LOS ANGELES -- The Minnesota Timberwolves were fresh off an embarrassing performance against his former team in his return to Staples Center on Saturday night, and yet the often-fiery Patrick Beverley sat down for his postgame press conference and again exuded the positivity he has carried himself with all season.
Beverley was brought in to bring intensity and accountability to a team that has had little of that in recent years, and teammates credited him for doing as much early in the season before things fell off the tracks in recent games.
Losses such as Minnesota’s faceplant on Saturday in Los Angeles generally would seem to bring a calling out of the team and a demand to do better.
But Beverley went the opposite route. In the past, he would touted the way the Wolves had built leads and contended in games. They didn’t do that Saturday. Yet Beverley said he wasn’t disappointed.
Instead, he started reading through the quarter-by-quarter results, noting the Wolves were only badly beaten in the second quarter — for whatever that’s worth in a 27-point loss.
“That said, we still got a lot of work,” Beverley said. “Our first back to back (games), and we’ll learn from it.”
It’s clear Beverley considers positivity as a leadership tactic in turbulent times.
“I think that’s a part of anything, right?” he said. “You get into it with your wife or anything, you’re not going to be (yelling at) her all the time. It’s all about positivity.”
Beverley noted he was a part of a long growing process with the Clippers, who finally reached the Western Conference Finals last season.
“So it takes a long time, but with any process, you have to be patient with it,” Beverley said. “I put a lot of pressure on myself to get the most out of every team I play for, so that won’t change here.”
But it’s fair to question if a team with two of its best players — D’Angelo Russell and Karl-Anthony Towns — who are in their seventh NBA seasons and have made all-star appearances should be experiencing such growing pains. They, like Beverley, have been through growing pains in the past, and likely should have such issues in the rearview mirrors of their careers.
But consistent effort continues to be an issue, starting with the team’s stars. It’s hard to think that won’t rub Beverley the wrong way eventually. But it doesn’t appear to be now.
“I have my days, but for the most part, I try to stay as positive as possible,” Beverley said. “It’s a long season. I don’t how many games left … 68, 69, 70, whatever. So long a season, and we’re trying to build a nice house, brick by brick. And you’ve got to take some L’s with it. It’s a learning process.”