Thursday, December 29, 2011

Minny test

After watching the Heat struggle just to get past the Bobcats, it's clear any game can be a difficult one on the road for Miami.

Friday's against Minnesota could be quite interesting, then, because the T-Wolves have potential coming from just about everywhere.

For starters, you can expect an early dose of Darko Milicic, who has a big height advantage over Joel Anthony and an effective hook shot.

Kevin Love can stretch the defense with his three-point shooting, which hasn't been very good yet this season (1 of 7 for the year) but is a legitimate part of his game.

Then you throw in the scoring ability from the wing with Michael Beasley and rookie Derrick Williams, the three-point shooting of Wesley Johnson, the gnat-like, floppish annoyance of J.J. Barea (although Barea-Westbrooka hamstring injury might keep him out of the game) and the passing ability of Ricky Rubio, and it adds up to a team that could score with the Heat -- especially after you just saw Miami give up 60 points in the first half to the Bobcats.

The Target Center was pretty amped in Minnesota's opening game against OKC, which ended in a close loss for the Wolves. And this second home game should have a similar, if not more intense, atmosphere.

LeBron James should be able to put together a good game, though, given that either Beasley or Johnson will defend him early, with only Anthony Tolliver as a decent defensive option off the bench. The Wolves have been going small often in the backcourt, with some combination of Barea, Rubio and Luke Ridnour playing together. That means either a small defender on Wade, or a helpless rookie (Rubio) for segments of the game.

Should be fun.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Chalmers organizes exhibition in Alaska; Wade might not play

Mario Chalmers has organized an exhibition basketball game to be played in his native Anchorage, Alaska, on Dec. 1.

48_chalmersmarioIn other words, MARIO CHALMERS has organized, arguably, the most logistically challenging exhibition game of this long offseason. Congrats to him. I mean, never mind getting to Alaska. Being there this time of year is miserable. The low tonight in Anchorage is two degrees.

Chalmers has commitments from some of his buddies around the league and Carlos Boozer (the other Alaskan). No doubt a good time will be had by all when Chalmers gets together with Michael Beasley,  Daequan Cook and James Harden.

Chris Bosh and Dexter Pittman will play in the game but Dwyane Wade told Chalmers he might not make it because of his responsibility as a parent. Sounds like a good excuse to me to get out of going to Alaska in December.

On Thursday, Wade did say that he might consider playing overseas if the season is lost. (He said this in August as well.) I seriously doubt Wade will ever play in a league overseas but I'm assuming he'll be bringing his boys if he does so.

KSC-Create

PICTURED: Sources confirm that this Heat dancer will not be playing overseas or going to Alaska.

-joe

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Roster Room For Zo? Always

Hot topics from this week's Heat live chat ... ZoFighting

Most Recently Answered Questions

Questions 1 - 15 of 1270 (Page 1 of 43)

Q: Hey Michael, I'm a huge Heat fan and as soon as Bron mentioned he was going to retire he's #23 i knew only possible cities were Chicago or Miami. But what do you think of a possible return to the sidelines by Alonzo Mourning? I know he's 40 years old now but 12-18 minutes a night is well enough for this cast? What do you think? Is February an option for return? Eddy B

Answered 08/19/10 14:05:26 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: I think Zo did some of his best work by joining the Heat's front-office recruiting team during free agency. He's also got a lot more on his plate than basketball, with all of his philanthropic work. Would it have been nice to see Timmy and Zo get the last two roster spots just to keep these guys focused on practices and on the road? Certainly. I've lobbied for it, both playfully and sort-of-seriously. But Zo insists his playing days are done. That won't, however, keep him from sneaking into a practice with his Heat guard and working out with these guys every now and then.

Q: It is time to quit hating and come to a realization that the Miami Heat are arguably the best team in the NBA. The THRINASTY is a bond created from drat day seven years ago, played together in the Olympics, and is a special relationship you will most likely never see in sports again. This is a unique situation where friendship, cap space, and family got this deal done. Riley and Wade thank you. Sit back and enjoy the show

Answered 08/19/10 14:02:26 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: Well said.

Q: hi michael very respectfully think that you do not respect the play of Carlos Arroyo on your final analysis or you have it playing in the rotation you know Carlos Arroyo has always had to shut his mouth to people like you who just think that the best players are those that are produced in the United States fortunately in recent years has shown that basketball has grown.

Answered 08/19/10 14:01:45 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: I've got no problem with Carlos. I respect what he brings to the table and wish him the best.

Q: Q: Does Carlos Arroyo have a chance this year? He did better than Chalmers last year and is good for the Latino fan base. This has nothing to do with any fan base; this is about championships. I suspect this season will start like last, with the starting job at point guard being Mario's to lose. But if Carlos has a strong showing at the World Championships with Puerto Rico, I would not be surprised if LeBron and Dwyane take note and perhaps make a note of it with Erik Spoelstra.you think of this

Answered 08/19/10 14:00:47 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: Arroyo just won't go away. Good for him. He's stubborn, and that's what the Heat needs at that position. He's not afraid to stand up and correct more established players on the team. And he doesn't make a lot of mistakes. That should keep him in the mix with the playing rotation. Unless politics get in the way.

