It was a rough night for Washington Wizards star Bradley Beal against the Memphis Grizzlies Tuesday. The NBA’s leading scorer was held to 23 points on 8-of-18 shooting. He added six turnovers in the lackluster performance. Majority of his struggles can be credited to the relentless defense of Dillon Brooks.
Brooks face-guarded Beal for much of the night. He made Beal earn every shot attempt and point that he scored. Ultimately, Beal used a lot of energy just to get open. And it showed on both ends of the floor, as he was a woeful minus-25 in the Wizards’ lopsided loss.
Beal noticed the effort of Brooks. Following the 125-111 Memphis win, Beal revealed Brooks told him he had spent the night before studying to prepare for the daunting task.
Bradley Beal said he could tell Dillon Brooks had done his homework on him, and that Brooks said 'I was preparing for this last night, to see you.'— Chase Hughes (@ChaseHughesNBCS) March 3, 2021
Beal: "I respect him, he's a gritty guy."
Brooks’ preparation showed. The 23 points was Beal’s second-lowest scoring output of the season. The six turnovers matched a season-high.
He could never get into a comfortable rhythm. There was no scoring barrage Beal is accustomed.
It's a testament to how good Bradley Beal is now that when he scores 23 points and shoots 44.4% it is legitimately an off night.— Chase Hughes (@ChaseHughesNBCS) March 3, 2021
Meanwhile, Dillon Brooks countered with 20 points, while producing a plus-25 rating. There won’t be many nights Bradley Beal will struggle as much as he did against Grizzlies. Certainly, there won’t many guys who can defend Beal as good as Brooks did. Thus, the former Oregon Duck has earned the respect of one of the league’s most lethal scorers.