LAS VEGAS – The Miami Heat move onto tournament play in the Las Vegas summer league Thursday, but it is unknown if their two best players will be on the court.
Forward Derrick Jones Jr. has not played since spraining his right ankle Sunday and coach Eric Glass said Jones remains day-to-day. But since Jones did not practice Wednesday it is highly unlikely he will play when the Heat face the Pelicans at 4 p.m. at the Cox Pavilion.
“He couldn’t do anything,” Glass said after Wednesday’s practice at The Clark High School in Las Vegas. “We will see how (Thursday) goes. It’s not as bad as we thought it was.”
Bam Adebayo, who had 24 points and nine rebounds in the Heat’s 98-90 victory over Utah on Tuesday, could also sit. Adebayo has played in all but one of the Heat’s six summer league games, missing their second game in Las Vegas.
The Heat’s coaches will decide if they want to shut down Adebayo.
Miami will face the Pelicans for a second time in four games, having lost 110-84 Saturday.
If the Heat defeat New Orleans they advance in tournament play on Saturday. If they lose, their final game of summer league is Friday.
The Heat are 3-3 in summer league games, 2-1 in Sacramento, 1-2 in Las Vegas.
“I looked at it like there’s 29 other teams, we got to play the same team again?” Glass said. “But on the positive side we have some film against these guys. There are things they really hurt us on, a shooter that really hurt us. Let’s correct what we can do. It’s a good challenge.”
Trevon Bluiett, an undrafted rookie out of Xavier, scored 26 points on 10-of-14 shooting, including 6-of-10 on threes.
One player who needs more time on the court to get his shot back on track is Derrick Walton Jr., the point guard who spent last season on a Heat two-way contract. Walton has struggled mightily, making just 12-of-49 from the floor (24.5 percent) and 3-of-27 on threes (11.1 percent). He is averaging 7.2 points.
“It’s really hard in this game, especially when you’re a shooter when your shot’s not going to find a way to impact the game,” Glass said. “He’s done that. He’s never put his head down. He’s never turned down an open shot. He’s focused on giving to his teammates and competing on the defensive end of the floor and that’s all you can ask for.”
LAS VEGAS – Perhaps it wasn’t quite an intervention as Pat Riley suggested, but Heat coach Erik Spoelstra and his embattled player, center Hassan Whiteside, have been in communication all summer.
And Spoelstra says that relationship is not what it appears to be.
“I have absolutely been in touch with Hassan,” Spoelstra said following the Heat’s summer league practice Wednesday at The Clark High School in Las Vegas.
“We’ve gotten together for lunch, in constant contact on the phone and in texts. Like many things in this league, it’s not what it seems on the outside. It’s pretty normal NBA life. I’m looking forward to the start of the season with a healthy Hassan. I know he’s looking forward to that. And we still have a good part of the summer to get better.”
Following the season, after Whiteside spoke out several times about his frustration over lack of playing time, including one profanity-laced outburst that cost him an undisclosed fine from the organization, Riley said Spoelstra and Whiteside needed an “intervention.”
Said Riley: “The disconnect between he and Spo that’s going to take a discussion between them and it’s going to take thought on the part of coach and also Hassan.”
Whiteside is the Heat’s highest paid player, signing a four-year, $98.4 million contract two summers ago. He still is owed $52.5 million the final two seasons of the contract.
Whiteside’s numbers declined during the regular season to 14.0 points and 11.4 rebounds while playing 25.3 minutes per game, a dip of more than seven minutes per game from the previous year when he led the league in rebounding.
Then he was a total non-factor in the postseason, averaging 5.2 points and 6.0 rebounds while playing just 15.4 minutes per game as the Heat were eliminated by Philadelphia in five games.
Now, Spoelstra believes the difference will be a healthy Whiteside. The 7-foot center missed 28 games last season, including 18 because of separate left knee bruises. He sat for nine games in March after injuring his left hip.
“I think Hassan having an opportunity to start off the season healthy will be a really big boost for us,” Spoelstra said.
But it isn’t just a healthy Whiteside that has Spoelstra looking forward to this season despite the fact the Heat have yet to make a move with the exception of signing Derrick Jones Jr. to a standard contract. Riley continues to explore trade options but nothing has materialized.
