Bradley Beal calls being Wizards’ franchise player an ‘honorable position’

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Everyone who would be involved with the Washington Wizards in a potential trade for the NBA’s current leading scorer Bradley Beal, all agree that isn’t happening. Not this year at least.

These people include GM Tommy Shepard, who told USA today reporters “[Beal] is a fantastic two-way player. He’s proved himself to be a cornerstone for this franchise.”

Plus, Beal’s agent Mark Bartelstein told Yahoo Sports late last week, Beal is “off the trade market” despite any speculation.

In the midst of a 7-17 record so far this season, Washington is dead set on keeping Beal as their franchise player. Lucky for them, the ninth-year guard is not shying away from owning that title.

Hearing Beal himself talk about it after their biggest win of the season on Sunday offered Wizard fans a huge sigh of relief.

“For the Wizards to entrust me with that, it’s an honorable position,” Beal told team reporters. “I believe I’ve become a better leader. I’m probably not the greatest one yet but I’m definitely working my way towards it.”

Granted, that did come after a 104-91 rout of the Celtics behind a game-high 35 points from Beal, so one could think it was a result of good spirits from him. But there was more.

“You understand there’s only 450 guys in the NBA and there’s only 30 teams and every team has a quote-unquote star or superstar on their team, a franchise guy,” Beal said, “and for the Wizards to entrust me with that, that’s an honorable position, one that I don’t take for granted, that I don’t take lightly.

Beal’s 32.9 PPG leads all players, and he’s on pace to start in his first all-star game next month in Indianapolis. If all goes to plan, this year he’d earn a spot on his first all-NBA team.

The speculation of NBA trade rumors however, did seem warranted from people around the league. From a viewer standpoint, it only takes watching a couple Wizards games to see bursts of outward frustration from Beal. Not to mention, most scoring leaders on sub .500 team prior to an All-Star break will have their name thrown around in some trade deals.

Just last week Beal made headlines for calling out his team for a lack of “dog” after a loss.

“We gotta have some pride man, some dog.” Beal told NBC Sports reporter Chase Hughes. “We’ve got no dog, we just kind of let teams walk all over us and that sh*t is frustrating.”

However, Shepard, Bartelstein, and Bradley Beal himself are all in the same page when it comes to the star’s place on this team. Beal’s comments after Sunday’s win over Boston offered the league the most clarity yet on the situation.