Chris Finch was able to get a good gauge on the many returning players and how to best use his skill set in last season’s final games.
Except for Malik Beasley.
The guard played a total of six games under his new coach in the back half of the previous season. He missed the rest due to suspension and injury. So Finch is still getting an idea of the effect Beasley can have on the team.
“It was hard not to be able to help the team, play the way I love to play and be out with people,” Beasley said. “It was difficult to sit on the edge. I did everything I could to join in, cheered on the team, took people out, passed for them, whatever I could. ”
That doesn’t mean Wolves’ coach isn’t familiar with the sharpshooter. Finch was an assistant coach at Denver during Beasley’s rookie year with the Nuggets. That’s where Minnesota is taking many of its defensive principles, so Beasley is already familiar with that plan.
He also had an existing relationship with Finch.
“I and he have a great relationship. We talk about a lot of different things, family and things like that,” Bijli said. “I think that’s the main part and then we both compete. like to do. He knows that about me, so I think we’re going to be good. We have a great relationship, and we’re going to be working on a lot of things.”
Beasley was a big piece for Minnesota last season, refreshing from a four-year extension he signed last offseason. He averaged 19.6 points per game, while shooting 40 percent from 3-point range at 8.7 attempts per game. Beasley is an important floor spacer in an offense with dynamic weapons such as Anthony Edwards, D’Angelo Russell and Carl-Anthony Towns.
The guard said he has the ability to improve the ball with his cutting and running in transition, but Finch said Beasley has also focused on his decision-making and ball-handling, two areas where he played 2020-21. fought several times during Campaign. Beasley’s mission is to turn your weaknesses into strengths.
“He runs so far off the line that he can turn those opportunities into really good shots for himself and his teammates,” Finch said.
Finch has been impressed by Beasley’s fine defence, focusing on being in the right spots on that end of the floor. He is also allowing crime to come to him. Both are important qualities when playing with Timberwolves’ “Big 3” weapons.
Currently, Beasley is in the process of coming to optimum conditioning. Beasley spent time in prison this summer, part of his sentence after pleading guilty to drug and intimidation charges stemming from an incident outside his home last November, when he fired a gun at a family parked on their driveway. pointed to.
Beazley was able to work during that sentence over the summer due to the work’s release.
“I was able to make sure I went to work every day and worked hard on it,” he said.
But after the completion of his prison time, Finch said the Wolves asked the guards to take some time off to make sure his mind was mentally sound throughout the season. Beasley said he needed that space, and after that, he was ready to roll. He resumed his season ramp-up when the team called for a pre-training camping trip to Miami.
“He naturally (with the conditioning) fell a little behind his teammates. We expected it,” Finch said. “He’s caught up to them. He’s such a workhorse, probably right where everyone else is right now.”
Even if it’s not quite true, it certainly will eventually. Beasley is a gym rat. In Minnesota’s presidential opener on Monday against New Orleans, Beasley played 19 minutes, scoring 3 for 8 off the ground for six points.
“I thought he played well. I thought he did well defensively,” Finch said. “He didn’t get shots, but he got really good shots.”
On Tuesday, Beasley remained on the court after practice, joining other, less established teammates 5-on-5 times.
“I’m excited. Basketball is back. I’m ready to get it, ready to show the world that we’re a great team,” Beasley said. “Even yourself, no matter what you go through, you can push and fight.”