Bradley Beal's playoff breakthrough

Wizards' young shooting guard has shined in postseason; can he keep it up?

Updated: May 7, 2014, 3:26 PM ET
By Kevin Pelton | ESPN Insider

The NBA playoffs provide an opportunity for the league's up-and-coming stars to introduce themselves to a national audience. With apologies to Damian Lillard of the Portland Trail Blazers and Washington Wizards point guard John Wall, both already All-Stars, this season's breakthrough player looks like Wizards guard Bradley Beal.

Beal's sparkling Game 1 effort on Monday in the Wizards' win at Indiana (25 points, 7 rebounds, 7 assists, 5 steals) was his third 25-point game in his first six postseason contests, putting him alongside Magic Johnson as the two players to reach that mark three times before age 21. That's right -- Beal won't be able to celebrate his success in a bar until after the season, because his birthday is June 28.

So who is Bradley Beal? Glad you asked.