Ashooh: 'Perfect time' for Wizards to reset, trade Beal

Ben Krimmel
July 14, 2019 - 8:58 pm

The Washington Wizards can't afford to pretend to be something they are not. There can be no delusions of grandeur. It is time for them to understand they're not close to contending and major changes must happen, Nick Ashooh said on 106.7 The Fan. 

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"This is the perfect time if you're the Wizards to reset, start over, start from scratch. This is the time," Ashooh said Saturday. "Whether Tommy Sheppard is your is your guy or you still decide to hire another GM."

And what does hitting the reset button mean? Trading All-Star guard Bradley Beal.

"At some point, Bradley Beal's gonna say, 'I'm wasting my time here, I want out.' And once he goes and asks for a trade or tells the organization, 'I'm over this.' Then it's a storm," Ashooh said.

The Wizards should look at what how the Thunder quietly traded Paul George (and then went on to send Russell Westbrook to Houston) as a blueprint on how to handle trading a star player without the fanbase in open revolt, without the media frenzy, and without losing leverage.

"The Thunder handled all of this before it blew up in their face like Antony Davis in New Orleans," Ashooh said. "Think about what a disaster that was for the Lakers and for the Pelicans. It got people fired, it got guys traded, it was an utter S-storm for two teams. Think about all the stuff that that did because it got out of hand because it wasn't handled sooner.

"The Wizards have to follow this blueprint. This is where they need to be. They gotta look at what the Thunder did and say, 'Alright, we're going to have to hit the reset button here.'"

While the Wizards won't get equal value in return, this is the right move for them in the long term. And in order to get that fresh start they need, the Wizards will likely have to part with their most valuable trade asset, especially when considering John Wall's contract situation.

There have been trade rumors this offseason. A report indicated the Clippers inquired about trading for Beal and earlier this offseason the Pelicans were also reportedly interested in him.

All of these moves would be unthinkable under the previous regime

And the moves the Wizard have made his offseason are in quite a different direction and Ashooh had praise for Washington's interim general manager. 

"Tommy Sheppard has created a much better culture already with the guys that they've drafted, that they've signed in free agency, or that they've traded for. These are guys that have a chip on their shoulder, hard workers, known as good attitude guys but none of 'em are going to make you a better team," he said. "In fact, I maintain this Wizards team is probably gonna be worse than they were last year." 

"But as of right now, I have no confidence this team is going to lose less than 50 games."

All of that goes back to the big issue: Why keep Beal on this team?

The market is there. "Bradley Beal is a star. Bradley Beal is somebody that any team in the NBA should want and probably does," Ashooh said, before adding the Miami Heat are reportedly still interested. 

The Wizards, who still have yet to name a permanent GM, should act now before Beal realizes he is being wasted in Washington for a team that likely won't make the playoffs in the NBA's second-best conference.

"It's best for the long-term (direction) of the organization," Ashooh said. "You have to understand that if you're the Wizards." 

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