NBA Rumor: Michael Beasley Free Agency

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Michael Beasley not retiring

In closing the episode, Clark continues to push Beasley on if he’s ready to retire from pro basketball before closing the episode reiterating Taylor’s points about Beasley spreading his message and hoping that discussing these issues will be a pivot in Beasley’s life.  “I’m gonna retire how I want to retire,” said Beasley. “I can’t live my life on your terms. I can’t just let my dream die. So…no.”

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In an episode debuting today at 12 p.m. ET on “The Pivot Podcast” YouTube Channel, Beasley, who last played in the league during 2018-19 season, dove deep on the narratives about him that dominated the public conversation regarding his eleven-year career. “Everybody sees me and makes their own narrative, and I just shut up,” said Beasley. “I have to sit there and watch a billion people tell me what they think, or this and that, without anyone hearing shit from me.”

Michael Beasley: 'Do I have to be in Delonte West's shoes to get help?'

“Do I have to be in Delonte West’s shoes to get help?” said Beasley. “No disrespect to Delonte West or people in his position. But, what does it take to do the right thing? My whole life I asked for help. People called me crazy. “I don’t leave the house. I play basketball, and I go home. I don’t care what y’all do no more. I try to talk to my kids as much as I can. I’ve reached out so much, so many times to different people and it’s just, I have to die with some kind of dignity.”

“Despite everything you’re saying, people will still sit back and laugh at us,” said Beasley. “Look at what Antoine Walker went through and people just sat there and made jokes about it. Even Allen Iverson was a joke to them for a while. “Being black is so fake right now. Motherf***rs only care when someone dies and it’s time for the cameras to show up. People are out here every day saying that they need help. It’s in the music we’re listening to. Everyone needs help, but everyone is out here walking like they have it all together.”

Michael Beasley eyeing NBA return

Former No. 2 overall draft pick Michael Beasley is eying a return to the NBA. Before this season, Beasley played in the NBA’s Vegas Summer League with the Portland Trail Blazers and averaged 11.4 points on 44 percent shooting from the field and 45 percent from three-point range with 3.6 rebounds, 1.6 steals, and 0.8 blocks in 22.7 minutes per game. The 33-year old forward, who hired agent Charles Briscoe of Briscoe Sports Group, has been training in Miami with Ronnie Taylor. Beasley and his representation have been in contact with several teams recently, with the trade deadline nearing and the buyout market beginning shortly afterward.

Michael Beasley: ‘I work out with John Wall, Tyreke Evans’

What have you been up to since then? Michael Beasley: I’ve been staying in the gym and keeping my head down, trying to be as positive as I can be. I’ve been staying around some good people. If you watch my Instagram, I work out with John Wall, Tyreke Evans, and whoever is in town. I try to keep my mind on the goal no matter how dark it gets or unrealistic it may seem. I have dreams, and I want to be somebody remembered that, if not for anything else, somebody that fought for my dreams. These last three years, I’ve been in the gym every day working on my craft, getting stronger, sharpening my jump shot, sharpening my handles, defense one-on-one, or five-on-five. I’ve become a student of the game again and have repeated that process.

Michael Beasley: ‘New York hurt my feelings so badly’

Michael Beasley: New York hurt my feelings so badly. I really wanted to stay in New York for the rest of my career. I had a good year. We were losing, but I was a bright spot. I used to drive after every practice and every game or get on the train to see my mom because she had cancer. At the end of the season in the exit meeting, the flight home from the last game was when they fired Jeff Hornacek. They had Corey Gaines do our exit meetings. I walk in, and he runs down my stats for the year. In my mind, I’m like you finally did it, got a nice contract, and solidified yourself a home for at least three years.

Michael Beasley: The Knicks hurt my feelings. On the court, I had Kurt Rambis there. I think 15 or 20 games into the season, Kurt came to me and asked me if I thought I should be playing? I said, “Yeah.” He said, “Before I ask you why, every time you go on the floor, just show the coach why you should be playing.” I had something to play for. Off the court, nobody knows this, but I found out my mom had cancer going into training camp in New York. That was extra motivation. I used to drive down after every game and every practice to Baltimore and kick it with my mom.