Q: Charles was a great ball player, but now he is playing a new position and that is the loud mouth EX-Player. Charles I am a fan of yours and I am disappointed with you and your tunnel vision, you value your own opinion to much. you see thats all your talking is, an opinion. charles you are still ok with me even if it does not matter to you. charles do me a favor shut up get off Bron. every great player who has won the NBA title has had Great players playing with them..ie Magic, Mike, Bird, even you tried to hook up with the Dream. charles lets stop the Black on Black crime.. 

Answered 08/19/10 13:59:03 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: I, too, loved Barkley as a player and find him entertaining and engaging as an analyst. But this thing with LeBron seemed to go a bit too far.

Q: Hello, Michael Wallace, How will new Heat addition, Mike Miller fit in the Miami Heat's system of playing basketball on the court? Will Haslem return for his 7th season with the Heat? What do you think about the new big three of Lebron James, Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade on the same Miami Heat team? take care.

Answered 08/19/10 13:57:11 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: Mike Miller could put up Reggie Miller type shooting numbers with this team. He might be the one who benefits most on this roster from the addition of LeBron and Bosh. There is no reason he shouldn't lead the league in three-point shooting and average about 6 assists and 5 rebounds to go with it. Miller always has been a shooter, but people don't give him enough credit for being a playmaker.

Q: Lebum is the only guy in the league that I hope gets an career ending injury...so I don't have to see the stupid faces that he makes..chalk in the air..I wish he would've taken his talents to Europe...enjoy the NBA's most hated player Miami! Come to think of it, the Heat are the Oakland Raiders of the NBA - Finally, Lebum said he's keeping track of all the negative stories and comments people have made - yeah right...he would have to get a computer with 1000 Gigabyte hard drive to store all the negative comments that fans, players, etc. have been saying. And whats he going to because of it? Stop choking in the playoffs - the opposite will happen - Lebum and his management dream team of morons/idiots will never get BIG advertising deals in the future because what BRAND wants to be endorsed by a VILLAIN...Lebum thought he could take 10 Million a year less with Miami and it wouldn't matter because of his endorsement deals...oops - I predict even NIKE drops him when they realize EVERYONE outside of Miami HATES LEBRON JAMES...I will be tossing my Nike B-ball in the trash and buying some Converse - anyone that pays Lebron James money ids getting boycotted by me...As a season ticket holder in LA - I have already given my tickets for Miami's game in LA away...I will not profit or support that BUM or his team...D.Wade and LeBum said the rest of the NBA should thank them for helping them sell tickets...EGO's are out of control - Sorry D.Wade no more T Mobile commercials for you either

Answered 08/19/10 13:54:52 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: Charles Barkley, is that you?

Q: What's going on Mike, I've heard your interview on the "Armando & The Amigo Show" and I must admit it was lively to say the least. The guys said that LeBron James would be a "punk" if he did not confront Sir Charles Barkley and I agree to a certain extent. A fight with Barkley has suspension and fine from the NBA written all over it. I know it's the right thing to do if we were on the streets but we're not on the streets anymore Mike. Lebron James is a walking multi-million dollar superstar and Sir Charles Barkley is a Hall of Famer. I highly doubt, LeBron meant that he was going to fight every single person who said something negative about him or the Heat. I'm a true LeBron James fan and I support him no matter what decision he made. I believe that he was just letting his true fans know that he is hearing all of the critics and that he won't let us down during the season. Besides he's not the only one to take mental notes. Michael Jordan took mental notes back in his day, so much so, that the media use to think that he was making them up just to get himself pumped up for the game. I'm not comparing LeBron to Jordan, personally I have always thought of LeBron more Oscar Robertson, Magic Johnson than Michael Jordan. I've always thought of Dwyane Wade as more Jordan-esque than LeBron. What I'm trying to say is would LeBron still be considered a "punk" if he called up Sir Charles Barkley and they talked over their differences. Instead of coming to blows as if they were back on the streets because I state again we're not on the streets Mike. And LeBron isn't trying to jeopardize playing next season let alone his career.

Answered 08/19/10 13:53:25 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: Well said. But at this point, I don't think there's anything else LeBron needs to say - or tweet - that would get his point across better than going out and dominating dudes on the court. Barkley is paid to be controversial at this point. LeBron doesn't need to justify anything to Barkley. Just play ball, is all I'm saying.

Q: Do you see LeBron James playing the Magic Johnson role (point guard or point forward)on this team and averaging a triple double?

