Dwyane Wade posts ‘welcome home’ message to Michael Beasley

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After Michael Beasley had problems both on and off the court during a tumultuous first year with the Phoenix Suns, the team decided to further its fresh start under a new GM and new head coach by negotiating a buyout of his contract, which made Beasley an unrestricted free agent.

Despite his well-chronicled history of issues, talent conquers all at the professional level, so Beasley didn’t remain on the open market for long. He ended up with maybe the only team willing to take a chance on him at this point — the two-time defending champion Miami Heat.

Beasley played his first two NBA seasons in Miami, so perhaps Pat Riley believes he knows how to reach him. Dwyane Wade was there during Beasley’s first go-around, and posted a photo and message to his Instagram account welcoming Beasley back with open arms.

“Sometimes u need to fall 2 see who will pick up.. Welcome home Beas we got your back… #heatfamily”

Fall seven times, stand up eight,” anyone?

Beasley will not only need the support and guidance of Wade, LeBron James, and the rest of the veterans on the squad, he’ll need to show them a consistent level of effort, and a willingness to do whatever it takes to fit into what has become a championship culture.

There’s no reason to believe that Beasley will magically straighten himself out and suddenly make basketball his number one priority, because he has yet to show an ability (or even a simple willingness) to do so at any time in his career to this point.

A return to Miami isn’t just Beasley’s best chance at turning his career around; its likely to be his last.

Blake Griffin calls out Raptors president Masai Ujiri while praising Dwane Casey

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Dwane Casey reportedly holds a grudge toward Raptors president Masai Ujiri for firing him.

Casey got revenge last night, coaching the Pistons to a win at Toronto. Casey called two quality plays in the final seconds, the latter producing Reggie Bullock‘s game-winner.

Keith Langlois of Pistons.com:

A Toronto reporter asked Blake Griffin if it gives Pistons players a degree of confidence in their coach when he gives them those tools to win games.

“We know that. This isn’t like we just discovered this for the first time today,” he said. “We’ve put in plays like that all the time in practice. He demands execution and we executed. Maybe to Toronto fans – or certainly their GM, maybe – it was a surprise. But not to us.”

The win had to be gratifying for Casey. Having his star player take up his greater cause must even more satisfying.

Jazz have one of worst offensive showings ever, score 68 in 50-point loss to Mavericks

AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth
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NBA scoring is exploding. Defenses are getting less leeway for physicality. Offenses are more efficient than ever. Pace is at its highest mark in decades.

Except for the Jazz last night.

Utah scored just 68 points in a 50-point loss to the Mavericks. And even that undersells the Jazz’s offensive woes. They played reasonably fast, getting 101 possessions. Their offensive rating – 67.3 – shows just how inept they truly were.

In all, Utah shot 42% on 2-pointers, 17% on 3-pointers and 63% on free throws and committed 22 turnovers.

The Jazz set several milestones for offensive futility:

  • Fewest points in a game (68) in nearly two years (68 by Hawks vs. Jazz on Nov. 25, 2016)
  • Lowest Basketball-Reference estimated offensive rating in a game (68.8) in more than three years (68.2 by Grizzlies vs. Warriors on Nov. 2, 2015)
  • Fewest points in a second half (22) in nearly five years (19 by Rockets vs. Thunder on Jan. 16, 2014)

Comparing across eras can be difficult, but here’s one measure: The Jazz scored 68 points in a season teams are averaging 110.4 points per game.

That output relative to average – -42.4 – is one of the lowest of all-time:

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Kevin Durant’s brother posts: ‘just follow along before the greatness is done rubbing off on you and people see you for what you really are’

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Kevin Durant and Draymond Green are feuding, the possibility of Durant leaving the Warriors in free agency next summer hanging over everything.

Now comes Durant’s brother, Tony – intentionally or not – throwing gasoline on the fire. Again.

Tony posted and deleted these comments on Instagram, via Bleacher Report:

Read too much into vague social-media content at your own peril.

But, man, that sure looks like Tony advising Green just to enjoy Durant masking Green’s problems until Durant leaves the Warriors and leaves Green exposed.

Andrew Wiggins simultaneously dunks on, kicks nuts of Nikola Mirotic (video)

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Andrew Wiggins keeps besting Nikola Mirotic.

Wiggins won Rookie of the Year over Mirotic in 2015.

In the Timberwolves’ win over the Pelicans last night, Wiggins had the dagger dunk on Mirotic – and made sure Mirotic felt it. Ouch.