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The rebirth of Michael Beasley

Miami is helping a once-troubled star realize his long-recognized potential

Updated: December 5, 2013, 12:37 PM ET
By Tom Haberstroh | ESPN Insider

Kevin Durant. Kevin Love. Anthony Davis. LaMarcus Aldridge. Blake Griffin. Brook Lopez. DeMarcus Cousins. Carmelo Anthony.

What do these eight players have in common? Each of them have played more than 200 minutes this season and average at least 20 points and seven rebounds on a per-36-minute basis. That represents a sample of the game's biggest star big men, and they're getting paid like it. The average salary of those franchise players? About $14 million. If we take out Cousins and Davis, who are still on their salary-depressed rookie scale contracts, that average price tag soars to $16.6 million.

Star players, star salaries.

Ah, but there's one more player who's putting up those types of numbers, averaging 23.1 points and 7.9 rebounds per 36 minutes.

That's Michael Beasley.

Guess how much the Miami Heat are paying him to play this season.

$1 million.

That's the bare minimum for a sixth-year player. While everyone turned a blind eye to Beasley this summer once he was waived by the Phoenix Suns, the capped-out, two-time defending champs signed him for almost nothing. So far he has posted a 22.0 player efficiency rating in 2013-14, the sixth-highest in the Eastern Conference. It appears the rich only got richer.

Welcome to the reconstruction of Michael Beasley.

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