Patrick Beverley

Central Notes: Mitchell, Allen, LeVert, Bulls, Sheppard, Beverley

With the season on the line, the Cavaliers have plenty of question marks heading into Game 5 at Boston on Wednesday. Donovan Mitchell, Jarrett Allen and Caris LeVert are all listed as questionable with their team down 3-1 in the series, ESPN’s Tim Bontemps tweets.

Mitchell missed Game 4 due to a calf strain. Allen hasn’t played in the series due to a rib injury, while LeVert is dealing with a bone bruise in his knee. LeVert, who reportedly aggravated his knee issue on Monday, scored 19 points in 39 minutes while starting in place of Mitchell.

We have more from the Central Division:

  • The Bulls are looking for more than draft help at the combine this week. Coach Billy Donovan is seeking a lead assistant with head coaching experience, K.C. Johnson of NBC Sports Chicago reports. They’re looking for a replacement for Chris Fleming, who was not retained after the season. The Bulls also have another vacancy to fill since Josh Longstaff is leaving to join Charles Lee‘s staff in Charlotte.
  • Kentucky guard Reed Sheppard could be the best option for the Pistons at the No. 5 pick, according to Omari Sankofa of the Detroit Free Press. Sheppard would provide much needed scoring punch alongside franchise player Cade Cunningham. He made 52.1% of his 3-point attempts during his lone college season.
  • On his podcast (video link), veteran guard Patrick Beverley said his preference would be to re-sign with the Bucks. Whether Milwaukee will pursue Beverley, who will turn 36 this summer, is a big question mark. His season ended in controversy, as he fired a basketball multiple times at Indiana spectators and received a four-game suspension that he’ll serve next season. Beverley will be an unrestricted free agent.

Bucks Notes: Coaching Staff Changes, Giannis, Lillard, Beverley

The Bucks have parted ways with assistant coaches DJ Bakker, Sidney Dobner, and Josh Oppenheimer, sources confirmed to Eric Nehm of The Athletic. Chris Haynes of TNT and Bleacher Report first broke the news.

All three coaches were assistants under Adrian Griffin who finished the season with the Bucks after Griffin was dismissed in January and replaced by Doc Rivers. As Nehm notes, Rivers brought in a few new assistants after his arrival in Milwaukee, resulting in a super-sized coaching staff, so it seemed likely that changes would be coming this offseason.

Following the changes, the Bucks now have seven assistants on their staff, per Nehm: Dave Joerger, Rex Kalamian, Joe Prunty, Patrick Mutombo, Vin Baker, Trevor Gleeson, and Pete Dominguez. With new head coaches filling their staffs around the NBA it’s possible Rivers’ staff will undergo more tweaks before the 2024/25 season tips off in the fall.

Here’s more on the Bucks:

  • Rivers said that he usually takes a bit of a break at the end of his team’s season, but that’s not the plan for his first offseason with the Bucks. The veteran head coach “can’t wait to get started” on preparations for 2024/25, as Ben Steele of The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel relays. “This summer is a very important summer for us. I have a lot of work to do,” Rivers said. “I’m going to take a break at some point, but not right away. Right now, I have some work to do that I have to get things right to make sure we’re ready for next year.”
  • Last offseason, Khris Middleton and Brook Lopez entered the summer as free agents and Damian Lillard wasn’t acquired by the Bucks until late September. This year, with all the team’s core players under contract, Giannis Antetokounmpo is looking forward to a greater level of stability, writes Jim Owczarski of The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. “We’re not questioning and trying to figure out how it’s going to look moving forward. You know and now that you know, you just gotta work, strategize to the best of your abilities,” Antetokounmpo said. “Dame’s going to be here. Khris is going to be here. Brook (is) going to be here. Bobby (Portis is) going to be here. I hope I’m here. And then we go and try to find out what we have.”
  • Within the same Owczarski story, Antetokounmpo said he plans to visit Portland this offseason to spend some time with Lillard. “Go work out together, talk, sit down, just spend time,” Giannis said. “It doesn’t have to be basketball. Just spend time together. I’ve done it with Khris in 11 years. I’ve done it with Brook. It’s just what you gotta do.”
  • On the latest episode of his Pat Bev podcast, veteran guard Patrick Beverley said that before he repeatedly fired a basketball at Pacers fans in the last game of the Bucks’ season, he was called a word that he’d never been called before, per The Associated Press. However, Beverley acknowledged that his actions were “still inexcusable.” He was suspended for four games by the NBA. “That should have never happened,” he said of the incident. “Regardless of what was said, that should have never happened. Simple as that.”