Michael Beasley: ‘I’ve been battling confidence issues my whole life’

Knowing all this stuff now, is there any advice you’d give yourself earlier in your career or do differently? Michael Beasley: I would believe in myself. I’ve been battling confidence issues my whole life. Everybody’s voices, everybody’s negative opinions. I was 19, and they were expecting me to be a grown-up. I wish I had the mindset and the balls to have fun and play basketball the way I know how to play basketball. Regarding confidence on the basketball court, it seemed like you could do a lot from shooting, rebounding, and why you were a high pick. When you said confidence, was that on the court or outside as a person? Michael Beasley: Both. It started on the court. The first thing that happened to me when I got to the NBA was everyone told me what I couldn’t do. That’s literally all I’ve heard for my entire career. Even if I couldn’t do things, which I didn’t agree with, what about the things that I could do? Can we make those things better or work around that? Every other player you build around, you build around how they play.

B/R: LeBron is signed for several years, and the Lakers have this young core. It’s early, but can you envision Los Angeles being a place to settle down? Michael Beasley: I’ve felt like that every year for the last eight years, so I’m going into this situation with the mindset of playing basketball for a year and coming home to Atlanta at the end of the year and whatever happens, happens. I want a long-term contract, two, three, four years, 100 percent. But at this point, I’m tired of getting my hopes up and smashed. But the Lakers organization, from Rob Pelinka to Jeanie Buss to Magic, they’ve treated us like family. So, they did nothing wrong as to why I feel the way I feel. It’s just kinda like a battered-dog situation. I’m gonna take it a day at a time, and hopefully the days don’t end.

As the Knicks figure out how to fill their stopgap starting power forward position during their expected quiet free agency, Beasley is still in the mix, according to NBA sources, but hardly a given. Knicks brass is doing their due diligence in investigating the rest of the mid-level power forward market as they are expected to wield an $8.6 million exception when free agency begins Sunday. Enes Kanter’s expected decision to opt into his $18.6 million contract will leave the Knicks without cap space but they don’t have a lot of open spots on their 15-man roster anyway.

Even though the Hawks and Suns could outbid the Knicks, an NBA source believes if the Knicks offer Beasley their entire $8.6 million — even on a one-year deal — it may be satisfactory. The Knicks want to refrain from giving out long-term deals that would reduce their cap space in 2019 or 2020. “He definitely wants to come back to New York and play for Fizdale,’’ the source close to Beasley said. “Fizdale is another plus. But it’s still a business.’’

Michael Beasley, who has been one of the pleasant surprise offseason signings, started in place of Porzingis at power forward Thursday and probably for the rest of the season. He finished Thursday with 21 points on 7-of-13 shooting with seven rebounds and three steals. He will be a free agent, and the Knicks have their eyes on re-signing him if they can. “That’s not really my mindset,” Beasley said of the new opportunity. “I still haven’t really wrapped my head around KP, man. But it’s an opportunity for everybody to show that we can band together, to show that we can hold the fort down , show that we can be better.”

Beasley, an impending free agent, told The Post he’s tired of moving and hopes his scoring prowess this season will earn him a long-term spot as a Knick. He also said it wouldn’t be appropriate to start fantasizing about playing with the Warriors next season. “He’s a best friend. Why not?’’ Beasley said. “But right now I’m a New York Knick. So me placing myself on another team during the season is not fair to my guys. Let the summer be the summer.

Morey also could bring back Michael Beasley, who appears to be a bargain, and keep his qualifying offer and cap hold to try to keep restricted free agent Donatas Motiejunas, and still have $38 million to spend. Terrence Jones, Josh Smith and Jason Terry will be free agents. Harden, Pat Beverley, Trevor Ariza, Corey Brewer, K.J. McDaniels, Beasley and Andrew Goudelock are all under contract with the Rockets, the latter two with team options for next season; Clint Capela, Montrezl Harrell and Sam Dekker are on their rookie deals.

The Rockets might not be ready to rely on that, having tried to fill that position so often before. But of all the power forwards on the roster, only Harrell has a guaranteed contract for next season. The Rockets hope that Beasley shows enough in the remainder of this season to bring him back for another. For now, they are a team paying a franchise-record $95 million in salary and luxury taxes. Their concern is more immediate than to collect options for next season.

Michael Beasley drawing interest

Marc Stein: A clutch of NBA teams, I’m told, are tracking Michael Beasley as he nears a return from China. Last seen in the NBA last season with Miami, Beasley has played his way into contention for a late-season contract back home after a strong season in which he’s established himself a 40-plus percent shooter from 3-point range while leading Shandong to the playoffs for the first time in more than a half-decade with a slew of gaudy numbers.
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