The Toronto Raptors might not be contending this season, as evidenced by the fact that Norman Powell was dealt away in exchange for Gary Trent Jr. and Rodney Hood, but Masai Ujiri and the front office have huge plans for the 2021 offseason, and Washington Wizards star Bradley Beal is at the center of it all.
While Beal has been putting up excellent numbers for the Wizards this season alongside Russell Westbrook, but that hasn’t translated to a ton of wins. Beal could look to leave the Wizards this offseason, and Kevin O’Connor believes that Toronto might be willing to make him the cornerstone of their team via trade.
Per O’Connor, the Raptors could be in on Beal this offseason, as Ujiri believes they can contend as soon as next season. O’Connor claimed that the reason Ujiri was a bit reluctant to deal Kyle Lowry was the fact he has such high hopes for 2021.
Back in Canada after an entire season spent in Tampa, the Raptors might be able to get back to their normal rhythm next year.
Could Bradley Beal come to the Toronto Raptors?
O’Connor projects that because of the cap uncertainty, only eight teams will head into the offseason with cap space, Toronto being one of them. This makes the Raptors players for both Beal and Victor Oladipo when he hits the open market.
Beal’s 31.3 points per game not only lead the league, but it also represents the second consecutive season in which he has topped 30 points per game. A three-time All-Star, Beal has been wasting away in Washington, and Toronto could give him the chance to play meaningful summer basketball once again.
While several holdovers from this years team would need to go in order to afford Beal, as Lowry will need to make a massive pay cut and Trent’s expected salary could be too much for the Raptors to take on, getting a player like Beal would be a transformative moment for a team Ujiri thinks can win now.
It goes without saying that the Raptors will have steep competition, as the Heat, Celtics, Knicks, and Pelicans will all reportedly make a run at Beal in the offseason. Given their money to spend, lower taxes, and geographical advantages, the Raptors will really need to sway Beal to come up north.
If Beal wants to get paid like the superstar he is, be the unquestioned top offensive option, and play some playoff basketball, the Raptors might give him the best chance to scratch all three of those itches.
If O’Connor is to be believed, Beal could make the trip to Toronto and don Raptors red and black. While losing Trent and, potentially, Lowry in this deal could sting, it’s worth it for a player of his caliber.