Patrick Beverley has played in only two preseason match-ups for the Los Angeles Lakers, but the veteran guard has already made an impression. He’s been active on the defensive end, as he seems to understand the team’s system. But above all, what matters for the Lakers is his promise to make them a playoff team again.
Beverley has missed the playoffs twice in his career, including a season in which he played only 11 games. In those playoff runs, he’s added tremendous value on both ends of the floor, and not making the playoffs would mean an incomplete season for the three-time all-defensive guard.
Kawhi Leonard recognizes Patrick Beverley’s work ethic
Kawhi Leonard and Beverley may not be teammates anymore, but they continue to push each other. The tenure between the two in the Los Angeles Clippers uniform was short, with just two seasons of time to got get to know each other. Both those seasons included playoff runs which helped the pair further their bond.
In a recent interview after a preseason match-up, Leonard acknowledged that the pair shares workout updates – keeping their rapport going to this day.
“You know Pat’s competitive. That’s one of the things I love about him. He’s a student of the game as well. So, we always have this similarity with each other, just how focused we are,” Kawhi said. “So, you know, that relationship just built over time.”
Beverley’s new chapter
Beverley’s move to the Los Angeles Lakers immediately improved the unit’s defensive strength, but there is much more the guard can offer. Beverley has accumulated a wealth of playoff experiences with the Houston Rockets, Clippers, and, most recently, the Minnesota Timberwolves. He focuses on the little details that championship teams need to prioritize, and his ex-coach in Minnesota agrees.
NBA analyst Dave MacMenamin recently had a conversation with Chris Finch – the Timberwolves’ coach – who holds Beverley in high regard.
“He [Chris Finch] said that he [Beverley] gave credibility to what he was trying to coach. Because Pat would emphasize the things that needed to be accounted for in practice, when it came to effort in shoot around, when it came to paying attention to the huddle,” MacMenamin said.
A player like that is a coach’s favorite and can be relied upon to build a winning culture within the franchise.