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11 posts from September 2012

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Chris Bosh, the 'Random Guy'

Meet Chris Bosh, Mr. Random.

Bosh held court on Sunday for a few writers and talked about a variety of topics, including his role as the team's center, no longer worrying about bulking up and how he's going to defend the Dwight Howards and Andrew Bynums of the NBA. You can find the meat of the conversation in my story in tomorrow's paper. There was a nice tidbit that didn't make the piece, though.

Bosh is calling himself the team's "Random Guy" based on the fact that he scores his points from random places.

“I’m still getting used to the offense," Bosh said. "I always watching film to see what I should have done and what I could have done. What I can do better. Where my shots can from. Because I’m the random guy. I don’t get any plays called for me, but the public will never know that.”

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Heat conditioning report after the first day of camp

Who's was in shape and who was sucking wind the first day of camp? Let's run down the roster ...

James is going to need about two weeks to get in full game shape. He might have had a second "hell week" with Kevin Durant but, from what I hear, it wasn't nearly as grueling as the first. James earned some much needed rest after last season and the Olympics and he took it last month.

In about as worse shape as he's been entering a training camp and understandably so. Wade has been slow to recover from his knee surgery in early July. Wade didn't do much on Saturday and he'll likely do even less on Sunday.

Remember when Chris Bosh bulked up for the 2011 training camp? Well, Bosh didn't take that approach this offseason. He's focusing on his speed and athleticism this season and he took that approach coming into camp. He rested his abdominal muscle and is fully healed. And that's all the Heat truly wanted. Bosh is on schedule to be in full-game shape by the third week of camp.

Allen's ankle, which bothered significantly in the 2011 playoffs, is still giving him a little discomfort. He's hopeing the pain goes away completely as the season progresses. He had surgery earlier this summer and there's still some swelling.

Healthy for an offseason for the first time in two years, Chalmers took advantage of the opportunity to work on his game and stay in shape. He's ahead of the curve at the start of camp.

Good to go. Spoelstra's "warrior poet" is on schedule to be ready for another season. And if he wasn't, he'd never let you know it. Haslem has kept his body lean and he's hoping the hard work will add a few more seasons to his career.

Mike Miller is a myth so far this preseason, as far as I'm concerned. I couldn't find him at media day and he bolted early after practice on Saturday. He rehabbed his back throughout the offseason and will ease cautiously into the season...thanks to the Heat's training staff, of course. If Mike had it his way, he'd be trying to go full speed already.

In much better shape this preseason than the last, when he partied a little too hard during the lockout. OK, "partying" is a relative term for Battier, but he has been known to enjoy a few cold ones on the lake during the offseason.

Looked chiseled as always on Saturday. Conditioning and quickness is most of Anthony's game, so you know he's not going to show up to camp out of shape.

The looming competition on the wing kept Jones in shape this offseason. He put up more shots this summer than anyone.

According to Spoelstra, Lewis has been "chomping at the bit" for the start of camp. Still, the Heat's training staff is going to use caution and make sure Lewis is fully healthy before allowing him to go at full speed. I watched Lewis practice his three-point shot for about 10 minutes today. At one point, he made about 10 in a row from the top of the key. The guy can still shoot.

Harris might be in the best shape of any on the team. Just like last season, he'll need every advantage to make the squad.

He's down to 275 pounds. He put in the work this summer and it showed. Now he's just got to make the team.

Too many wings on this team for Carney to find a place. Still, he's a tough player who will push the team's veterans and perhaps earn a spot somewhere else.

A solid body for training camp purposes. He's a valued player but might not find a place on this loaded team.

The leader out of the gate to earn the team's final roster spot. Gladness has been living in Miami the entire offseason and putting in plenty of work. 

Many assume Harrellson is guaranteed a roster spot. He's not. Still, his big body and soft touch will get a strong look. 

If anyone has a chance to unseat Terrel Harris as the Heat's latest surprise to the roster then it's Temple. He was considered one of the best players in the summer league not on a roster and he's projected to play in the NBA this season. Whether or not that's with the Heat, we'll see.

