Mike Beasley and His Twitter Just Made Life Harder for Himself
In completely unrelated news, Michael Beasley did something that doesn't look too bright right now. Why, do you ask?
So Beasley got himself a new tattoo with his nickname, 'Supercool Beas' across his back along with angel wings and a "God's Son" piece of text. Because, you know, when you're promoting your Supercool Beasness, you want to rep your Lord and Savior. And he wanted to share that with all his 'Tweeps.' So he took a picture and uploaded it to TwitPic. Then he tweeted that link. I'd love to link you to that tweet, but he deleted it. Here's the text, though, courtesy of Twitter-Athletes.com: "GorillaBeas I told u, I'm still SupercoolBeas!!!!!!!!! "
Not only is he the Supercool Beas, but he's very excited to share that information with you.
Ah, a young kid being silly. No harm, no foul, right?
Take a good look at the bottom right-hand corner of that picture.
No, not the 7-Up bottle, that's a good thing. Kid doesn't need any caffeine. No, what's curious, and what drew multiple comments on the TwitPic page and his Twitter account are what appear to be two plastic bags of something on the table.
Now, it's not like we're looking at a high-res image of 10 bricks or anything. It's completely possible that's the leftover bag that contained the bologna sandwich he had for lunch. Or maybe he just likes to keep things in plastic bags. Maybe it just looks like a rolled up plastic bag, and it's actually just some trash.
And if the kid hadn't tried to hide his involvement in the mini-party that resulted in two players getting booted from the rookie symposium last year, which of course involved marijuana (NOT THAT WHAT'S IN THE BAG IS MARIJUANA), it would probably not be that big of a deal.
But man, it looks bad. And that's the real problem. It's not about what it actually was. It's about the perception, because that's what drives dollars, and that's what sponsors, and subsequently the league, cares about.
Good news! It's a blurry Twitpic taken at Beasley's house so there's no way he can face discipline from the league. Even if for some reason he didn't get rid of whatever was on the table (and of course it's completely possible it was nothing), it's not like David Stern has a crew of guys ready to go knock on Beasley's door at a moment's notice. Now, if he was wearing jeans to an event? Then he'd have the hammer down on him. But this won't draw any formal issues.
Bad news! Even if it was nothing, there's absolutely no way for him to prove that it wasn't weed (NOT THAT IT WAS GANJA, SWEET MARY JANE, THE GLORIOUS HERB). People will now assume it was, based on his reputation, and he's stuck with it. The fact that he subsequently tweeted several bizarre things and then deleted his Tweet account doesn't help. Which means that while the league can't do anything officially, I'd expect someone in his camp is going to be getting a call from someone with an eye on such things.
The worst part about this is how unnecessary it is. Right now millions of people are getting high. If Beasley hadn't jumped to the NBA, he'd be at K-State, where, like all universities in America that aren't religiously affiliated or Ivy League, is ripe with young people experimenting with better living through chemistry. The NFL consistently has issues with its players involved in assault and battery and DUI manslaughter. But Michael Beasley may end up with a ton of attention on him for something that really isn't worth the concern, and that's if he actually is (still) partaking. But much as it was with Stephon Marbury, there's a sense of decorum you need to exercise in your best interests.
Getting high in one's own home (NOT THAT IT WAS MARIJUANA OR HIS OR BEING USED) isn't a phenomenally stupid idea, though it's not a Mensa move considering how much he has going for him. But recklessly posting a picture that calls into question IF you were getting high in the comfort of your own home, after you've gotten in trouble with the league for a substance violation and have a reputation for immature behavior? That displays a regrettable lack of foresight. Beasley needs to be aware that anything he posts online is going to be scrutinized and judged because of his fame. And if he isn't aware of that, someone from his camp, his family, his team, or the league needs to make him aware of it.
Interestingly, former NFL quarterback Trent Green (yes, that Trent Green) was on 810 WHB Kansas City and mentioned that Mark Cuban spoke to Fox Sports' NFL team as part of their orientation process about social media. And according to Green, Cuban talked about how many NBA players are on Twitter, and how it's handled and encouraged. Meanwhile, the NFL has been fostering a police state in regards to Twitter. That's disappointing for the athletes and the fans. But when the results of Twitter are things like the starting small forward for the Miami Heat being presented as a possible drug user (NOT THAT IT WAS MARIJUANA, BECAUSE IT TOTALLY PROBABLY WASN'T MAYBE), and things like the J.R. Smith debacle, you have to wonder if the NBA isn't going to have to put a clampdown on sites like Twitter and UStream (thought Stephon Marbury is already warning off players probably... or at least Brendan Haywood).
So there you have it. I've just written a post about how Beasley will likely receive undo media attention for a questionable image that may or may not show a leftover receptacle of a substance that we can't confirm the identity, ownership, or context of. And in doing so, I have helped bring more undo attention to Beasley and the image. We're all trapped in a hyper-reactive cube that moves at the speed of 140 characters, and perhaps the only way out is Supercool Beasness.