Patrick Beverley gained some national attention when his aggressive play resulted in an injury to the Thunder’s Russell Westbrook in the first round of last year’s playoffs.
There was nothing wrong with Beverley’s play, but it branded him as an agitator of sorts. He’s since lived up to that label, being one of the more combative perimeter defenders in the league, and excelling in that role on a Rockets team that has Dwight Howard patrolling the paint to correct any mistakes that may come from playing that style of defense.
Apparently during Tuesday’s win over Miami, Beverley was agitating the Miami bench as his Rockets were handling the Heat in the first half — at least until Udonis Haslem had a little chat with him about it at halftime.
“I was just giving him a hard time,” Haslem said. “It was nothing serious. I just told him to stop talking crap and looking over at our bench. I know Pat. I think he the spent the summer with us. He’s a hard-nosed kid, a real competitor, and I respect the road that he took and the success that he had, but he was just doing a lot of yapping and I told him to stop looking at our bench and talking crap.
“It wasn’t nothing personal. I got a lot of love for Pat Beverley, but he was just looking over at our bench and talking and he’s always got something to say. We’re cool off the court, but in between the lines, I don’t like it.
“You play against a team that you worked out for, or you felt like you should have been there, or they made a mistake by letting you go, you try to prove something. And I guess he came out tonight with a chip on his shoulder.”
Beverley has a history with the Heat, and was cut by the team at the conclusion of training camp in 2010.
Haslem is known as one of the league’s few actual tough guys, though, so his words probably carried a certain amount of weight with Beverley that allowed him to zip it before things got out of hand.
Beverley finished with 19 points on 6-of-12 shooting in 33 minutes of action in the victory, but likely did his damage much more quietly in the second half.