Jarvis Varnado has barely touched the court for the Heat — 12 minutes total in two games during his two 10-day contracts with the team.
But they must like what they are seeing in practice from the former Mississippi State forward — they are going to sign him for the rest of the season, tweets Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports and the NBC Sports Network.
The Heat also are holding on to the Birdman — Miami will offer a second 10-day contract to Chris Anderson, Woj reports.
The Heat drafted Varnado in the second round back in 2010, but he didn’t make the roster. He played for a while in Italy and Israel but returned to the D-League this season, playing in Sioux Falls where he turned heads.
Varnado is an energy big off the bench — he is strong on the defensive end blocking shots and crashing the board. He hustles. He’s not going to score much, but that’s not what the Heat want, they want a good practice player. They apparently found one.
If you believe there is a difference between being dunked on and being dunked around, this definitely falls in the latter category.
Still, it’s an impressive move by Toronto’s Anthony Bennett to make the move and dunk around Lakers’ big man Robert Upshaw during the Raptors’ 105-97 preseason win over the Lakers Thursday night.
Bennett only had four points, but Kyle Lowry had another impressive preseason outing with 25. He has looked sharp. Julius Randle had 17 for the Lakers on 7-of-10 shooting.
The Cavs are shorthanded in the backcourt right now, with Kyrie Irving still out and Iman Shumpert sidelined for up to three months. Yahoo’s Marc Spears reports that they’re bringing in former Temple guard Dionte Christmas, who played for the Suns in 2013-14:
In 31 games for the Suns two seasons ago, Christmas averaged 2.3 points and 1.2 rebounds in 6.4 minutes per game. He probably won’t get very many minutes if he makes the Cavs’ final roster, but there’s a chance they’ll keep him around on a non-guaranteed deal until Irving and Shumpert are healthy, just to have another body in the backcourt.