Patrick Beverley couldn’t WAIT to pile on Chris Paul after Phoenix’s collapse in Game 7, waking up bright and early to appear on Get Up Monday morning at ESPN’s South Street Seaport studio in Manhattan. Beverley, who was traded for Paul in 2017 (Lou Williams, Montrezl Harrell and Sam Dekker were also included in the deal), unleashed on the Suns veteran, comparing Paul’s defense to that of a stationary cone used in dribbling exercises.
“Do guys go to sleep early the night before playing the Phoenix Suns? Hell no,” the Timberwolves guard told Mike Greenberg and Stephen A. Smith. “I’m going to Steak 44 over here in Phoenix. Have me a nice little wine. Probably sweat it out in the pregame shootaround and get ready for Chris Paul. Steph Curry, I’m going to bed at 8 o’clock. Mom, don’t call me. My girl, don’t call me.”
The Suns, and Paul in particular, deserve to be criticized after not only squandering homecourt advantage (achieved on the strength of a franchise-best 64-18 regular-season record), but getting obliterated by Dallas in Sunday’s Game 7, with Luka Doncic matching Phoenix’s entire team with 27 first-half points.
At 37, this may have been Paul’s best—and last—chance to win a title. That narrative will continue to haunt Paul until he gets over the hump, but is Beverley, an 8.8-point per game scorer for his career, the right person to deliver that message? Not if you ask Trail Blazers mainstay Damian Lillard, who threw plenty of shade at Beverley after his boisterous appearance on Get Up.
Matt Barnes was similarly critical, calling Beverley’s victory lap, ostensibly dancing on Paul’s grave, “completely disrespectful” and “out of line.” “You’re not that guy, plain and simple,” said Barnes, invoking the old adage, “people who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones.” “Chris Paul played terrible this year and his numbers were still better than your career numbers have ever been.”
Regardless of whether you think Beverley—a zero-time All-Star who has never played in the Finals, much less won a championship—is in a position to judge Paul, the 33-year-old accomplished his goal of going viral, displaying the kind of outspoken, unapologetic analysis that will surely make him a successful media personality in his post-playing career. Beverley’s public beef with Paul mirrors a similar feud between Draymond Green and ESPN’s Kendrick Perkins, who escalated their rivalry with a heated exchange over the weekend.