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Vintage Patrick Beverley Was on Full Display Against the Lakers

The NBA's most well-known 'pest' continued his shtick on Sunday night against the Los Angeles Lakers

Patrick Beverley's brand of NBA basketball is well-known around the league, especially to Laker fans. Laker fans are, let's say, not fond of "Pat-Bev." Beverley once said that LA was a Clippers town and not a Lakers town, which was not well-received.

“I got no regrets. Wouldn’t change anything. We put on for the city. We turned this Laker city into a Clipper city and that’s all you can ask for. We gave the fans something to be excited about.”

Obviously, for Beverley, this was a nod to the Clipper fans who supported him when he played in LA. Laker fans are notoriously easy to anger when it comes to who runs Los Angeles in the NBA, so Beverley also probably knew what he was doing in that context. 

Sunday night was vintage P-Bev pest behavior.

Russell Westbrook and Patrick Beverley sharing a word or two isn't a world-shaking event, but it does show that Beverley still enjoys using his psychological style of game to make up for his lack of offensive ability. On the offensive end though, Beverley showed some flair.

One could see this as a distraction from the game—hyping up plays because Beverley is not an elite player. What can't be argued though, is that Beverley puts all his effort into trying to get into the Lakers' heads. Holding Talen Horton-Tucker's hand is completely unnecessary, as was jawing at James after a three. It certainly helped Beverley, who posted a +5 and had a good stat line. It didn't overall help the depleted Minnesota Timberwolves, however, as they lost to the Lakers 108-103.

The internet loved the exchanges, however.

As for getting into James' head, Beverley didn't quite accomplish his goal. King James put up 26 points (8th straight 25-point game), 7 rebounds, 5 assists, 3 steals, and a block. James put up a +9 rating while dropping a 26/7/5 line. The Lakers also won the game.

Beverley's reputation as a hard-nosed defender who plays the game psychologically isn't spotless, however. He has a history of "dirty plays" and he isn't exactly shy about it, either. Last season Beverley shoved Chris Paul in the back as the Clippers were getting eliminated. Throwing a cheap shot at the end of a series where your team was getting waxed doesn't show a lot of maturity.

Beverley was suspended one game for this offense, which he served at the beginning of the current NBA season. The Clippers traded away Beverley (and Rajon Rondo) to save themselves about $30 million in luxury tax penalties. Not exactly the way a player would want to end his playing days for a team he was so committed to, but the NBA is ultimately a business. 

The Lakers and Timberwolves will play each other again on March 16th, which promises to have more of these Beverley vs. Lakers fireworks. The Lakers are currently sitting at 19-19, good for 7th in the Western Conference standings. If they stay where they're at, they are looking at the play-in tournament (for the 7th-10 seeds) as are the Timberwolves who are currently 9th in the Western Conference. 

The next few months will prove to be very interesting for both the Lakers and Timberwolves.