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Erik Spoelstra on Dion Waiters: “He has to be more efficient”

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In his final 20 games last season, Dion Waiters averaged 17.1 points per game, shot 40.7 percent from three, and the team was +5.7 per 48 minutes he was on the court. Waiters was a key reason the Heat turned the season around in the second half (just missing out on the playoffs).

Miami rewarded him with a four-year, $52 million contract.

This season Waiters is averaging 15 points a game on 39 percent shooting overall and 31.1 percent from three. The Heat are outscored by 5.3 points per 100 possessions when he is on the court, and he is not lifting up a Miami offense that is 27th in the NBA this season.

Coach Erik Spoelstra told Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald part of the issue is shot selection.

“He has to be more efficient,” coach Erik Spoelstra said Tuesday. “He knows that. He has the ball in his hands quite a bit. There has to be more commitment to get him open and get him into the paint and he has to be more committed to making the right plays and not just settling for low percentage pull ups, particularly when they’re contested and particularly when there’s more time on the clock to explore more options of our offense.”

Consistency has never been a Waiters’ trademark. When he’s hot everyone wants to buy a condo on Waiters’ Island, but there are some cold winters there.

Waiters is shooting more threes this season, particularly above the break threes, and he’s hitting just 30 percent of them. Spoelstra wasn’t kidding about pull-up jumpers, they account for 32.9 percent of his shots total, and from three he is hitting 27 percent on them. But he keeps firing away — Waiters has never seen a shot he doesn’t like. Spoelstra wants his other Heat shooters to be more aggressive, to shoot their shots, but he is asking Waiters to be a little smarter about his choices.

 

Grizzlies sign second-round pick Jevon Carter to multiyear contract

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — The Memphis Grizzlies have signed second-round pick Jevon Carter to a multiyear deal.

Terms of the contract announced Sunday were not disclosed, but Carter himself confirmed the deal.

Carter has impressed at NBA Summer League in Las Vegas and in Utah. His dogged, aggressive defense has slowed players — Trae Young had some of his worst games against Carter — and on offense his game has improved, including him dropping 26 points on the Jazz recently.

Carter was taken with the No. 32 pick after winning the Naismith defensive player of the year last season at West Virginia. The point guard was second in the nation with 3.03 steals per game and is the Mountaineers’ career leader in that category.

“Ray Allen from long distance” with chip shot to save par at American Century Classic

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“Ray Allen from long distance, how many times have we said that?”

Ray Allen had a good weekend at the American Century Championships, the former NBA sharpshooter and future Hall of Famer finished third in the celebrity golf event. One of the reasons he was there, this chip shot on 13 Sunday.

Former Cowboy’s quarterback Tony Romo won the event, with former MLB pitcher Mark Mulder was second.

LeBron James sits courtside for Lakers’ Summer League win

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There are two, maybe three guys playing for the Lakers in Summer League likely to be sharing a locker room with LeBron James next season — Isaac Bonga and Josh Hart, with maybe Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk and/or Alex Caruso. Only Hart could see the court much.

LeBron was still courtside on Sunday for a quarterfinal game at Summer League, showing his support and being a good teammate. He gave Hart a hug on the court. Brandon Ingram stopped by and talked with LeBron for a bit.

LeBron watched the Lakers continue their strong run through the Summer League, racking up a 101-78 win. LeBron was into it, when Mykhailiuk took a shot midway through the first quarter LeBron yelled, ‘cash only!”  The shot was nothing but net.

The Lakers are on to the Summer League semifinals. Los Angeles won the Vegas Summer League last year.

 

After losing to his father in golf, Stephen Curry leaps into Lake Tahoe

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Golf fanatic Stephen Curry was clearly enjoying himself on the links at the American Century Championship celebrity golf event in Lake Tahoe this past weekend.

But he couldn’t beat his father, Dell.

The price? Curry (and his caddy) had to jump in the lake. Check out the video above.

For the record, Tony Romo won the event.