The Washington Wizards enjoyed great success last season, finishing with a record of 44-38 and then defeating the Chicago Bulls in the first round of the playoffs. Although they have arguably the league’s most balanced roster, the biggest reason for their success is their starting back court of John Wall and Bradley Beal.
John Zitzler of Basketball Insiders believes “the sky is the limit” for Beal.
After only two years in the league, it’s already evident that he is on his way to having a very long and successful career. He started in all 73 of the games he played in this past season and was a key contributor alongside star point guard John Wall. While Beal may have had a strong season, the playoffs were where he really put his name on the map; in 11 playoff games, he averaged over 41 minutes per game, scoring 19.2 points per game on 41.5 percent shooting from three. With Wall struggling at times, Beal stepped up and provided valuable production from the backcourt. He was unnerved by the weight of the moment and that is something he can take confidence from as he looks forward to next season. At just 21 years old as of this past June, the sky is really the limit for Beal.
With the Wizards bringing back most of their core (they have subbed Paul Pierce for Trevor Ariza, who signed with the Houston Rockets), they key to their improvement will be the development of players like Beal.
Beal put up 17.1 points, 3.7 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 1.0 steals per game while shooting 41.9% from the field, 40.2% from beyond the arc and 78.8% from the free throw line. In the postseason, he averaged 19.2 points, 5.0 rebounds, 4.5 assists and 1.6 steals per game while shooting 41.6% from the floor, 41.5% from three and 79.6% from the charity stripe.
Be sure to check FanSided’s official NBA page to keep up to date on the latest news and rumors from around the league all summer long.