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Monday's quotes that speak to Hassan Whiteside's growth

There was a quote regarding Hassan Whiteside that will get some attention, and rightly so. 

It came after Dwyane Wade, who has been critical of Whiteside at times during their year-plus together, praised the center's maturity to a media group and added, "He's the Defensive Player of the Year. That's a conversation that needs to start happening."

That's significant. 

That's acceptance. 

But there was a quote from Hassan Whiteside, after this 110-99 win in he scored 27, that will likely get the Heat front office and coaching staff even more excited.

It's the sort of quote that will make Miami more comfortable paying him handsomely this offseason.

It came when I asked Whiteside what it means for his statistics to be contributing to wins. Miami is 14-6 since the All-Star break, and Whiteside is averaging 18.5 points, 13.4 rebounds and 3.3 blocks since the All-Star break. 

"That's what I'm saying," Whiteside said. "Too many guys are praised that's not even making it to the playoffs, for putting big numbers up. You know what I mean? You're not going anywhere with them numbers. I feel like a lot of guys are praised for being on a losing team. When you're putting up numbers and you're winning, that's when you're actually doing something." 

That's the message the Heat has been hoping he'd heed this season. 

Then there was this, from Wade: "He's getting better. He wants to be. That's the big thing about him, he's being coached. And now he's allowing our coaches to coach him. When he first came here, I don't know if he'd ever been coached the same way before, with responsibilities. And now he's taking it straight on." 




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