NBA Suspends Patrick Beverley Four Games Without Pay

The NBA has suspended Bucks guard Patrick Beverley four games without pay for “forcefully throwing a basketball multiple times at spectators and an inappropriate interaction with a reporter during media availability,” the league announced on Thursday (Twitter link).

Since Beverley is an impending free agent, it isn’t yet known how much he will be fined, notes ESPN’s Bobby Marks (via Twitter). Assuming he’s able to land a new contract, Beverley will serve the suspension at the start of 2024/25.

The incidents in question came a week ago, both during and after Milwaukee’s Game 6 loss to Indiana. The defeat ended the Bucks’ season.

Late in the fourth quarter, Beverley first threw a ball that appeared to miss its mark, a male Pacers fan, instead hitting an unsuspecting female in the side of the head (Twitter video link). When the male fan retrieved the ball and lightly tossed it back to Beverley, he immediately threw it back at the male fan with considerably more force.

The Athletic subsequently reported that a fan — presumably the male fan — was directing obscenities toward Beverley leading up to the incident. Yesterday, The Athletic reported that Indianapolis police were reviewing the altercation. It’s unclear if it will lead to criminal charges.

The second incident in question came when Beverley grew agitated with ESPN producer Malinda Adams because she wasn’t subscribed to his podcast (Twitter video link). After stating she couldn’t be present at his media session for that reason, he subsequently pushed her microphone away and later asked her to leave the circle of reporters around his locker.

The 35-year-old reportedly had been telling media members they couldn’t interview him unless they were subscribed to his podcast since Milwaukee acquired him in a deadline-deal from Philadelphia.

Patrick Beverley’s behavior towards ESPN producer Malinda Adams was unacceptable, unprofessional and failed to meet the standard that NBA players consistently meet in their interactions with the media,” said NBA spokesperson Tim Frank, per Howard Beck of The Ringer (Twitter link).

Beverley and the Bucks reached out to Adams to apologize the following day.

Indianapolis Police Investigating Game 6 Incident Involving Patrick Beverley

The Indianapolis Police Department is investigating the altercation that took place in Game 6 of the Bucks/Pacers series on May 2 involving Milwaukee guard Patrick Beverley and fans in Indiana, according to Shams Charania and Mike Vorkunov of The Athletic (Twitter link).

During the waning moments of the Bucks’ season, Beverley threw a basketball at Pacers fans sitting behind the Bucks bench. His first throw hit a female fan who was looking in another direction in the side of the head. Beverley got the ball back and forcefully fired it back at a male fan seconds later (Twitter video link).

Beverley tweeted after the game that there were “exchanges between a fan and our ball club” all night and suggested that the team asked security for help dealing with the fan in question. He expressed a little more contrition in a follow-up tweet several hours later, acknowledging that he has to “be better.”

Charania, Lauren Merola, and Eric Nehm of The Athletic subsequently reported that a Pacers fan was directing obscenities toward Beverley in the lead-up to the incident, which was apparently escalated when the fan yelled, “Cancun … Cancun on three” as the team was breaking a huddle.

According to Charania and Vorkunov, Indianapolis detectives are working with Gainbridge Fieldhouse staffers to review video footage from the arena. They intend to speak to the individuals involved in the incident.

While it’s unclear if the investigation will lead to any criminal charges, Beverley certainly figures to face discipline from the NBA, which is conducting its own probe. The veteran guard isn’t under contract yet for next season, but will likely have to serve a suspension before making his 2024/25 season debut.

Bucks Notes: Giannis, Lillard, Grades, Offseason, Beverley

After entering the season with hopes of claiming their second title in four years, the Bucks were eliminated in the first round of the playoffs for the second consecutive season, with superstar forward Giannis Antetokounmpo missing the entire series due to a calf strain.

As Jamal Collier of ESPN writes, Milwaukee made plenty of changes to try to advance further in 2023/24, starting with firing Mike Budenholzer and trading for Damian Lillard. The Bucks also cut ties with Adrian Griffin, Budenholzer’s replacement, during the season, hiring longtime head coach Doc Rivers in Griffin’s place. Yet the end result was the same: Antetokounmpo injured and a first-round exit.

