NBA Trade Rumors: Kyrie Irving Out, Bradley Beal In For Boston Celtics
Kyrie Irving is near certain to leave the Boston Celtics going into free agency on June 30, so the team is naturally on the hunt for an All-Star replacement. Reports said the most likely candidate is Bradley Beal, who presently plays point for the Washington Wizards and is worth nearly $60 million in case an offer is forthcoming.
Beal, in fact, is now characterized as a "prime option" for the Celtics, NBC Sports said, adding the two-time All-Star could be the next big star to play for Boston. But having Beal around will not come cheap, which should not be a problem for the asset-rich Celtics.
"One league source suggested that Washington would need to strongly consider an offer of Jayson Tatum, Marcus Smart and a protected pick for Beal or that Boston could offer Smart, Jaylen Brown and two future first-rounders as an alternative trade," the report said, quoting Jordan Brenner of The Athletic.
Letting go of Tatum though seems not easy on Boston as he is part of the reason Anthony Davis slipped out of the team's hand and ended up with the Los Angeles Lakers. Tatum proved a non-starter when the Celtics tried striking a deal with the New Orleans Pelicans. The Pelicans wanted Tatum on the table, which thought was unthinkable.
But with Irving practically on his way out, the Boston backcourt will surely feel a vacuum that the caliber of Beal can fill. Will the Greens prove more flexible now?
Investing in Beal is prudent, according to Bleacher Report. Last season was his most productive when he averaged 25.6 points. Most importantly, Beal is at the prime of his game. At 25, he never missed a game during the last two seasons, which should be an indicator for head-hunters that they'd be getting a healthy ballplayer.
There is no denying Beal fits the bill. He can certainly fill the void that the departing Irving would leave, and perhaps even more. Beal's stats show he not only take shots and delivers. He creates situations, recovers the ball, and causes turnovers. In other words, Beal is a prime performer that the Celtics can ill-afford to pass up.
To acquire Beal, however, via trade, Boston will need to think hard on the high cost. Bleacher Report said it's highly likely the Wizards will only agree on a deal with Beal if John Wall is part of the package. That seems tempting - the prospect of getting to talented players - but Wall's contract that will run for four more years states a total pay of $170 million.