Bradley Beal has emerged as one of the NBA’s best two-guards in recent years, and the Wizards have made it very clear they would like to compensate him as such to retain his services.
The question facing Beal has been whether he sees his future as being in Washington or not, given the direction of the franchise. On Thursday, Beal answered that question by finally inking a new deal, as he signed a two-year, $72 million max extension with the Wizards, as relayed by ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
In a commitment carrying league-wide ramifications, Washington Wizards All-Star guard Bradley Beal has agreed to extend his deal for two years on a $72 million maximum contract, agent Mark Bartelstein of Priority Sports told ESPN on Thursday morning.
The deal includes a player option for the 2022-23 season, effectively making it a one-year extension that allows Beal to hit free agency in 2022 with 10 years of service in the league, opening him up to the opportunity for the league’s richest contract of 35 percent of the salary cap.
While this would seem to calm trade rumors that have swirled around Beal throughout the offseason, by only really tacking on one more year to his current deal he still applies plenty of pressure to the Wizards new front office to make the requisite roster moves and improvements. If they don’t and the direction of the franchise doesn’t change dramatically over the next two years, he will once again have leverage to push for a trade or simply walk away the summer of 2022.
Ultimately, the extension is a win for both sides. Washington maintains at least some stability in a year where they otherwise saw a tremendous amount of roster turnover. Should they decide a hard reset needs to happen soon, the extra year on Beal’s deal will make him command even more lucrative trade assets from potential suitors. Beal also sets himself up to maximize his financial opportunity to make the most money possible with the extension pushing him to the 10 years of service mark, while also committing to the franchise he’s always been a part of to give them an extended opportunity to turn things around.