It’s finally here. After years spent in NBA purgatory, reloading for a playoff push that never came, the Washington Wizards are taking the first steps toward a rebuild. New Team President Michael Winger and his front office are expected to pursue a rebuild and help this franchise accomplish something other than disappointment and low expectations.
That process won’t be instantaneous, nor will it be easy. Players beloved by the franchise will be moved, cut or not retained. Yet at the same time, it will give the franchise and its fans something they haven’t had for some time: hope. Hope for a title contender to once again return to the nation’s capital.
Bradley Beal is open to a trade
The biggest step is trading Bradley Beal, a difficult proposition since Beal has a no-trade clause, the only contractual no-trade clause in the entire NBA. Yet it was reported on Wednesday that Beal is open to working out a trade with the front office if they do in fact start a rebuild. That makes a Beal trade all but fait accompli at this point.
Plenty of teams could put together a package for Beal, but the Wizards aren’t looking for a package of spare parts. Even with Beal’s massive salary and no-trade clause depressing the market, they should look at young players around the league who could develop into stars with the next great Wizards team, or at least increase their trade value to be flipped down the line.
The Wizards aren’t trading Beal for Evan Mobley or Jalen Williams, but there are some intriguing players who might be available. Let’s look at four such options and whether they make sense for the Wizards.