Summer League Rumors
Beasley has played with four teams in eight years, including two stints with the Heat. He’s only 27 and perhaps with discipline and a couple of breaks could develop into a dependable rotation player. That’s why he was in Las Vegas. “I feel as if I’ve always been prepared. I’ve been one to take my game seriously, but it’s just a little more special, a little more precious, just slow down and enjoy the ride this time,” he said. “My first time, I was 19, 20 years old, I thought I knew everything and y’all gave me all the money in the world, so I wasn’t thinking to look at y’all [in the eye] anymore. I’m doing it the right way this time, slowing down, enjoying the process, falling in love with the process.
Here is a brief look at 10 PIT alums from this season and how they fared this summer: Bryn Forbes (6-3, 190), Michigan State (San Antonio Spurs) Unlike many of his PIT brethren, Forbes was given ample opportunity to show his team what he had. In eight games, he shot 40.6 percent from three-point range and 94.4 percent from the line, averaging 11.6 ppg in about 25 minutes per game of playing time. Forbes tallied 23 points vs Philadelphia, hitting 8-10 from the field and 4-5 from three-point range. Forbes has textbook catch-and-shoot mechanics but also understands when not to shoot, which could get him on the court with veteran players sooner. The Spurs signed Forbes to a partially guaranteed contract, and he has an excellent chance to secure a roster spot in the fall.
Andrew Andrews (6-2, 200), Washington (Los Angeles Clippers) Andrews knows how to put the ball in the basket, as evidenced by his 20.9 ppg average as a senior at Washington. Playing for the Clippers in Orlando, Andrews put together several solid performances, averaging 11.0 points, 4.4 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 2.2 steals in 28.6 minutes per game. Andrews got to the line more than five times per game in Orlando, shooting 77 percent from there, and NBA veterans broadcasting his games (Greg Anthony, Vince Carter) noted his ability to get into the lane and create plays both for himself and teammates. Andrews must be a combo guard to earn a look from the NBA, and he took a big first step in that direction in Orlando.
The lithe Maker averaged 14.2 points and raised some eyebrows with his consistent and strong rebounding, averaging 9.6 boards a game. But it wasn’t the numbers that Maker put up during summer league competitionthat the Bucks were most concerned about, according to Sean Sweeney, who served as the Bucks head coach. “I thought he did a great,’’ Sweeney said of Maker. “Our goal was daily improvement, not to skip any steps, try to improve each day and try to do the best he could every time he stepped on the floor and try to put together as many good plays as he could, as many good possessions as he could and I thought he did a great job in checking those boxes.’’
As he watched his team’s future compete for a summer league title, new Minnesota Timberwolves coach Tom Thibodeau was still waiting for an answer as to whether one of the last links to the franchise’s past will still be a part of the team next season. “We just have to give him time,” Thibodeau told ESPN Monday night when asked about the future of Wolves star Kevin Garnett.
First, Denzel Valentine hit a 3-pointer with 0.2 seconds left to force overtime after Timberwolves guard Tyus Jones sank a circus 3-pointer over two defenders with 3.6 seconds left in regulation of Monday’s NBA Summer League final at Thomas & Mack Center. Then, Valentine dribbled into the paint, pump-faked and calmly sank a buzzer-beating game-winner as the Bulls downed the Timberwolves 84-82. “I’m here for a reason,” Valentine said. “The Bulls picked me up to be a confident player and come through when the team needs me and be a winner. That’s what I preached during my draft interviews. I just keep winning on my mind.”