Bradley Beal is on course to become best scorer ever for very bad team

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Bryan Kalbrosky
·2 min read
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Is Bradley Beal frustrated with the performance of his Washington Wizards, who currently have the worst record in the NBA? Is the sky blue?

Beal, who led the Eastern Conference in points per game last season and trailed just James Harden for the league’s scoring title, has been incredibly loyal to the franchise that drafted him at No. 3 overall in 2012. But this year, the losses are weighing on him in a way that has become more visible on the court, and frankly, he may be sick of it.

The 27-year-old is averaging a league-best, career-high 35.4 points per game in 2020-21. These aren’t empty calory performances. According to Cleaning the Glass, the Wizards have been outscored by 0.4 points per 100 possessions with Beal on the floor but 11.8 points per 100 in the minutes he has not been featured.

Despite the most dominating efforts from Beal, Washington (3-11) has had an abysmal season.

To put all of this in context, we looked at the top scorers to ever play for struggling teams. The main takeaway here is that it is fairly unprecedented for someone to score at the rate that Beal has been scoring and still have their team come up short.

We learned there are only seven instances in league history where a player ended the season averaging at least 30 points per game despite playing for a team that finished with a winning percentage of 35 percent or below.

The most recent example occurred last season when none other than Beal himself averaged 30.6 ppg but the Wizards finished with just a 34.7 winning percentage.

Before that, this had not happened since Bernard King averaged 32.9 ppg for the New York Knicks (24-58) in 1985. Yet if the season ended today, this would actually become the second time in as many years that this happened to the same person.

As you can see, based on how rare this is, Beal has plenty of reasons to be upset at what is happening for Washington in 2020-21.

HoopsHype’s Alberto de Roa contributed research to this report

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