Miami Heat's Udonis Haslem celebrates a basket against the Chicago Bulls during Game 2 of their NBA Eastern Conference Finals playoff basketball game in Chicago

Heat’s Haslem sits out practice Friday just as precaution


Udonis Haslem, the man off the bench that helped change the Heat’s fortunes in Game 2 and even the series, sat out practice Friday because of his surgically repaired foot.

Relax Heat fans, it’s just precautionary. Deep breathes.

Haslem stayed out of running drills, according to a tweet from our man Ira Winderman with the Sun-Sentinel. If there had been a game tonight Haslem could have gone, but with time off until Sunday he got some rest.

He told 790 The Ticket in Miami he is feeling just fine (via Sports Radio Interviews).

“I feel pretty good. My foot’s feeling pretty good. I’ve just got to tip my hat to the training staff. … So far, everything’s going the way we planned it.”

Haslem played 23 minutes against the Bulls in Game 2 and provided the toughness and rebounding they needed. Not to mention a block on Derrick Rose, a few points and one emphatic dunk. He was a game changer.

The Heat need him to be again on Sunday for Game 3, so he got to rest on Friday.

Greg Smith fails physical, will not join Pelicans

Greg Smith
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With both starter Omer Asik and backup Alexis Ajinca out injured for the rest of the preseason (and maybe a little longer), the Pelicans are looking for a center to put next to Anthony Davis for a stretch. That could include a handful of regular season games.

Greg Smith was going to be that man, but the 24-year-old failed his physical, reports the Times-Picayune.

The New Orleans Pelicans were set to sign power forward Greg Smith, but sources said Friday night that he failed his physical examination and will not be joining the team.

And so the search goes on.

The problem is, there are not quality big men still out there on the market, there is a limited supply and just about anyone worth having is spoken for. A few with non-guaranteed contracts may be waived as we get closer to the end of training camps, but that is likely a couple of weeks away.

With both Asik and Ajinca expected back in a few weeks, it’s not worth making a trade or some big move to bring in a center, the Pelicans are just going to have to live with what is out there.

Kevin Durant with huge dunk on visiting Fenerbahce Ulker

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Welcome to America, Fenerbahce Ulker.

The Turkish powerhouse was in America playing some exhibition games this preseason, and they got a first-hand reminder that Kevin Durant is back. KD had 13 points in the Thunder’s easy 111-81 win.

Not to be outdone, Russell Westbrook got in on the act.