1. Beal is an elite scorer, like Harden
Beal and Harden are much different players, to put it politely, but they are both elite scorers. Beal nearly led the league in scoring in 2019-20, but ultimately finished as the runner-up, with 30.5 points per game, on 22.9 shots.
Beal made 35.3 percent of his threes, and is a career 38 percent shooter from deep, which is better than Harden’s career mark of 36.3 percent. Beal is currently leading the league in scoring, as he’s averaging 34.9 points per game, on 37.5 percent from deep.
Beal recently scored a career-best 60 points on 7-of-10 from deep, albeit in a loss. Beal would certainly rather be on a winning team (which the Rockets would be with him on the roster) than be putting up empty numbers on a losing team.
Beal would also not need to score nearly as much to win in Houston, but could assume the role of the team’s closer, much like Harden has in the past. It would also be easier for Beal to get looks, as Wall could create opportunities for him, much like he has in the past.
To be clear, the Houston Rockets haven’t been rumored to be interested in Beal, but he figures to be one of the best returns they could get for Harden at this point. And with him facing a player option that could see him opt out, the Wizards would be wise to deal him for a former MVP in Harden.