We were a little surprised the other day that the Heat did not sell out the building in Philadelphia (although it looked pretty close), but this one is a bit of a shocker:
There are still tickets available for the Heat home opener Friday, something first made public by a tweet from Brian Windhorst of ESPN. We checked by trying to buy tickets online and yup, you can still get them.
There were not a lot, just a few hundred. But spread throughout the arenas. And those could be seats the Heat held back to use in promotional events or to give out to sponsors and the like, then when they were not needed they were released to the public. (That is a pretty common practice.)
Still, that you can still buy tickets to the Heat opener last minute without having to go through a broker is a bit shocking. This for a game of real importance against the Magic (well, as much real importance as any game in October can have).
Bigger yet, you can still get tickets for the game when the Lakers come to town. That is not sold out.
As we said about Philadelphia, this speaks more to the economy and the price of tickets than it does the popularity of the Heat. In these times, even in Miami, people have limited discretionary income and what are they going to spend it on: A Heat ticket or a night at a hot South Beach club and some Cristal? In Boston the fans don’t have these problems (and if you ordered Cristal at The Corrib Pub what would happen to you anyway?).
On Monday, Dion Waiters agreed to a one-year, $2.9 million deal with the Heat, far less than most people thought he would get as one of the few significant free agents still on the market. Tuesday afternoon, he posted an explanation on Instagram for his deal.
Here’s what he said:
I didn’t do it for the money… I did it for the opportunity to go out & ball & have fun. Everything else will take care of its self!!! I just felt like it was the best situation for me…& my family. I could have waited & got wat I wanted. But I rather be happy then miserable at the end of the day!!! Meaning Yu can have everything & still not be happy… #heatnation let’s get it!!! #provethemwrong #stamped #Philly
It seems clear, based on the market, that the kinds of offers Waiters was hoping for weren’t out there for him. In Miami, with Dwyane Wade gone, he’ll probably start at shooting guard and have plenty of opportunities to prove himself in hopes of landing a long-term deal next summer.
While we wait for the Celtics to make a bigger move to trade for another star, they’re filling out the end of their roster. Sheridan Hoops’ Michael Scotto is reporting that they’ve signed Demetrius Jackson, the No. 45 pick in last month’s draft, to a four-year deal.
Jackson declared for the draft after his junior season at Notre Dame. Talent-wise, he has the chance to be a major steal for Boston — DraftExpress has him ranked as the 17th-best overall prospect in this year’s draft class. But he might not play much his first year. The Celtics’ roster is already crowded and there’s still the chance that they’ll make another move with some of their much-vaunted assets if the right star becomes available.
ATLANTA (AP) — The Atlanta Hawks have signed undrafted rookie free agent center Matt Costello of Michigan State.
The 6-foot-9, 245-pound Costello averaged 5.7 points and 5 rebounds on the Hawks’ summer league team in Las Vegas.
Costello averaged 10.7 points and 8.2 rebounds as a senior at Michigan State. He holds the school’s career record with 146 blocked shots.
Terms of the deal were not released.
Jamal Crawford knows how to get buckets.
He does it against NBA level defenders, so put him in a free-flowing pro-am — let’s say the Seattle pro-am in his hometown — and he barely breaks a sweat dropping 44. And nailing the game winner.
Doc Rivers hopes to see a lot of that next season.