LOS ANGELES — The Heat found a way to keep most of last season’s core intact. But Willie Reed was part of the small group that didn’t return.
Reed, who impressed as Miami’s backup center last season, opted out of the 2017-18 season on his Heat contract worth $1.6 million in hopes of earning a bigger contract in free agency. Instead, he ended up signing for one season at the $1.5 million veteran minimum with the Los Angeles Clippers. Continue reading “A look at Sunday’s Willie Reed-Miami Heat reunion”
TV/Radio: Fox Sports Sun/WAXY 790AM, WAQI 710AM (Spanish)
Records: Miami 3-5, Los Angeles 5-3
PROBABLE STARTING LINEUPS
F: Danilo Gallinari
F: Blake Griffin
C: DeAndre Jordan
G: Austin Rivers
G: Patrick Beverley
F: Josh Richardson
F: Okaro White
C: Hassan Whiteside
G: Dion Waiters
G: Goran Dragic
Scouting report: The Heat will be without Rodney McGruder, who is out indefinitely after left tibia surgery. … The Clippers will be without Milos Teodosic, who is out with a plantar fascia injury in his left foot. … The Clippers swept the season-series against the Heat last season, 2-0, and have currently won four straight over Miami. … Heat guard Tyler Johnson has shot a perfect 20-of-20 from the free-throw line this season. That marks the third-longest such streak to start a season in team history. According to Elias, only Dwyane Wade, 24-straight to begin the 2015-16 season, and Dorell Wright, 21-straight to start the 2009-10 season, have longer streaks. … Goran Dragic is averaging a team-high 20.3 points on 49.6 percent shooting for the Heat. … Miami has struggled to execute late in close games, as it owns a 1-4 record in clutch games this season. A “clutch” situation is defined by the NBA as a game that has a margin of five points or fewer inside the final five minutes of the fourth quarter. … The Heat rank 21st of 30 teams in the NBA with a net rating of -2.8, which is a reliable team performance measure that’s the difference between a team’s offensive and defensive ratings (OR-DR). … The Clippers enter Sunday’s game with losses in three of their past four games, including a 113-104 loss to the Grizzlies on Saturday. … Former Heat center Willie Reed is averaging 5.6 points and 4.3 rebounds in a bench role for the Clippers this season. Reed declined his $1.6 million player option with the Heat for the 2017-18 season in hopes of earning a bigger contract this past summer, but he ended up signing a one-year agreement with the Clippers for just under $1.5 million, or his minimum salary.
Season stats: Played one season at Kentucky, averaging 13.0 points, 8.0 rebounds and 1.5 blocks as a freshman last season.
Contract status: Set to make $2.5 million this season, with his deal guaranteed for the first two seasons. The Heat then have a team option in years three and four of Adebayo’s contract.
What to know?: Adebayo was the Heat’s first-round pick this year and he’s now a part of the team’s young core. But it will be tough for Adebayo to find playing time right away with Hassan Whiteside, Kelly Olynyk and James Johnson expected to get most of the minutes in the Heat’s power rotation. Foul trouble and injuries could create playing time for the rookie, but don’t expect him to have a big role early on.
Season stats: Averaged 9.0 points, 4.8 rebounds and 2.0 assists in 75 games (6 starts) for the Celtics last season.
Contract status: Signed with the Heat on a four-year contract worth $50 million in free agency this offseason.
What to know?: With Olynyk’s ability to stretch the floor and pass the ball as a 7-footer, he can used as a power forward and center. And the Heat are expected to use him at both spots this season. Olynyk saw playing time as a power forward next to center Hassan Whiteside and also got some minutes at center when Whiteside exited the game during the preseason. Expect Olynyk to have a big role this season.
F JUSTISE WINSLOW
Season stats: Averaged 10.9 points, 5.2 rebounds and 3.7 assists in 18 games (15 starts) last season. Season was cut short due to season-ending surgery on his right shoulder.
Contract status: Set to make $2.7 million this season. In addition, the Heat already decided to exercise the fourth-year team option on Winslow’s rookie-scale contract, which guarantees him $3.5 million for the 2018-19 season.
What to know?: After a shoulder injury forced him to miss the second half of last season, it will be interesting to see how the Heat integrate him back in. Shooting has been a constant struggle for Winslow. But there’s definitely a place for him on this team with his defense, passing ability, versatility and potential. Winslow was always expected to have a spot in the Heat’s rotation, but Rodney McGruder’s injury should open up even more playing time for him than expected this season.
PG GORAN DRAGIC
Season stats: Averaged 20.3 points, 3.8 rebounds and 5.8 assists in 73 games (73 starts) last season.