Answered 08/19/10 13:50:08 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: I don't know about AVERAGING a triple double. But I think his numbers will be close enough. They've always been impressive. I think he has a chance to be far more efficient in all aspects of the game. But not even the great Magic Johnson ever averaged a triple double. That hasn't happened since Oscar Robertson did it some 40 seasons ago.

Q: Who do you believe will be the leader of this Miami Heat team? And do you believe it will take long for their chemistry to develop? I think it will be co-lead by Dwyane Wade and LeBron James with no problems. And I think Wade and James will be on the same page early on with the rest of the team to follow towards the middle of the season. Besides Wade is quoted saying that he's played with LeBron more than he's played with his own teammates.

Answered 08/19/10 13:48:03 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: Wade will be the unquestioned leader of this team. LeBron might be the best all around player on the roster, but this is Wade's team. I've compared it before the to the Yankee dynamic with Jeter and A-Rod. The difference is that Wade is still in the prime of his career, whereas Joete is on the decline.

Read more: http://www.miamiherald.com/qna/forum/heat_chat/index.html#ixzz0x4o8iUyK

(For live news, notes and updates on the Heat, follow me on Twitter @ twitter.com/WallaceNBAHeat. To post a question or join our live Heat chat each Thursday from 1-2 p.m., click here.)

Friday, August 13, 2010

Punk Move? Barkley from Beasley to 'Bron

Charles Barkley is at it again. He just can't keep his mouth closed.Barkley

When the always-controversial Round Mound of Rebound took on Michael Beasley and the Heat's supporting cast last season, by referring to Dwyane Wade as "Michael Jackson playing with a bunch of Titos," it was both funny and not overwhelmingly far from the truth.

We can all admit that now. Even Dwyane Wade, who would never put down his teammates in public, knew he needed a significant upgrade around him.

Those upgrades have arrived. And Barkley still can't find a way to shut up and contain himself when it comes to the Heat. After taking on Beasley last season, Barkley has stepped up in an attempt to take down LeBron James.

During an interview with a Dallas radio station, he referred to the way LeBron handled his departure from  Cleveland to Miami as a "punk move." He also insinuated that the Heat's free agency celebration, with all the fireworks, music, stage and rock concert atmosphere was a similar "punk move."

Barkley was simply answering a question. He didn't bring his agenda to the interview. But still, his latest assault came in response to LeBron posting on Twitter the other day that he was taking mental notes of all of the Heat haters. A few weeks ago, LeBron also tweeted that Miami is essentially Team Dillinger, in reference to the legendary bank robber who rose to become the most wanted fugitive in America.

From a media standpoint, this is remarkably entertaining fodder to cover. But it's also getting to be a bit childish and overblown on both ends. LeBron taking a vacation from Twitter at this point wouldn't be a bad idea at all. I know the Heat privately would want nothing more than that right about now.

LeBron-Heat Save the drama for the season. No need to be a Twitter tough guy right now. But Barkley also is insane for stooping to that level and referring to matters as "punk moves." Where I come from, those were fighting words. The only thing worse than being called a punk back on the playground was to be called a "sissy."

Remember that? These are both grown men engaging in childish antics. Barkley and James will go down as two of the top 5-to-10 small forwards to ever play the game. You wish they played in the same era, so that we could see this feud play out on the court.

I was a guest on 640 AM's "Armando & The Amigo Show" this morning and talked extensively about this whole Barkley-Bron media brawl. Click the audio link below to hear the segment. You won't be disappointed. The discussion was lively, strong and engaging.

After you listen to part or all of it (it was a 15-minute take), feel free to post your own thoughts, regardless of where you come down on this issue. In short, I believe Barkley is a hypocrite and LeBron is being a Twitter tough guy, which is sort of weak in my opinion.

Wallace on 640AM about Barkley vs. LeBron

What's your take?

(For live news, notes and updates on the Heat, follow me on Twitter @ twitter.com/WallaceNBAHeat. To post a question or join our live Heat chat each Thursday from 1-2 p.m., click here.)

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Eddie's Back in the (Heat) House

Eddie's back again. No, not Eddie Jones. Been there, done that. And did it again. Eddie House (Knicks)

This time, it's Eddie House's turn for a Heat reunion. House agreed with the Heat Thursday on a two-year deal worth the veterans' minimum. The deal is worth a total of $2.8 million over two seasons, with the second season at House's option.

Agent Mark Bartelstein confirmed the deal just minutes before the start of our weekly Heat chat. As we do every week at this time, I try to answer your Heat questions. Or, at least try to provide an entertaining way to waste your time as we search for the answers.

Here's another sample of the hot questions this week...

