The scrappy guard uses his effort and energy on the defensive end to consistently propel the Rockets to new heights.
When Patrick Beverley first arrived on the NBA scene with the Houston Rockets in the 2012-13 season, few expected him to become a solid starting guard on one of the best teams in the league. However, that is exactly what Beverley has done.
How has he done it? Well, mainly through his excellent defense and hustle. If you play good defense and always give incredible effort when you are on the floor, you are almost guaranteed a roster spot in the NBA.
However, Beverley went beyond just being a good defender, as he worked on his shot and play-making abilities, making him the perfect partner to James Harden in the Rockets’ backcourt.
This season Beverley is averaging career highs in assists (4.4), rebounds (5.9), and steals (1.6) per game. Beverley has already had seven games with at least 10 rebounds, which is incredible when you realize he is only 6’1″. A lot of these rebounds come as a result of Beverley being more aggressive and out-hustling opposing bigs.
Beverley is averaging a career high in offensive rebounds, and his effort to obtain those rebounds not only inject energy to the Rockets, but they also provide their lethal offense with another possession to catch the defense off guard.
Among players shorter than 6’4″ that average at least 4 rebounds per game, Beverley currently has the highest contested rebound percentage in the entire league. That’s significant and important for the Rockets’ offense.
Turning to Beverley’s play-making, Beverley is averaging 5.2 assists per game per-36 minutes this season. The reason Beverley is usually subbed out of the game at the midway point in the first and third quarters is so he can come back in to run the bench unit in the second and fourth quarters.
Beverley has become a reliable ball-handler and play-maker, as he is effective in driving to the rim in order to open shots up for others. Beverley is posting the second highest assist percentage (20.0) of his career, trailing only his debut season with Houston (24.2).
While Beverley’s play-making abilities make him the ideal guard to run the bench unit, his improved shooting makes him the perfect running mate to Harden in the starting lineup.
Beverley has improved his three-point shooting while taking more attempts from beyond the arc, which is the ideal combination. This season Beverley is shooting 39.4 percent on his three-pointers, which is slightly down from the 40 percent he shot last season but a steady improvement on the 35.6 percentage he shot in the 2014-15 season.
Beverley is now an off-ball threat playing alongside Harden while also being the primary ball-handler on the second unit. Who would have imagined that when he first joined the Rockets?
Finally, as is usual when discussing Beverley’s impact on the game, we have to address his defense. Beverley is currently posting a 1.8 defensive box plus-minus, and is defensive real plus-minus of 1.68 is good for second in the league among point guards.
Even though the numbers support the idea that Beverley is an elite defender, simply watching him will give you enough of an idea of his impact on that end of the floor:
Beverley has had countless defensive moments like the one above, making him a crucial part of a Rockets team that lacks good perimeter defenders. Also, Beverley’s great defense provides the Rockets with energy sparks in addition to helping them win basketball games.
For the various reasons outlined above, Patrick Beverley is the true heart and soul of the Houston Rockets. He consistently does the dirty work of rebounding and playing physical defense, all while becoming a good play-maker and three-point shooter. Long live Mr. 94feet, Patrick Beverley.
All statistics courtesy of Basketball Reference and NBA.com