Contract status: Set to make $17 million this season. Heat have Dragic under contract for next three seasons, but the final season of his deal is a player option for 2019-20.
What to know?: After turning in one of the best seasons of his NBA career, Dragic has solidified his role as one of the Heat’s leaders moving forward. With Miami’s core returning, Dragic should be able to build on last season’s success as the Heat’s starting point guard. Dragic had a quiet preseason as he rested his body and mind after a crazy offseason. He played in just two of the Heat’s six preseason games after leading Slovenia to EuroBasket gold in September. But Dragic will be expected to perform as one of the Heat’s top players when the regular season begins.
G/F JOSH RICHARDSON
Season stats: Averaged 10.2 points, 3.2 rebounds, 2.6 assists and 1.1 steals in 53 games (34 starts) last season.
Contract status: Set to make $1.5 million this season. In September, Richardson agreed to a four-year, $42 million extension with the Heat that will start in 2018-19.
What to know?: The Heat expect big things from a healthy Richardson this season. He impressed in the preseason with averages of 13.6 points, 2.6 rebounds, 2.2 assists and 1.6 blocks in five games. Richardson’s versatility at 6-foot-6 should help Miami, as he’s an option at both guard positions and at small forward. Whether he starts or not, Richardson is going to be a big part of Miami’s formula.
G TYLER JOHNSON
Season stats: Averaged 13.7 points, 4.0 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 1.2 steals in 73 games (0 starts) last season.
Contract status: Set to make $5.9 million this season, but his contract becomes a lot more expensive after next season when he will be paid $18.9 million in 2018-19 and $19.6 million in 2019-20.
What to know?: Johnson carved out a nice role for himself as the Heat’s sixth man last season. And he will play that scorer role off the bench again this season. Johnson had a solid preseason, averaging 12.5 points on 56.3 percent shooting from the field and 47.1 percent shooting from 3-point range. But if the Heat want to avoid the expensive half of Johnson’s contract, this season is the time to trade him with this year’s salary still a bargain. On the other end of the spectrum, Johnson is a reliable player who is still improving and has been developed within the Heat organization. That’s always an asset.
C HASSAN WHITESIDE
Season stats: Averaged 17.0 points, 14.1 rebounds and 2.1 blocks in 77 games (77 starts) last season.
Contract status: Set to make $23.8 million this season. Heat have Whiteside under contract for the next three seasons, but the final season of his deal is a player option for 2019-20.
What to know?: Whiteside’s growth last season proved the Heat’s investment in him was a wise one. With max contract salaries going up again this summer, the Heat locked up Whiteside for a fair price. Entering this season, Whiteside has a chance to make his first All-Star team and solidify his spot among the NBA’s top centers. He led the league in blocks in 2015-16 and rebounding in 2016-17. What will Whiteside lead the NBA in this season?
G WAYNE ELLINGTON
Season stats: Averaged 10.5 points and shot 37.8 percent from 3-point range in 62 games (13 starts) last season.
Contract status: Set to make $6.3 million with the Heat this season. Will be an unrestricted free agent next summer.
What to know?: $6.3 million is a good number for a player like Ellington, who proved to be a good fit for the Heat on the court and in the locker room. He’s a shooting specialist and he’ll be a very effective weapon off Miami’s bench this season. With drive-and-kick guards Goran Dragic and Dion Waiters on the roster, Ellington’s 3-point shooting is important to the Heat’s spacing.
F JAMES JOHNSON
Season stats: Averaged 12.8 points, 4.9 rebounds and 3.6 assists in 76 games (5 starts) last season.
Contract status: Re-signed with the Heat on a four-year contract worth $60 million in free agency this offseason. The deal includes a player option in the fourth year.
What to know?: Johnson became a fan favorite and a favorite of those within the organization in his first season with the Heat. He got in better shape, became a leader and bought in to the Heat’s culture. Now with a new four-year contract in hand, Johnson’s growth with Miami can continue. He was used in a bench role last season and he prefers to have that role again this season. Whether Johnson starts or not, his play will be important to the Heat’s success.
G/F RODNEY MCGRUDER
Season stats: Averaged 6.4 points, 3.3 rebounds and 1.6 assists in 78 games (65 starts) last season.
Contract status: Set to make $1.3 million this season. McGruder also has one additional non-guaranteed year on his contract for the 2018-19 season.
What to know?: The Heat will start the season without McGruder, who underwent surgery the day before the opener to repair a left tibia stress fracture. There’s no timetable for his return, but he’s expected to miss an extended amount of time. McGruder, who will still count as part of the Heat’s 15-man roster despite the injury, was one of the top candidates to begin the season as the Heat’s starting small forward.
