Washington Wizards guard Bradley Beal, an oft-pined for player for Mavericks fans, went on a Wizards postgame show and gave one of the more remarkably unaware interviews I’ve seen in sometime.
“It’s always tough because I never like disrespecting the teammates that I have and disrespecting the team that we have,” Beal began. “It’s tough because I think we need bigger guards. We need more guys who can get in the paint for us. More ball handlers. More guys who can really create, get two feet in the paint, but also who can knock town threes.”
The player archetype he’s describing sounds remarkably like Spencer Dinwiddie! Since arriving in Dallas, Dinwiddie’s averaged 17.6 points on 49% shooting including a fiery 38% from three while parading to the free throw line over five times a game. He’s also serving up 4.1 assists per game for a team that really needed help in the play making department.
While Dinwiddie did not play his best basketball this season in Washington, he also seemed rather frustrated by the hierarchy. In mid-December, he gave a telling quote with hindsight:
“I think we run an equal opportunity system, you know what I’m saying? So then people are like, ‘Spence, what’s going on?’ Look at our shot chart. Look at our play chart. Everybody’s got eight to 10 shots. Everybody’s got two to three assists, obviously outside of Brad, but that’s our primary guy. That’s who we go to — as we should. I want to make that very clear: as we should. But then if we’re going to be equal opportunity after Brad, then you’re going to see that even distribution.”
Since arriving with the Mavericks, he’s playing a well defined role in what’s quickly become a well defined-hierarchy. After the Mavericks 114-113 win over the Kings on March 5, Dinwiddie had this to say:
“I do what I do and I don’t do what I’m not supposed to do. That goes one through 15. Everybody here follows that type of mentality because we understand to win basketball games not just in the regular season but to win in the playoffs, you need that.”
The Wizard’s loss is the Maverick’s gain, with Dinwiddie looking like a very different player despite not having that much of a difference in terms of opportunity. His usage and minute totals are very similar to Washington.
It’s just very strange that the Wizards would move on from a player who seems to so directly fill the holes they have and yet that’s exactly what happened.