Friday, June 26, 2009

ESPN'S Mock Draft Nailed the Patrick Beverly Pick

Last week I posted that ESPN had stated that the Miami Heat were very impressed with Patrick Beverly's workout and were looking to take him with their first 2nd round pick. Here we are the day after the draft and Patrick Beverly is property of the Heat. It did not quite happen how it was predicted, but they Heat were able to turn their pick, LSU guard Marcus Thorton, into two future 2nd rounders by trading him to the New Orleans Hornets. They then were able to trade one of those future 2nd rounders to the Los Angeles Lakers for Patrick Beverly who was picked one spot ahead of their pick. All in all, the Heat ended up with the guy that they wanted all along plus an extra 2nd round pick in next years draft. I would say that is a great move on Pat Riley's part, and one that is not really being mentioned much today.
What did the Heat get in Patrick Beverly? Possibly a Mario Chalmers clone. The guy is a super athlete who might be more of a combo guard than a traditional point guard. He started his career at Arkansas, but ended up leaving to play in the Ukraine last year. Through it all, he has shown the ability to score in bunches, whether it is attacking the hoop or shooting from the outside. He was a monster at Eurocamp, consistently filling up all aspects of the stat sheet. His athleticism and hustle have Riley believing that he can become as close to a defensive stopper as you can have at the point guard spot. Last season was a nightmare when Chalmers was out of the game so Beverly and perhaps another veteran will be brought in to shore up that spot.
Beverly is far from a finished product, but he has shown enough potential that the Heat's staff believing that they might have gotten a steal in the 2nd round.

  • With the final pick of the draft, the Heat picked Robert Dozier out of the University of Memphis. Dozier showed off some skills while there, but never fully put the entire package together. He will most likely be sent to Europe for seasoning, with hopes that he can return in a year or two and provide the Heat with a versatile and big wing player.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Patrick Beverly To The Heat With Pick #43 In ESPN'S Mock Draft

The Heat were impressed with his workout and could use another athletic combo guard in the backcourt, especially someone who defends as well as Beverley does.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Michael Beasley Goes Back To Work

Michael Wallace of the Miami Herald with our Michael Beasley fix:

Beasley appears to be adjusting well to the initial stages of his conversion from power forward to small forward. The team plans to continue to play him at both positions, which is why Beasley is being strongly encouraged to put on about 10 pounds this offseason. He will add the weight yet improve his quickness and versatility. He also won't have a shortage of motivation. Beasley will likely find himself on the outside looking in when it comes to a spot at the USA training camp. The team will bring together 24 of the top first, second or third-year players to form a pseudo pipeline for future USA national teams. Judging by the names that have emerged, it looks like USA basketball went out of its way to pick around Beasley.

Last we heard of Beasley, he was working on guard drills to adjust to the life of a small forward, and now we hear he is bulking up to play some power forward as well. Looks like the Heat is trying develop Beasley into a combo forward who is able to attack opposing defenses any way he wants, much in the same way that Antwan Jamison does for the Washington Wizards. Is Beasley a power forward or small forward and does it even matter? All we can ask for is that Beasley just continues to work hard on his overall game. Beasley has the potential to be an All Star in this league and it could happen as soon as he wants it to.

NBA DRAFT: Workout Update

Miami Hurricane guard Jack McClinton led a group of possible draft picks that the Miami Heat brought in to work out. The Heat have the 43rd and 60th pick in the draft and are bringing in players who might fall in that range. Other players in the workout were Connecticut point guard AJ Price, UCLA forward Alfred Aboya and LSU forward Chris Johnson. McLinton is the biggest name of the group and there are doubts that he would even last until the Heat's first pick. If he is there when the Heat does pick, would he be a good fit or is he a copy of Daquan Cook? One thing we do know, is that the Magic made it to the finals by surrounding Dwight Howard with nothing but shooters. The Heat could do worse than drafting players to put around Dwayne Wade that can score the ball. Too often the team seemed stagnant when the ball was out of Wade's hands, McClinton could help fix that issue.

Monday, June 15, 2009

FLASHBACK: HEAT - KNICKS 1997 The Fight That Started It All

Highlights from the 1997 NBA Playoff Series between the HEAT and the KNICKS. The HEAT won the series 4-3, but it will always be remembered for the fighting between the two teams most notably when Charlie Ward got flipped by PJ Brown.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Michael Beasley Shifting To SF?

Michael Beasley began serious offseason workouts Monday, starting a long process in which Heat coach Erik Spoelstra will determine if he is suited to playing a lot at small forward. Besides needing to improve his defense for that position, ''he must improve his passing,'' ABC's Jeff Van Gundy said off the air.