G DION WAITERS
Season stats: Averaged 15.8 points, 3.3 rebounds and 4.3 assists in 46 games (43 starts) last season.
Contract status: Re-signed with the Heat on a four-year contract worth $52 million in free agency this offseason.
What to know?: Waiters impressed last season, turning into a key part of Miami’s second half resurgence. The backcourt of Dragic and Waiters, better known as 7-Eleven, should be even better this season with one year of experience playing together under their belt. Under a four-year contract with the Heat, Waiters has the security he’s been looking for. Now, Waiters wants to become a more efficient player after shooting 42.4 percent from the field and 64.6 percent from the free-throw line last season.
F OKARO WHITE
Season stats: Averaged 2.8 points and 2.3 rebounds in 35 games (0 starts) last season.
Contract status: Set to make $1.3 million this season.
What to know?: White is an NBA role player and every team needs a few of those. White can provide defense and some 3-point shooting off the Heat’s bench. He probably won’t have a consistent role at the start of the season, but White is a good option to have if there’s foul trouble or injuries. The 2017-18 season marks White’s first full season in the NBA.
F UDONIS HASLEM
Season stats: Averaged 1.9 points and 2.3 rebounds in 16 games (0 starts) last season.
Contract status:Re-signed with the Heat on a one-year, veteran minimum contract worth about $2.3 million this offseason.
What to know?: Haslem is preparing for his 15th NBA season, with the first 14 seasons all coming with Miami. Haslem did not play much last season and was out of the rotation for most of the year, but he did bring invaluable leadership as the team captain. Now with Bam Adebayo and Kelly Olynyk joining the roster and James Johnson returning, Haslem’s playing time is expected to be limited this season, too.
C AJ HAMMONS
Season stats: Averaged 2.2 points and 1.6 rebounds in 22 games as a rookie for the Mavericks last season.
Contract status: Set to make a guaranteed salary of $1.3 million this season. Has his contract guaranteed for $1.5 million in 2018-19.
What to know?: The Heat acquired Hammons from the Mavericks this summer in the trade that sent Josh McRoberts to Dallas. But don’t expect Hammons to play much this season. He didn’t play in the preseason as he battled an illness and his role will be limited in the regular season, too, with plenty of players ahead of him in the Heat’s frontcourt rotation.
Season stats: Split last season between the Celtics and their developmental league team, the Maine Red Claws. In 25 games with the Celtics, he averaged 1.5 points and 1.4 rebounds in 5.6 minutes per game. He appeared in 12 regular-season games for the Red Claws, averaging 20.8 points on 51.5 percent shooting from the field and 43.8 percent shooting from 3-point range to go with 8.8 rebounds and 2.8 blocks per game.
Contract status: Signed a two-year contract with the Heat in free agency this summer, with the first year guaranteed at the $1.5 million veteran’s minimum and a team option for the 2018-19 season.
What to know?: At 6-foot-8 and 235 pounds, the power forward has two skills that really intrigue the Heat. He can stretch the floor with his outside shot and has an incredible knack for blocking shots. This skill set along with his guaranteed salary was enough to earn him a spot on the Heat’s 15-man roster. Miami will continue to try to develop Mickey’s game, and don’t be surprised to see some flashes from him throughout the season.
Reed, 27, has filed a $13.5 million arbitration claim saying he was defrauded. Dawkins worked for prominent NBA agent Andy Miller and his company, ASM, before being terminated in early May, yet he remained the primary ASM representative for Reed and other players.
Multiple clients have since severed ties with Miller.
Reed terminated his contract with Miller on the evening of July 11, ESPN reported. Dawkins represented Reed and others well after he was believed to have been fired for racking up $42,000 in Uber charges on an unnamed NBA player’s credit card.
Reed, the Heat’s backup center during his one year with the team, turned down his option seeking a much larger pay day. He made just more than $1 million last season and has earned just under $2 million in his two full seasons in the NBA.
Reed averaged 5.3 points and 4.7 rebounds in 71 games with the Heat last season. He is expected to backup starting center DeAndre Jordan with the Clippers.
Miller represents more than 40 current NBA players including Kristaps Porzingis, Kyle Lowry, Serge Ibaka and Myles Turner.
The statement released by attorney Ivlis Mantilla from Jasmine Reed reads: “This incident has been totally blown out of proportion. I did not call the police and I did not ask anyone to call the police on my behalf. Willie is a good man and a great father. I have no intention of pressing charges and I have asked the authorities to immediately dismiss all charges against Willie. This is a private matter between my husband and I and for the sake of our family I would like to keep it that way.”
