With the big contract comes added pressure and expectations for the shooting guard. Nevertheless, Allan Houston said he believes Hardaway is ready to handle it. “I’m excited for [Hardaway],” Houston told The Post. “When you’re 20 years old and you’re coming into this environment, everybody has to grow and everybody has to mature. He’s developed all the way around and he’s prepared himself for this. So he’s prepared for it.”
Houston remembered what is was like when he was preparing to start playing under his six-year, $100 million guaranteed contract. “The mindset I took is: you come in, you put your work in, you treat your whole being, your whole life, like you want to make the most out of it,” Houston said. “You want to be valuable, not in terms of money, but you want to be valuable to your family, your community, to the franchise. That’s where [Hardaway’s] mindset is.”
A series of marijuana incidents and being scrutinized under the lens of a No. 2 pick, Beasley suggests, has prevented the 28-year-old old from getting his due on the court. “It’s exactly the reason,’’ Beasley said. “People meet me. First thing they say: “You’re totally different than I thought you are. A large part of my career is due to perception, what people think what I am or should be. My past is my past. They keep harping on it.