With the NBA’s second-oldest roster, the Bucks looked brittle throughout the season, particularly on the defensive end, according to Michael Pina of The Ringer. Khris Middleton, Lillard and Antetokounmpo only combined to play 42 games together, and while they went 28-14 in those contests, they’ve all had their share of injuries the past few seasons.

Pina wonders if either Antetokounmpo or the Bucks — or even both — will eventually decide its best for the two sides to part ways, particularly if Milwaukee slogs through another up-and-down season again in ’24/25. That could turn out to be the most prudent choice for both parties, Pina contends.

Here’s more on the Bucks:

  • Lillard, who missed Games 4 and 5 after aggravating an Achilles injury, returned for Thursday’s Game 6 loss. He finished with 28 points and four assists. While the team was obviously disappointed to be eliminated by Indiana, Middleton appreciated how much work Lillard put in to return on Thursday, per Jim Owczarski of The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. “It meant a lot,” Middleton said. “He was going through a serious thing that had been bothering him for a while. He felt he was good enough to go out there and play tonight. I thought he gave it everything he had also. So it’s a lot of respect from me and I think from everyone inside that locker room that he went out there and played 35 minutes. We needed him tonight, but just couldn’t pull it out.”
  • Eric Nehm of The Athletic gives an “incomplete” grade regarding the fit of Lillard and Rivers due to Milwaukee’s injuries. However, it’s clear the Bucks need to improve their roster, particularly adding more wing defenders, which will be a tall order for a team facing luxury tax restrictions this offseason, Nehm adds.
  • Mark Deeks of HoopsHype provides his offseason preview for the Bucks.
  • At the end of Game 6, Patrick Beverley threw a ball in the stands behind Milwaukee’s bench two times, hitting a pair of Pacers fans. According to Lauren Merola, Shams Charania and Eric Nehm of The Athletic, one of the fans was directing obscenities at Beverley in the lead-up to the incident, which was apparently escalated when the fan said, “Cancun … Cancun on three” when the team was breaking a huddle. The NBA is looking into the incident, per The Athletic.
  • Beverley also refused to speak to a very well-regarded ESPN producer — Malinda Adams — who wasn’t subscribed to his podcast after the game. On Friday, Adams announced (via Twitter) that both Beverley and the Bucks reached out to her and apologized.

Patrick Beverley Throws Ball At Fans At End Of Game 6

With 2:32 remaining in the fourth quarter of Game 6 and the Bucks trailing Indiana by 20 points, guard Patrick Beverley threw a basketball at Pacers fans near Milwaukee’s bench two separate times (Twitter video link).

Beverley’s first toss appeared to miss its target, a male fan, instead hitting an unsuspecting female in the side of the head. He asked for the ball back and the male fan lightly tossed it back to him, only for Beverley to throw it back immediately at the male fan with considerable force (and nearly hitting a Bucks assistant in the process). The male fan deflected the ball.

Bucks forward Jae Crowder tried to calm Beverley down at that point, but he pushed Crowder’s arms aside before sitting on the bench. Security then intervened and appeared to remove some of the fans.

As Jim Owczarski and Emmett Prosser of The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel write, Beverley refused to address the incident after the loss, which eliminated the Bucks from the playoffs.

No, don’t worry about that,” Beverley said. “Nothing.”

However, late in the night, Beverley responded to the incident on social media (Twitter link).

Not Fair at all,” he wrote. “Exchanged between a fan and our ball club all night. We warned and asked for help all night. Not fair.”

About six hours later, Beverley followed up (via Twitter) with, “But I have to be better. And I will.”

TNT analyst and former NBA star Charles Barkley expects Beverley to receive a harsh punishment for the incident. Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated concurs (Twitter link).

Listen, I’ve done stupid stuff and I got criticized,” Barkley said. “That’s just wrong. He’s gonna get suspended for that. And that’s gonna be a good one, too. ‘Cause he didn’t do it once. He did it twice.”

Beverley, 35, will be an unrestricted free agent this summer, and Milwaukee’s season just ended. A potential suspension wouldn’t be served until next season begins, assuming he’s able to land another contract.

Beverley also refused to speak to an ESPN producer after the game because she wasn’t subscribed to his podcast, tweets Pacers reporter Alex Golden. Evidently that isn’t new behavior though, per Jack Maloney of CBS Sports (Twitter link).

