Oct. 12, 2012; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Phoenix Suns forward Michael Beasley (0) reacts on the court during the game against the Portland Trail Blazers at US Airways Center. The Suns defeated the Trail Blazers 104-93. Mandatory Credit: Jennifer Stewart-USA TODAY Sports

Benching Michael Beasley? About Time!


Here’s what head coach Michael Beasley had to say in regards to himself after last night’s loss to the Dallas Mavericks “I don’t know what it is,”Beasley said. “I come in every game optimistic about my play and my shots. It’s just not good right now, and it’s not what anybody’s doing. It’s all me.”

Nov 30, 2012; Toronto, ON, Canada; Phoenix Suns forward Michael Beasley (0) drives past Toronto Raptors forward Linas Kleiza (11) at the Air Canada Centre. The Raptors beat the Suns 101-97. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

Good thing is, he’s taking full responsibility for his poor play instead of pointing fingers at the coaching staff or teammates(cough cough Marcin Gortat), but nonetheless Beasley is struggling and benching him at the moment would be the right decision.

Alvin Gentry said after last night’s loss to Dallas that “It may time for another line-up change” And Michael Beasley may be out of the starting line-up. At this point it’s not Gentry’s fault for benching Beasley, it’s Beasley’s fault, his poor play is forcing Gentry to bench him.

Michael Beasley is having an awful season; the worst in his 5 years in the NBA. Beasley is averaging 11.4 points, 3.9 rebounds, 2.4 assists, shooting a dreadful 37% from the field, a flat out embarrassing 27% from the 3-point line, and a whooping 2.6 turnovers per game throughout the first 20 games of the season. Beasley also has the worst PER(Player Efficiency Rating) of 8.96, the second worst on the Suns behind Wesley Johnson.

The Suns pretty much had a choice this past off-season to either go after O.J Mayo or Beasley. It’s obvious now they’ve gone after the wrong guy. In prospective they could of signed both players however they felt at the time that taking on two troublesome players may be a move that could cause a lot of issues in a Steve Nash-less locker room.

It’s been brought to attention recently by Beasley that he’s dealing with an injury in his shooting hand and that’s been the cause of his poor shooting. Personally I don’t buy it, the coaching staff, or has any liable source reported such an injury.

Gentry benching Beasley is actually in a gift in disguise. Beasley has taken a lot of heat in the valley for his poor play and pulling him from the starting line-up will relieve him of the pressure of being the starter. Look, most of the readers on Sun-N-Gun did not agree with me prior to the season when I said Beasley shouldn’t start right away, guess I was right huh?

November 4, 2012; Orlando FL, USA; Phoenix Suns small forward Michael Beasley (0) shoots during the first half against the Orlando Magic at Amway Center. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The most troubling thing with the Beasley situation is the simple fact that no one really knows what’s going on but let’s face it, that’s horse excrement. What’s really going on is Beasley isn’t trying to be aggressive defensively or offensively, any average fan can tell that by watching his lazy body language and that has killed his game. If anyone watched Beasley at Kansas State what made him so successful was his aggressiveness fighting for rebounds, muscling up shots near the rim which ultimately opened up his entire game both offensively and defensively.

Earlier in the season Beasley was taking any 20-footers that were available to him which I believed led to poor shooting trend to begin with. First off Beasley isn’t Kobe Bryant or Carmelo Anthony, only a handful of players can get away with taking those long contested shots on a consistent basis, and Michael Beasley isn’t one of them.

Secondly Beasley clearly doesn’t have a great enough handle to play to be a play maker, not yet at least, that much is clear. This is reflected in his 2.6 turnovers per game. For a guy who takes a lot of jumpers, and averages 11.4 points and 2.4 assists, you have no business coughing the ball up 2.6 times a game. To put into prospective how ridiculously turnover prone Beasley has been, Rajon Rondo, the NBA leader in assists averages 13.8 assist per game(in 40 mins) and has a turnover average of 3.6(per 40 mins). Michael Beasley averages of 3.5 assists per 40 minutes and 3.77 turnovers per 40 minutes. So Beasley averages less than a quarter of Rondo’s assist per 40 minutes but more turnovers, wow.

At this point to say Beasley has been bad would indeed be an understatement. I heard the great Reggie Miller speak about how Beasley’s head coach at Kansas State was the only the coach to ever get through to Beasley because he stayed on top of him 24/7 and that doesn’t happen in the NBA, well if you ask me it shouldn’t. It’s a grown man’s league if you want to succeed you work for it regardless of your talent and the idea that Beasley needs someone to hold his hand 24/7 so that he can play well is a joke. Beasley is a grown man, if he wants to succeed in this league and become a great player only he can do something about that.

I’m still optimistic about the whole Michael Beasley situation, I still believe he will turn it around because this guy is just simply too talented to be this bad for the rest of his career. Like I mentioned earlier, I never felt he should of been give the starter right away in the first place. Do I think he’ll become an all-star, no but he has a shot to become the caliber of player he was during his rookie season which is Michael Jordan like if you compare it to the season he’s having now.

Bottom-line it’s a long season but in the NBA time goes by rapidly which means Beasley won’t have all-season to figure himself out, and he needs to do so quickly before that ink from the “Bust” Stamp dries off on him for good.

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Tags: Alvin Gentry Michael Beasley NBA Phoenix Suns