Published On: Tue, Aug 23rd, 2016

Wall admits to friction with Beal: 'We have a tendency to dislike each other'

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Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports / Reuters

The Washington Wizards‘ two franchise cornerstones have fences to mend.

John Wall and Bradley Beal are one of the NBA’s brightest backcourt combinations, but having two alpha types sharing the court has led to some friction.

“I think a lot of times we have a tendency to dislike each other on the court,” Wall told CSN’s Chris Miller. “… We got to be able to put that to the side. If you miss somebody on one play or don’t have something go right … as long as you come to each other and talk. If I starting arguing with somebody I’m cool. I’m just playing basketball.”

The Wizards showed their faith in Wall by locking him into a five-year maximum contract in 2013, and he delivered, making the All-Star Game in three straight seasons and blossoming into one of the league’s best point guards.

This summer, Beal got a max deal of his own, and Wall hopes he follows in his footsteps by developing into an elite player.

“Now that you have your money you got to go out there and improve your game. I want you to be an All-Star just as much as I’m an All-Star. If we were playing well as a tandem like the other two superstars that play together as a backcourt, play as a tandem, one night it’s going to be his night, one night it’s going to be mine, some nights it might be both of us. Those are nights it’s going to be tough to beat us,” Wall said.

If there was already conflict based on sharing the ball, Beal’s salary bump won’t help matters. Wall will make a shade under $17 million next year, while Beal will earn over $22 million. That difference is entirely due to the escalating salary cap, but it didn’t stop Wall from speaking out last summer when contracts ballooned.

Nevertheless, Beal and Wall are locked in as the team’s core for the foreseeable future. So if they want to threaten for Eastern supremacy, the two will have to set their differences aside.

“I want it all to be on me. At the same time I want him to be right there with me. He’s my sidekick. I’m A. He’s A-1. He’s right there,” Wall said. “That’s something we got to do on the first day of training camp. We have to go in there and understand and get on the same page.

“If we’re not on the same page and we have our ups and downs we’ll keep dealing with the same problems. We have to get control of it. I think it’s hanging out off the court, doing those little things (helps).”



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