Sources – Suns finalize trade for Wizards’ Bradley Beal

Adrian WojnarowskiVeteran NBA InsiderJune 18, 2023, 04:31 PM ET3 minutes of reading

The Washington Wizards are finalizing a trade to send three-time All-Star guard Bradley Beal to the Phoenix Suns for a package expected to include Chris Paul, Landry Shamet, several second-round picks and a picks swap, sources told ESPN on Sunday.

The deal could be a few days away, but sources said Beal is headed to the Suns to form a new Big 3 alongside Devin Booker and Kevin Durant.

One of the reasons the deal could take days to complete is to allow the Wizards the option to expand a two-team trade into a three-team trade, which would give Ball a chance to land with a contender, sources told ESPN. . Without a trade partner for Ball, there is a possibility that the Wizards and Ball could discuss a contract buyout that would allow him to become a free agent.

Beal’s agent, Mark Bartelstein of Priority Sports, confirmed to ESPN that Beal will land with the Suns.

“It’s a very complicated process and there are many hurdles [Wizards owner] Ted Leonsis and [Wizards president] Michael Winger has been an incredible partner,” Bartelstein told ESPN. “He’s been by our side since the day we made Ted Broad. [former general managers] Ernie Grunfield and Tommy Shepard. They’ve always had Brad’s back in every way, and now we’ve experienced the same with Ted and Michael Winger. We are very grateful.”

Beal waives his no-trade clause to accommodate the deal for a Suns franchise that now realizes the top-tier roster of talent and salary. Beal will join Booker, Durant and Deandre Ayton — four max contracts with a collective bargaining agreement designed to severely limit teams’ roster flexibility at more than $117 million above the second apron of the luxury tax. It was the ultimate all-in game in the Suns’ championship chase.

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Beal’s arrival and the $207 million remaining on his contract will make the Suns a second-apron team for at least the next three years, a time when they will rely heavily on minimum contracts to fill out the roster.

Suns management and key players have sold Beal on Phoenix as a place to fulfill his championship hopes in recent days, sources said.

Owner Mat Ishbia has made a massive commitment to salary and luxury tax on Beal and Durant’s contracts to pursue a title in the coming seasons. The Suns will pay Booker, Durant, Beal and Ayton $163 million through the 2023-2024 season.

Bartelstein has worked closely with the winger in recent days in navigating a deal with Phoenix, with talks that included conversations with multiple teams, sources said. Beal’s no-trade clause and the $207 million remaining on his contract with the new CBA prevented the Wizards from making even stronger returns.

Offloading the final four years of Beal’s contract clears the way for the winger to rebuild the roster after missing the playoffs in four of the last five years — all of which included losing seasons. The Suns did not have any first-round draft picks to add to the deal due to the Brooklyn Nets’ control from the Kevin Durant deal.

After 11 years with the Wizards — who drafted him No. 3 overall in 2012 — Beal is approaching 30 years old and admits the franchise is running out of a quick way to contention with the winger.

After the Beal trade, the Suns would make two blockbuster trades under Ishbia in the last several months, including the Durant deal.

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After completing the first season of a five-year, $251 million contract, Beal stands as the NBA’s only current player to negotiate a no-trade clause in his contract, giving him the ability to control not only where he can go, but how a potential package can buy him and affect his new supporting cast.

Beal’s no-trade clause will make him known to the Suns.

Leonsis gave the winger full autonomy on whether he wanted to rebuild with the Wizards or pursue a path around more expensive veteran talent. The Wizards are awaiting player-option decisions on forwards Kyle Kuzma and Kristaps Porzingis, both of whom could become unrestricted free agents.

Beal averaged 23.2 points in 50 injury-plagued games last season. For his career, he averaged 22.1 points, including 30.5 points and 31.3 points from 2019 to 2021.

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