Most Recently Answered Questions

Questions 1 - 15 of 1187 (Page 1 of 41)

Q: Just read SI "How it all went down," it was more like "How could LBJ do it." I can't understand all this stuff over "The Decision," he made, as if he owed more to the cav's. Since when did a player owe anything to a franchise? As if he can't make up his own mind, he spent 7 yrs. W/ the Cav's getting them further than they have ever been & that's not enough for the doubters. So my question is, what will it take for all the hate to stop, 3-4-5, or 6 championships? Thanks & I love your work.

Answered 07/29/10 14:00:04 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: Appreciate the love. And there's much too much being made of "how it all went down." The bottom line is simple. None of it would have gone down had Bosh not come to Miami first. My thought has always been that once Bosh and Wade were on board, LeBron had the easiest choice. The Heat were going to be fine regardless of what James decided to do.

Q: Not Larry Hughes PLEASE??? Hughes offense cost Cleveland the finals. His ORtg vs. DRtg, playoff Offensive Rating = 8 to 10 points lower. A-I, Iverson if he will take a 7th or 8th man role??? J-Will OR sign Jarvis Varnado, with Bosh, Lebron and Wade all scoring in the paint, we can't have too many shot blockers in the middle can we???

Answered 07/29/10 13:57:44 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: Good, passionate plea from you. That's a real Heat fan.

Q: I agree with your points of the Heat getting a little more younger and athletic in the 'bigs'. Also agree that the last few roster spots should go to younger talent with specific criteria (hitting open jumper being the most important). I believe either Howard or Magloire will be released to make room for a younger, athletic player (maybe even a Kwame Brown or a summer league guy). Secondly, I believe either Hansbrouck or Lucas III (or both) will be on our roster AND might be better fits that either Arroyo or Chalmers in the starting lineup. YOUR THOUGHTS?

Answered 07/29/10 13:57:00 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: Your logic is solid. But I'm willing to wait and see how things develop in camp before making any bold predictions. There's just too much that can happen between now and the end of training camp. I don't think the Heat would have signed these guys just to get rid of them.

Q: Hey brother! I read your forum everyday; I am serving in the US Air Force; so its good to hear good news... I just wanted to know who you think will ultimately be the last two ppl signed for the Miami Heat?... Thanks.

Answered 07/29/10 13:55:32 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: Eddie House is one. The other spot remains up for grabs, which might be the case going into training camp. And thanks for following us.

Q: Hey Mr. Wallace how r things going. I wanted to ask since the Heat need a 3rd point guard, do you think Jon Scheyer could make the team he ran point at Duke and is a willing defender and a great shooter. Do you also think the hard-working De'Sean Butler could make the team. Thank You.

Answered 07/29/10 13:54:42 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: I know the Heat likes Jon. It was a shame his summer league ended with the eye injury. There's a good chance he'll be invited back for training camp. Beyond that, he'd have to beat out some decent vets to earn a spot.

Q: Hey Mr. Wallace, I am not really a fan of Tracy McGrady, but I must sacrifice my personal conflict for the best interest of the Heat, I feel that Mr. McGrady would provide solid points coming off the bench. However, there are also huge questions surrounding his age and ability to stay healthy, that's obvious ever since... But I feel that He would be a tremendous benefit to Heat. As for his age, he's only 31 and can make up for any physical shortcomings with veteran experience... What is your logic behind acquiring T-Mac?? and What's his asking price? Thank you, Mr. Wallace

Answered 07/29/10 13:53:12 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: Well, if his asking price is anything above the veterans' minimum at this point, it's far too rich for the Heat's taste.

Q: who could the heat possibly sign at the point guard position??

Answered 07/29/10 13:52:23 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: There's a good chance Eddie House might be the guy.

Q: Hi Mike , I know the Heat is out of money this summer but ,is there any chance that they could run for Chris Paul via trade by February ?

Answered 07/29/10 13:51:44 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: So who would you give up to do that? Wade, LeBron or Bosh?

Read more: http://www.miamiherald.com/qna/forum/heat_chat/index.html#ixzz0v61Gu1Jp

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Your Questions? Our Answers

You've got Heat questions. I've got answers. Or at least as close to them as possible. Or, maybe not.  Game5-Rio

But here's a sample of the questions and answers from our weekly Heat Q&A. From Allen Iverson to Shaq. From LeBron to Pat.

Most Recently Answered Questions

Questions 1 - 15 of 1137 (Page 1 of 39)

Q: As a former resident of Miami for thirty years, I don't understand, if LeBron James was a free agent why did he have to sign with Cleveland and then they traded him to the Heat for two first and two second round choices?? This just does not make sense to me. Unless the Denver Post got it wrong, thats where I got the information. Thank you in advance. N. Smith

Answered 07/22/10 14:13:08 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: LeBron wanted to get a sixth season on his contract, and the Cavs wanted to get something for losing him. So that trade was the compromise.

Q: My friends call me Keith, you can call me John.... MW, should we be concerned about our BIGS is looks like most are 6'9", only Z is our only one over 7' and from what I hear he's not a great rebounder? Bell was a big miss, if we lose out on Barnes who else is out there for our Artest type, should this be a concern....