Any chance Varnado had of making the roster likely went out the window when he strained his hamstring last week. Still, the Heat will give him a fair shake. He's a legitimate shot blocker. 

Friday, September 28, 2012

LeBron's mission statement

We'll be getting to plenty of tidbits from Friday's media opportunity with the Heat, but I wanted to throw up this initial quote from LeBron. He might have had a long summer, but he seems more than ready to get to work defending his title:

“I’m not satisfied with my career and what I’ve done so far,” James said. “I’ve accomplished a lot of things and a lot of goals but I’m not satisfied with that. I’m going to continue to get better, continue to lead this team the best way I know how and continue to add more pieces to my game.”

Spoelstra won't say "repeat" during Heat's 'media day'

Heat coach Erik Spoelstra, now a master of delivering Pat Riley one-liners, got to the point quickly.

“We’re sharpening our weapons for warfare,” Spoelstra said.

The Heat begins training camp on Saturday and Friday was the team’s official “media day.” Dozens of reporters packed the Heat’s interview room at AmericanAirlines Arena to hear Spoelstra, LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh talk about defending their NBA championship.

“This team was built for something bigger than just a one-year run," Spoelstra said.

Interestingly enough, Spoelstra refused to use the word “repeat.” He only said that his team’s goal was to win another championship.

"I'll roll with it," Wade joked. "He's our leader. Whatever he says."

Thursday, September 27, 2012

D-Wade update, Guru of Go, roster additions and other stuff

Here's a link to my story off today's media availability with Heat coach Erik Spoelstra, LINK!

The cliff notes version:

--Dwyane Wade will be limited to begin camp. He hasn't fully recovered from his offseason knee surgery and the team is taking a cautious approach with its star. If you recall, Wade is getting up in age in basketball years. There's no sense in pushing him too hard too soon.

--Mike Miller will be limited as well. Miller has been rehabbing his back throughout the offseason and the team isn't taking any chances. Better just to save him for The Finals.

--Erik Spoelstra spent time with Florida Gators coach Billy Donovan this offseason to talk about the challenges of winning back-to-back titles. Donovan has some experience in that department.

--Spoelstra also spent time with Paul Westhead, the Guru of Go. Spoelstra has known Westhead for awhile, so the meeting isn't too significant. They're friends. Don't expect the Heat to stop playing defense anytime soon.


The Heat signed forwards Rodney Carney and Robert Dozier on Thursday to round out the team’s training camp roster. Miami will carry 20 players into camp. Carney, the 16th overall pick in the 2006 draft, played in China last season. Dozier was drafted by Miami in the second round of the 2009 draft and has played in Europe ever since. He appeared in three games for the Heat’s 2012 summer-league team.

Before you ask, no, I don't expect either player to make the team.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Miffed LeBron just like the rest of us

Like you, LeBron James loves the NFL. Like you, he was beside himself over the ending of Monday night's game between the Seahawks and Packers.

"These replacement refs gotta go man!!" James wrote on Monday night. "Packers just got game took from them. I LOVE NFL football [too] much to see this type of work."

James extended the public discourse further: "I simply just LOVE the NFL [too] much to see these mistakes. I'm sick like I just played for the Packers."

Mario Chalmers' Twitter take was little more hard-line: "Yo I'm seriously bout to boycott the NFL until they bring the real refs back. Can u really call that a TD. That's not even close."

Training camp starts Saturday, thank the heavens.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Don't miss the online presale for individual game tickets

Individual game tickets for the Heat’s 2012-2013 season will go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday. Fans can sign up online at Heat.com for presale access to tickets from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Tuesday.

Tuesday’s presale will feature individual game tickets for as low as $25. Fans can preorder as many as eight tickets per game. Variable pricing based on opponent and ticket demand will apply.

According to the Heat, “Fluctuations in ticket prices are based on market conditions, and not an intent to discriminate against purchasers."

On Thursday, an Internet presale will offer tickets for the bargain price of $10 for select games. Season tickets are sold out for the 2012-2013 season but fans can join the team’s “Priority Access Club” to receive priority access for individual game tickets as well as waitlist priority when season tickets become available.

