Monday was an eventful day for Wizards-related headlines. ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported in the morning that the team was sending signals that it was willing to listen to inquiries on any of its players – including John Wall and Bradley Beal. Afternoon and evening reports, meanwhile, provided details on a contentious recent practice that included Wall cursing at head coach Scott Brooks, while Beal and Austin Rivers also had a verbal altercation.
In an article for The Washington Post, Candace Buckner shared more details on Thursday’s practice, which included an on-court confrontation between Wall and Jeff Green. Although sources who spoke to Buckner stressed that no arguments turned physical and that the altercations weren’t necessarily unusual for a struggling NBA team, the practice saw several players’ frustrations reach a boiling point.
“This is embarrassing,” a person familiar with the team told Buckner. “This is crazy.”
At one point during the practice, according to Buckner, Beal went on a tirade about the current culture within the Wizards’ organization, yelling something to the effect of “I’m sick of this sh**.” He also gestured toward GM Ernie Grunfeld and said, “It starts at the top,” per Buckner.
Despite Beal’s outburst, he hasn’t expressed any desire to be traded, people familiar with the situation tell Buckner. As for whether the Wizards would actually be willing to deal him, several sources who spoke to Buckner believe the team has no plans to move on from Wall or Beal. Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington hears that any thoughts the Wizards have about trading either of their star guards are “very preliminary.”
Here’s more out of D.C.:
- Buckner also reports that Kelly Oubre cursed out Brooks during a recent game. Although the incident happened on the court, Brooks addressed it during the locker room after the game, per Buckner.
- “They just need to blow the whole sh** up,” one person connected to the Wizards said to Buckner. “It’s all bad.”
- A source tells Fred Katz of The Athletic that changes are coming for the Wizards, adding that “you will notice a difference” in Brooks’ rotations going forward.
- Washington will also consider trades, especially involving players who are perceived not to be playing hard every night, sources tell Katz. However, the club is in no rush to make an unfavorable deal and no trade appears imminent.
- Here’s what a source who works in another team’s front office said about Beal, per Katz: “He isn’t the best player who’s been available in the past few years, but he’s the best player with the best contract situation.” The two stars who were traded most recently – Kawhi Leonard and Jimmy Butler – were in the final year of their respective contracts, whereas Beal won’t be a free agent until 2021.
- In an Insider-only article at ESPN.com, Kevin Pelton ranks the Wizards in terms of trade value. Beal tops Pelton’s list, followed by Oubre, Otto Porter, and Tomas Satoransky. Wall places eighth.