By the numbers: Get to know Phoenix’s new offensive weapon Bradley Beal
Jun 19, 2023, 2:30 PM | Updated: Jun 20, 2023, 8:18 am
(AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)
The Phoenix Suns and new owner Mat Ishbia made another major splash by acquiring Wizards star Bradley Beal in a trade that sent Chris Paul, Landry Shamet and multiple second-round picks to Washington.
Ishbia has been in Phoenix since February and has already pushed his chips into the center of the table declaring all-in.
Beal, Kevin Durant and Devin Booker will form the newest super team in the NBA, something that Booker wished upon back in 2018.
Despite the trio earning $131 million combined next year, the offensive ceiling the Suns have may be unmatched.
Let’s take a look at the newest Sun and how his offensive game will fit alongside Booker, Durant and potentially Deandre Ayton.
Beal has grown into one of the best scorers across the league, averaging 22.1 points per game on 46% shooting over his 11 years in the NBA.
He was named to the 2013 All-NBA Rookie First Team but took a few years for him to find his footing after being drafted at 19 years old. But after his fourth season, he exploded onto the scene.
From 2016-23, the guard averaged 25.6 PPG en route to three All-Star games in that span. Additionally he was named to one All-NBA Team.
A snag coming in the Beal deal is that he is entering the second season of his five-year, $251 million contract and has a no-trade clause to every team in the league.
As previously mentioned, the three stars will consume $131 million next season, $151 million the following and $163 million in the third year.
The Suns lacked depth a year ago and will be looking to general manager James Jones to maneuver around the free agent market to keep this team competitive with a Denver Nuggets team that walked through the playoffs.
Along with depth, Phoenix lacked consistent outside shooting from anyone not named Devin Booker, even Durant struggled in many different instances.
Beal is bringing his career 37.2% 3-point shooting to the Valley, and although that doesn’t directly jump off the page, Phoenix saw vast improvements in Devin Booker’s numbers when Durant was slotted into the lineup. Beal was surrounded by lesser talent in Washington.
In the first four years of his career when the Wizards were consistently competing for playoff spots, Beal shot over 40% from deep each season.
As a team, Phoenix shot 37.3% from deep last season, seventh best.
With the trade, a lot is going to be asked of No. 1 on the Suns, Devin Booker.
Now that The Point God Chris Paul is gone, it can be assumed that Booker will have a much bigger role at the point guard position.
When Paul was out of the lineup the last two season, Booker averaged 29.4 points per game, 6.6 assists and 5.0 rebound in 34 regular season games without Paul.
But with Beal and Durant alongside him, the growth of Devin Booker may have a new ceiling.
Throughout his career so far, Beal has missed 182 games due to some form of injury or illness. There have been only two seasons where he played the full 82-game regular season
Beal has played just two full seasons over his 11 year career.
He has not played over 60 games in five straight seasons and has played in 50 or fewer the last two. Availability will be a major key for Beal and his other superstar teammate’s hopes of hoisting the Larry O’Brien trophy.
Last year, Phoenix took extra precautions with injuries to get a healthy squad into the playoffs.
Beal will most likely not be called upon to play all 82 games next year. Only Torrey Craig (79), Damion Lee (74) and Josh Okogie (72) played in more than 70 games last year.