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Archive for October, 2010

Heat Sign Jerry Stackhouse, Waive Beverley and Butler

October 25th, 2010 4 comments

A freak injury to the right thumb of Mike Miller is expected to keep one of the NBA’s top three-point shooters sidelined for an extended period of time.

Miller fractured a bone and tore a ligament when the thumb on his shooting hand got tangled in a teammate’s jersey during a post drill at practice last Wednesday. He underwent surgery Friday to repair the damage. He will remain in a cast for four weeks, then move to a brace for several more weeks, then prepare once again for the start of the season. The Heat don’t expect him back on the court before January.

Pat Riley met with Erik Spoelstra and other team officials about options on dealing with the injury. They chose Jerry Stackhouse, on a one-year fully unguaranteed minimum salary contract, for temporary relief. It is the wrong move.

Stackhouse won’t rock the boat, won’t bring drama, and will bring a high caliber of veteran leadership. But let’s be clear — this team does not need more veteran leadership. James, Wade and Bosh provide plenty of that. It needs an injection of youth and athleticism. It needs to develop for the future. It needs to identify players with the type of floor-spacing shooting stroke that it has just lost. It needs to find tough, quick defenders.

Stackhouse is none of those things. He is old (he turns 36 next month). He is working on wonky knees. He is a glaring defensive liability on a team that puts a premium on it. He is a man no longer capable of providing any of the offensive value he once did. And he has never been a good three-point shooter (31% for his career). He provides nothing this team needs.

He is nothing more than a sub-optimal stand-in for Miller. But when Miller gets healthy, he’s gone. Why sign someone who has no chance of being a member of the Heat come playoff time? Why sign someone who has no chance to be a part of the Heat’s future? Why eat up a valuable roster spot on such a player?

With the Stackhouse addition, the Heat roster stood at 17. The team had until 6 p.m. today to get its roster to the regular-season limit of 15 as they prepared for tomorrow’s season opener against Boston. Beverley and Butler were the final two cuts.

Beverley and Butler were both competing for the Stackhouse spot. They had a real shot at being a big part of the Heat’s future. Danny Green was a better option than both of them.

In an alternate universe, all three could have been retained. In an alternate universe, the Heat could have kept Beverley as its potential point guard of the future (by waiving Magloire), Green as its potential shooting guard of the future (by passing on Stackhouse), and Butler as its potential small forward of the future (by waiving Howard). That’s a quality developmental backcourt.  Read more…

Heat Should Pursue Danny Green

October 22nd, 2010 No comments

With Mike Miller injured, recently waived Danny Green could be the perfect fit.

Mike Miller is injured.

The severity of the Heat shooting guard’s thumb injury isn’t public, and early indications are not promising. The Heat did not announce the findings from an MRI that Miller received on his right hand, but the team is bracing itself to be without its best shooter for an extended period.

Although LeBron James has said that he is confident that Miller will play a majority of the regular season, this is no doubt a huge blow to the Heat. Signing a $29 million, 5-year contract with Miami this past off-season, Miller was supposed to be the fourth-best player on the Heat, providing a three-point touch as a complimentary element to a powerful starting lineup.

Instead, the Heat is left without a single backup shooting guard on the roster — none!

Pat Riley has met with Erik Spoelstra and other team officials about options on dealing with the injury. They appear destined to turn to Jerry Stackhouse for temporary relief. It is the wrong move.

Stackhouse won’t rock the boat, won’t bring drama, and will bring a high caliber of veteran leadership. But let’s be clear — this team does not need more veteran leadership. James, Wade and Bosh provide plenty of that. This team needs depth. It needs players who can play. It needs to identify a player with the type of floor-spacing shooting stroke that it has just lost, packaged in the body of a man who can provide solid backcourt defense.

Stackhouse is not that. He is old. He is working on wonky knees. He is a glaring defensive liability on a team that puts a premium on it. He is a man no longer capable of providing any of the offensive value he once did. And he never had the ability to stroke the long ball; he’s a career 30.7% shooter from beyond the arc. He provides nothing this team needs.

There is simply no way Stackhouse will be a member of the Miami Heat come playoff time. So why sign him now?

But the Heat does have a glaring need. Even when healthy, the slow-footed 6-foot, 8-inch Miller is more of a small forward than he is a shooting guard capable of defending the perimeter.

A possible solution comes from the unlikeliest of places. The Cleveland Cavaliers.

Dan Gilbert’s team has just done the Miami Heat a huge favor. It has waived second year guard Danny Green.  Read more…

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Heat Waive Kenny Hasbrouck and Shavlik Randolph

October 20th, 2010 No comments

As expected, the Heat have cut Kenny Hasbrouck and Shavlik Randolph loose.

Randolph never had a realistic shot at making the opening day roster.

Hasbrouck faced long odds to earn a spot. But he did nothing to help his cause during preseason play. He made just 9 of his 41 shots, including just 1 of his 15 three-point attempts, averaging 4.6 points, 3.0 assists, and 1.4 rebounds in 24 minutes per game.

The Hasbrouck-Beverley competition for a possible final roster spot was the most hotly scrutinized, debated and captivating storyline of the second half of the offseason – starting during Summer League play (where Hasbrouck dominated), through training camp and into the preseason. Hasbrouck was thought to have had the more NBA-ready game. That never materialized. Beverley struggled somewhat himself, but did average more points, rebounds, assists and steals during the preseason, while averaging fewer turnovers and fouls in nearly identical minutes. Beverley was also the vastly superior defender and three-point shooter.

The question now is whether the Beverley win will translate into a roster spot.

Teams are allowed to carry as many as 20 players in the offseason, but must cut to 15 by opening night. The Heat roster currently stands at 16. Fourteen are veterans with fully guaranteed contracts. Da’Sean Butler has a partial guarantee, but has been all but assured a spot as he continues his rehabilitation.

It would appear that the Heat have run out of available slots for Beverley. The situation was equally true when Beverley signed his fully-guaranteed, multi-year contract nearly three months ago, prompting speculation that he could be added with a roster spot that would be freed up by waiving fourth-string center Jamaal Magloire.

For a Heat team with limited options with which to meaningfully improve – having just traded away four first-round draft picks, the Heat’s competition will have roster-building advantages almost every summer – and considering Beverley’s considerable upside, waiving Magloire, who is unlikely to see any playing time this season, would appear to be the prudent approach.

Randolph and Hasbrouck do get nice parting gifts – both had $250,000 guarantees in their deals.