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Local Upbringing Benefited Beasley

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By Ivan Carter
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, November 15, 2008

MIAMI, Nov. 14 -- Heat rookie Michael Beasley entered Friday's game averaging 16.4 points on 44.6 percent shooting and 5.9 rebounds, solid numbers for a young player who spent only one season at Kansas State.

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Beasley grew up in Prince George's County and honed his game as a teenager playing AAU basketball.

Wizards Coach Eddie Jordan credited the experience Beasley picked up as a youngster with his rapid development.

"My son's 10 years old and he just played one of the same AAU teams [Beasley] played on and I'll tell you what, that's another level," Jordan said. "So, he started young, learned how to play and that's a heck of a system they have out there. He learned from some good people."

Paying Dues

One problem the Wizards may experience playing talented young center JaVale McGee is that officials are often stingy with calls when dealing with rookies.

McGee discovered that Wednesday night when he was assessed his fifth foul event though it appeared that he did not make any contact with Jazz forward Paul Millsap.

Such is life in the NBA until a player earns the respect of opponents and officials. For McGee, learning how to play aggressively without fouling must be learned throughout the season. Entering Friday night's game, McGee had been whistled for 10 fouls in 96 minutes of action.

"Yeah, I might have to get a tech or two sticking up for him," joked Caron Butler. "Those rookies don't get too many calls."

Up Next: Tuesday vs. Heat 7 p.m. Comcast SportsNet, WTEM-980

Wednesday at Hawks 7 p.m. Comcast SportsNet, WTEM-980


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