Rookies come into the NBA with hopes and dreams of making an immediate impact to their respective teams. Those drafted at the top usually have a chance to contribute right away due to the inability of their new team to make the playoffs the previous season. Those rookies drafted late in the first round and sometimes the second have to work even harder to break the rotation. When your team happens to pick in the top 5, everyone expects that player to make noise from day 1.
Bradley Beal took some time to adjust to playing basketball at college’s highest level last year so it was to be expected that one year removed, he would need time to adjust to the pro game. The Washington Wizards didn’t count on Beal having to adjust without his back court mate, John Wall. Randy Whittman attempted to ease him into the lineup but that plan changed almost immediately. Two months into the season, it’s time for Beal to get aggressive.
Beal happens to be one of those rare players that has the skill set to do a lot of different things on the floor. Shooting is supposed to be his forte, he can distribute, and rebounds well for a player his size. Often times, he disappears for stretches of the game attempting to let the game come to him. When you play for a team that’s missing it’s best player, and wading at the bottom of the NBA pool, you can’t afford to let the game come to you. Beal has to stop settling for jumpers and start going to the rim more. Make your defender respect the driving ability enough to give more room when it’s time to shoot the jumper you were heralded for.
Beal would also benefit from having more plays run for him. Sometimes it’s hard to tell when Jordan Crawford or Kevin Seraphin is in the game, they shoot unconsciously. It would be in the Wizards’ best interest to make sure Beal stays a focal point of the offense when he is the game. This is what they drafted him for. The team is struggling–teach and nurture a player that you plan on making a central part of your future.