The Phoenix Suns exited the 2022 NBA Playoffs in stunning fashion.
Yes, the Suns, who were the reigning Western Conference champs and posted the NBA's best regular-season record in 2021-22, no-showed in a second-round Game 7 at home.
It marked yet another disappointing playoff result for Chris Paul, who finishes the 17th season of his legendary career still without a ring. And on Monday, one of Paul's NBA peers kicked him while he was down.
Minnesota Timberwolves point guard Patrick Beverley was a guest on ESPN's "Get Up" and absolutely teed off on the Point God.
"Ain't nobody worried about Chris Paul when you play the Phoenix Suns, nobody in the NBA. And I'm just letting you know how NBA players feel and think," Beverley said to Stephen A. Smith. "He's finessed the game to a point where he gets all the petty calls, all the swipe-throughs. We wanna be really honest? He should've fouled out [in Game 7]. The last game, too. ... He literally can't guard.
"CP can't guard nobody, everybody in the NBA knows that. What do we call him? 'Cone.' You know what you do with cones? Like in the summertime, you got a cone and you make a move, what does the cone do? He's a cone. Everyone knows that. It's just y'all don't want to accept it because it's CP.
"Give him the Ben Simmons slander. Give him the [Paul George] slander. Give him the slander that you give everybody."
Those weren't Beverley's only spicy comments about Paul on national TV either. He added that the Suns should have benched Paul instead of center Deandre Ayton in Game 7.
"I'm gonna get a lot for this but I don't really care: they benched the wrong person. They should've benched Chris," Beverley said. "Once you see they starting to attack Chris early and you know that might become a problem later on, you need to see how the team works without Chris for a little bit.
"I got benched. We won though, so you don't even remember that. As a coach you have to understand, 'Man, they're attacking my main guy, I can't get buckets from him. I have to make an adjustment.' Whatever that adjustment is. And that's no fault against Monty [Williams], he's a great coach, Coach of the Year. But if [Los Angeles Clippers head coach Tyron Lue] is there, he's making that decision. It's a hard decision but he's making it."
It should be mentioned that Beverley and Paul have a history -- and not a good one. There's on-court history, like Beverley shoving Paul from behind during last year's West finals, and off-court history, like Beverley calling Paul a "dirty m*****f***er" on JJ Redick's "The Old Man & The Three" podcast a couple of months ago. Beverley actually detailed on Redick's podcast that his rivalry with Paul dates all the way back to Beverley's high school days.
While PatBev may have gone a bit overboard in his criticism of Paul, there's no debating that the Suns point guard was far from his best against the Mavs. After a strong start to the series, Paul failed to record more than 13 points in the final five games, where he averaged 9.4 points, 5.8 assists and 3.6 turnovers per game.
Paul turned the ball over seven times in a Game 3 loss and had more fouls (6) than points (5) in 23 minutes of action in a Game 4 defeat. Then, in a do-or-die Game 7, he put up 10 points and four assists and was a staggering minus-39, the worst single-game plus-minus of his entire career.
Paul exited the arena following Game 7 with a limp due to a quad injury, according to ESPN's Marc Spears. It's unclear when the 37-year-old sustained the injury and he declined to comment when asked about it. Paul did confirm that he'll be back for Year 18 next season though.