Bradley Beal signed a 2-year, $72 million contract extension that could keep him in Washington through 2023. This is great for the Wizards who were able to temporarily lock down their star player. It's such great news that it made ESPN's Jay Williams temporarily lose his mind.
"If you have one of the best backcourts in the league, you're going to have a chance to be at the top of the East."
It's unclear exactly what exactly Williams meant here, but it sounds like he thinks a Bradley Beal - John Wall backcourt will make the Wizards competitive. This a take that makes a lot of sense in 2016, but in 2019, what is he talking about?
After playing a total of 73 games over the last two seasons, John Wall is likely going to miss this entire season, while his absurd contract is not. Wall is also signed through 2023, but at an even higher salary than Beal.
The Wizards' over/under win total is somewhere in the 20's this year and Bradley Beal isn't even an acquisition. He's just not leaving this year. Wall's best basketball is almost assuredly behind him. It doesn't matter what happens with Philly or Milwaukee this season. It doesn't matter how wide-open the Eastern Conference is this year or next. The Wizards will never compete for a top seed in the East with John Wall and Bradley Beal.
Their best finish together came in 2017 when they won 49 games and earned the 4-seed. That was so long ago that Isaiah Thomas kicked them out of the playoffs, who is now their teammate. It seems like so long ago it might as well have been Isiah Thomas.
It is great for the Wizards that they are keeping Bradley Beal. He's great. But they need to get rid of John Wall's contact to be competitive. Unless an asteroid takes out everything north of Baltimore and Bugs Bunny actually cuts Florida adrift from the United States as part of the marketing of Space Jam 2, the Wizards will not win the East with a Beal - Wall backcourt.