A Few (more) thoughts on Michael Beasley

August 25th, 2009 by John Krolik

There’s just an absolute put-load of news, both Cavs-related and otherwise, that’s gone on in the last few days, so let’s do our best to catch up.

The story of the day, and maybe one of the stories of the off-season, is the news that Michael Beasley has checked into rehabilitation, apparently for reasons relating to depression. There are also questions regarding substances, particularly Beasley’s use of marijuana, but I feel like a focus on that aspect of the issue is losing sight of the disease in the symptoms. (Although I will be the first to admit I am no doctor.)

So Beasley allegedly has depression. Now what? The issue is one that requires a degree of cogent analysis I’m unable to provide after one afternoon, but here are a few quick things:

Adande hit the nail on the head when he said it’s time to stop pretending the age limit cures all ills and is the right thing to do for these kids 100% of the time. The evidence against the age limit’s ability to make these long-term life improvements is fairly staggering in the NBA alone, and that’s before you factor in the Maurice Clarett fiasco with the NFL’s age limit. The rule doesn’t make legal sense, it doesn’t make moral sense, and I’m still not convinced it makes basketball sense. That leaves economic sense. Fun.

-This case is interesting to any Cavalier fan who remembers Delonte West’s struggles with depression last off-season, which he was fortunately able to overcome, because both guys were thought as “goofy” guys instead of true problem children. Just how I’m not quite sure yet, but this is definitely a new kind of head case-we’re so used to judging “difficult” personalities in the NBA in terms of the damage they do to those around them that we’re not sure how to react to a player who trespasses most of all against himself.

-Boy, the whole Derrick Coleman thing just got a little creepier, didn’t it?

-America has understood the notion that depression happens to celebrities since Marilyn Monroe’s suicide. Famous artists and depression are synonimous to the point where it might be a chicken-egg question. Why is depression in famous athletes such a leap? There are complex answers to all of these questions, and one would hope that someone takes the time to find them in the wake of this story.

Well, that actually came out to around 400 words, so I’m just going to link to a few more takes on Beasley and hopefully get up the Cavs-related stuff sometime tomorrow afternoon.

Here’s a picture of what kicked off some of this mess, an image of Beasley showing off his new tattoos while two bags of what may be marijuana are visible in the background. (Sources allegedly say that the hulabaloo over the picture had nothing to do with Beasley checking into rehab, as he was already headed there before the picture was released.)

Peninsula is Mightier published the disturbing “final tweets” without appearing all that sympathetic, and does seem to think the tweets were, in fact, a response to the photo controversy.

An extremely interesting post from Hot Hot Hoops on the Heat and social media, put up just before the Beasley controversy broke.

And although I’m aware that most of you probably come here from TrueHoop and linking them is somewhat superfluous, if not downright nepotistic, this post on John Lucas’ role as Beasley’s mentor is worth a read. (And just to clarify, I am actually more hesitant to link it because it comes from TrueHoop than I would be if it came from anywhere else.)

Alright, that’s it for tonight. Until tomorrow, campers.