The Heat also features a multi-game “Partial Plan.” Starting at $250, fans can purchase tickets to 10 games of their choice to better accommodate budgets and schedules.

Lakers great James Worthy picks Heat

James Worthy might be one of the greatest Lakers of all time but he hasn't seen enough of Los Angeles' new players to pick them as champions. Worthy told the Los Angeles Times that the Heat still has the edge based on experience together.

"I would have to say Miami still has a little edge simply because they won last year. It will be so much easier for them to win again because they know how to do it. With them adding Ray Allen and Rashard Lewis, they have tremendous scorers and three-point shooters off the bench. Then they also have the greatest player in the game with LeBron James. I give them the edge because they're defending champions."

Worthy's analysis might be a minorty opinion when the season begins. The Lakers' projected starting five -- Steve Nash, Kobe Bryant, Ron Artest, Pau Gasol and Dwight Howard -- has the look of a major contender. Here's a link to the Los Angeles Times' full Q&A with James Worthy.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Taking questions on the Heat

Join the live Q&A right now. Ask away...

Phil Seiter (@SeiterBomb) asks via Twitter: Has Ray Allen and fam settled in SoFlo, or will they remain in New England?

The move is complete. Ray Allen is fit and ready to push Shane Battier and Mike Miller for playing time.

RaRa (@RaRaRLN asks via Twitter: When does Mickey Arison plan on paying the citizens of Miami what he owes for the AAA handout!

I sense a little hostility here. Micky Arison (not Mickey) has provided the City of Miami a valuable asset in the Heat. I'm no accountant, but I'm pretty sure the city benefits from the team's presence. Consider it an investment?

Ash asks via the blog: Is Josh Harrelson expected to play a big role this year?

He's got to make the team first. I'm betting on Mickell Gladness. We'll see.

Josh (@UnbiasHeatFan) asks via Twitter: Who gets the last two spots?

I'm not so sure two is the magic number here, but I'll gladly indulge the question. Clearly, there will be competition at center and wing to fill out the roster. James Jones has guaranteed contract for this season and next season (he's to be paid $1.5 million for the 2013-2014 season), so I'm assuming he's safe.

How safe is Dexter Pittman? The big man has been a project for the Heat for two seasons but last year his biggest contributions during the playoffs were starting that forgettable game in Indiana and then later body checking Lance Stephenson. Pittman's penchant for picking up fouls carried over into summer league, something I'm sure concerns the Heat. Still, Pittman is guaranteed more than $800,000 this season whether he makes the team or not. I'm not sure there's enough value in eating that money to take on another player who probably won't see much playing time.

That leaves us with your magic number, two. Terrel Harris bumped Eddie House last season in a shortened training camp. I'm going to assume Erik Spoelstra is still in love with Harris' defense, a premium for the Heat especially considering all of the offensive talent on the perimeter. 

The last roster spot will be a battle between Mickell Gladness, Josh Harrellson and Jarvis Varnado. I'm going to side with Gladness for one reason. Dudes from Alabama are crazy.

So, here's my predicted roster coming out of training camp:

1. LeBron James

2. Dwyane Wade

3. Chris Bosh

4. Mario Chalmers

5. Joel Anthony

6. Ray Allen

7. Shane Battier

8. Mike Miller

9. Norris Cole

10. Rashard Lewis

11. Udonis Haslem

12. James Jones

13. Terrel Harris

14. Dexter Pittman

15. Mickell Gladness

Micky Arison makes paper

Images-1Micky Arison is the richest man in Florida, according to Forbes. He's worth about $5 billion, which places him 68th among the world's wealthiest people.

H.Wayne is on the list and so is the Glazer family. Tony Montana is not on the list, so take it for what it's worth.

When Arison is not making billions in the cruise ship industry, he's busy doing many important things like helping out in Haiti, honoring American soldiers at midcourt, tweeting about his basketball team, sitting next to Justin Beiber at home games and riding in cars with Jimmy Buffet.



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