The life of an NBA player has no guarantees. At one point you can be the next big thing in the sport, and the next day you find yourself struggling for opportunities in the league. Several players have found themselves in these situations throughout the league's history. Because of how rapidly evolving and competitive the NBA is, players have to continuously improve or they run the risk of being left behind.
Luckily, because of the growth of basketball, opportunities to play professionally are not just restricted to the NBA, but the rest of the world as well. And when players find their opportunities in the NBA are running short, they are more than willing to make the trip abroad in search of playing opportunities. It is rare that these players find their way back to the NBA, but it isn't entirely impossible. And that is the case recently for two former NBA stars.
During the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas, a picture shows that former NBA players Kenneth Faried and Michael Beasley are playing for the Portland Trail Blazers. The Summer League usually sees teams select rosters with their rookie and sophomore players, along with some additional signings that they want to test out before committing long term.
And it appears that is exactly what the Blazers are doing right now with Faried and Beasley. It will be interesting to see if their time in the Summer League leads to them getting long-term contracts with the Blazers or any other NBA franchise.
Kenneth Faried played in the NBA between 2011 and 2019. The high point of his career was when he made the All-Rookie First Team in 2012. His stint in the NBA was mostly spent with the Denver Nuggets, along with a few short stints with Brooklyn and Houston. He then went to play in China but returned to the US later after an injury. He has been a free agent since then and has been looking for an opportunity with an NBA team.
As for Michael Beasley, he has been in the NBA for a lot longer, playing on-and-off between 2008 and 2019. Beasley mostly played for the Miami Heat, even reaching the 2014 NBA Finals with them. He was going to make his return to the NBA in 2020, as the Nets signed him for their Orlando Bubble roster. But a positive COVID-19 test derailed that opportunity.
Both Faried and Beasley will be hoping to get enough minutes to impress the Blazers and the other teams at the tournament. A solid showing could see them get a minimum contract with a franchise, and from there they can look to get more opportunities in the league if their level of play remains solid enough to warrant it. But as of now, they are in Las Vegas, playing in the Summer League.