Could Michael Beasley Be Miami Heat's Sixth Man?

By Shane Phillips
Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

We could spend the next year attempting to unravel the inner workings of Michael Beasley‘s mind. Maybe there are one or two screws loose or maybe he is an individual struggling to find himself. No one exactly knows what is wrong or right with Beasley. What I do know is that the small forward has the potential and skill set to be a good player.

Beasley’s journey has been anything other than magnificent or spectacular. Through five seasons in the NBA, he has managed to play for three different teams, have several run-ins with the law and fail a handful of drug tests. He has managed all of this while oppressing his basketball potential.

The former second-overall draftee of 2008, Beasley is now on his second stint with the Miami Heat. Pat Riley decided to give the troubled youngster a second chance, another opportunity to prove he is worthy.

I will be honest, I was somewhat skeptical when the defending champs decided to bring back the former Kansas State Wildcat. Did I agree with the move? No. Did I think it could work? Eh, maybe.

What do I think of Beasley and this decision now? Genius, pure genius!

So, why such a change of heart? Why do I think that Riley has made another brilliant move? Here is why.

Beasley was drafted with the second overall pick in 2008. Had it not been for Derrick Rose, he more than likely would have ended up with the Chicago Bulls.

By no means would I ever consider Beasley to be a bust. I’d rather categorize him as an underachiever with the potential for a strong career. Over five seasons, he has averaged 14.1 points and 5.2 rebounds. Those are decent numbers, they aren’t exactly overwhelming, but decent.

Beasley has showcased some of his skill this preseason. In two games, he has shot 8-of-16 from the field and has 22 points in 28 minutes. Those are encouraging stats for such limited time.

With no guarantees on his contract, Beasley has likely earned a roster spot. It is unknown the role he will play for the defending champs. I think he could find himself amidst the middle of the rotation. He is quick, long and has the ability to play the small or power forward position.

Heck, if everything goes smoothly, he could be a regular for Miami and might even be the sixth or seventh man in the rotation. The key to all of this is his maturity and behavior. The “Big 3” and company will point him in the right direction because they have no patience for a slacker.

Beasley has two things going for him, talent and youth. He has to want to be successful and he has to want to win. If coach Erik Spoelstra and the Heat can hammer that mentality into him, we may witness one of the best career turnarounds in professional sports.

2013-14 NBA Sixth Man recipient? Let’s not get ahead of ourselves.

Shane Phillips is a Miami Heat Writer for Follow him on Twitter @Smphil01, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.

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