ORLANDO – Heat coach Erik Spoelstra has decided on a starting lineup and a rotation for tonight’s season opener at the Magic. … but he’s not ready to let the world know, just yet.
“I’ll announce it tonight,” he said after today’s shootaround. “We know who we’re going with, we know the majority of our rotation but everybody has got to be ready. You could see in the two games last night there was some normal fatigue for early in the season so if we have to go deep in the rotation we will.”
The Heat’s game notes list three starters – guards Goran Dragic and Dion Waiters and center Hassan Whiteside – and question marks at forwards.
Many expect Kelly Olynyk to start at power forward and Josh Richardson to step in at small forward with Rodney McGruder out after undergoing surgery Tuesday to repair a stress fracture in his left leg.
One player who will not be part of the rotation tonight is forward Okaro White, who continues to rehabilitate his strained left shoulder.
White participated in the shootaround and did some conditioning but he’s not ready for game action.
“Right now I feel good, I’ve got good motion in it,” White said. “As far as being physical in the game and got to set screens and fight through screens not today for sure.”
White, who was injured a week ago in a preseason game against Washington, said he will need one practice to “see where I’m at being physical and playing defense,” before getting into a game.