The New York Knicks have been admirers of Bradley Beal for some time now and could pursue him in the summer, according to the latest NBA trade rumors. Beal has committed his immediate future to the Washington Wizards but they continue to struggle during the 2020-21 season.
Despite Monday's win, the Wizards only have a 17-28 record so far and could miss the playoffs again. This could be unsettling for Bradley Beal and, as per The Ringer's Kevin O'Connor, four teams – including the New York Knicks – are ready to pounce. O'Connor wrote:
"There’s still a real chance Beal stays in Washington for years to come, but as the Wizards rack up losses, teams like the Heat are waiting to pounce. In addition to Miami, multiple league sources say the Celtics, Knicks, and Pelicans are among the teams with interest in pursuing a deal for Beal."
Bradley Beal's two-year extension with the Washington Wizards comes into play next season, but he has a player option for the 2022-23 season. This means that he could be a free agent as early as the summer of 2022. If the Wizards feel that Beal is likely to decline his player option, they could be forced to trade him.
NBA Trade Rumors: New York Knicks in a position to trade for Bradley Beal
The allure of the Big Apple is hard to ignore, especially when the New York Knicks are in the ascendancy. Tom Thibodeau's unit has an All-Star in Julius Randle and two long-term prospects in Immanuel Quickley and RJ Barrett.
Even if they don't make the playoffs this season, the New York Knicks have gotten the ball rolling. If Bradley Beal ends up demanding a trade, he could become the final piece of the jigsaw puzzle for the Knicks, who are already elite defensively and only lack a three-level scorer.
The cap structure would also allow the New York Knicks to package a good deal for Bradley Beal. They only have $48 million in committed salaries for next season. They also have a war chest of draft picks. They could essentially acquire Beal without having to match salaries.
Franchises like the Miami Heat could also have a good chance of landing Beal, but the New York Knicks should feel good about their prospects if the three-time All-Star becomes available.