Michael Beasley sits out Wolves win over the hapless Wizards
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MINNEAPOLIS -- After spraining his ankle in three consecutive games and gutting through the pain, Michael Beasley finally took a night off in the Minnesota Timberwolves 109-97 win over the Washington Wizards.
Beasley came down on Tim Duncan's foot in Tuesday's 107-96 loss and had to be helped off the court by teammates Luke Ridnour and Darko Milicic. Kurt Rambis and the coaching staff decided it was time to get Wolve's leading scorer healthy.
"I've twisted my ankle before but never three games in a row," Beasley said.
"Since it is reoccurring at such a rapid rate, it is just time to get him healthy," Rambis said. "I don't know if he will ever be completely healthy but we will get him healthier so he can go out there and play where he isn't thinking about it because you can see when he started the ball game (Tuesday) he was aware of what was going on with his ankle and proceeded cautiously so we need him to not be focusing on his ankle."
Beasley is the type of player play through pain, so it should come as no surprise that he lobbied with Rambis before the game to let him give it a go.
"He is always going to lobby to play," Rambis said smiling. "And I admire the fact that he wanted to play. I think sometimes you have to do that. You just have to tape it up tighter, whatever the injury is and go out there and play. But at this point of time, we feel that it is just better to get him healthy."
Although the injury does not appear to serious, Rambis – who constantly reminds the media he is not a doctor – doesn't have any time table for Beasley's return.
"We don't know," Rambis said. "We will see how he progresses with treatment and physical therapy and gets stronger. But I think you guys can see it doesn't take much. The one time he just tripped over someone's foot, just the slightest little clip of his ankle and he rolls it."
True to form, Beasley isn't too worried about his ankle, "It's not that serious. It didn't swell too much, just a little sore on the outside. It will get better with time," he said.
Beasley did mention he was thankful that the ankle he keeps spraining is his "good" ankle.
"I can't cut as much or cut as sharp as I want to (with a bad ankle)," Beasley said. "I got to round my cuts which ultimately makes me slower and easier to guard and I can't really elevate on my jump shot like I want to so it hinders my performance.
No player in the NBA worth his salt is 100 percent at the midway point of the season but Beasley says he is in better condition overall than he was during the first two seasons of his career.
"The first two years I was playing inside so I was getting beat up by 6'9" 300 pound guys so it varies but I feel like I am good through 39 games. Beat up a little bit but I am still straight," Beasley said.