wants to stay in Washington. Beal is not offering up vague complimentary lip service, he’s explicitly telling you why Washington is the place for him and why – if it’s up to him – he’s not going anywhere anytime soon.

Beal’s style of play has been frustrating at times this season as he’s forced possession after possession of hero ball during some second halves. But there’s no denying that he’s been the one carrying this team to the few wins they have. Hearing that he wants to return and keep building – hopefully with a healthy John Wall – should provide some much-needed hope for next season as the team closes out this one.

Next: Beal's top 5 games from record-setting streak

That doesn’t mean teams won’t come calling in July once Beal is eligible to be traded again. He’s averaging 30.4 points, 6.1 assists, and 4.3 rebounds this season on 51 percent true shooting, per Basketball-Reference. Any team would be willing to move heaven and earth to get that player. And as a result, the Wizards should seriously consider any offer they get for Beal. But the front office has shown a commitment to Beal and Beal has shown a commitment to this franchise. Listening to offers is not the same as accepting them, and while they should be open for business, I doubt they do any business that centers around Bradley Beal.

So sorry, Miami. Maybe next time, Brooklyn. Keep looking, Boston. Because you won’t be adding Bradley Beal to your rosters anytime soon. Not if he has anything to say about it.

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