Answered 07/22/10 14:11:55 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: There's always Yakhouba Diawara.

Q: Wuzzzz up, Mike..... Can we all stop the, "This is Wade's team" who cares lets just kick some butt.... Why Howard over someone like Kwame, don't we already have enough 6'9" type guys?

Answered 07/22/10 14:10:50 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: It's everyone's team. But Wade has to be the ring leader. And he will probably be announced last in the starting lineup. As far as Howard over Kwame, the difference is that Juwan was fine with coming for the vets min. Kwame still believes he's worth far more.

Q: Will Tracie mcgrady and AI end up on the Heat or Stackhouse?

Answered 07/22/10 14:09:36 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: My guess is none of the above. But I could be wrong. I've been so before.

Q: Is there any truth to rumor the Heat were looking to trade Rio for Rudy Fernandez and if so is that trade still a viable option?

Answered 07/22/10 14:09:05 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: The Heat had discussions with Portland on a number of levels. I think Beasley and Mario came into play. But at this point, I don't see such a trade going down unless Miami has another starting-caliber PG on the way.

Q: Hey Mike! I had to let the excitement die down before joining your forum. First I have to give good Pat his prop's for getting LBJ and Bosh. For a minute I was ready to run him out of town. But I hav a problem with bad Pat. Was bad Pat behind the decision to sign Mike Miller and sign him to a 5year deal? This sounds like the bad Pat that choose beasley over mayo. Why not resign DWright?Although i'm happy because he's playing in my area. DWright would've been the perfect compliment for the big3. I could envision a wade,bosh,wright,lbj,ilgasus or anthony lineup. That would've reminder me of the bulls lineup with jordan,pippen,harper,rodman and the other guy. In wright,wade and james they would've given you dynamic wing players that can guard multiple position and is long and athletic. With that lineup you don't need a starting point. And what's up with the suppose signing of juwan howard? The same guy who turned his back on you back in the 90's. I just hope that all this attention does'nt go to the heat especially bad pat's head. We have'nt won nothing yet. And please whatever they do. Do not bring back Shaq!!!!!!!!!!!

Answered 07/22/10 14:08:08 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: The five-year deals for Miller, Joel and Udonis are the only things you can question about Pat at this point. But I think, to some degree, you had to get the deals done against competition from other teams that had more money. So the Heat compromised by offering max years.

Q: Dear Mr. Wallace, I'm a coach on the small island of Curacao and a huge Miami Heat Fan. I see these days on the news, that everybody is talking about the Heat needing someone to start at point guard. I think the Heat can start LB(Lebron James) at point, because he can handle the ball and has the ability to pass the ball. He has also been compare to Magic Johnson in the past, as he(Magic) played that position for LA. Also the Chicago Bulls played in the 90's after they send BJ Armstrong away without a true point guard. Now that they have sign Mike Miller and luring Zydrunas Ilgauskas, they can have the following starting five in my opinion: PG Lebron James, SG Dwyane Wade, SF Mike Miller, PF Chris Bosh and C Zydrunas Ilgauskas. What do you think about that?

Answered 07/22/10 14:06:27 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: I think LeBron does have some point guard instincts. But I wouldn't put him on Magic's level in a PG sense just yet. My projected starting five is a bit different. I think Miller comes off the bench. I think Mario starts at PG and Joel starts at center.

Q: CAN WE PLEASE GET THE WORD OUT TO GIVE STEVE FRANCIS A TRYOUT sorry for screaming but if Penny is an option why not franchise He has gotten paid so Im sure he would take the minimum to redeem his career and hes far younger than Penny! PLEASE

Answered 07/22/10 14:04:53 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: You just did. Still don't think anyone heard you, though.

Q: Looking at our bench we only have one player with possible firepower--Mike Miller. The rest is a mix of solid old and young guys all who aren't known for scoring. If a humbled Allen Iverson is serious about just wanting to be a bench player don't you have to look into it? He's still an expert at drawing fouls. Imagine having Wade, Lebron, and Bosh check into the game again with the other team already in the penalty!

Answered 07/22/10 14:03:58 by Miami Heat Beat Reporter

A: A year ago, it would have made some sense. But after the way things went down in Memphis and Philly, I'm not sure if I'd take that gamble with Iverson. It's far greater risk than potential reward. And I'm an A-I guy. Always have been.

Read more: http://www.miamiherald.com/qna/forum/heat_chat/index.html#ixzz0uR7QyE4v

(For live news, notes and updates on the Heat, follow me on Twitter @ twitter.com/WallaceNBAHeat. To post a question or join our live Heat chat each Thursday from 1-2 p.m., click here.)

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Vanishing From Vegas (Day 7)

Final thoughts as the Heat closed out its five-games-in-seven-days stint in the Vegas summer league ...

