John Wall acknowledged some on-court chemistry issues between him and backcourt-mate Bradley Beal in an interview with CSN Mid-Atlantic.
Wall and Beal—who just agreed to a long-term max contract worth $128 million—have been teammates from the start with the Wizards. Wall, 25, was the first overall pick in 2010 and Beal, 23, was selected third in 2012.
Wall admitted the two still have to work on their chemistry.
”I think a lot of times we have a tendency to dislike each other on the court. … 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,” Wall said, according to CSN Mid-Atlantic.
Both Wall and Beal have dealt with injuries in recent seasons, and the Wizards took a step backward with a 41–41 record in 2016 after consecutive trips to the East semifinals in 2014 and 2015.
"Now that you have your money you got to go out there and improve your game,” Wall added. “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 also said he wants to take ownership for Washington’s team results and referred to Beal as his “sidekick,” referring to them as “A” and “A-1.”
Beal also spoke to CSN about his relationship with Wall.
"It’s tough because we’re both alphas. It’s always tough when you have two guys who firmly believe in themselves, who will bet on themselves against anybody else, who want to be that guy. We both can be that guy," Beal said, according to CSN Mid-Atlantic.
"Sometimes I think we both lose sight of the fact that we need each other.” he continued. “I wouldn’t be in the situation I’m in without John. John wouldn’t be in the situation he’s in without me, without the rest of the team. It goes hand-in-hand so it’s kind of a pride thing. We got to (hash) out our pride, figure out what our goals are individually, help each other achieve those goals, figure out what our team goal is, where do we see ourselves five years from now, 10 years from now and go from there.”
The Wizards hired head coach Scott Brooks in the off-season. Brooks managed stars Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook in Oklahoma City from 2008–2015.