Trade Proposal Sees Lakers Send 2 Players to Land $251 Million Guard

bradley beal

Getty Washington Wizards guard Bradley Beal.

The Washington Wizards may have waited too long to trade star guard Bradley Beal. He had his best season in 2020-21 where he averaged 31.3 points a game. He has fallen off over the past two seasons and averaged 23.2 a game in each.

The Los Angeles Lakers are a team that has coveted Beal for years but the price to get him was either too steep or he simply wasn’t available in a trade. The Athletic’s Josh Robbins just dropped a report that “many rival executives” expect new Wizards team president Michael Winger to undergo a full rebuild in the near future. Beal turns 30 this month so he’s likely not part of the rebuilding plans.

The three-time All-Star’s trade value is likely the lowest it has been in a long time. He has dealt with serious injuries in each of the last three seasons and his productivity has declined. Considering he’s only entering the second year of a five-year, $251 million contract, the Wizards may be happy to unload him on the cheap. If the Lakers want to make this move, they will need to figure out how to make the money work. They’ll need to convince D’Angelo Russell to go to Washington in a sign-and-trade. The team would also likely need to attach Malik Beasley’s contract to the trade. A package of Russell, Beasley and this year’s first-round pick for Beal might be a deal that works out for both sides.

Is Adding a 3rd Star the Right Idea?

Beal on the Lakers a few years ago would’ve made a lot of sense. He’s an elite scorer and solid 3-point shooter who would help space the floor. It’s possible that he can still do that but his contract is massive, he’s getting older and has had trouble staying healthy. It’s going to be very difficult to add his contract to the salary cap and build out the roster.

If Anthony Davis, LeBron James and Beal were all good to play in 70 games in the regular season, then it’s a trio that could lead a team to a championship. However, all three played fewer than 60 regular season games last season. The Lakers need a player who can play most of their game if they’re going to go the route of adding another star. Beal isn’t the player at this stage in his career.

Run It Back?

It’s becoming clear that LeBron could put pressure on the team to add Kyrie Irving. That might end up being a worse deal than going after Beal. He’s injury prone, difficult off the court and unreliable. The Lakers tried to build a superstar trio when they added Russell Westbrook and that was an unmitigated disaster.

Irving and Westbrook are very different players but it’s possible to see similar issues arising. The Lakers were good enough to go to the Western Conference Finals with a team that was largely constructed at the trade deadline. Adding some depth to the group that went on a run this year isn’t the worst idea. If the Lakers can find a starting center and a wing who can hit some threes and play defense, they could be back in contention next season. Running it back isn’t always a bad idea.

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jennifer lewis
jennifer lewis
3 months ago

I think the Lakers should let Jeannie Buss make the decision and not LeBron like she has done the last 2yrs. The way the Lakers did Russell Westbrook that was not cool at all. The fake attitudes that LeBron and Anthony gave him for 2yrs was not right it was embarrassing as a fan of the game. The Lakers organization look spineless like Ms. Jeannie Buss is not the owner and that LeBron is which he needs to let Ms. Buss run the Team . Please bring back Magic Johnson to the team.