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5 posts from October 2006

Monday, October 30, 2006

A Rose is a Heat?

Loved the link to the Jalen Rose going crazy video on Youtube. That has cracked me up since last summer.
I actually think that Jalen makes perfect sense here. As much as I'd like to see what Chris Quinn can do because I like young players, everyone knows Riley prefers veterans, and Rose can definitely handle some point guard duties.
The question is will Rose be OK with little-to-no minutes when Jason Williams comes back? There are other places he can go where minutes will be a guarantee, but going deep in the playoffs won't be.

Also, here's a great jab from Dwyane Wade to Dirk Nowitzki, who said on ESPN that the Mavs gave the Heat the title. I love that Dwyane is selective with his trash talk. It makes it all the more effective when he does say something.

"Dirk saying that he handed us the championship, my thing is, OK, that’s fine. When did he hand it to us? Did he hand it to us when he missed that free throw? I just want to know. But it’s all like that. Some games you should’ve won but you didn’t, so who cares."

Friday, October 27, 2006


... to those who are only in the U.S. for a little while and have not gotten the proper updates on the Heat via my blog (I think that's a total of one person), but I haven't been entirely focused on the Heat of late.
But fear not, the regular season is nearly upon us, and the blog updates will come early and often.
Here's one to hold you over...

Udonis Haslem says his abdominal injury is improving, even though he seems a bit concerned that it could worsen. He says doctors have ruled out a sports hernia, but these things are always kind of tricky, aren't they? UD is a tough guy who hates to sit out, so let's hope for his own sake that he doesn't ignore any pain and make matters worse for himself.

Dorell Wright is gonna practice Saturday for the first time since injuring his left ankle, and even though he says it's gonna hurt like heck, he thinks he'll be ready to go if needed on Tuesday. I think the kid gives them exactly what they need right now, which is an open-court presence other than Dwyane, and a guy who can hit a spot-up jumper with relative ease.
We'll see if Riley gives him a chance, or if Dorell is even healthy, but I would like to see what he can provide.

And lastly, I'm hearing that the Heat is trying hard to make a move, but who and for what is still unclear. I'm guessing Riley is not thrilled with the prospect of playing Chris Quinn significant regular-season minutes and wants an upgrade, but there's no sure things in free agency. And that means a trade is in order, but no one seems to be biting on what the Heat has to offer, which is basically Mike Doleac, Jason Kapono, and possibly Earl Barron and Wayne Simien.
I also think Riley might be doing exactly what he said he wouldn't: worrying too much about the regular season, especially at this stage. I would wait until Jason Williams comes back to make any major evaluations. If this team starts off 10-10 again this year, it could be considered a decent beginning.

There you go, and look for more of these now that the real deal is about to begin.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Now what?

Dorell Wright might be the unluckiest 20-year-old millionaire on the planet. Just when things were going well for him, he suffers a freak injury and has to wait three weeks before he can continue to work his way into the rotation.
What that means for the rest of the roster, though, is that Riley will probably keep two of the rookies on the opening day roster, assuming he doesn't pick up someone else or sign Shandon Anderson before his wrist injury heals.
My guess is Chris Quinn and Robert Hite will stick, with Quinn looked at as the backup point guard and Hite being the two-guard who can play spot minutes if necessary.

Not that those two guys aren't good players, but if the Heat has any chance to grab Travis Diener from Orlando, I think the team should try hard to get that done. The kid is playing real well in the preseason for the Magic, shooting 50 percent from the field, 57 from three-point range, has a 5.5:2 assist-to-turnover while playing 31 minutes a game. But when the regular season starts, it's doubtful he'll get time behind Jameer Nelson and Carlos Arroyo, with Keyon Dooling and Grant Hill also available to play the point guard spot.
The Magic needs a big guy badly, and it would make sense if they liked either Wayne Simien or Earl Barron (he ripped up the Orlando summer league). It would be a need-for-need move, and I think Diener is on the verge of being a quality player in the league.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Preseason stuff

Not a whole lot learned from that game in Puerto Rico. I thought, of the point guards, Chris Quinn played the best game. He was a bit indecisive with a couple of his shots, so he didn't have his legs under him and missed. But the one that he made, you could tell he's a pure shooter.

Antonio Burks seems to be turnover prone, while Vince Grier and Robert Hite are apparently being looked at as scoring guards because they didn't get a chance to run the point.

I thought Dorell looked pretty good defensively, which led to a couple offensive breakouts. Here's the problem with Dorell in that game: He wasn't playing with the starters. If Riles wants to know how Dorell will play off the bench in the regular season, he has to put him in regular season situations. When Dorell is in there with the second and third units, then he can't just be the rebounder/defender/playmaker they want him to be. In that situation, he has to be the scorer, and that's not what they're looking for from him. I'm sure Riles will start doing that in these upcoming games and that's when we can really judge Dorell's play.

And then there was what I think could be the most significant moment of that game for the Heat. I was shocked when Shaq shot those two free throws. They looked completely different than any free throw I've seen him shoot (on an aside, don't you hate it when another blogger steals your observations? :)  His free throw form looked to be more one-handed, and it had more arc than any free throw I've seen him shoot. It didn't have much rotation on it, but I don't think Shaq will ever have that pure shooter's rotation on his ball. It looked good, and it will be interesting to watch him play this year if he can somehow shoot, say, near 70 percent from the line. He would put up MVP numbers again, even at age 35.

By the way, in case you ever go to Puerto Rico, give yourself some extra time when you get to the airport. Because they have Ms. Pacman in the terminals. Like, one at every gate!

Monday, October 09, 2006

Young guys

The Heat doesn't have many inexperienced guys, but you're going to see a lot from those guys in the preseason.

Dorell is going to log big minutes, possibly even starting when Dwyane Wade sits out a game or two in the preseason. I've heard he looks good, is making smart plays in practice and is playing real aggressively on defense. That might translate into a lot of fouls in a real game, but it's better that he plays instinctive ball.

Of the point guards, I'm hearing a lot of good things about Chris Quinn, mostly that he's shooting the heck out of the ball, and that's always important to open the middle of the floor for Shaq and Dwyane. Shaq personally endorsed Quinn and Robert Hite, though he didn't mention either by name (not sure he knows their names). I think Hite, Horton and Grier might be more of combo guards, though, and I'm not sure that's what Riley is looking for from the position.
The safe pick from the group would be Antonio Burks, not only because he has been in the league, but because he is a good defender and can break down a defense with his quickness. But Riley is stressing offense, surprisingly, saying how important it is to be able to hit a shot (that didn't seem to be an issue when Anthony Carter was around).

I believe the Pistons-Heat game Tuesday from Puerto Rico is going to be on NBA TV for those of you who get that channel.



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