Michael Beasley will be an All-Star next season, says Michael Beasley

In 2008, Miami Heat rookie Michael Beasley came into the league with big expectations. He was to be the second star in tandem with Dwyane Wade, a scorer, rebounder, and matchup nightmare. Things haven't worked out close to as planned — Beasley has been an inefficient shooter and little else with the Heat and Minnesota Timberwolves. He has a chance to start over with the Phoenix Suns after signing a three-year contract worth $18 million, but no one really expects him to approach the potential he flashed as a teenager.

Everyone, that is, except Beasley himself. Because, as he enters his first season as a Sun, he has plans to make his first All-Star game. From an interview with XTRA 910 in Phoenix, as transcribed by Sports Radio Interviews (via SLAM):

How he feels coming into this new situation in Phoenix:

"It feels great. I actually feel great coming into a situation like that. I get a chance to not be the main guy but you know to be the go-to guy. Not just scoring but the go-to stopper and whatever my team needs, me to get a bucket or get a defensive stop, I feel good and confident that I can be that guy." [...]

Whether he believes he will be an All-Star before his contract is up in Phoenix:

"In my mind I'm going to be an All-Star this coming season. All I want to do is win. Whether I get the recognition for what I do on the floor or not, as long as we're winning I'm okay with that."

I don't want to be too hard on Beasley here, because most NBA players need to maintain an absurd level of confidence to perform well. And while I don't know how someone can be "the go-to guy" without being "the main guy," he is at least not touting himself as a savior or the man who will replace Steve Nash in every Suns fan's heart.

Nevertheless, there's a difference between having confidence in yourself and saying something totally ridiculous. Beasley can't be expected to speak poorly of himself, because that's not how athletes are wired. He was answering a specific question here, and it probably shouldn't have been asked in the first place given that Beasley has an infinitesimal chance of being an All-Star over the next three years.

But that doesn't mean Beasley answered it well — that response would have involved his thoughts on winning games with a curt dismissal of the importance of individual honors. Whether deservedly or not, Beasley has a reputation as a disappointing player with a misguided sense of his own worth. Claiming that he can make the All-Star team only reinforces that impression, so there's no way he can win here.

In this same interview, Beasley claims that he has matured as a person and player. In truth, the easiest way to convince people of that change would be to lay off the hyperbole.

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