Spoelstra cited the return of guard Dion Waiters, who played 30 games before having ankle surgery; swingman Rodney McGruder, who played 18 after undergoing surgery in October to repair a stress fracture in his leg; and James Johnson, who had surgery to repair a sports hernia surgery following the season, as optimism that the team will be better.
Miami finished last season 44-38 and sixth in the Eastern Conference.
“I look at all those guys that had some injuries that they were dealing with last year as opportunities,” Spoelstra said. “In my mind, you’re almost adding a new player, adding a Derrick Jones, adding a Rodney McGruder, adding a Dion Waiters, adding a healthy Hassan Whiteside. Having a fully healthy James Johnson. These are new players you’re adding into the mix of already a playoff team. That’s something that’s exciting to me.”
Spoelstra also pointed to the improvement made this summer by center Bam Adebayo and Jones.
“We feel really good about our roster,” he said. “We love the internal growth we’ve had. Guys have had tremendous summers already. You’ve seen the improvement that Bam has made in terms of his skill level and running an offense through him. Being a little bit more offensive minded.
“We have great opportunities for internal growth. We have a lot of the guys returning. … we think the continuity and the corporate knowledge we bring from one season to another can really help. What we’re seeing is a lot of turnover every single offseason with a lot of teams. That’s not the easiest thing to manage. We bring some familiarity which we think can be a help.”
LAS VEGAS – Bam Adebayo called it the “UD” role, trying to emulate Heat captain Udonis Haslem as the most experienced player on the team’s summer league roster.
While Adebayo has spent the last two weeks working on the tangible parts of his game – rebounding, defense, ball handling, outside shooting – it’s that intangible of growing into a leader that he first pointed to when asked what has stood out for him while in Sacramento and Las Vegas.
And when it comes to leadership and acting like a coach on the court in the Heat organization, the first name everyone thinks of is Haslem, the 16-year veteran who has played on three championship teams.
“I’m gaining more off the court than on the court, just because I’m trying to be a team captain and trying to get everybody together, trying to get everybody in their spot,” Adebayo said. “I’m gaining a lot of confidence in myself in being a leader.”
Heat coach Eric Glass has put Adebayo in that position; asking him to be more vocal, to mentor those players who are getting their first taste of being a professional.
“We want to see him be like another coach out there, putting all the other four guys in their spots,” Glass said. “Bam’s our (first round) pick from last year. He’s the face of our team right now in summer league. It’s not always about his individual performance.”
Adebayo, who turns 21 on July 18, has been a little bit uneven on the court. The Heat challenged him to grab every rebound possible. He has played in five games, sitting out the Heat’s second game in Las Vegas, and is averaging 9.2 rebounds.
“I can definitely do better, keeping guys off the glass,” he said. “I’ve got to go out and fight harder for rebounds.”
The Heat have not announced whether Adebayo will play Thursday when they begin play in the tournament round. Miami plays New Orleans at 4 p.m. If they win, they play Saturday. Lose and their final game of summer league is Friday.
The Pelicans defeated the Heat, 110-84, on Saturday.
While Adebayo has been aggressive around the rim, especially in Miami’s victory over Utah on Tuesday when he had 24 points, nine rebounds and went to the free throw line 16 times, making 14, he also has worked on his perimeter game, more so during the three games in Sacramento when he had the ball in his hands at half court and the three-point circle little more more than he has in Las Vegas and showed several times he has a Euro step.
But Adebayo has not been efficient offensively, shooting just 36.3 percent (20 of 55). Adebayo said it was “a little bit frustrating” that he’s missed so many shots.
“I put in a lot of work into it,” he said. “I spent hours and hours getting the reps, but I know it will fall. I’m not too worried about it. I just got to keep going out there and being a team player and helping us win.”
Several of those were jump shots, which is a priority for Adebayo to work on during the summer. Adebayo averaged 6.9 points and 5.5 rebounds in 69 games as a rookie. Of his 174 field goals, 91 were dunks, which placed him 25th in the league. Of his 340 field goal attempts, 300 were from within 10 feet and just 21 shots were from beyond 15 feet.
Adebayo has attempted two 3-pointers during summer league, missing both.
“The rhythm, the shot, is all good,” Adebayo said. “It’s just I got to get those bounces. You’ve got to live with the result.
“They want me to shoot it. I’ve got to be in the right position to shoot it and when I get my chance I’ve got to keep making it and build from there.”
