Two teams that have been reportedly starting to get active in the trade/free agency market are the Dallas Mavericks and Washington Wizards. Both of these teams have duos that haven’t panned out to play as expected, and are therefore trying to move parts of them. Washington has already moved Mr. Triple Double to La La Land, and there truly is no good reason for Bradley Beal to stay. The 7 foot Latvian Kristaps Porzingis just hasn’t been able to find a comfortable fit in Dallas, as the whole situation there is shaken up after blowing a 2-0 lead to Kawhi’s Clippers. If these two players were to get traded, how could this benefit both?
Let’s start off with KP. After his gruesome injury that he had suffered in New York, the Mavs decided to roll the dice on him to give Luka a so-called “solid No. 2 option”. Before he played one minute for the Mavs, they decided to sign him to a 5 year, $158 million dollar deal, which evens out to $31 million per season. KP had a solid start with Dallas, but we had all assumed it would get better come the postseason. Then, the pandemic hit. Once the bubble was upon us, we weren’t sure what to expect from the Unicorn. Boy, did he show out. Porzingis averaged 28 points and 9 boards in Orlando, which gave Dallas a huge amount of hope going into the Clippers series. Then, the injury bug got him again. He ended up with a torn meniscus, missed half of the 2021 season, and, we know what happens after that. What Porzingis needs is a fresh start, with a new team and staff. His relationship with Luka just doesn’t seem at its fullest, and he won’t maximize his potential with a team like Dallas. With a squad like Washington, he’d be able to get more touches on the ball, and a new offense could be designed around him. Players like Kyle Kuzma and Spencer Dinwiddie won’t be the number 1 option without Beal, so it opens up as a great opportunity for Porzingis.
As for Bradley Beal, how can you not feel for this man? He was put next to John Wall, and the future looked bright as ever in D.C. John Wall, as we all know, couldn’t stay healthy and Brad eventually became the first option, which bloomed him into being one of the best shooting guards in today’s game. Then, Russ Westbrook came along, and Washington got off to an atrocious start, and at one point in March having a less than 1% chance to make the playoffs. MVP Westbrook and Bradley Beal went on a hot streak and went on one of the best regular season stretches we have seen, only to fall to the 76ers in 5. The Wizards front office accepted their fate in that they won’t be a Finals team for a while, and said goodbye to Russ. Rumors started surfacing that Beal may want out before the draft, but he never requested. He then went on to post this cryptic tweet to spark some more rumors, but nothing has happened since. I believe that it’s likely we see Brad in another uniform by the time this upcoming season starts off, but Dallas needs to come out of the gate as one of the leading contenders to land him. Along with Luka, Beal would make this offense elite, grabbing buckets from all over the court. Not only that, but they’d also get rid of KP’s ugly contract. I’m almost certain that Beal would thrive in this offense with how it’s been run recently.
For the Mavericks front office, reports have come out that they have been hesitant to trade players away because of how “beloved” they are by the team. Teams like Dallas have so much culture and are able to get their players to bond easily but this chance will come and go. You never know when Luka could get frustrated due to his lack of help, as we’ve seen with other athletes in the past. Dallas needs to capitalize on this opportunity to make themselves a deep playoff run.
What kind of assets would be included in this trade to make contracts match up? For Dallas, we could be seeing them give away Tim Hardaway Jr (who they just resigned), Dwight Powell, Trey Burke, and maybe Willie Cauley-Stein.
Here’s the trade:
Washington receives: Kristaps Porzingis, Tim Hardaway Jr, Dwight Powell, 2026 second round pick
Dallas receives: Bradley Beal, Thomas Bryant
This trade seems like a lot, and very risky, especially for the Wizards, but it could also easily work out. For one, you finally give Bradley Beal a chance to win, and you are giving a 7 foot unicorn with a whole lot of potential both the time and space to find his groove. You also get THJ, a spot up shooter who ended the season on a high note. Hardaway Jr is a master at creating his own shot, whether it be mid-range or beyond the arc. Dallas could easily make a playoff run with Beal joining their starting 5, but this can all only happen if Bradley Beal finally demands a trade. It’s amazing that he’s being loyal, but if the team isn’t able to give you any kind of help, it’s time to leave. It really is tough, especially for a rising star like Beal, but it’s best for his career and future.
Top Photo: AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez