It was just a few years ago when it looked like Michael Beasley was destined for stardom. Coming off an incredible freshman season at Kansas State, Beasley earned conference player of the honors and went into the draft as one of the most coveted prospects. Miami made Beasley the second overall pick in the 2008 NBA Draft but he has yet to live up to those expectations. Trouble has followed Beasley everywhere he has gone and he has yet to show that he can stay clean. After two underwhelming seasons in Miami, he was shipped off to Minnesota where he once again ran into trouble off the court. This offseason the T-Wolves decided they had enough with the underachiever and allowed him to become a free agent. While there were a few teams that showed interest in the troubled forward, the Phoenix Suns decided to take the risk. Beasley agreed to a three-year contract with the Suns and will try to resurrect his career in the Valley. The talent is there and the versatility is tough for teams to match up with. A player with as much baggage as Beasley rarely continues to get opportunities. For the former second overall pick, this may be his last shot to show his talents won’t be wasted.
Michael Beasley joined XTRA 910 in Phoenix with Bickley and MJ to talk about what attracted him to Phoenix, how it feels coming into a situation like the Suns, on his past issues, when he realized it was time to put the past behind him and mature, how he would describe his game and whether he thinks he will be an All-Star this season in Phoenix.
On what attracted him to Phoenix:
“First it was the offense, the style of play and it kind of fits my game to a ‘T.’ Then it was the fact that Coach Gentry and the organization believes in me and still has confidence in my game. That made me feel good as a person and feel great as a player.”
How he feels coming into this new situation in Phoenix:
“It feels great. I actually feel great coming into a situation like that. I get a chance to not be the main guy but you know to be the go-to guy. Not just scoring but the go-to stopper and whatever my team needs, me to get a bucket or get a defensive stop, I feel good and confident that I can be that guy.”
On his past issues:
“You have to embrace your past. Ultimately it was my fault. I’m here to play basketball and I’m here to work hard and hopefully my next contract will be a little bit bigger to say the least. I’ve been through a lot in my past, some good and some bad and that kind of altered my value. I understand I’ve grown and I’m ready to move on.”
When he realized that it was time for him to mature:
“My last year in Minnesota, which was last year. There are a lot of things that I know I had control over or did have control over and I realized it was me who didn’t capitalize on a lot of those things. In order to grow as a person the first step is realizing it was your fault more than anybody else. I did that and I’m ready to move on.”
How he would describe his game:
“I’m just a winner. I’m going to work hard and do what I have to do on both sides of the floor but overall I just want to be exciting. This is a business and the fans come to be entertained. At the same time I just want to win.”
On his approach coming to Training Camp:
“I come into Training Camp with an open mind and realize there are going to be things that I don’t want to do and things that I do. Just have to do them both. Whatever the coach needs from me on both sides of the floor and on and off the court, just have to do it and work hard towards our bigger goal which is winning the ring.”
Whether he believes he will be an All-Star before his contract is up in Phoenix:
“In my mind I’m going to be an All-Star this coming season. All I want to do is win. Whether I get the recognition for what I do on the floor or not, as long as we’re winning I’m okay with that.”