As for a go-to move, Adebayo still appears to be working on one. His offensive game remains built on power. Most of his baskets still come from dunks but he’s working to develop a shot from around the basket.
“He’s got a couple of things he can go to,” Glass said. “I don’t know if I would say there’s a go-to move. I think it’s better to have a reactive to what the defense is doing and have multiple moves.”
Adebayo has now gone through two summer camps, the first as a wide-eyed rookie just days removed from being the 14th overall pick in the draft and this year, as a summer league veteran.
For him, the game has slowed down noticeably.
“First year, I was in a real high pace running around and I couldn’t pace myself.” He said. “Now it’s kind of calm and the game has slowed down for me.”
Something he hopes happens when the Heat next reconvene, which will be for training camp in late September.
LAS VEGAS – The Miami Heat will not leave Las Vegas winless.
The Heat defeated Utah, 98-90, Tuesday for their first victory in three games in Las Vegas. Miami is 3-3 in summer league, including two wins in Sacramento.
Miami now will move onto tournament play. Every team qualifies and is guaranteed at least two more games. The Heat face the Pelicans at 4 p.m. Friday. If they win they play at 6:30 p.m. Saturday. If they lose they play at 4:30 p.m. Friday and are done. Miami lost to New Orleans, 110-84, on Saturday.
Bam Adebayo led the Heat with 24 points including going 14-of-16 from the free throw line. Adebayo, who was given off Sunday, played 24 minutes. He had nine rebounds, two assists, two blocks and two steals.
The Heat were without summer league leading scorer Derrick Jones Jr., who sprained his right ankle in Sunday’s loss to Charlotte.
First-round draft pick Grayson Allen of Duke scored 17 points for the Jazz.
Here are our three takeaways:
Bam is back: Adebayo was given off Sunday, a 94-90 loss to Charlotte, and returned well rested for Tuesday. Adebayo had his highest scoring game of summer league. He was active around the rim and aggressive going to the basket as his 16 free throws showed. Adebayo was 5-of-13 from the floor. The Heat would not say if they are shutting down Adebayo for their final two games.
“With my offseason work, that was something I had to get better at,” Adebayo said about drawing fouls. “The coaching staff helped me with that throughout the whole offseason, so y’ll are getting to see it all now.”
Miami, Sioux falls now Mr. Robinson’s neighborhood: Duncan Robinson became the newest member of the Heat organization when he signed his two-way contract Tuesday. Robinson’s strength is his 3-point shooting and he made his first attempt Tuesday before finishing 3-of-7 on threes. The 6-foot-8 forward joined the Heat summer league team after going undrafted out of Michigan. He has started all six Heat summer league games.
“I’m just excited, incredibly fortunate, unbelievable organization,” Robinson said. “Words can’t quite put it into perspective. It’s an incredible blessing.”
Heat find their touch: After scoring just 18 points in the first quarter, the Heat scored 29 and 30 points in the middle two quarters, shooting 7-of-17 on threes. Daryl Macon made both of his threes in the second and third quarters and Rashad Vaughn had two threes, including a buzzer-beater at the end of the third quarter that gave the Heat an 11-point lead.
“We finally put a game together offensively,” coach Eric Glass said . “When the ball’s moving everybody feels like they’re in rhythm. The shots are easier, they’re going through more of a flow. I just thought as a team we really moved the ball around. And we hit the boards when we were missing, so it was a full-package game again today.”
LAS VEGAS – Duncan Robinson still is trying to get a grasp on everything that has happened for him since leaving the University of Michigan.
“This whole process ever since I finished up at Michigan has been a little bit of a whirlwind,” Robinson said. “I’ve just tried to enjoy it as much as possible, make the most of everyday. I feel like in doing so I put myself in good position.”
Good enough for the Heat to offer Robinson a two-way contract, which he signed Tuesday, a reward for his impressive summer-league play.
Robinson, 6-foot-8 forward, agreed to play for the Heat’s summer league team after going undrafted last month. He has started all six Heat games, including Tuesday’s 98-90 victory over Utah in which he scored 12 points. Robinson is averaging 12.3 points on 54.3 percent shooting (25 of 46), including 58.3 percent (10 of 34) on threes.
“He’s really put in a lot of work,” Heat summer league coach Eric Glass said. “He’s earned that contract. Everyone in the organization is really happy and we’re excited about it.”
The Heat now have 12 players under contract for their preseason training camp, which starts in late September.
With each NBA team allowed to have up to two players under two-way contracts, teams can carry up to 17 players on its roster during the regular season and up to 20 players before and during training camp and the preseason. The two-way contract does not count against the 15-man regular season roster.
Robinson showed his outside shooting prowess at Michigan, finishing his career with the fourth-most 3-pointers in Wolverines history. He hopes to get to Miami soon after summer league end and said the next step is to improve his defense.
“Really improving my body, getting in really good shape, that way I can really defend at this level,” Robinson said. “I feel like I’m far from finished in that regard. I’m excited to put in the work.”
Heat center Bam Adebayo described playing with Robinson like playing with Wayne Ellington, the Heat free agent guard who established a franchise record last season with 227 made 3-pointers.
“He’s been developing this mentality where it’s like no pump fakes, just let it go,” Adebayo said about Robinson. “He’s benefiting from (that). So every time I go to duck inside, I expect him to shoot it every time. Every time I hand it off, ‘just shoot it, Duncan.’ Just playing with him, he reminds me of Wayne so much, just in a different body.”
The reached out to Robinson immediately after the June 21 draft ended.
“We liked him a lot,” said Chet Kammerer, the Heat’s vice president of player personnel. “His ability to shoot. We talked to (Erik) Spoelstra. He talked about the one quality he likes the most or wants the most is shooters. To me he’s an elite shooter and he’s proven that so far here.”
Kammerer has been impressed with more than just Robinson’s shot. Robinson has said he felt like he “was labeled” at Michigan and is hoping to show he is more than a jump shooter.
“I think he’s done a little bit more than we anticipated,” Kammerer said. “He’s had two dunks now off the dribble in the half court, which were kind of unexpected. And (Saturday) he had six rebounds in 20 minutes. Those are big factors.
“You look for other things. The more diverse his game is, is helpful for him. Still the key is for him to make shots. That’s why he is valued as a player is his ability to stroke the ball and the fact that he’s not 6-3. You like guys who are a little longer and you like that.”
Two-way contracts were added under the new collective-bargaining agreement that took effect last July, which allow for NBA teams to keep the rights to two players on their G League squads on top of the NBA’s standard 15-player roster limit. Players under two-way contracts can’t be poached by another team, as these players can spend up to 45 days with their NBA teams and the rest of the time must be spent with the NBA team’s G-League affiliate — Miami’s developmental affiliate is the Sioux Falls Skyforce.
Derrick Jones Jr., who was on a two way contract with the Heat last year after signing in late December, was rewarded with a two-year standard contract this summer. Derrick Walton Jr., also on the Heat’s summer league roster, spent the entire 2017-18 season on a two-way contract.
LAS VEGAS – The Heat’s summer league roster has 14 players. Just two are under contract and guaranteed a job this season – Bam Adebayo and Derrick Jones Jr.
If any other player winds up in the Heat’s camp, or any other team’s, coach Eric Glass will feel a sense of satisfaction.
“It’s the tough part about it, you can’t take every guy and even some of the guys we’ve had on our main teams that have developed and gone on elsewhere you want to see them be successful,” Glass said. “When you’re competing against them you don’t, but every other time you want them to feel like you were a part of helping them on their journey.”
The Heat face Utah at 4:30 p.m. today. Miami is 2-3 during summer league, including 0-2 in Las Vegas. Jones has played just 7 ½ minutes in the two games in Las Vegas, sitting the first and coming out of the second after spraining his right ankle. He will not play today and could miss Miami’s final two games.
Adebayo will return today after not playing in Miami’s loss to Charlotte on Sunday.
The Heat’s player development is not just about seeing their players succeed, but others that might have started in the Heat’s summer camp or even regular season camp and are on another roster. That is why the staff, whether it’s Glass’ during summer league or Erik Spoelstra’s during the regular season, spends so much time with every player.
“All 14 of them each day, they’re focus is developing themselves as individuals and that’s through film sessions, through games, through practices, through chalk talks,” Glass said about the players on the summer league roster.
“It’s just trying to pick up as much information as you can, learning how to be a professional and hopefully we can find these guys some jobs so they can start their careers.”
Others who have had their moments during the last week:
* Undrafted free agent Duncan Robinson out of Michigan, who has been the most impressive of the players not under contract. Robinson is averaging 12.4 points on 57.8 percent shooting (22 of 38), including 62.9 percent (17 of 27) on threes.
* Guard Daryl Macon, an undrafted free agent from Arkansas, had 17 points, six rebounds and five assists Sunday. Macon has 22 assists in four games including 11 in a win over the Lakers in Sacramento.
* Forward Yante Maten, the SEC’s player of the year from Georgia, had 25 points and 13 rebounds in the Heat’s two wins in Sacramento. He has struggled some in Las Vegas but had 10 rebounds in the two losses.
* Guard Rashad Vaughn, the 17th overall pick in the 2015 draft, has 27 points in the two games in Las Vegas. Vaughn, who has played for three NBA teams in his two seasons, played one season at UNLV before entering the draft.
* Center Landry Nnoko, the 2017-18 G League Defensive Player of the Year, had 12 points and 13 rebounds against Charlotte. Forward/center Jarrod Jones, who has played the last six seasons in Europe, had 15 points and 12 rebounds against New Orleans.
* Guard Derrick Walton Jr., who spent last year splitting time between the Heat and Sioux Falls while in a two-way contract, has struggled with his shot. In four games he is 9-of-42 from the field (.214) and 3-of-24 on threes (.125).
LAS VEGAS – Derrick Jones Jr. will not play Tuesday when the Heat face Utah in their third game in the Las Vegas summer league, but the Heat have seen all they need from this jumping-jack forward.
Jones sprained his ankle in Sunday’s loss to the Hornets. Although the Heat list him as day-to-day, it’s doubtful Jones will play again in Las Vegas. Miami already has seen Jones’ game and confidence progress, something he says that has come because of demands that are non-negotiable with the Heat.
“I work harder than I did ever in my life when I’m with this team,” Jones said after the Heat’s practice Monday on the UNLV campus, where he spent one year of college. “They hold you to a higher standard. It’s like everybody in the organization is working hard so you don’t want to be that one guy that’s singled out – ‘He’s just in here BS-ing it and going half-ass.’
“I want to be that one that they say ‘Yeah, he’s in here every day, he’s working hard, he wants to be better.’ That’s the player I planned on being. That’s the player I am now.”
But Jones, 21, blames himself. He joined the Phoenix Suns at 19 after going undrafted out of UNLV. He played in just 36 games with the Suns over about 1 ½ years before being waived. He signed to a two-way contract with the Heat on Dec. 31.
During his time with Suns, Jones was assigned or recalled from their G League team 23 times.
“I should have held myself (with more) accountability when I was in Phoenix.” Jones said. “But I was a young kid, fresh out of college. I just had turned 19 years old. It’s something that I should have been doing. I’m doing it now.
“I realized I had to work harder. I feel like I’m one of the hardest working players on the team. I’m going to keep it going until whenever my day is done. I want to be able to feel like I worked my tail off every day, never took any days off.”
The Heat saw that commitment and rewarded Jones with a two-year standard contract he signed less than two weeks ago.
“This summer he really took it upon himself to get in the gym and work and grind,” Heat summer league coach Eric Glass said. “He became obsessed with the game. He just dominated every game he was in whether it was on the offensive boards, on the defensive end, his leadership, his attacking, he was on a different level than most of the other guys on the court and were really happy to see that.”
Jones averaged 21.3 points on 22-of-42 shooting in the three summer league games in Sacramento last week. He added 22 rebounds, six steals and four blocks.
Glass said Bam Adebayo will return for Tuesday’s 4:30 p..m. game after getting a break on Sunday. Adebayo said he played the “UD” role, referring to veteran Udonis Haslem who has been a leader and mentor in the Heat locker room for several years.
“They wanted me to be the UD of the team,” Adebayo said. “UD sits over there to be vocal and be loud, just help everybody out when they come off the court.”
LAS VEGAS – For 7 ½ minutes, the Heat’s Derrick Jones Jr. entertained the Cox Pavillion crowd Sunday with an assortment of dunks – either attacking the basket with the ball in his hands or by throwing down teammate’s miss on the put back.
But late in the first quarter those “oohs” and “aahs” turned to cringes after Jones rolled his ankle and was helped off the court.
The early diagnoses is a sprained right ankle and Jones did not return for the Heat’s 94-90 loss to the Hornets. Jones likely will not play again in summer league.
Jones was injured when he went up to block a shot and landed on somebody’s foot. He emerged from the locker room following the game with just a brace on his ankle. He said he still felt pain but was never concerned it was anything worse.
“It’s not something that I can’t tolerate,” he said. “Ankle sprains happen. It’s the game of basketball. So you’ve got to do what you can do.”
Coach Eric Glass was disappointed, especially after Jones’ start. He made all four of his shots including three dunks and a 3-pointer.
“He was on his way to a game, so it’s sort of disappointing,” Glass said. “We’ll see how he is tomorrow.”
Jones has been Miami’s best player during their first week of summer league games after signing a two-year contract on June 30. He averaged 21.3 points on 22-of-42 shooting in the three games in Sacramento, adding 22 rebounds, six steals and four blocks. He did not in the Heat’s first game in Las Vegas, a 110-84 loss to the Pelicans on Saturday.
Jones’ athletic ability was a big hit with the crowds in both cities with several highlight reel dunks that brought the fans out of their seats. One of those to see a big improvement is his Heat teammate, Josh Richardson.
“He’s been aggressive, attacking the rim,” said Richardson, who has been at Miami’s two games in Las Vegas. “His jump shot looks a lot better. He’s been knocking threes down. I’m proud of the work he’s put in.”
Daryl Macon led the Heat with 17 points Sunday as Glass gave Bam Adebayo the game off. Adebayo had played in four straight games.
“We had an overall presence on the court,” he said. “We had much better connection. We had much, much better communication. Our effort was better.
“It’s never going to be perfect, especially in summer league. There’s a lot of moving parts, a lot of new things. But that was a Miami Heat performance tonight. The last game I don’t know what that was.”
Landry Nnoko had 12 points and 13 rebounds for the Heat. Rashad Vaughn added 16 points.
The Heat (2-3 in summer league, 0-2 in Las Vegas) are off Monday. They return to action at 1:30 p.m. Tuesday against Utah.
LAS VEGAS – The Miami Heat gave their best player from the Sacramento summer league the day off Saturday and the result showed as much.
Miami fell behind the New Orleans Pelicans by 18 points at the half and things got worse in the second half in a 110-84 loss at the Cox Pavilion on the UNLV campus that coach Eric Glass called “embarrassing.”
Derrick Jones Jr., who averaged 21.3 points in Sacramento, sat – as did guard Derrick Walton Jr. – as coach Glass gave significant time to a group of players who didn’t get on the court much the first three games.
Bam Adebayo, though, logged heavy minutes for the fourth consecutive game and finished with nine points and four rebounds. Adebayo’s turn to rest could come Sunday as the Heat face Charlotte at 2 p.m.
Duncan Robinson led the Heat with 18 points.
The Heat are 2-2 in summer leagues including 2-1 in Sacramento.
Glass not happy: For the first time this week, Glass was angry following the game. The Heat allowed the Pelicans to shoot 58.1 percent (43 of 74) from the floor, 50 percent (11 of 22) on threes. New Orleans had 52 points in the paint. Miami was 8 of 31 (25.8 percent) on threes.
When asked who stood out, Glass said: “Nobody stood out to me tonight. That was an embarrassing performance and it started with the head coach.”
Glass then was asked what bothered him most: “Everything. Lack of energy, lack of effort, lack of intensity, connection on the court. It was an embarrassing game.”
Robinson more than a shooter: As the fourth-most prolific three-point shooter in University of Michigan history, Robinson was known for his perimeter game and has shown that skill during summer league. But Robinson is determined to show he is more than a jump shooter and he’s done a nice job.
Robinson continues to impress, not only with his outside shooting but had several plays at the rim in Sacramento and continued that in the Heat’s Las Vegas opener with two early baskets on drives to the basket. Robinson, who scored 19 points in Miami’s victory over the Lakers in Sacramento, has been the most impressive player among the undrafted rookies and could be putting himself in a good spot for a two-way contract, from someone if not from the Heat.
Robinson, who also had a nice block on a layup attempt by the Pelicans’ Walter Lemon Jr., he was 7-of-10 from the floor and 4-of-6 on threes against New Orleans.
“I felt like I was labeled a lot in college,” Robinson said. “Not to discredit anything I did in college, but I feel like there’s more to my game than just that. It’s a great opportunity to be out here and showcase it. I’m thankful for the opportunity and just trying to continue to grow and hopefully make some noise.”
Getting some playing time: Glass gave heavy minutes to Rashad Vaughn, Matt Farrell, Ike Nwamu and Jarrod Jones on Saturday. Vaughn, who is trying to rehabilitate his career after being the 17th overall pick in 2015, finished with 11 points. Farrell, an undrafted rookie from Notre Dame, finished with six assists but was 4-of-13 from the floor. Nwamu, who play the last two years in Sioux Falls, had seven points.
Jones, who has played the last six seasons in Europe, was the most impressive with 15 points and 12 rebounds. Jones played just eight minutes in Sacramento, sitting two of the three games.
“Every game you might not get to play but the minutes that we get I just personally want to go out there and play hard and prove to all the teams in the league that I can play at this level,” Jones said.
If you were not able to ask a question this time, send them along for future mailbags via Twitter to @tomdangelo44 and @Anthony_Chiang. You can also e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
From @ChrisHypeTrain: Where would Carmelo Anthony fit in with the Heat?
Oklahoma City is moving on from Anthony. The question is how do they part? Will it be a trade? Will OKC stretch the $27.9 million they owe him in the final year of his deal? Do the two sides agree to a buyout?
The later two scenarios would make Anthony a free agent and available to any team – presumably for the $3.4 million veteran minimum – including the Heat.
Does an Anthony deal make sense for the Heat?
Miami has two obstacles. First, with 11 players due about $120 million, the Heat are about $18 million over the cap and just $4 million shy of the luxury tax line, something Pat Riley is trying to avoid crossing. Without any other moves, Anthony would put you closer to that luxury tax line, and that’s without Wayne Ellington, Dwyane Wade or Udonis Haslem under contract. And if Anthony wants to come to the Heat, one of the biggest reasons would be to play alongside his friend, Wade.
Secondly, the Heat’s roster is lacking great players but has an excess of good players who could be in the rotation. The 6-foot-8 Anthony played most of his minutes at power forward last season which means coach Erik Spoelstra would have to find minutes for Hassan Whiteside, James Johnson, Kelly Olynyk, Bam Adebayo and Anthony in the power rotation. And if the thought is to give Anthony more minutes at small forward then he’s competing with Josh Richardson, Justise Winslow, Rodney McGruder and Derrick Jones Jr. for playing time.
As for his role in Miami, Anthony would step in as one of the top scoring options and the Heat would find a way to hide his defensive deficiencies.
Unless a third team is involved, and Atlanta really is the only one with enough cap space, the Thunder likely are not going to trade Anthony to the Heat because Miami would then have to match Anthony’s salary in the deal and that does nothing to help OKC reduce its mammoth luxury tax bill.
So, for the Heat to sign Anthony, they need to make a trade that not only would shed salary but also include a player or two, especially one of the power forwards. Ideally, enough cap space is created to fit in Anthony, Wade and Ellington.
The best fit among the three teams linked to Anthony is Houston. There, he also gets to play with one of his friends, Chris Paul, but more importantly, he’d replace Trevor Ariza, who signed with the Suns, although it is not ideal considering Ariza is a small forward. Anthony’s role in Houston would be similar to what is was in OKC as the third option.
As for the Lakers, yes, Anthony also is close to LeBron James, but the Lakers have an overabundance of players up front. The plan is to play James at power forward with Kyle Kuzma coming off the bench. We know James will play 36-38 minutes a game. Signing Anthony could cut into Kuzma’s minutes, something the Lakers do not want to do after he had such a strong rookie season.
From DjHitbwoy: Is this the perfect season for the Miami Heat to trade and tank? With us having a 2019 first round pick we can look forward to drafting Zion Williamson and try trading Whiteside contract to LA Clippers
Didn’t we hear enough of this in 2017 when fans wanted the Heat to go against everything the franchise stands for an tank after that 11-30 start? The Heat never will enter a season with the objective to lose as many games as possible and hope for a high pick. Trading Hassan Whiteside will be challenging and may not happen this summer. If not, the Heat will work tirelessly with Whiteside to improve his game with the hopes of moving up in the standings.