NBA Rumors: Trading Bradley Beal Would Be Crippling Decision by Wizards

Tim KeeneyContributor IJanuary 15, 2013

DALLAS, TX - NOVEMBER 14:  Bradley Beal #3 of the Washington Wizards at American Airlines Center on November 14, 2012 in Dallas, Texas.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

This is your daily reminder that Bradley Beal is 19 years of age. 

You can bring up whatever argument you want about the No. 3 pick being a "bust." You can point to his anemic 36.7 field-goal percentage, 32.4 three-point percentage and 42.1 effective field-goal percentage. You can show me his offensive rating of 96. You can even highlight arguably his worst stat: an overall plus/minus of minus-206, the worst mark on this Washington Wizards team. 

Nevertheless, Beal is 19 years old and playing in the NB freaking A. When I was 19, I was in my dorm room drinking 40s—don't tell my mom—and playing Halo with my roommates.

There is still a massive amount of time for Beal, who is older than just two other players in the league, to develop and hit his unreal potential.

That's why rumors like this one from Ronald Tillery at the Memphis Commerical Appeal make little to no sense from Washington's perspective:

According to a person with knowledge of those conversations, Gay is likely to remain a Grizzly through the end of this season. The message to Gay at the moment is that if he is dealt by the league's Feb. 21 trade deadline, then the Griz will have been offered a no-brainer scenario.

For example, the Griz have entertained the Washington Wizards' offer for Gay. The crux of that exchange would have the Griz receiving rookie shooting guard Bradley Beal in a larger package. The proposals for Randolph have been even weaker.

Wait. So, according to the report, the Wizards have actually offered Beal in a package for Rudy Gay already? Um, what? 

The problem here isn't Gay. If you forget about the fact that he would be an incredibly expensive commodity for a team trying to rebuild or the fact that he is in the midst of arguably the worst offensive season of his career, he makes for an intriguing piece. 

Not only is he an incredibly underrated defender, but he is still just 26 years old, has the potential to be great offensively and is the type of veteran this team needs.

But my goodness. Trading Bradley Beal after 32 games should not be an option. 

Despite what his field-goal percentages say (which, by the way, have improved every month), the youngster is a deadly shooter with no pressing mechanical flaws. He has an ideal NBA body, can create off the dribble and can play either guard position. 

Moreover, let's wait and see what Beal can do with John Wall, who just finally returned for his first 21 minutes of action on Saturday, in the same backcourt. It's not exactly fair to judge someone who was forced to start his career playing next to guys like A.J. Price, Garrett Temple and Shelvin Mack. 

It's certainly not enough to warrant a trade. 

For one last time, Bradley Beal is 19 years old. He is under contract at a good price through 2016, is already getting beneficial NBA experience and has the potential to be elite. 

Trading him would only cripple the rebuilding process and further set this franchise back.