Willie Reed was arrested early Sunday morning in Miami on a domestic violence charge in Miami, three days after the Los Angeles Clippers announced they signed the former Miami Heat center.
Reed, 27, was taken into custody around 3 a.m. Sunday and by Sunday afternoon posted a $1,500 cash bond and was released to Heat forward Okaro White, Reed’s teammate last season. He was arrested in downtown at the Miami Marquis condo.
According to the Miami-Dade County Criminal Justice Online System, a stay away order has been issued with a pre-trial condition for Reed of no contact with his wife, Jasmine Reed.
The argument started when Jasmine Reed told her husband she wanted a divorce, according to the police report as reported by the Miami Herald. She told police he then pulled her hair while she was holding their youngest child and she later hit him in the head with a glass candle to escape him.
Reed told police he didn’t put his hands on his wife, but did touch her hair as she got on the elevator at the Marquis and he admitted that he grabbed her purse and her shirt.
The report noted that Jasmine Reed “had red marks on her left wrist, right bicep, the right side of her chest and her back. She also had some swelling on her left foot.”
Reed played two seasons at Saint Louis University before he and another player were dismissed from the school in the fall of 2010 after St. Louis police investigated a claim of sexual assault on campus. No charges were filed and Reed returned the next spring but was later “administratively withdrawn” by the university for failing to meet the terms of his reinstatement as a student.
In April 2011, Reed declared for the NBA draft, forgoing his final two years of college eligibility. He was not drafted.
Reed and the Clippers agreed to a one-year deal for just less than $1.5 million on July 18 after he declined his player option to return to the Heat for the 2017-18 season, turning down $1.6 million, hoping for a much bigger pay day.
Reed, who is 6-foot-11, 245-pounds, averaged 5.3 points and 4.7 rebounds while shooting 56.8 percent in 71 games with Miami last season. He signed with the Heat last summer after playing 39 games for Brooklyn the previous year.
Heat coach Erik Soelstra addressed Reed leaving the Heat for the first time on Thursday. Spoelstra thanked Reed for everything he did for the Heat last season and wished him luck. On Friday, Reed thanked the Heat on an Instagram post “for helping me grow over this year.”
Reed had said following last season that he wanted to return to Miami, even though he was expected to decline his option. The Heat, though, signed center/forward Kelly Olynyk and brought back James Johnson making Reed expendable.
Instead, Reed’s decision will cost him money after reaching a one-year agreement with the Los Angeles Clippers for just under $1.5 million, or his minimum salary.
Reed, 27 made just more than $1 million last season, and has earned just under $2 million in his two full seasons in the NBA. He signed with the Heat last summer after a season with the Brooklyn Nets.
The 6-foot-11 Reed averaged 5.3 points and 4.7 rebounds while shooting 56.8 percent in 71 games. He took advantage of his five games filling in for Hassan Whiteside, averaging 14.8 points and 8.2 rebounds while shooting 68.6 percent as a starter. He recorded 22 points and 18 rebounds in a loss to the Suns on Jan. 3 and scored 22 points and grabbed 12 rebounds in a loss to the Lakers on Jan. 6.
In Los Angeles, he will backup DeAndre Jordan. The Clippers primary backup last season, Marreese Speights, remains a free agent.
Reed said following the season that he wanted to return to Miami, even though he was expected to decline his option.
“We all want to be a part of something special,” Reed said in April. “I love this team, I love these guys in the locker room. Being here would be great. Hopefully something works out. I don’t know what’s going to happen, but I’m just going to continue to do my part, continue to embrace this culture and embrace those guys that are around this summer as we continue to try to get better.”
But after drafting 6-10 Bam Adebayo and signing 7-foot Kelly Olynyk, both power forward/centers, the Heat no longer had a need for Reed.
Still, nobody questioned Reed’s decision and some believed he would even double his money after proving his value to the Heat. But the market was weakest at the center position. Among the nearly 75 free agents to sign, Reed is just the fifth center. Of those three have signed one year deals, Dewyane Dedmon signed for two-years and $14 million with Atlanta and Olynyk joined the Heat for four years and $50 million.
Last week, Heat president Pat Riley virtually dismissed the idea of Reed returning to the Heat.
“Anything’s possible but with our front line. …,” Riley said. “We talked to his agent. I hope he gets what he deserves.”
MIAMI — The Heat have plenty of things to sell free agents on.
It’s an organization that has won three titles over the past 12 seasons. It’s an organization that has made the playoffs in 17 of the past 22 seasons. It’s an organization that’s led by respected basketball names like president Pat Riley and coach Erik Spoelstra.
Oh, and it’s Miami. An attractive city that has always helped the Heat in free agency.