By Ron Oakes-Cunningham
on January 5, 2021 at 2:27 p.m. EST
Modern basketball has given high priority to highly qualified playmakers and shooters. And when the game changes, so does compensation, as having one or both of these coveted skills guarantees a godsend.
Start with Sagittarius. Davis Bertans provides a perfect example. After the Latvian laser recovered from two ACL injuries with its reconstructed knees, it was awarded a $ 80 million contract for its exceptional ability to snip from a long distance.
But there’s an even bigger reward for it achieving playmakers. We have to thank (or blame) James Harden for this. When Harden was traded to the Houston Rockets and used as a de facto point guard, he revolutionized basketball.
As a rifle guard it was natural that he could score. By adding the role of playmaking, the Rockets put a true artist on the basketball canvas. Like any great art, great works inspire others to reach the same level. Which brings us to the point: Bringing Bradley Beal to a James Harden effect on the Wizards offense.
Like Harden before him, we know Beal can score. When he was named number one last season, he averaged the top 30 points per game. After John Wall paused, the Wizards needed to see what Beal could do as the primary playmaker. With 6 helpers per game, his points and his style of play, the magicians contributed between 42 and 48 points every evening.
This season his assists numbers have dropped to just under 5 per game. Instead of minimizing his game, the wizards should keep increasing it. As Harden’s Houston score increased, so did his nightly assistance amount. And it makes sense: a dangerous goalscorer cannot be guarded by just one player. The ability to score at all levels means there is an opportunity to draw a mismatch and increase the chances of a favorable outcome with any possession of the ball. So we have to move on, but how?
Stunning minutes for Beal and Russell Westbrook is a start. This does not mean that Westbrook will have the ball completely out of their hands as he and Bertans are a good match.
It means that Scott Brooks should plan Beal’s minutes with his favorite target: Thomas Bryant. Against Minnesota, Beals contributed 31 points and 7 assists to the Wizards’ victory. Note that 3 of Beal’s 7 aides went to Bryant’s home. Bryant cashed 2 of Brad’s 5 groschen against Brooklyn. There is synergy between the two and I believe they can develop a nasty two-man game if Brooks plays the rotation right.
In this case, the game-winning drive-to-dime sequence against the nets can too become an integral part of the magicians’ offense.
This represents the view of the user who posted the FanPost, and not the entire Bullets Forever community. We are a place with many opinions, not just one.
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