Bradley Beal Not Sure About Playing in NBA’s Return

Bradley Beal Lakers trade

Getty Washington Wizards guard Bradley Beal

Washington Wizards star Bradley Beal is unsure about whether he will play in Orlando when the NBA returns later this month, as he tells and other media members via a zoom conference call.

Beal is monitoring how Florida does with regard to COVID-19. The shooting guard also said that not being able to play 5-on-5 until a few weeks prior to the restart will be a big factor in his decision, adding that “a lot” of players will factor that in as well.

Players are not obligated to attend. Any player who chooses not to play in the resumption of the season in Orlando will have to notify his team. Players will not be penalized for missing the contests (fines, future suspensions) but they will not be paid for the games. Compensation would be reduced by 1/92.6 for each game missed.

Beal’s teammate, Davis Bertans, is one of the players choosing to sit out. Bertans remains in Latvia with his family and Beal said that the power forward spoke to him prior to making the decision to sit out.

Wizards Grateful to be Included in Orlando

GM Tommy Sheppard said the Wizards were very “grateful” to be included in the NBA’s return. Sheppard said that the team has “nothing to lose” with regard to the remaining games left in the season and their pursuit of making the playoffs.

“We’re trying to manage expectations…but what are we there to do? We’re there to win games…with the opportunity to (win games) and make the playoffs, that’s all we can ask for,” Sheppard said.

The GM said that he considers this a “pressure situation,” which is something he likes to see players in to evaluate them. With only eight games in the regular season (and with the Wizards needing to make up 1.5 games in the win column to force a play-in game), the franchise should get to see its players in those types of situations.

Who Will Travel With the Wizards to Orlando?

All teams are limited to bringing 35 people to Orlando and Sheppard touched on who will travel to Florida.

“We haven’t zeroed in on the final list,” Sheppard said while adding that he’ll go to Orlando and he expects about 15 people split between the medical staff and coaching staff.

Sheppard added that outside of Bertans, he hasn’t received any indication that other players will bow out. NBA players are not required to attend and Sheppard cautioned that he didn’t “want to look too far ahead” in regard to any player not attending.

Teams are allowed to add replacement players, though it’s unlikely that the Wizards sign someone to replace Bertans. Admiral Schofield, who was the team’s 2019 second-round pick, is a candidate to see more playing time at the four as a result of Bertans missing the resumed season.

It was previously reported that John Wall won’t travel with the team to Orlando. The Wizards confirmed as much during the conference call on Monday. The team also gave an update on how the rest of the team is doing.

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