FIRST, a link to my story on the first day of training camp...CLICK ME! (Important note on Birdmanzilla at the end of the story, so read all the way down.)
Now some other stuff...
Let's clear the air a little bit on the controversy/none controversy that cropped up involving Mario Chalmers on Friday.
As I posted to Twitter on Friday, Chalmers did refer to LeBron James as "that guy" during Media Day. But Chalmers didn't seem to choose that wording as a slight to James. A reporter asked Chalmers if he did it on purpose and Chalmers quickly corrected himself.
"We don't have to call him that guy," Chalmers said. "He's still King James, LeBron."
Still an oddly worded way to refer to someone — surname first, like when you're at the social security office — but it was pretty clear Mario meant no disrespect. Chalmers put out a tweet directed at LeBron just to clarify, which was also a little odd.
Anyway, moving on...
—If you haven't read Lee Jenkins' profile of Erik Spoelstra over at SI.com, you should probably do that. Great work as always by one of the best sportswriters in the business.
—I chatted with Justin Hamilton for a few minutes on Friday. If you don't know who Hamilton is yet, he's the Heat's rookie center who might end up receiving consistent minutes this season backing up Chris Bosh and Udonis Haslem. Hamilton sacrificed money last year and the chance to play in Europe and instead signed with the D-League and Heat-affiliated Sioux Falls Skyforce.
"It was really hard to turn down so many good offers overseas, but I knew there is only a certain amount of time to get back in the NBA, and I wanted to utilize that. I felt like I was an NBA player. I just needed to get back into it, so I stayed here close so I could stay in the NBA terminology and the way the NBA works and be easy to get back in."
The Heat traded for Hamilton in the second round of the 2012 draft and he played in Croatia his first season as a professional. He was with the Heat last year during the preseason but broke his nose and didn't make the team. Instead of returning to Europe, he took his chance in Sioux Falls and it's close to paying off.
"I went from [Miami] to Sioux Falls because I was used to that Heat culture and just the way they do things," Hamilton said. "So going to Sioux Falls was really beneficial in just working on my game and just having a lot more practice time than an NBA season and using those games to build my resume."
Hamilton was an All D-League First Team Selection last season as well as being named to the D-League All-Defensive First Team and D-League All-Stars.
—Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said he wanted Danny Granger to go through about 70 percent of practice on Saturday, "but I forgot about him and he went the whole way through."
Granger said on Friday that the Heat didn't want to burn him out during training camp and risk another knee injury. Granger has had two knee procedures, including one two months ago, and he's attempting to reestablish himself in the league this year. He played just five games in the 2012-13 season due to knee problems and was limited last year as well, although he did play well with the Clippers during the end of the season.
Granger's role on the team is unclear, but the best-case scenario is that he can play some sort of role similar to that of Ray Allen last season.