‘He’s a Hall of Famer’: Wizards’ Bradley Beal Reveals How Russell Westbrook Has Helped Elevate His Game

Published 03/08/2021, 11:30 PM EST
Dec 26, 2020; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; Washington Wizards guard Russell Westbrook (4) stands on the court with Wizards guard Bradley Beal (3) against the Orlando Magic in the second quarter at Capital One Arena. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports


The biggest drama in the NBA 2020 off-season was the Russell Westbrook trade. After he asked for a trade, the Washington Wizards took the gamble and brought him in to partner Bradley Beal.

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While the Wizards haven’t had a lot of success yet, there have been a few encouraging signs. In his short tenure, Westbrook has impressed his teammates already. Beal has been the most vocal about it and spoke about it during a recent interview.

He said, “I credit a lot of success to Russ because he’s a Hall of Famer, he’s an MVP, scoring champ. (I see) how he brings it every single day, as a leader, as a player, as a father. He’s probably the best teammate I’ve ever had and in terms of his leadership, probably one of the best leaders I’ve been around.”

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Beal also mentioned how Westbrook always holds himself accountable and gives nothing but his best out on the court.

Can Bradley Beal and Russell Westbrook take the Wizards to the playoffs?

Westbrook’s arrival was touted to be the revival of the Wizards, but they sit in 12th place currently. They were rock-bottom at one stage but are slowly creeping up the standings. They went on a hot streak in February where they won seven out of eight games. Westbrook averaged a triple-double during that stretch and was influential in those wins.

Dec 29, 2020; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; Washington Wizards guard Russell Westbrook (4) reacts after a shot against the Chicago Bulls during the first half at Capital One Arena. Mandatory Credit: POOL PHOTOS-USA TODAY Sports

Beal talked about Westbrook’s triple-doubles during the interview and said that it comes through hard work and dedication only. Watching that is inspiring him as well. He said, “I looked at that and I was like, ‘Ok I can do that. I can play hard every single night. I can give my teammates my all every night.'”

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Their current record is 14-20 and they are two games behind the #8 seed Raptors. They entered All-Star break with a statement win over the Clippers, and now the key for them will be to continue that momentum when action resumes. After playing the Grizzlies, they face the 76ers and then the Bucks twice. Those are huge games, and if they can win a couple, it will give them a huge boost.

The East hasn’t been very competitive so far, so if the Wizards can continue to push, they could sneak into the playoffs.

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Jan 31, 2021; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; Washington Wizards guard Russell Westbrook (4) celebrates with teammates after making the go ahead the go ahead three point field goal against the Brooklyn Nets in the final seconds in the fourth quarter at Capital One Arena. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

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Aaron Mathew

1629 articles

Aaron Mathew is a sports analyst at EssentiallySports. A graduate in Mass Media from Xavier’s College, Aaron has been a part of EssentiallySports since May 2020 where he covers both NBA and NCAA basketball news, and has also covered NBA 2K. In the past, Aaron has worked at the Sports Desk of Mumbai Mirror.

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