Heat Notebook

Miami Heat keeps roster intact as contract deadline passes

 
 

Miami Heat coach Erik Spoelstra talks to forward Michael Beasley during the second half of the NBA basketball game against the Toronto Raptors at AmericanAirlines Arena in Miami on Jan. 5, 2014.
Miami Heat coach Erik Spoelstra talks to forward Michael Beasley during the second half of the NBA basketball game against the Toronto Raptors at AmericanAirlines Arena in Miami on Jan. 5, 2014.
Gregory Castillo / Staff Photo

bjackson@miamiherald.com

Believing there’s no need to add center Andrew Bynum at this time, the Heat decided to keep guard Roger Mason Jr., and, as expected, forward Michael Beasley by Tuesday’s 5 p.m. NBA deadline to guarantee contracts for the remainder of the season. That means Miami would have to eat a contract to add another player.

Erik Spoelstra called the lack of any roster moves “fairly easy decisions” and said of Mason: “It’s not easy to find guys like that.”

Though the Heat hasn’t ruled out Bynum barring a change of heart (if he’s still available), Miami was not among several teams that contacted Bynum’s agent after he was released by Chicago on Tuesday.

The Heat also remains optimistic that center Greg Oden will be able to contribute at some point this season, but feels no rush to insert him in a game. Oden hasn’t played in an NBA game in more than four years while continuing to work his way back from several knee operations.

Chris Bosh said Tuesday that Oden hypothetically could play in a game today, if needed, but “you don’t want to throw him out there too soon. He’s got to get his conditioning under him. He’s got to make sure he’s got his legs correctly. Once he gets in good conditioning as far as doing his drills and can do it with no problem, then I’m sure they’ll insert him in games. …

“He’s really going to be able to help us in some areas we need to fill later on. His time is coming pretty soon. He’ll be ready.”

Joel Anthony said Oden has looked good in two-on-two matchups against him. The Heat hasn’t done much five-on-five practice work in recent weeks.

Asked if he’s convinced Oden will help the team this year, Spoelstra said: “All I’m concerned about is follow the plan. And he’s been following the plan. Very disciplined. Making progress.”

•  Shane Battier missed his third consecutive game with a quadriceps injury, and Mario Chalmers sat out with Achilles’ tendonitis.

RILEY SPEAKS

Pat Riley, who hasn’t spoken to local reporters since late last June, did a recently released interview with Index Universe in which he discussed some of the Heat’s philosophies — much of which Heat fans already know, but are interesting nevertheless.

Among the highlights:

• Riley said flatly: “We don’t like to build through the draft. If you’re going to do that, then you’re probably going to have to lose for two or three or four years in a row, and get high lottery picks. In my 19 years here, we’ve been in the lottery three times. We ended up getting three good players out of that [ Caron Butler, Dwyane Wade, Beasley].

“We really like the trade route or free agency to find the fourth- or fifth-year player … and now has become a veteran. He’s a talent. He’s experienced. He’s mature. And he will slot into that sixth-man role or a specific role. Or every now and then, go for a real star. That’s how I think about building a team. And that’s how I think about keeping the team relevant, to keep adding one piece. Jerry West taught me this in Los Angeles.”

• He said Spoelstra believes in analytics: “We have a database of numbers, not only individually but as a team, in which we track every single movement that one of our players makes out on the court. And we will definitely quantify it into a number. And the player will have that number. Spoelstra believes in these numbers. He uses them to set up the offense and defense, especially offensively, and who are the best players to complement LeBron James and Bosh and Wade. Numbers and analytics play a big part in … how we can space the floor. The numbers tell us that Battier and Rashard Lewis play better when LeBron and Chris and Udonis Haslem are on the court.”

• Riley says Spoelstra is the “face of the franchise now” and “we don’t want a lot of people out there making statements to the media that can contradict one another.”

• One key, Riley said, is “the players trust us because they know we’re competent. We’re going to make them better players. We’re going to make sure they’re the best-fed and nutrition-oriented-conditioned team in the league. Otherwise, they probably wouldn’t want to really play for us if they didn’t trust that we were competent.”

Read more Miami Heat stories from the Miami Herald

  •  
Miami Heat forward-center Udonis Haslem.

    GAME 1 | BOBCATS AT HEAT, 3:30 P.M. SUNDAY, ABC

    Patience, preparation pay off for Miami Heat’s Udonis Haslem, Rashard Lewis

    Udonis Haslem will be back in a familiar spot as an expected starter when the playoffs start. And Rashard Lewis also appears likely to receive playing time.

  •  
Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade shoots a free throw before a game against the New York Knicks at AmericanAirlines Arena in Miami on April 6, 2014. Wade did not play in the game.

    Heat notebook

    Miami Heat’s Dwyane Wade rested, healthy for playoffs

    Dwyane Wade ended up sitting out 28 games this season after missing a combined 36 in the first three seasons with LeBron James as a teammate. But Wade enters these playoffs in a much better place, from a health perspective, than last year, when a knee injury lingered throughout the postseason.

  •  
LeBron James cheers as he holds both trophies after the Heat won Game 7 of the 2013 NBA Finals at AmericanAirlines Arena in Miami, Florida on Thursday, June 20, 2013.

    In My Opinion

    Greg Cote: Element of doubt makes this Miami Heat quest intriguing

    This time it feels different, doesn’t it? The Heat in the Big3 Era always has found a way to keep things fresh and keep us fascinated, and now that means trying on a role unlike any the team has played in the previous three seasons. This time, for the first time since LeBron James and Chris Bosh joined Dwyane Wade, Miami enters a postseason seeming a bit vulnerable — something close to the unlikeliest of underdogs.

Get your Miami Heat Fan Gear!

Join the
Discussion

The Miami Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

The Miami Herald uses Facebook's commenting system. You need to log in with a Facebook account in order to comment. If you have questions about commenting with your Facebook account, click here.

Have a news tip? You can send it anonymously. Click here to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Miami Herald and el Nuevo Herald.

Hide Comments

This affects comments on all stories.

Cancel OK

  • Marketplace

Today's Circulars

  • Quick Job Search

Enter Keyword(s) Enter City Select a State Select a Category