Central Notes: Mobley, Garland, Pacers, Giannis, Lillard

Jarrett Allen‘s rib injury meant the Cavaliers needed a huge performance from Evan Mobley in Game 5, and he responded with 14 points, 13 rebounds and a game-saving block in the final seconds, writes Kendra Andrews of ESPN. Mobley switched onto Orlando’s Franz Wagner on a drive to the basket and tipped away a shot that would have tied the game.

“It was a big play,” Mobley said. “The game was on the line. I just went for it. I knew he was going to go for the layup. So, went for it, got a clean block and we got the rebound. So, got us to win. I’m just trying to make game-winning plays and winning plays as much as possible, especially on the stretch. And I feel like I did a good job this game.”

The win was vital for a Cavs team that had just come off two lopsided losses to the Magic and was hoping to avoid going to back to Orlando with a 3-2 deficit. Allen is considered day to day, and there’s no indication yet of whether he’ll be ready when the series resumes Friday night. Coach J.B. Bickerstaff said the team will continue to use a “committee” approach if his starting center isn’t available.

There’s more from the Central Division:

  • After struggling to score for most of the series, Darius Garland provided an early spark for the Cavaliers in Game 5, Andrews adds. Garland, who had plus-minus ratings of minus-22 and minus-27 in the two losses at Orlando, poured in 17 points in the first quarter Tuesday. “Shoot. Shoot. Shoot,” Donovan Mitchell responded when asked about his advice for Garland. “I don’t give a damn. Shoot the ball. At the end of the day, go out swinging — and there’s a different spark we get when he’s like that. You see it. I’ve set the tones in Games 1 and 2, but there’s a different spark too when he’s also continuing to go. He’s a guy that’s [an] All-Star-level player, caliber player, and he’s just — shoot the ball, be you, be aggressive. And that’s what you see tonight.”
  • The Pacers feel like they squandered a golden opportunity to close out their series, losing by 23 points Tuesday to a Bucks team playing without Giannis Antetokounmpo and Damian Lillard, per Kelly Iko of The Athletic. Indiana players realize that they’ll have to match Milwaukee’s intensity in Game 6. “We gotta understand they’re a team on the brink of their season being done,” Tyrese Haliburton said. “They’re playing desperate, they’re playing hard as they should be. They out-competed us tonight. Dominated us in every facet of the game.”
  • The Bucks may continue to be short-handed as Antetokounmpo (left soleus strain) and Lillard (right Achilles tendinitis) are both listed as doubtful for Thursday’s contest, tweets Eric Nehm of The Athletic. Patrick Beverley (right oblique muscle strain) and Khris Middleton (right ankle sprain) are considered probable.

Bucks’ Giannis, Lillard Out For Game 5

APRIL 30: Antetokounmpo and Lillard are both out for Tuesday’s Game 5, Rivers told reporters prior the game, Eric Nehm of The Athletic tweets.

APRIL 29: The Bucks are on the verge of elimination and it’s unlikely they’ll have their two best players available for Game 5 of their first-round series with the Pacers. The team is listing both Giannis Antetokounmpo and Damian Lillard as doubtful to play on Tuesday, The Athletic’s Eric Nehm tweets.

Antetokounmpo hasn’t played the entire series due to a left calf strain that he suffered late in the regular season. Damian Lillard missed the Bucks’ Game 4 loss on Sunday due to right Achilles tendinitis. Lillard averaged 32.3 points and 5.3 assists in 40.7 minutes per contest during the first three games of the series.

Prior to Game 4, Milwaukee coach Doc Rivers expressed optimism that Antetokounmpo could return to action after the superstar went through a rugged workout on Sunday morning. “I think there’s a chance for him to play in this series. I really do,” he said.

Patrick Beverley (right oblique muscle strain) and Khris Middleton (right ankle sprain) are listed as probable to play.

The Pacers’ top player isn’t a lock to suit up, either. Tyrese Haliburton is listed as questionable due to back spasms, Dustin Dopirak of The Indianapolis Star tweets.

Central Notes: Bucks, Middleton, Cavaliers, Donovan, Pistons

Bucks coach Doc Rivers responded to the team’s late-season swoon by holding a film session on Saturday, according to Eric Nehm and Shams Charania of The Athletic.