BANKING ON BEASLEY: Had a chance Saturday to catch up with Minnesota Timberwolves coach Kurt Beasley Minnesota Rambis, who sees the acquisition of former Heat forward Michael Beasley as the ultimate low-risk, high-reward project.

"It didn't cost us much to get him," Rambis said. "So it was a no-brainer for us to go after him."

Beasley, the No. 2 overall pick in the 2008 draft, was dealt to the T-Wolves for two second-round picks in what amounted to a cap-clearing move that allowed the Heat to retain Udonis Haslem and bring on Mike Miller. Even the most objective observer could see that Beasley easily has more upside than either of those players. There's a good chance that when his career is done, his production will dwarf that of Miller and Haslem - possibly combined.

But Beasley just didn't fit into the Heat's plans after two seasons of issues on and off the court that led to him struggling to live up to expectations. And in the photo above, he looks just like a player who got traded to, well, Minnesota. At any rate, Rambis says Beasley is a microcosm of the T-Wolves roster. A lot of youth. Plenty of promise. Low expectations. High ceilings. And an abundance of opportunity to develop - even if the results aren't always positive in the win column.

"With his skill set, he fits in very well with the way I want to run my offense," Rambis said Saturday. "I can see him playing a couple of positions. And where he likes to score from is exactly where we like to operate, whether it's two-man basketball or individual basketball."

Off the court, Rambis said the T-Wolves are well aware of Beasley's stint last summer in the league's substance-abuse program, and the potential short leash he could be on in the face of stiffer penalties if there's another violation. But Rambis also said he believes Beasley is appreciative of this second chance to sort of rebuild his image in Minnesota.

"I talked to him a little bit, but it was the day after he had emergency root canal surgery last week," Rambis said. "So he probably wasn't in too good of a mood. We've heard about his issues in the past. But, from everybody I've talked to, there's not a mean bone in his body. Lord knows none of us want to be hammered for all of the youthful mistakes we've made in our life."

Beasley has transitioned from a veteran Heat team to a T-Wolves roster that includes 10 players who are 24 or younger. In Minnesota, Beasley will benefit from two things that were sometimes lacking for him in Miami. Patience. And Production.

In the end, it will probably be a win-win situation for both sides.

"I just see him as somebody who, like a lot of our players, needs time, needs growth, needs development, needs maturity," Rambis said. "But we have good pieces. And I see him as a very good piece to our growing group of guys."

SUMMER SCHOOL'S OUT: The Heat closed out its five-game summer league slate with a 4-1 record after Saturday's 73-69 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers. It was a game that featured little drama. With LeBron Shav-Heat James and Dan Gilbert not in attendance, that was to be expected. That intensity and action will come when they meet in the regular season.

Still, Heat summer league coach Dave Fizdale could only think about the missed opportunity. "We were one three-pointer away from being undefeated," a smiling Fizdale said. "That would have been really nice."

The shot Fiz was referring to was the 34-foot dagger former Heat camp invitee Brian Chase nailed for Golden State to send Miami to a 72-69 setback on Wednesday.

But overall, the Heat got solid performances from Shavlik Randolph and Kenny Hasbrouck. Dexter Pittman, the massive center Miami picked in the second-round of the draft out of Texas, came up a bit small in summer league. A toe injury contributed to his struggles. Pittman has the size and skill set to be a solid big man in the league. But he still has a ways to go before he realizes that potential. The next two months are going to be crucial for Pittman in terms of his development going into training camp. But he got the most important thing accomplished this week. He signed that three-year contract.

Heat coach Erik Spoelstra was generally pleased with the Heat's week of summer league work.

"It was a fun group," Spoelstra said. "These guys really came to work. They were very professional and hungry. They really got after it. You could see that the work they've put in paid off. There are opportunities for these guys, even when there doesn't appear to be one. Some of these guys will break through."

AS THE ROSTER TURNS: Miami made another roster addition official on Saturday when the team announced the signing of Zydrunas Ilgauskas. Big Z agreed to a two-year contract worth about $2.8 million Magloire1 - which equates to the veteran's minimum. The second year of Big Z's deal is at his option.

The Heat is also poised to bring back point guard Carlos Arroyo and center Jamaal Magloire on veteran minimum deals. Juwan Howard also is on the way. Those additions would bring the Heat's roster to 12 (Wade, James, Bosh, Chalmers, Miller, Haslem, Anthony, Pittman, Ilgauskas, Arroyo, Magloire, Howard). The regular-season limit is 15.

Miami will likely add another perimeter defender/shooter (In-house options are James Jones or Yakhouba Diawara). That could leave another spot or two, possibly, for development players from the summer league roster. If that's the case, Randolph, Hasbrouck or Jarvis Varnado are among the top options.

(For live news, notes and updates on the Heat, follow me on Twitter @ twitter.com/WallaceNBAHeat. To post a question or join our live Heat chat each Thursday from 1-2 p.m., click here.)

