Suns, Hawks interested in Michael Beasley
Michael Beasley put his star right on the map last season for the New York Knicks, later joining the starting lineup with Kristaps Porzingis’ injury. As such, teams like the Phoenix Suns and the Atlanta Hawks have reportedly shown interest in Beasley, Marc Berman of The New York Post.
The veteran forward has a home right in Atlanta and is “intrigued” in a return to familiar territory as he becomes a free agent on July 1 after coming off a great statistical 2017-18 campaign where he averaged 13.2 points and 5.6 rebounds in 22 minutes per game, including a beefy 50.7 percent shooting from the field (finally addressing his previous efficiency issues) and a hefty 39.5 from beyond the arc.
The Suns are looking for bench scoring and a veteran presence to guide their young core — one that will only get that much younger with the top overall selection in this year’s draft. Beasley had previously played with the Suns in 2012-13 and could now right his wrongs after he was released following a scandalous marijuana-possession arrest that season.
Both teams have ample cap space to sign him to a decent deal, yet his current team hasn’t given up hope at retaining the 29-year-old forward, who has shown he still has plenty left in the tank.
Beasley played twice in Miami, crossing paths with now-coach David Fizdale, who was an assistant with the Heat during both of his stints (2008-10 and 2013-15).
“He likes him a lot,’’ said a source close to Beasley, according to Berman.
The Knicks’ front office want Beasley to re-sign with the team, but will have to use all or a portion of their $8.6 million mid-level exception to keep him in The Big Apple.
New York might be without star forward Kristaps Porzingis for an extended period of time, and might need a scoring forward in his place, especially a veteran who won’t have a problem coming back to a bench role or into a sixth man job upon the unicorn’s return.