When the Washington Wizards needed it most, Bradley Beal came through with a performance for the ages on Tuesday night in Portland.

After a 47-point loss in Utah on Monday night that didn’t sit well with anyone on the Wizards, The Panda wasted no time establishing a more aggressive mindset and putting the Wiz on his back. Brad erupted for a career-high 51 points, carrying Washington to a 106-92 win over the Trail Blazers at the Moda Center.

The Panda’s 21 made field goals were also a new career high and his 51 points are the most ever by a visiting player in Portland, surpassing Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s mark of 49 set in 1972.

Brad started the game by being aggressive attacking the rim, scoring 12 points in the period on mid-range jumpers, drives and cuts to the hoop and a pair of free throws.

After the game, Scott Brooks said Beal’s play early on set the tone for the rest of the night.

“You never go into a game thinking one of your best players or best guards in the league is going to get 50, but he has the ability to get high numbers when he’s aggressive,” said Brooks.

The win comes a night after a 47-point loss in Utah where the Wizards only managed to score 69 points as a team, so Beal said he stayed up late watching film and brought an aggressive mindset into the Moda Center.

“I was myself trying to make every play and I can’t make every play, so that’s something I learned…My game is to be aggressive, look to score, and if the defense closes on me make the right play…That’s what I did today,” said Beal.

From the film study, BB said he has been trying to do too much recently in the games without John Wall, but after the sixth game without the All-Star point guard, Beal appears to be settling into the role of the team’s primary offensive option.

Brad knew he was having a good night at halftime, but didn’t quite expect a 51-point outburst. As the game progressed, Beal played more freely which allowed him to fill up the stat sheet.

“I kinda knew at halftime it was gonna be a good one, but I didn’t think it was gonna be a 50-pointer,” said Beal after the game.

Fittingly, the bucket that surpassed Brad’s previous career high of 42 points came on one of the sharpshooter’s five triples on the night and it pushed the Wizards’ lead back up to double digits early in the fourth quarter.

Beal punctuated his performance and capped off a Wizards victory with an emphatic dunk in the closing seconds that gave the Wizards their first 50-point scorer since John Wall last season.


After the huge outburst, Brad talked about his performance and the preparation that helped him get there.