Wall recently admitted in a TV interview with CSN’s Chris Miller that he and Beal don’t have great on-court chemistry, claiming they have “a tendency to dislike each other on the court.” Beal told CSNMidAtlantic.com’s J. Michael that he and Wall “lose sight of the fact that we need each other.”
O’Connor takes it a step further, quoting an unnamed agent who says the dislike extends beyond the basketball floor.
“Whatever is public, multiply it by five and that’s how they really feel about each other,” the agent told O’Connor. “It’s probably a total disaster.”
New Wizards head coach Scott Brooks will have the challenge of getting them to become a more cohesive pair but if that fails, the club may have no choice but to break them up, O’Connor opines. Beal just signed a $127MM contract but Wall’s contract, with three years and $54.2MM remaining, can easily be moved if the Wizards go in that direction, O’Connor adds.
Wall’s willingness to become more accountable and a respected leader will go a long way in determining how Washington handles the situation, Michael asserts in a different column. The backcourt pair, while not the best of friends, don’t hate each other, Michael continues. But assistant coach Sidney Lowe contends Wall must do more to win over everyone in the locker room.
“It’s your communication and get your players to feel good about you. And the way you do that is by you getting them to feel good about themselves,” Lowe told Michael. “There’s something to that. Obviously that’s an area where I can work with and talk to with John and help him out a little bit.”
Wall’s habit of publicly displaying his displeasure over contracts handed out to opposing players does not help his cause, O’Connor contends. Wall criticized the Pistons last summer for giving out a big contract to Reggie Jackson. Wall apparently had similar feelings about the extension James Harden received from the Rockets this summer, with a front-office executive telling O’Connor that Wall was “rankled” by that four-year, $118MM contract.