Hawks, Suns Interested In Michael Beasley?

3:24pm: John Gambadoro of Arizona Sports 98.7 disputes the notion that the Suns have any interest in a reunion with Beasley, tweeting that the report is just a case of an agent pushing his client.

8:23am: As Michael Beasley‘s one-year contract with the Knicks nears its expiration date, multiple teams are believed to be eyeing the veteran forward, writes Marc Berman of The New York Post. A source tells Berman that the Hawks and Suns have interest in Beasley, who is expected to be pursued by at least five teams when he reaches free agency in July.

Beasley, 29, enjoyed one of his most productive NBA seasons in 2017/18, averaging 13.2 PPG and 5.6 RPG in 74 games (30 starts) for the Knicks. His .507 FG% and .395 3PT% were also well above his career rates.

According to Berman, Beasley is a fan of new Knicks head coach David Fizdale, whose time as an assistant in Miami overlapped with Beasley’s stint with the Heat. However, New York only has Non-Bird rights on the former second overall pick, limiting the team’s ability to offer him a raise — the Knicks would likely have to use their mid-level exception to sign Beasley.

“He definitely wants to come back to New York and play for Fizdale,” a source close to Beasley told Berman. “Fizdale is another plus. But it’s still a business.”

A source suggests to Berman that if the Knicks were to offer Beasley their full MLE, even for just one year, it “may be satisfactory.” I’d be pretty surprised if Beasley – who remains a defensive liability – receives a salary exceeding $8MM, but a one-year contract along those lines could make some sense for the Knicks, who will be without Kristaps Porzingis in the frontcourt to start the 2018/19 season.

New York isn’t expected to pursue top free agents this summer, and re-signing Beasley to a one-year deal would allow him to gain Early Bird rights for the summer of 2019. That would allow the club to make a longer-term decision on him a year from now, when the front office will have a clearer sense of how its cap room should be used.

Still, with the Hawks and Suns among the teams expected to kick the tires on Beasley this summer, and no guarantee that the Knicks won’t use their MLE on another player (or players), a return to New York is far from a lock.

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9 thoughts on “Hawks, Suns Interested In Michael Beasley?

  1. Beasley could be interesting for the Hawks. At the very least be a reminder not to waste your talent, stardom is not guaranteed! However if he still can’t put the weed down, we should steer clear. No Mike Smith2.0

      • Played with the Hawks, I think he pkayed for Washington last season. Anyway we all knew he couldn’t put the weed down and ends up catching a charge. No knock on him he’s great off the bench and you do what you do, just don’t get caught.

  2. Knicks have to be smarter in FA than last year (or prior years for that matter), when Mills “played” GM and ended up severely (and needlessly) overpaying THJ and Baker. The draft is primary, but a rebuilding team needs to be smart (or at least not comically stupid) in FA as well.

    The best use of the MLE is for short deals (with modest guaranteed money after the first year) with young players (under 25) who they think may have fallen through the cracks. If those aren’t around, then a 1 year contract for a guy like Beasley might make sense. If he plays well, he can be flipped (with an expiring deal, and EBRs). If not, it does not affect potential FA in 2019. They absolutely should not give out a 3-4 year deal for the full MLE to anyone who’s out there.

    • Dodgethis

      Can you sign a player to a long term deal using multiple “mle years”? I was under the impression the value changed each year and could only be used on one year deals? Admittedly I’m unsure.

      • You can sign any FA for up to 4 years using the non-taxpayer MLE and the contract only utilizes the MLE for the 1st year of the contract. Salaries for subsequent years of the contract a limited to certain percentage increases.

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