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Las Vegas Recap (Day 3)

After seeing Juwan Howard and Zydrunas Ilgauskas commit to joining the Heat for the Big Z chance to win a ring alongside Dwyane Wade, LeBron James and Chris Bosh, it's amazing how many other old-time NBA players had a pep in their step Tuesday night.

Chris Webber still looks in shape. So does Steve Smith. Heck, may as well throw Kevin McHale down on the low block and see what he's got left. I'm sure he can still pump-fake and up-and-under his way to the free throw line to knock down a few.

These days, almost everybody seems willing to jump on board with the Heat. Ilgauskas confirmed his commitment earlier Tuesday when he said he loved Cleveland, but the best path to a championship runs through Miami and alongside good friend LeBron James.

So counting Ilgauskas, the Heat has either signed or is on the verge of signing James, Bosh, Wade, Mario Chalmers, Udonis Haslem, Howard and Mike Miller. There's also the qualifying offer out there for Joel Anthony.

Miller's situation created quite a buzz among league people in the two gyms being used for the Las Vegas Summer League. The fact that he remained unsigned as of Tuesday night led to speculation that Miller might be having second thoughts. At least two teams have reached out to him again to see if he would reconsider signing with the Heat.

Miller even reached out to people Tuesday to make it clear that a deal is not yet done in Miami. The hangup, however, doesn't appear to be Miller having any sort of cold feet. Instead, it seems to be a technicality that deals with the completion of physical exams and trade paperwork.

Part of this goes back to Michael Beasley, who has yet to arrive in Minnesota to complete his physical with the T-Wolves. Everyone assumes he will pass the physical, but Beasley had root canal surgery recently and was unable to fly the past couple of days. If Beasley is unable to pass his physical for whatever reason, there's a chance the trade can be rescinded, meaning Mike and his $4.9 million salary for next season would fall back onto the Heat's books.

And that would essentially mean no space for Mike Miller. The T-Wolves expect Beasley to arrive either Wednesday or Thursday to be formally introduced to the media. So this saga could drag on a day or two. The Heat doesn't want another Tyson Chandler situation to come of this. Chandler was dealt two seasons ago from New Orleans to Oklahoma City, arrived in OKC and failed the physical because of a toe injury. He was then sent back to New Orleans.

- The Heat's summer league team fell to 1-1 with Tuesday's 72-69 loss to Golden State. It was a painful setback for a number of reasons. First and foremost was the fact that former Heat camp prospect Brian Jon Scheyer Chase nailed the game-winning shot on a 34-foot 3-point dagger with 12 seconds left.

Two summers ago, Chase was one of the better point guards in camp. But he got caught up in a numbers crunch because the Heat had more money and time invested in Chris Quinn. Another former Heat short-timer, Kasib Powell, had 16 points for the Warriors. Miami was led by Kenny Hasbrouck for the second time in as many games. He had 14 points. Center Garret Siler had 10 points and six rebounds.

It was another struggle for second-round pick Dexter Pittman, who is being groomed to be a rotation player with the Heat this season. But Pittman was in early foul trouble and closed with seven points, four rebounds and four turnovers in 18 minutes.

The Heat lost former Duke guard Jon Scheyer in the second quarter to a lacerated right eyelid. Scheyer was taken to UMC Trauma Center for treatment and did not return. He received five stitches and was released. His status for the Heat's remaining three games has not yet been determined. The Heat plays again Wednesday night against Detroit at 10:30 p.m.

(For live news, notes and updates on the Heat, follow me on Twitter @ twitter.com/wallacesports. To post a question or join our live Heat chat each Thursday from 1-2 p.m., click here.)

Monday, July 12, 2010

Las Vegas Recap (Day 2)

Highlights from Day 2 of the Heat experience at the Las Vegas Summer League ... Three Kings

- The biggest news of the day? The Three Kings will get to do their championship chase thing in Miami.

Of course that was the expected. But NBA commissioner David Stern had to give the league's owners a chance to voice their displeasure with the Heat landing LeBron James and Chris Bosh to join Dwyane Wade in Miami. As expected, talk of potential tampering dominated the early stages of the owners' meetings at The Palms Hotel. But Stern emerged from the meeting declaring that no team formally filed charges and that there would be no investigation for tampering or collusion. Consider it case closed.

But Stern did leave the door open for the owners' Labor Relations committee to look into possible tweaks to the free agency format and how to better monitor the rules and spirit of the process. The plain and simple truth is this: You can't keep players from talking among themselves about future plans. As Stern said: "Those three players were within their rights to talk to one another."

