NBAWashington Wizards

Bradley Beal Played Like an NBA All-Star

It has been a unique NBA season, for reasons we all know. Everyone is focused on the NBA restart at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Walt Disney World on July 30th… I still can’t understand why Bradley Beal wasn’t an NBA All-Star this season.

Bradley Beal’s All-Star Snub

The NBA All-Star game starters were chosen through a combination of fan, player and coaches votes. The reserves, on the other hand, were strictly selected by head coaches around the NBA. There are snubs every year but Bradley Beal shouldn’t have been one this season.

The Wizards were just 15-31 but that was no excuse to keep Beal out of the All-Star game. He became the first player averaging over 28 points per game to not make the All-Star game since Purvis Short in 1984-85.

Bradley Beal has been a volume scorer this season but in addition to his 28.6 points, he was shooting 45.3 percent from the field. Beal also averages 6.3 assists and 4.4 rebounds in 35.5 minutes over 39 games.

Some might have said that he didn’t play enough games this season but Kyle Lowry had played in just 36 when the selections were announced. Beal had a minus-3.4 Defensive Box Plus-Minus (DBPM) but playing with a losing team is what hurt his case.

Bradley Beal Out of NBA Restart

Making the playoffs was not going to be easy for the Wizards. Washington is 5.5 games behind Orlando and six games behind Brooklyn for the last playoff spots in the East, with eight contests to play.

It will be an uphill battle, especially now that Davis Bertans (15.4 points per game) and Bradley Beal (30.5 points per game) are out of the restart.

Beal will finish the season averaging career-highs of 30.5 points and 6.1 assists, to go along with 3.3 rebounds and 1.2 steals in 36.0 minutes over 57 games. Beal shot 45.5 percent from the field and 35.3 percent from beyond the arc.

“Bradley did everything possible to be ready to play, but after closely monitoring his individual workouts we came to the conclusion that it was best for him to sit out the upcoming games in Orlando and avoid the risk of further injury,” Wizards General Manager Tommy Sheppard told the team’s official website.

“Although he was able to play through the majority of the season with the injury, the layoff from March until now did not leave any of us feeling comfortable that he would have enough time to be ready to perform at the extremely high level we are all accustomed to seeing and agreed that not participating in the games in Orlando was the right decision.”

What to Expect from the Wizards in Orlando

The 2019-20 season was all about development for the Wizards. That much was clear since the offseason. Beal’s unbelievable play was the topic of conversation when people discussed the Wizards. However, the team’s focus was on letting players like Rui Hachimura, Isaac Bonga and Moe Wagner grow. Even if that meant not getting the best results.

The young core will have a chance to prove their worth without Beal, Wall and Bertans. These are the team’s three best players currently under contract. The Wizards will play at least eight games and everyone will have more responsibilities than ever.

Those who went to Orlando have a unique opportunity to prove their worth. They can show the front office what they’re made of. It will be interesting to see what Hachimura and company can do with veterans like Ian Mahinmi, Ish Smith, Shabazz Napier and Jerian Grant leading the way.