Tag: Udonis Haslem

Miami Heat Media Day

Dwyane Wade throws halfcourt pass off backboard, perfectly sets up Udonis Haslem dunk (video)


Dwyane Wade’s alley-oop pass to James Ennis was a bit off.

But it was spot-on to set up Udonis Haslem for a dunk.

Enough clicked last night for the Heat, who beat the short-handed Hornets and moved within a half game of the Celtics for eighth place in the Eastern Conference. Miami holds the head-to-head tiebreak over Boston.

Pat Riley found it ‘almost shocking’ Heat players let LeBron get to point he wanted to leave Miami


LeBron James is close with Dwyane Wade. LeBron is also close with Chris Bosh. In his Sports Illustrated letter, LeBron mentioned his bond with Udonis Haslem and Mario Chalmers.

But LeBron still left the Heat for the Cavaliers.

After four straight trips to the NBA Finals, which included two championships, LeBron assessed the situation and determined he preferred Cleveland. That surprised many of us, including Pat Riley.

The Heat president, who coached the Showtime Lakers, elaborated on his reasons for being caught off guard. They have as much to do with LeBron as his former teammates.

Riley, via Ethan Skolnick of Bleacher Report:

“That’s the most surprising thing for me, is how those…” Riley said, voice rising. “Generational teams stay together. The players stay together. They know what they have. They see what they’ve won. They see that there’s going to be a little bit of an adjustment here, and they don’t want to leave that. You may never get it again.

“That was almost shocking to me that the players would allow that to happen. And I’m not just saying LeBron. I mean, the players, themselves, would allow them to get to a state where a guy would want to go home or whatever it is.

“So maybe I’m dealing with a contemporary attitude today of, ‘Well, I got four years here, and I think I’ll go up there for whatever reason I went.’ You know, the whole ‘home’ thing, I understand that. But what he had here, and what he had developed here, and what he could have developed over the next five or six years here, with the same team, could have been historic. And usually teams from inside…”


“It would be like Magic and Kareem and [James] Worthy, they weren’t going to go anywhere,” Riley said. “They had come at a time when there were free agents. They weren’t going to go. You think Magic was going to leave Kareem? You think Kareem was going to leave Magic? You think Worthy was going to leave either one of those guys, or [Byron] Scott or [Michael] Cooper? No, they knew they had a chance to win every year. And this team had a chance every year. So that was shocking to me that it happened. Now, could we have done more? Could they have done more?”

I salute Riley for this: He doesn’t come across as complaining. He – especially in the large context of Skolnick’s fantastic feature on the Heat president – seems to be just noting the differences between generations. Riley has always taken the high road with LeBron’s exit.

To a degree, I think this shift is due to an increased friendliness between teams. LeBron can join the Cavaliers – his hometown team, a team closer to a championship – and remain friends with his former Miami teammates. Some of LeBron’s relationships with those Heat players predate their NBA days, something less likely to happen years ago. These are friendships enhanced by sharing an NBA team, but not formed wholly from that.

So, yes, Magic Johnson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, James Worthy, Byron Scott and Michael Cooper stayed together. LeBron left the Heat.

But that doesn’t make one way right and the other wrong. It’s just different.

Dwyane Wade ‘very’ disappointed in Hassan Whiteside after ejection vs. Celtics

Phoenix Suns v Miami Heat

Hassan Whiteside has been a great story for the Heat for most of this season, but the maturity issues that kept him out of the NBA for so long seem to be creeping back in at the worst possible time.

Miami is battling for the eighth and final playoff spot in the East, but Whiteside has been more of a distraction lately than the helpful player he’s been.

He was ejected from Monday night’s loss to the Celtics for a complete non-basketball play, and Dwyane Wade was among those who came down hard on him afterward.

From Jason Lieser of the Palm Beach Post:

Shortly after Whiteside’s ejection, Udonis Haslem (he was out with multiple injuries) stormed from the bench to the locker room. It is unknown why he went back there, but there is one obvious possibility.

Miami coach Erik Spoelstra, who appears to have been very patient with Whiteside since the team signed him early in the season, was clearly angrier about what happened Monday than Whiteside’s previous ejection.

Dwyane Wade went so far as to say there is nothing left for the veterans to tell Whiteside at this point. He has to figure this out himself.

Is Wade disappointed?

“Very,” he said. “We all are. As a Heat fan you are. In this locker room we are. Everybody. He’s gonna have to learn and he’s gonna learn the hard way. He’s doing it his own way. Hopefully he changes his mentality pretty quick.”

More from Wade, via Joe Goodman of the Miami Herald:

“He’s had enough veteran advice. There comes a time where you have to do it yourself. There’s only so many words people can continue to say to you. You gotta do it. Not for you, you got to do it for the other guys you see in here sacrificing — that you see out there playing hurt and all the things you see going on. You’re part of a team. You’re part of an organization.

“We all have our moments, selfish moments, but you can’t continue to keep having them because you got to be reliable, and you got to be able to be counted on. And right now, if he continues to act that way, then he’s not reliable.”

Whiteside was also ejected from a game against the Suns just one week prior to this latest incident.

The Heat see themselves as a family organization, and are willing to tolerate a lot from their players; Michael Beasley is a great example of that. We’ll see if that approach is able to reach Whiteside, who, with averages of 11 points, 9.8 rebounds and 2.4 blocked shots per game, has been an important part of the team this season.