Michael Beasley. What to do with him. He is only 24 years old, but has five years of NBA experience already. He can shoot (usually too much and with horrible shot selection) and has an athletic and long 6’10” body.
However, last season he lost his starting spot at the small forward position to P.J. Tucker, who hadn’t played in the NBA until a year ago and is still getting experience by playing on Phoenix’s summer league team.
Tucker just has more heart. He cares more. Beasley is innately better than Tucker at the game of basketball, but it doesn’t matter if you don’t have the drive. Beasley has a significantly better shot and is taller and can probably handle the ball better. However, Tucker is much better defensively and his cost to the team is SO, SO, MUCH LESS.
Beasley is making $6 million this upcoming year to sit on the bench and play back-up to Tucker, who the Suns picked up the option on for a measly $884, 293. Seems a little backwards doesn’t it?
Also, Marcus Morris, who the Suns picked up from Houston last season to pair with his twin Markieff could have a breakout year on a rookie contract.
The bottom line is Beasley needs to be traded. But the question remains, who would take him?
There are two types of teams that would sign Beasley. Firstly, a team that just needs to fill out the roster with players regardless of contract. These are teams desperate for any talent or potential at talent. That was what Phoenix was last year, which is why we got Beasley in the first place. We needed to be pickier about who we brought into the Suns family and we weren’t. Some teams in this category (regardless of whether they will or can sign him) are the Milwaukee Bucks, Detroit Pistons, Portland TrailBlazers, Utah Jazz. These are middling to bad teams that recently have had trouble cultivating good players.
The other type of team is a better fit for Beasley and the team he would go to. It would be a team that is close to playoff contention or even further and are a man away from a championship. This organization would have the star players and the coaching staff to keep Beasley in check and have the luxury of not having to rely on Beasley for long stretches of a game. Last season, he was more effective, when put in for a short period of time and given the ultra green light on offense. In those periods, he was probably also told he would be benched if his defense was not good, because his intensity improved on that end. A team of this caliber would be the San Antonio Spurs, Miami Heat, Indiana Pacers, Brooklyn Nets. While these teams probably don’t have the ability or desire to sign him, that is the situation Suns GM, McDonough needs to look for to ship Beasley out of the desert.
Somehow, Suns management needs to trade him because his contract is too large compared to his positive impact on the games, and there will be no room for him in Phoenix’s future.
Waive him if you must.