The Los Angeles Lakers rounded out their 2018-19 roster on Friday with a reported agreement with free agent Michael Beasley, who spent last season playing for the New York Knicks. As it stands, he will fill the team’s 15th – and final – full roster spot.
While Beasley will be a new addition to the Lakers, this won’t be his first season playing alongside superstar LeBron James. The two played together for the Miami Heat during the 2013-14 season, after which James departed to return to the Cleveland Cavaliers.
James and Beasley didn’t just play basketball while they were teammates, either. They joined Shane Battier’s karaoke event called “Battioke” and rapped together, which Bryan Kalbrosky of Hoops Hype shared (warning: video contains explicit language):
"Ladies and gentlemen, your 2018-19 Los Angeles Lakers!" by LeBron James (feat. Michael Beasley) pic.twitter.com/W5RIWhYaJM
— Bryan Kalbrosky (@BryanKalbrosky) July 20, 2018
While Beasley and James didn’t share the court very often for the Heat (the pairing appeared in just 41 games together at an average of 8.5 minutes per outing), their prior relationship could help a Lakers team that is integrating a number of new faces next season.
At one time, Beasley was considered one of the top prospects in the country and was selected with the second overall pick in the 2008 NBA Draft by the Heat. While he never became the smooth-scoring superstar that most predicted he would be, Beasley is entering his 10th season in the NBA.
Although, he did spend the better part of the 2014-15 and 2015-16 seasons playing in China. Since then, Beasley has been determined to stick in the league and has adapted his game by improving as a three-point shooter.
He connected on 40 percent of his threes with the Knicks and knocked down 42 percent with the Milwaukee Bucks the year before.
With the addition of Beasley, the Lakers now have an interesting mix of veterans and young players. Head coach Luke Walton will have to find a way to bring them all together cohesively.
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