Wizards GM: Beal is 'somebody you can build your franchise around'


Wizards general manager Tommy Sheppard talked with reporters on Monday for the first time since Washington’s season ended, and just over a week before the team will be able to talk with Bradley Beal about his future with the franchise.

At this point, it seems like a given that Beal will be returning after his season abruptly ended due to wrist surgery, and if/when he does, Sheppard is expecting a big bounceback performance from the three-time All-Star.

“I’ve never seen a better healer than Bradley Beal,” Sheppard said. “I fully anticipate him being ready well ahead of training camp…I think Bradley would tell you he’s got a very big chip on his shoulder for the upcoming season. Injuries tend to minimize people’s value in the NBA.”

Sheppard certainly doesn’t undervalue Beal, who had a career year during the 2020-21 campaign, and Sheppard expects that level of play in the upcoming season from a franchise cornerstone.

“I’m not worried about the noise outside, I just look at the player and I know that’s somebody you can build your franchise around,” Sheppard said. “I know he’s going to have a tremendous season coming up. Where he’s at right now, it’s not where he’ll be in a month. In two months as we get ready to go to Japan, I think he’ll be in full swing in terms of his shot.”