Report: Giannis Antetokounmpo has previously had love for idea of teaming up with Bradley Beal

Mike Battaglino
3 Min Read
Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Giannis Antetokounmpo reportedly has been very interested in teaming up with Bradley Beal, and with the Washington Wizards guard possibly on the move this offseason, a trade to the Milwaukee Bucks could be on the table.

ESPN insider Brian Windhorst acknowledged Antetokounmpo’s desire for something like that to come to fruition but added it may be too difficult to pull off.

“I know that Giannis has had a love, the idea of pairing with Bradley Beal has appealed to Giannis in the past,” Windhorst said at the 40:33 mark of his podcast. “I think if you’re Bradley Beal, you look at the opportunity to go to Milwaukee. You’d love that opportunity. But I don’t see how it structurally happens with what the Bucks already have on their roster and their commitments.”

Beal has emerged as one of the hottest names in the NBA rumor mill, with teams keeping “a very close eye” on the Wizards and their personnel moves. New Wizards president Michael Winger could be on the verge of a rebuild in Washington.

The Bucks were recently linked to the University of Florida product.

Beal has a no-trade clause as part of his five-year, $251 million contract that kicked in last season. The 29-year-old has struggled to stay on the court the past two seasons, playing only 90 games combined. His scoring average also has dropped after back-to-back seasons of more than 30 points per game from 2019 to 2021.

However, joining a team as talented as the Bucks, who are led by two-time NBA MVP Antetokounmpo, could be a good fit for Beal, who one executive said is actually better suited for a supporting role.

Milwaukee, the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference last season, was upset by the Miami Heat in the first round of the playoffs, so it is looking for a way to improve and bounce back next season. The Bucks won the NBA title in 2021, and as long as they have Antetokounmpo available, their championship window will be open.

Eric Nehm of The Athletic wrote that for the Bucks to orchestrate a trade for Beal, they would have to part ways with at least one of Jrue Holiday, Khris Middleton or Antetokounmpo.

Milwaukee is likely to face competition for Beal’s services, with the Miami Heat reportedly one of the top teams interested. For Beal’s part, he reportedly would accept a trade to the Heat but is not pushing to go there.

Where Beal winds up could alter the path of other available players during an offseason that is expected to be a “major reset” for the league.

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Mike is a veteran journalist who has focused on New York sports. He has covered the NBA and NFL for almost three decades and is still waiting for the next championship for the Knicks and Jets.