It’s unknown exactly how much playing time Udonis Haslem will have in his 16th season with the Miami Heat.
But if nothing else, the Heat’s captain, veteran leader and hometown fan favorite can look back on his heroics Saturday.
Haslem closed out the Heat’s intrasquad scrimmage — and, in turn, the team’s preseason camp — with a buzzer-beating bucket that sent the sold-out FAU Arena into a frenzy and had his teammates mobbing him on the court.
“It’s always fun. It’s always enjoyable winning a game, whether it’s a scrimmage or a real game,” Haslem said. “I still take it seriously and I still play the game at a certain level and compete. When you have the opportunity to practice those moments and you have the opportunity to make good on them, hopefully that translates into the game.”
A fitting and touching moment for the Miami native who has spent his entire career with the Miami Heat organization and is the Heat’s all-time leader in rebounds (5,711). However, Haslem has shifted into more of a mentor role over the past few years. The 38-year-old played in 30 combined games throughout the past two seasons, totaling just 202 minutes on the floor.
Justise Winslow drew up the play during a timeout, which came with less than five seconds left in regulation. According to Winslow, the plan was to go to Derrick Jones Jr. up top. If Jones Jr. wasn’t open, Haslem was the second option.
“I made myself the second option,” Haslem said with a smile on his face. “He drew up a good play.”
And Haslem made a good shot in return.
“The OG knocked it in,” Winslow said.
Could this be a sign of more to come?
“I wish I could tell you that,” Haslem said. “I have no clue. I’m focused on doing what I can do and controlling what I can control. If I have the opportunity, I’ll try to make good on it.”