Jayson Tatum and Kyle Kuzma Hype Up “Goat” Bradley Beal’s Emotional Washington Return

Published 02/04/2024, 4:33 PM EST

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USA Today via Reuters

Bradley Beal will play what is probably one of the most emotional games of his career tonight against the Washington Wizards. Before he was traded to the Suns in June 2023, the only other team that Beal had known was the Wizards. After being drafted by the Wizards in 2012, Bradley Beal spent the first 11 seasons of his NBA career with the team. Tonight, he will return to DC, but as an opponent.

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Phoenix will travel to the Capital One Arena for their second game against the Wizards. The most excited about The Big Panda’s return to DC was his ‘little brother’ Jayson Tatum and former teammate Kyle Kuzma, who were all about hyping up the returnee.

Opponent Kuzma doesn’t hold back from celebrating Beal’s return

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Jumping in on the revelry, Beal’s ex-teammate Kuzma also put up a heartwarming post on X. Beal will be going up against Kuzma and the Wizards tonight, but leaving all differences aside, Kuzma wrote, “B.Beal day!” followed by some flower emojis.

Tatum went all out by taking to X to celebrate the occasion. The 5X NBA All-Star posted a ‘Goat’ emoji on the social media platform to show his support for Beal. There is a whole history and brotherhood behind Tatum’s celebration as the two go way back. They grew up in the same neighborhood, and Beal used to babysit Tatum, who was four years younger than him. Then, as they grew up, Beal took on the big brother role for Tatum throughout school and college. Taking it back a little further, the Celtics’ forward once said about Beal, “Without you, it wouldn’t be me…My big brother, man — I appreciate you.

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Over time, they developed a deep bond, to the point where Tatum credits the 3X NBA All-Star as his basketball mentor. So, it comes as no surprise that Tatum is the happiest for Beal at this very important juncture in his career.

Throughout the 11 seasons that Bradley Beal was in DC, he achieved new heights and broke countless franchise records. With a deep connection with the franchise, we can only imagine the sentimental impact this will have on Beal tonight.

An emotional return for a record-holder

Bradley Beal himself had an emotional reunion in his former home arena as he showed up to DC for the game. In a video that has been making the rounds on the internet, Beal can be seen walking up to what appears to be a former Wizards staff member and embracing each other in a hug. This demonstrated the extent of his attachment to the place and its people.

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When Beal was traded to the Suns last year, he left the Wizards with several accolades. He leads the franchise history in most 3-points made (1,514), is second in steals (772), FGM (5,624), points (15,391), and third in leading games played (695), and wins (342). Tonight’s game with his first and only other team will undoubtedly be a memorable one for Beal.

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What are your thoughts on Bradley Beal’s performance when he was with the Wizards? Barring his injury this season, was he better off in DC? Share your thoughts!

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Written by:

Tsuktibenla T Jamir

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Tsuktibenla T Jamir is an NBA author at EssentiallySports. Armed with a Masters in Journalism from the prestigious Delhi School of Journalism, this Nagaland native combines her academic prowess with her passion for the game to craft compelling narratives that bring the NBA to life. She finds immense joy in dissecting the journeys of the athletes who make the game larger than life.
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Edited by:

Ruth John

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