Patrick Beverley certainly didn’t waste time jumping on Chris Paul’s smear wagon after Phoenix’s loss in Game 7 to Dallas. Pat Bev was bright and early on ESPN, throwing jab after jab after jab against longtime rival CP3. These days it feels like we hear the phrase “keep it real” way too often, but Beverley did just that. He didn’t hold back when it came to breaking down Paul.
As we know, Beverley is never short of words, whether on the pitch, on Twitter or on television. Beverley joined ESPN’s Stand up with Mike Greenberg, Stephen A. Smith and JJ Reddick Monday morning and gave his analysis of what we had seen the night before. Pat Bev claims that Paul should have been in one clip because the Suns weren’t getting anything from him.
It’s hard to argue with Beverley’s point because Paul was passive the entire game. He tried eight shots in Game 7 and seven in Game 6. While Paul is not known for being a dominant scorer, he is known for being hot-tempered and taking over when needed. We saw that side of Paul last year several times in the playoffs. It looked like Paul ran out of steam after the second game against the Mavs as he turned 37 that same day. May 6 came and went and took Chris’s game in the process.
Becoming a talking head is a perfect fit for Beverley after his NBA career ends. He’s been just that all his time in the competition. Although Beverley is known for her intense defense, often picking up ball handlers on the field, Pat Bev’s most valuable asset is his mouth† He is blessed with the gift of gab and is not afraid to let his voice ring bells in the ears of his opponents.
Mr. 94 Feet even claimed that no one in the NBA sweats against Paul, leading to a game against the Suns. I’m not sure how true that is as Paul is highly respected throughout the competition. About this time a year ago, Paul’s name was included in the conversation of the greatest point guards of all time with names like Magic Johnson, Isiah Thomas and Stephen Curry. A year later, he is vandalized on national TV by a journeyman guard who doesn’t even get an invitation to enter the Hall of Fame when he’s done playing.
We have to realize that this rivalry between Beverley and Paul goes back many years, even before the NBA. Beverley was a guest on Reddick’s podcast, The Old Man and the Threeduring the regular season, and he explained how the beef started from his point of view.
“You know Chris, so people don’t understand. Me and Chris, what we’ve been doing since high school,” beverley said:† “A lot of people don’t understand the backstory, but Chris and I certainly understand the backstory. I was invited to a LeBron James camp, the big Nike LeBron James camp, when we were in college… Chris Paul was there. “I killed him. I destroyed him… Then I see him in the NBA, so that energy naturally transfers to the NBA.”
So this is not a grudge that has arisen in recent years. Knowing all this, it’s no surprise that Beverley pushed Paul back in Game 6 of the Western Conference Finals last postseason. Not that he was right to do it, but I get it. Paul isn’t squeaky clean himself, and Beverly wants to make sure everyone understands this. CP3s had more than one incident where his sportsmanship was questioned. And they mostly revolved around targeting opponents under the belt†
Pat even went for one of Paul’s business cards during his diatribe and downplayed CP3’s ability to defend. Paul is a nine-time All-Defensive roster. So, who’s to say if this is just the rivalry talking or if Pat Bev really believes this? Beverly’s has had its own defensive prowess called for in the past, most notably by Russell Westbrook a few years ago when he said Beverley fools people and doesn’t really defend anyone. So while Beverley was undoubtedly entertaining in what he said, I’m not so sure about that last part. But after Paul’s most recent five-game stint, it will be difficult to convince Beverley otherwise.