Adrian WojnarowskiVeteran NBA Insider4 minutes of reading
The The Washington Wizards are finalizing a trade to send three-time All-Star guard Bradley Beal to the Phoenix Suns for a package expected to include Chris Paul, Landry Shamet, multiple second-round picks and a picks swap, sources told ESPN on Sunday.
The deal could take a few days to complete, but sources said Beal is headed to the Suns to form a new Big 3 alongside Devin Booker and Kevin Durant.
Beal’s agent, Mark Bartelstein of Priority Sports, confirmed to ESPN that Beal will land with the Suns.
“It’s a very complicated process and there are a lot of hurdles to overcome, and Ted Leonsis and Michael Winger have been incredible partners in making this happen,” Bardelstein told ESPN. “Ted has been by our side since the day Brad was created [former general managers] Ernie Grenfield and Tommy Shepard. They’ve always had Brad’s support in every way, and now we’ve had the same experience with Ted and Michael Winger. We are very grateful.”
Beal waives his no-trade clause to accommodate the deal for a Suns owner who now realizes the roster is high on talent and salary. Beal will join Booker, Durant and Deandre Ayton — four max contracts with a collective bargaining agreement designed to severely limit teams’ roster flexibility at more than $117 million above the second apron of the luxury tax. It was the ultimate all-in game in the Suns’ championship chase.
Beal’s arrival and the $207 million remaining on his contract will make the Suns a second-apron team for at least the next three years, forcing them to rely heavily on minimum contracts to fill out the roster.
Suns management and key players have sold Beal on Phoenix as a place to fulfill his championship hopes in recent days, sources said.
Owner Mat Ishbia has made a massive commitment to salary and luxury tax on Beal and Durant’s contracts to pursue a title in the coming seasons. The Suns will pay Booker, Durant, Beal and Ayton $163 million through the 2023-2024 season.
Bartelstein has worked closely with the winger in recent days to navigate a deal with Phoenix, with talks that included conversations with multiple teams, sources said. Peel’s no-trade clause proved limited in Washington’s options to negotiate a return to the market.
The Wizards shed the final four years and $207 million of Beal’s contract, clearing the way for the winger to rebuild the roster after missing the playoffs in four of the last five years — all of which included losing seasons. The Suns did not have any first-round draft picks to add to the deal due to the Brooklyn Nets’ control from the Kevin Durant deal.
After 11 years with the Wizards — who drafted him No. 3 overall in 2012 — Beal is approaching 30 years old and admits the franchise is running out of a quick way to contention with the winger.
After the Beal trade, the Suns will make two blockbuster trades under Ishbia over the last several months, including the Durant deal.
After completing the first season of a five-year, $251 million contract, Beal stands as the NBA’s only current player to negotiate a no-trade clause in his contract, giving him the ability to control not only where he can go, but how a potential package can buy him and affect his new supporting cast.
Beal’s no-trade clause will make him known to the Suns.
Leonsis gave the winger full autonomy on whether he wanted to rebuild with the Wizards or pursue a path around more expensive veteran talent. The Wizards are awaiting player-option decisions on forwards Kyle Kuzma and Kristaps Porzingis, both of whom could become unrestricted free agents.
Beal averaged 23.2 points in 50 injury-plagued games last season. For his career, he averaged 22.1 points, including 30.5 points and 31.3 points from 2019 to 2021.