Following a recent arrest for marijuana possession (I don’t understand why he doesn’t just smoke it in his house), Michael Beasley was released by the Phoenix Suns Tuesday afternoon.
The arrest is one of many reasons why Beasley was released by a middling Suns team that will be fortunate to break 35 wins this upcoming season. Expectations were so low for Beasley that the team is instead choosing to run with the likes of Marcus Morris, PJ Tucker and Gerald Green as its small forwards.
Beasley’s coming off a 2012-13 season with the Suns where he averaged 10.1 points on a shade above 40 percent from the field and 31 percent from beyond the arc. The 3.8 rebounds he averaged also continued the extreme regression Beasley has dealt with over the past two seasons.
Two years ago as a starter with the Minnesota Timberwolves, Beasley averaged a career-high 19 points and shot 37 percent from three. He would eventually have his spot in the rotation challenged by rookie Derrick Williams, leading to his one-year stint in Phoenix.
Many held out hope that Beasley would thrive on a Suns team that wasn’t going anywhere and needed a high-volume scorer. Instead, he continued to make the same bad plays (poor shot selection, useless defense and zero aggression on the boards) and was sent to the bench after starting the first 20 games of the year.
The Suns gave $7 million to Beasley to go away.
Five years after being drafted second in one of the deepest drafts in NBA history, Michael Beasley will be likely to find any sort of job in the league that will pay him more than the veteran’s minimum.
The Miami Heat is not going to be the team. Neither of the two remaining spots on the roster is worth the frustration of keeping the 24-year-old child. Not even for the same deal that Greg Oden received.
Honestly, I’d hold out more hope that Oden would live up to his million dollar deal than Beasley would to his.
Heat fans know Beasley from his first two years in the league as Miami’s starting power forward in the days where it was Dwyane Wade or bust. He made it on the All-Rookie First team after averaging 14 points and five boards, while shooting 41 percent from three, but failed to make the jump in his sophomore season.
Meanwhile, those who were drafted before and after him, such as Derrick Rose, Russell Westbrook and Kevin Love, were proving to their franchises and cities that success was on its way, it would be there soon and it would remain there for awhile.
The Heat dropped Beasley the second they got the chance. He was a victim of the Heat’s salary dump that resulted in the acquisitions of LeBron James, Chris Bosh and Mike Miller, as well as the re-signings of Dwyane Wade and Udonis Haslem.
To think that people once argued Beasley should have been kept around instead of Miller.
It’s extremely unlikely Beasley makes a return to Miami, unless Pat Riley is feeling nostalgic and is entering the first stages of dementia. He was frustrating to watch when he was wearing a Heat uniform and there’s no reason to bring him back when he clearly hasn’t matured at all since his departure from Miami.
If he wasn’t getting minutes on the Suns team from last year, finishing a respectable 25-57 and dead-last in a division that also features the Sacramento Kings, then he’s not getting any minutes in Miami.
The Heat front office chooses its free agents wisely. Talent and youth isn’t the only thing Miami is looking for, and that’s what separates them from teams that try to load up on names and projects.
What’s more important to the Heat is a player that can fit into the system (I want you to imagine Michael Beasley playing in the Heat’s style of defense. Seriously, try it out.), will not object if minutes suddenly become sparing and has the focus and commitment to winning that only contenders desire.
Does Michael come off as someone that desperately wants to win titles? Didn’t think so.
For old time’s sake, and to get that blood boiling and that vein in your head throbbing, let’s take a look at who the Heat missed out on in the 2008 draft:
OJ Mayo, Westbrook, Love, Danilo Gallinari, Eric Gordon, Brook Lopez, Brandon Rush, Roy Hibbert, Ryan Anderson, Serge Ibaka, Nicolas Batum, George Hill, DeAndre Jordan, Nikola Pekovic, Omer Asik and Luc Richard Mbah a Moute.
At least the Heat got Mario Chalmers out of it.