Stern also sternly expressed his displeasure with comments made by Cavs owner Dan Gilbert and civil rights leader Jesse Jackson in the aftermath of LeBron's departure from Cleveland. Gilbert was fined $100,000, and Stern said he had a long talk with Jackson on Monday morning about Jackson's "slave" remarks. The commish also was far from thrilled with LeBron's way of announcing his decision on the ESPN hour-long telecast. "The Decision was ill conceived, badly produced and poorly executed," Stern said.

- There's the Big 3 and, now, the Gator 2. Udonis Haslem's decision to turn down more lucrative offers from Haslem Dunking New Jersey, Dallas and Denver to re-sign with the Heat on Monday gives Miami significant depth and experience at the power forward spot. The all-but-officially-completed addition of swingman Mike Miller also gives the Heat a needed shooter on the perimeter. Pat Riley just continues to come up with Aces in this free agency process. There appeared to be no way the Heat would be able to carve out enough salary cap space to re-sign Haslem, let alone Mike Miller. But the former UF Gators took less than market value to get it done here.

Miller was a Heat target years ago during his prime years in Memphis. Now that Haslem and Miller are in Miami, the Heat can now focus on picking up two or three players at the veterans minimum. There are center options out there in Zydrunas Ilgauskas, Jamaal Magloire, Brad Miller and Kwame Brown. The Heat simply needs a banger down low to eat up rebounds, block a few shots and use six fouls. There's also a need for help at point guard, with Derek Fisher pulling a Lamar Odom by turning the Heat down Monday to re-sign with the Lakers. Among those still available are Keyon Dooling, Jason Williams, Earl Watson and, dare we say it, Allen Iverson.

- The Heat's summer league squad didn't have a game scheduled Monday, but that didn't keep them off the court. The team went through practice Monday morning in advance of Tuesday's game against Golden State at 10:30 et. A look back at the stat sheet from Sunday's game revealed a solid second-half performance from guard Jon Scheyer, who filled the stat sheet with 11 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists and 2 steals. There were the four turnovers. But he also nailed the go-ahead 3-pointer late in the fourth and also drilled four consecutive free throws to close out the 77-72 victory over New Orleans.

"I feel confident, and that's something the Heat is known for, giving guys a chance," said Scheyer, who Beasley-Headdown was undrafted out of Duke. "I'm going to just keep giving everything I have and that's all I can control."

- The Heat officially finalized the trade that sent Michael Beasley, the No. 2 overall pick in the 2008 draft, to Minnesota for two future second round picks. Let's repeat that. The second overall pick was traded for two second-round picks. It isn't quite a LeBron-type come up for Minnesota. But the T-Wolves got a big-time something for absolutely nothing. The Timberwolves have a team here competing in summer league, but it's too late to add Beasley to the roster. Instead, Beasley, who was already in Minnesota in advance of the trade being complete, plans to remain there to work out at the T-Wolves facility.

(For live news, notes and updates on the Heat, follow me on Twitter @ twitter.com/wallacesports. To post a question or join our live Heat chat each Thursday from 1-2 p.m., click here.)

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Riley Explains Beasley Decision

Amid all of the hype, hysteria and genuine hoopla that surrounded Friday night's rock-concert-of-an- Riley-Press introduction for Dwyane Wade, LeBron James and Chris Bosh, team president Pat Riley explained his decision to say goodbye to Michael Beasley.

Beasley, the No. 2 pick in the 2008 NBA Draft, just wouldn't have fit in the mix, considering the Heat's star-studded overhaul. See, Beasley's $5 million salary didn't turn out to be the problem that would have prevented Miami from bringing in the Big 3.

With James, Bosh and Wade all agreeing to take about $2 million less than the first-year max salary of $16.6 million, Beasley's money was within the budget. Instead, the Heat hopes to turn that salary slot into offers for Mike Miler and Udonis Haslem. The Heat saw no reason to mix Beasley's silly antics and inconsistent production in with the new all-business approach.

Although the deal hasn't been officially finalized, the Heat has parted with Beasley. He was headed to Minnesota at last we heard for a second-round draft pick.

"Michael - it's a personal thing - he was the No. 2 pick in the draft," Riley said. "He came in very young. He came in a situation where he didn't start the first year and averaged 15 points and seven rebounds."

BeasleyDraft With Bosh clearly going to be the starter at power forward and James the starter at small forward, Riley said there was no reason to juggle Beasley's role again.

"We didn't want to do that," Riley said. "We don't want to do that. We feel like he's a young talented kid, who has a long career ahead of him. This particular move, we felt like, to bring in other complementary players, we had to go in that direction."

Riley did say he might eventually have second thoughts about dealing Beasley.

"Whatever happens, I would hate, two or three years from now - and Micky and I talked about this - I know I'm going to probably regret it when he gets 29 (points) and 19 (rebounds) on us one night. He's really a gifted kid."

(For live news, notes and updates on the Heat, follow me on Twitter @ twitter.com/wallacesports. To post a question or join our live Heat chat each Thursday from 1-2 p.m., click here.)


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