Found December 28, 2011 on NBA 24/7 365:

  • Michael Beasley needs to diversify the ways in which he scores.  In the two games the Wolves have played thus far he hasn’t really meshed with his teammates, who have exhibited stellar chemistry.  Beasley is a ball stopper, basically.  He likes to hang out on the perimeter and take his man off the dribble.  He can be effective at times, but he needs to find more ways to contribute offensively that don’t kill the flow.  He’s got the size and athleticism to take the majority of threes into the post.  I think he should work on that aspect of his game.  He could also help himself by moving without the ball… I’m confident in Ricky Rubio’s ability to find him.  I thought a Minnesota commentator brought up another good point about Beasley during last night’s game: ”Something Beasley needs to work on is his demeanor on the floor.”  This being his fourth year in the league, Mike has more NBA experience under his belt than most of his teammates.  When he goes to the bench looking dejected after a few missed shots he’s not displaying the kind of ever-positive attitude that a young team must possess.  The Wolves could really use Beasley’s ability to score in one-on-one situations at the end of close games, but they’re going to need him to make a few changes to both his style of play and his attitude in order to keep him involved in this rebuilding process.
  • Kevin Love had 31 points and 20 rebounds as he went 19-24 from the freethrow line in Minnesota’s 95-98 loss to the Bucks.  That just seemed like something that needed to be mentioned. 
  • Ricky Rubio’s second NBA game didn’t go as smoothly as his first.  He played 27 minutes and scored another 6 points on 2-3, but he turned the ball over three times and failed to leave an impression like he did in his debut.  I thought part of the reason was because he wasn’t as involved.  He was on the court with Luke Ridnour for a little while, and during that time he didn’t always have the ball in his hands.  Ricky is more ideally paired with JJ Barea, who left the game with a hamstring injury.  I don’t think it’s a serious injury at all, and I hope to see the exciting duo back on the floor next game.
  • Andray Blatche says he wants the ball in the post.  After Washington’s season-opening loss to the New Jersey Nets, Blatche explained to reporters that he doesn’t feel he will be effective if the majority of his touches come outside of the paint.  Whether or not he has a point is irrelevant; the problem here is in the timing and public nature of his complaint, and that he apparently doesn’t see why he shouldn’t have said anything.  As the captain of the Wizards, Blatche should probably focus solely on the team in his post-game comments and approach Flip Saunders directly with any individual issues.  Losing doesn’t exactly work wonders on a young lockerroom, and the Wiz will be doing a whole lot of it this season.  The last thing they need is their supposed leader pissing and moaning about where he caught the ball after an ugly loss.  Blatche should’ve simply stated that he and the team played poorly and left it at that. 
  • The Sacramento Kings assisted on just 11 of their 31 field goals, resulting in 37.8% shooting and ultimately a 22-point loss to the Blazers.  One positive I noticed from a Kings perspective were the flashes of brilliance that DeMarcus Cousins showed in the post.  On multiple occasions he used his quickness to get his body between the defender and the basket before his sheer size completely eliminated his man from the play.  His combination of size, skill, and athleticism is remarkably unique, and the Kings should be able to take advantage for many years to come.  In order to do so they need Cousins to become a more disciplined player.  He’s got a jumper, and he can dribble really well for a big guy… but he needs to refrain from doing all of that and hit the block.  That’s where he’s going to help the Sacramento Kings win basketball games. 
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