Among the dramas coming next season — whenever there is a next season — surrounds Miami Heat coach Erik Spoelstra. Because there was not enough drama in Miami already.
Spoelstra is entering the last year of his contract. With Pat Riley hanging over him like the Sword of Damocles (just ask Stan Van Gundy) there is inherent drama.
The Heat Index at ESPN talked to Riley about the waiting during the lockout, but when they asked about Spoelstra’s status they didn’t get far.
“We’ve met all summer,” Riley said of Spoelstra, who had a previously-scheduled commitment and was the lone member of the coaching staff not in attendance at Friday’s camp session. “We’ve had some great, long conversations about philosophy. He’s watched every game (from last season) over and over. I’ve watched every single playoff game two or three times. His staff is ready to roll.”
I then pressed Riley on whether there were any discussions as to whether Spoelstra would be rolling with the Heat beyond this season.
“He’s been here, what, 15 years already,” Riley said. “But we don’t talk about contracts.”
Riley does not want to return to the sidelines. But if Spoelstra and the Heat end the season with anything short of a championship, there will be a lot o questions. And decisions.
Kobe Bryant reflected, told stories and showed his emotions.
For nearly 25 minutes, the Lakers star talked about his pending retirement. It was pretty cool.
DeAndre Jordan‘s free-throw problems – 38.7% this season, 41.5% for his career – are mental.
You can’t watch this trip to the line and convince me otherwise.
Nene hurt his calf. Drew Gooden is banged up. Martell Webster is out for the season.
Those are three players the Wizards expected to play power forward this season.
So, Washington – which has lost four straight – will bring in another big man: Ryan Hollins.
Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports:
The Wizards have a full roster of 15 players. They don’t qualify for a hardship exemption, which a team gets if four players have missed three straight games and will continue to be out. Only Webster and Alan Anderson definitely fit that bill. Gooden, who has missed five straight, might. But it’s unclear both how many of those absences were due to injury and when he’ll return.
So, Washington will have to waive someone to sign Hollins now. It’ll probably be Webster, whose $5,845,250 2016-17 salary is just $2.5 million guaranteed. If he’s out for the year and the Wizards plan to drop him by the summer to clear cap space, why not just do it now?
Hollins is more center than power forward and doesn’t appear to fit well with Marcin Gortat. But at this point, Washington just needs big bodies. Hollins – a nine-year veteran who plays decent interior defense, lacks offensive skill and rebounds poorly for his 7-foot frame – is at least that.
Sometimes – as Kristaps Porzingis sees against Dwight Howard – it’s more flattering just to play James Harden-level defense.