Bradley Beal wants to remain loyal to the Washington Wizards. His offseason re-signing also confirms this theory. On June 30, Beal signed a five-year, $251 million contract extension with the organization.
The three-time All-Star is one of the highest-paid NBA players. However, the team hasn’t advanced past the second round of the playoffs since 1979.
That was back when the Washington Bullets lost to the Seattle SuperSonics in five games of the 1979 NBA Finals.
Bradley Beal: “Loyalty is definitely a huge factor for me”
Anyway, during a casual interview with Haute Living, Beal left this comment regarding his future with the Wizards: “People always look at me like I’m crazy, but I have a huge desire to want to make it work here and win here.”
“This is the team that drafted me. They’re super loyal, I have a great relationship with ownership, and a great relationship with our front office.”
“Plus, there’s not a lot of chances in the careers of NBA players to be notated as the franchise guy, you know? To be able to have that opportunity, to be able to be in a position to where I can write my own story, that’s everything.”
Honored to be on the cover for @HauteLivingMag's first ever DC edition 🙏🏽
— Bradley Beal (@RealDealBeal23) August 26, 2022
Last season, the Wizards finished 35-47 (.427) and 12th overall in the Eastern Conference. It was the team’s first season under head coach Wes Unseld Jr.
“Loyalty is definitely a huge factor for me,” continued Bradley Beal. “At the end of the day, basketball is a business. You see guys drafted to teams and traded shortly after, and sometimes, loyalty is questioned.”
“I’ve never had that feeling [with the Wizards]. I’ve never had to have that particular cloud lingering over my head at any point in my career here. I love the fact that we’re always up front, that there’s always a straightforward conversation about where we’re going and what we’re doing.”
“I feel like if I win a championship here in DC, the grind of it, with everything I’ve been through, all the adversity and ups and downs, that would make a win that much sweeter, make me appreciate it that much more. And I do love the grind, and to sometimes go against the odds.”
Will the Wizards make the playoffs in 2023?
In 40 appearances with the Wizards last season, Bradley Beal averaged 23.2 points, 4.7 rebounds and 6.6 assists per game. He also averaged 45.1% shooting from the field and 30% from downtown.
According to BetOnline oddsmakers, the Wizards have the seventh-lowest odds (+25,000) of winning the 2023 NBA championship. Though, the Los Angeles Lakers and Brooklyn Nets had the highest odds of winning the title last season. Neither team met expectations.
The Lakers failed to qualify for the play-in tournament. And the Nets were swept by the Boston Celtics in the first round of the playoffs.
Furthermore, the Wizards’ 2022-23 season win total is also set at 35.5 wins. Washington hasn’t won at least 40 games in the regular season since the 2017-18 season. Back then, they went 43-39 (.524) and lost in six games against the Toronto Raptors in the first round of the playoffs.
With Bradley Beal staying healthy, anything is possible.
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