Tag: Michael Beasley

Jabari Parker, Andrew Wiggins

67RIEFNS No. 4: Andrew Wiggins vs. Jabari Parker


The NBA is full of talent, personality and suspense. During the doldrums of the offseason, It’s easy to forget how wonderful the league can be. So, I’ve assembled 67 Reasons I’m Excited For Next Season (67RIEFNS). They’ll be presented in no particular order.

It’s been six years since the No. 1 and No. 2 picks both made the All-Rookie team. Heck, it’s been just as long since the top two picks played even 2,000 minutes as rookies.

We’ve been waiting a while – since Derrick Rose and Michael Beasley – for the highest draft picks to immediately meet expectations.

Can Andrew Wiggins and Jabari Parker finally buck the trend?

They’ve got a heck of a chance.

Rarely do top-two picks enter the season without major expectations. Even Anthony Bennett, whom Cleveland reached for at No. 1 last year, faced the pressure typical of a No. 1 pick. So, whenever one or both of the top two picks struggles, it’s surprising on some level – even though it usually happens.

But per annual tradition, I have my hopes up Wiggins and Parker will deliver.

Parker looked NBA-ready at Duke, and Wiggins acquitted himself quite well in summer league. If Parker and Wiggins can handle it, the Bucks and Timberwolves have openings for playing time.

Adding intrigue: Wiggins’ and Parkers’ positional overlap, giving potential for an individual rivalry.

The Cavaliers – who at the time were trying to lure LeBron James – insisted Wiggins was a shooting guard, and Parker might play some power forward for the Bucks. But both should see a majority of their minutes at small forward.

Wiggins’ trade from Cleveland takes him from Parker’s division, but Minnesota-Milwaukee can still be a nice regional rivalry. Their fan bases border, at least.

Wiggins and Parker will be competing this season – against each other and against the recent history of top-two picks failing to immediately excel. If they can collectively meet the latter challenge, the former becomes that much more intriguing.

Agent: Michael Beasley won’t be back with Heat next season

heat beasley

Michael Beasley is an unrestricted free agent, after Miami took a chance on him as a bit of a reclamation project last season.

Beasley was waived by the Suns last summer after multiple off-the-court incidents, but since he came into the league with the Heat, the franchise was hopeful that the familiarity there, along with the strong locker room presence that the championship team possessed would be enough to help him turn things around.

It didn’t work out that way, however, and after the Heat reportedly had plenty of reasons for not wanting to re-sign Beasley, his agent confirmed that Miami won’t be having him back next season.

From Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald (via Basketball Insiders):

No surprise here: Michael Beasley definitely won’t be back with the Heat, agent Jared Kearns said Tuesday. The Heat never made an offer, preferring instead to sign journeyman Shawne Williams, whose career hasn’t been nearly as productive as Beasley’s.

The Lakers twice have watched Beasley work out, and they remain a possibility for him. The Heat’s decision not to retain Beasley — in spite of his offensive gifts — ultimately came down to the coaching staff’s lack of complete trust in him. Defense and maturity issues were cited by one NBA official briefed on the Heat’s decision, though Beasley behaved more maturely last season than in his earlier stint with the Heat.

This comes as little surprise, of course, considering that Miami gave Beasley’s number away the moment they signed Shawne Williams.

The Heat citing maturity issues won’t help Beasley in his efforts to land somewhere else, though the second overall pick in the 2008 draft will still have teams taking a hard look at him in workouts, wondering if their situation might finally be the one where Beasley can find some focus, and play the game the way he was projected to all those years ago.

Lakers give Julyan Stone second work out

Julyan Stone; Danny Green

The Lakers have been nothing if not meticulous this offseason.

They waited far longer than any other team to hire a coach. They waited until LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony signed to move onto other free agents.

And they’re sure being thorough in their hunt to round out the roster.

We already know the Lakers have works out:

  • Michael Beasley
  • Dexter Pittman
  • Daniel Orton
  • Bobby Brown
  • Toney Douglas
  • Ben Hansbrough
  • Malcolm Lee
  • Greg Stiemsma (since signed with the Raptors)-

Add Julyan Stone to the list.

Shams Charania of RealGM:

Free agent Julyan Stone will work out for the Lakers in Los Angeles this week, his second visit with the organization before meeting three other teams, league sources told RealGM.

Stone also has scheduled workouts with the Cleveland Cavaliers, Los Angeles Clippers and Miami Heat, sources said, attempting to solidify an NBA contract before training camps start. The Sacramento Kings remain a possible landing spot for Stone.

Stone held a workout with the San Antonio Spurs earlier in the week, and he’s received two lucrative offers from Chinese clubs.

A second workout would seem to indicate significant interest, but the Lakers have worked out Beasley twice and still not signed him. They’re just that methodical.

But Stone, who spent last season with the Raptors, seems to have a real shot. The Lakers have just 13 guaranteed contracts and could use more wing depth behind Kobe Bryant, Nick Young, Wesley Johnson and Xavier Henry. Stone is a solid defender, but he just can’t shoot.

Stone is right on the edge of deserving an NBA contract. Seems to make him a perfect fit with the Lakers at this point.