Not a day goes by without the Washington Wizards All-Star shooting guard Bradley Beal isn’t dealt to a new destination in a fake trade scenario. Since a rebuild is on the way in Washington, Bradley Beal and his monster contract of four more years and $208 million are potentially on the trading block. Due to his high salary and a no-trade clause, this will be a tricky trade to pull off, but this latest idea proposed by Bleacher Report might work for both teams.
According to reporting by Shams Charania of the Athletic, the New Orleans Pelicans are looking to be active this offseason. Having failed to make the playoffs last season due to the inability of its stars to stay healthy, the Pelicans are looking to reshape their roster. The Wizards could be an ideal trading partner.
The trade proposed by Bleacher Report looks like this:
On paper, this seems like a fair value for Bradley Beal and his contract. CJ McCollum is another overpaid shooting guard whose deal extends three more years for a total of $100 million. This is a significant discount for the Wizards. Paying McCollum $33 million a year on average instead of paying Beal $50 million may be more palatable. The difference between those two players is currently smaller than that gap.
CJ McCollum is not the greatest fit for a rebuilding team
However, McCollum is almost two years older than Beal. As an undersized shooting guard with below-average athleticism, he comes with a real risk of a sharp decline. He already had his lowest scoring average since 2015-2016, and his lowest field goal percentage since his sophomore year last season. There is a real chance he might be a less tradeable contract than Beal in a year or two.
McCollum is a good veteran and a locker-room presence. He could be a useful piece as a leader for this rebuilding Wizards team. How much he wants to do that in this later stage of his career is a different question.
Dyson Daniels was the 8th overall pick a year ago. He is only 20 years old and had promising flashes in his rookie season, especially on the defensive end. He would be a valuable building block for the Wizards going forward.
The Pelicans have a surplus of promising young players. Daniels could easily be replaced in this deal with Trey Murphy III, Herb Jones, or Jose Alvarado if necessary.
The no.14 pick in this year’s loaded draft is another valuable asset in this deal. The Wizards would have two lottery picks and two swings at a future star. Packaging the no.8 and no.14 picks to move up in the draft would be another solid option for the Wizards.
This is a good return for the Wizards in exchange for Bradley Beal
Despite McCollum’s less-than-ideal contract situation and fit on a rebuilding team, this trade is a good value proposition for the Wizards. Getting one former lottery pick and another lottery pick in this year’s draft is worth downgrading from Beal to McCollum.
Whether New Orleans will be interested in this sort of deal is uncertain. If all their other trade possibilities fail, they might go for it as a last resort to revamp their roster. As a last resort, it’s not a bad option. They need to consolidate their young players and assets at some point.
Acquiring Beal who is age-wise more on their stars’ timeline to create a formidable trio of Brandon Ingram, Zion Williamson, and Bradley Beal might be worth it for a team desperate to contend.
This is perhaps not the most ideal trade for both teams. However, the Wizards and the Pelicans have tricky rosters with hard-to-deal contracts. So, this may be their only option to reshuffle their rosters. Let’s see if their front offices see it that way.