The meeting involved the team’s nine veteran rotation players — Giannis AntetokounmpoDamian LillardKhris MiddletonBrook Lopez, Malik Beasley, Bobby PortisPatrick Beverley, Pat Connaughton and Jae Crowder — and each of them was given the opportunity to share his perspective on the team’s recent slide and offer suggestions on how to address it.

“It’s only the start of these tough and necessary conversations,” a source told Nehm and Charania.

While the session may have cleared the air, it didn’t help Milwaukee end its slump as the Bucks fell to New York on Sunday while getting outscored 72-48 in the second half. Although they remain in second place in the Eastern Conference, the Bucks are now just one game ahead of the Magic and Knicks and a game-and-half up on the Cavaliers, as home court advantage in the first round is no longer a guarantee.

There’s more from the Central Division:

  • Middleton’s bad luck with injuries continued Sunday as he had to leave the game after being accidentally struck in the face by Donte DiVincenzo, Nehm and Charania add. Rivers said Middleton had to make an emergency trip to the dentist, which is why he didn’t return to the game. “You just feel bad for him. The guy can’t catch a break,” the Bucks‘ head coach said. “I mean, what are the odds you go into a game, ‘OK, tonight, it will be my tooth gets knocked out.’ He’s having one of those seasons right now, but that’s OK because it can all turn for him. I thought he came with great spirit tonight, too, so just tough luck.”
  • The Cavaliers had a disastrous end to their five-game Western swing as they let a 26-point lead slip away in Sunday’s loss to the Clippers, per Chris Fedor of Cleveland went 1-4 on the trip and returns home in fifth place in the East. “Just a very disappointing loss,” said Isaac Okoro, who was able to return after missing four games with pain in his big toe. “Think we all know right now we need wins. Wanted this one bad.”
  • Head coach Billy Donovan admits that the Bulls aren’t having the type of season he expected, according to Joe Cowley of The Chicago Sun-Times. Chicago is just a game ahead of Atlanta for ninth place in the battle to host next week’s play-in game between the two teams. “I certainly didn’t come here [when I was hired in 2020] to say, ‘Hey, listen, let’s be a play-in team,’” Donovan said. “When I sat down first with [executive vice president of basketball operations] Arturas [Karnisovas] and [general manager] Marc [Eversley] about this, it was to try and build something. I still feel like we’re building something, but I don’t think anyone is happy with where we’re at.’’
  • James L. Edwards of The Athletic ranks the Pistons‘ best assets heading into the offseason. Not surprisingly, Cade Cunningham tops the list, with this year’s first-round pick coming in second, followed by Ausar Thompson, Jalen Duren and Jaden Ivey.

Patrick Beverley Says He Tore Ligament In Wrist

After missing Tuesday’s game vs. his former Lakers team due to what the Bucks called a right wrist sprain, Patrick Beverley revealed on his latest podcast that the diagnosis is more serious than that. According to Beverley, who underwent X-rays and an MRI, he has a torn ligament in his right wrist (Twitter video clip).

Beverley said he was informed that he would require surgery to repair the tear and that the procedure would likely sideline him for three to four months.

However, the Bucks guard gave no indication that he’s prepared to go under the knife immediately, suggesting that he plans to do all he can to return to the court this season and play through the injury, perhaps postponing surgery until the summer.

According to Beverley, he sustained the injury when he missed a dunk attempt during warmups prior to Sunday’s game against the Thunder. He was active for that game and was a +12 in 15 minutes, though he missed both of his shots from the floor, as well as one of two free throws.

If they ultimately have to shut down Beverley for the season, it would be a tough blow for the Bucks, who sent Cameron Payne and a second-round pick to the Sixers in exchange for the veteran at February’s trade deadline in an effort to add toughness and upgrade their perimeter defense.

Beverley has struggled to score efficiently since arriving in Milwaukee, making just 34.4% on his field goal attempts, but the 35-year-old has been a regular rotation player, averaging 19.6 MPG in 19 appearances, including two starts.

It’s worth noting that the Bucks have a -5.5 overall net rating in Beverley’s 372 minutes on the court, compared to a +11.7 net mark in the 598 minutes he hasn’t played since joining the roster.

We’ll have to wait for an update from Beverley, the team, or a reporter to get a clearer sense of the treatment plan for the wrist, as well as his availability going forward.