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Suns Prepare To Close Bradley Beal Trade

By Jeff Stinger

The Washington Wizards and the Phoenix Suns are reportedly finalizing a deal to send All-Star guard Bradley Beal to the Western Conference franchise. Beal’s agent Mark Martelstein of Priority Sports confirmed the agreement is about to happen. Let’s go over the finer details of the deal and what this means for the 29-year-old’s future in the NBA.

Bradley Beal to the Phoenix Suns

Beal the Wizard

Reports say the deal involves sending the Suns’ veteran guard Chris Paul, Landry Shamet, a handful of second-round picks, and several pick swaps to Washington in the exchange. However, the most extensive account in this deal involves Beal waving his no-trade clause to move to another team. There is a chance that the trade could feature a third team, specifically to snatch Paul from the deal, but the basics are ironed out.

Beal spent a decade of his professional career in Washington. He was the third overall pick in the 2012 Draft class and averaged 23.2 points, 3.9 rebounds, and 5.4 assists in ten seasons with the franchise.

There are only three active players in the league with at least 500 games averaging 22 points per game. Phoenix now has three in their arsenal. Beal, Durant, and Booker are nothing short of juggernauts on paper. They also make a pretty penny next season and take home a combined $130 million salary. Of course, these numbers come at a price and the Suns are obligated to pay a ransom in salary and tax for this title shot.

The Chaminade product enters his second year of what could be a massive $251 million contract; the final year features a player option and would pay him %57.1 million. Over the next four years, Beal is set to make over $200 million.

Washington vs. Phoenix

The Wizards completed what had to be on top of their list in the deal. They’re no longer committed to Beal’s massive contract. That is, without question, a win for a rebuilding side. However, some say that the bigger picture tells an entirely different story.

Washington will presumably look into re-routing or waiving Paul. If they let him go before the end of the month, only $15.8 million of his salary is guaranteed. This is huge compared to a $30.8 million take home, but the former looks more likely to happen.

And 26-year-old Landry Shamet isn’t exactly a game-changing piece for Washington. The draft compensation could potentially add more firepower to the squad. But, don’t expect a strong roster out of the bag. They’re not getting top-rank first-round picks in the deal after all.

The Suns’ end of the bargain contrasts what the Wizards get. In the immediate consequence of the move, it’s easy to look at the 2022-23 fourth seed as winners. They get a three-time All-Star in the mix. Although they have to deal with playmaking and scoring responsibilities, having three on the floor will make the Suns a nightmare to play against. And if any coach can put together a proper defensive system for this group, it could be the 2020 champion, Frank Vogel.

In hindsight, the deal brings more than just three dimensions. Building out the rest of the team is going to be a challenge. The Suns’ lack of depth already showed in their second-round loss to the eventual champions Denver Nuggets, so that needs to be dealt with.

Additionally, will Ayton be part of Phoenix’s future? Does he bring enough value for Phoenix to keep him? Ultimately, there’s still plenty of figuring out for the Suns.

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