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Friday, October 4, 2013
Back to the start for Michael Beasley

By Michael Wallace

MIAMI -- The nickname is still B-Easy.

Yet, it would be absolutely foolish to believe this is going to be a smooth and seamless return to the Miami Heat for troubled yet still-talented forward Michael Beasley.

Having barely taken three steps onto the AmericanAirlines Arena floor for the Heat's media day earlier this week, Beasley had to retreat a bit as he braced for his new reality.

The familiarity had to be bittersweet.

The No. 2 overall pick in the 2008 draft, Beasley was back on the same floor he called home for his first two NBA seasons.

But he was also back facing the same line of questions about his immaturity, inconsistency and involvement in alleged illegal activities -- from marijuana use to a recent sexual assault probe -- that threaten to derail his career.

How Beasley has stumbled back to this point, back to Miami on a one-year nonguaranteed contract and seemingly facing his final real shot at redemption, isn't as important as whether he truly understands where he stands.

"I'm coming in here with an open mind," Beasley said. "I'm here knowing that this team doesn't need me. I just want to show them that I can help. I just want them to want me."

Read the full column here.