Udonis Haslem on leadership style: ‘I don’t just talk it. I walk it, I exemplify it’

Chicago Bulls guard Derrick Rose (1) goes to the basket as Miami Heat forward Udonis Haslem (40) defends in the first half of an NBA basketball game, Thursday, April 7, 2016, in Miami. (AP Photo/Alan Diaz)

Chicago Bulls guard Derrick Rose (1) goes to the basket as Miami Heat forward Udonis Haslem (40) defends in the first half of an NBA basketball game, Thursday, April 7, 2016, in Miami. (AP Photo/Alan Diaz)

MIAMI — Udonis Haslem is proud to be the Heat’s captain.

Even though coach Erik Spoelstra called it an “obvious” decision to name Haslem as Miami’s only captain, the 13-year veteran takes the role seriously.

“It means a lot,” Haslem said. “I don’t take it lightly. I put just as much responsibility and pressure on myself as a coach or anybody else could to make sure I handle that position and honor that correctly and also bring guys along with me.”

The 36-year-old Haslem has served as a Heat captain since 2007-08. Part of Haslem’s time as a captain was spent with Wade as co-captains (2008-2015) and with Wade and Bosh as tri-captains (2015-16).

“He’s the most experienced guy on this team,” guard Goran Dragic said. “He’s won three championships. He know what it takes to be at that high level and to compete. I feel like you can just learn from him because he has so much knowledge.”

When asked to describe his leadership style, Haslem didn’t hesitate with his answer.

“I don’t just talk it. I walk it, I exemplify it,” Haslem said. “You see it, you feel it, you know it’s pure when you’re around me. Everything that I say to these guys, they know I’ve either done or I’m willing to do myself.”

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