Miami Herald

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

A Case For Hedo Turkoglu to the Heat

With Hedo Turkoglu making his case as the best player hitting free agency this summer, it begs the question, would the Orlando Magic actually let him walk in free agency? All season long the Magic has lived and died by shooting the three, and it got them all the way to the finals. However, those looks would not be there without the interior game of Dwight Howard. Howard has been a one man wrecking crew in the interior all year, but it appears that he has met his match in the front line of the Lakers. It has become clearer and clearer throughout the finals that Howard's post game needs a lot of work this summer. Send him to big man camp with Patrick Ewing and figure out a way to get the guy some moves.
One guy who already has all the moves is Turkoglu. The guy has showed throughout the season and the playoffs that he has the ability to create off the dribble and/or hit the spot up jumper. He has been their go to guy, their clutch ball handler, and their go to defender down the stretch the other night. It is this versatility that makes him a matchup nightmare for opposing squads, so why in the world would they let him go? Rashard Lewis, is the other forward in the lineup, and he is another player suited small forward. Lewis is a sweet shooting athlete who shies away from banging inside, which has not been an issue till the finals. The Magic are getting killed inside, cause there is no help for Howard. Would they be better served having Lewis on the perimeter and a true power forward next to Howard?
If that is the case, Riley needs to get on the horn and see about working a sign and trade deal giving up Udonis Haslem and change for Hedo Turkoglu. Turkoglu is 30 years old and started hitting his prime over the last 2 seasons. His versatile game would match up perfectly with Dwayne Wade, allowing the Heat with more opportunities to play Wade off of the ball and keep defenses honest, by giving the team another scorer. A frontcourt of Jermaine O'Neal, Michael Beasley, and Hedo Turkoglu looks great to me.
Will the Magic look at this seasons finals and realize that what they were missing was more help inside for Howard, or will they be content with the frontcourt that got them to the finals? If it comes down to a lack of size, then Riley needs to do his best to sign Turkoglu as a free agent or work a sign and trade deal for some more money, cause he would be a great addition to this lineup.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

2009 FREE AGENTS...Whose on your wishlist?


Key: ETO = Early Termination Option; P = Player Option; T = Team Option

Thomas Gardner
Othello Hunter
Mario West
Josh Childress
Solomon Jones
Marvin Williams

Zaza Pachulia
Mike Bibby
Ronald Murray

Glen Davis
Leon Powe

Eddie House (P)
Stephon Marbury
Mikki Moore

Raymond Felton
Cartier Martin
Sean May
Sean Singletary (T)

Juwan Howard

Aaron Gray

Ben Gordon
Lindsey Hunter
Jerome James (P)


Zydrunas Ilgauskas (ETO)
Joe Smith
Wally Szczerbiak
Anderson Varejao (P)
Lorenzen Wright

Ryan Hollins

Brandon Bass
Devean George (P)
Gerald Green
Jason Kidd
James Singleton

Linas Kleiza
Johan Petro

Chris Andersen
Anthony Carter
Jason Hart
Steven Hunter (ETO)
Dahntay Jones

Walter Herrmann

Kwame Brown (P)
Allen Iverson
Antonio McDyess
Rasheed Wallace

Golden State
Rob Kurz
C.J. Watson

Jamal Crawford (ETO)


Ron Artest
Brian Cook (P)
Dikembe Mutombo
Von Wafer

Jarrett Jack
Josh McRoberts

Maceo Baston
Marquis Daniels (T)
Travis Diener (P)
Stephen Graham
Rasho Nesterovic

L.A. Clippers
Alex Acker (T)
Steve Novak

Ricky Davis (P)
Fred Jones
Brian Skinner (P)

L.A. Lakers
Shannon Brown

Trevor Ariza
Kobe Bryant (ETO)
Lamar Odom

Juan Carlos Navarro
Hakim Warrick

Chris Mihm
Quinton Ross
Mike Wilks

Joel Anthony
Yakhouba Diawara (P)
Jamario Moon
Chris Quinn (P)

Mark Blount (ETO)
Luther Head
Jamaal Magloire
Jermaine O'Neal (P)

Ersan Ilyasova
Ramon Sessions
Charlie Villanueva

Malik Allen (P)
Keith Bogans
Francisco Elson (P)
Damon Jones

Bobby Brown (P)

Rodney Carney
Jason Collins
Kevin Ollie
Shelden Williams

New Jersey

Maurice Ager
Trenton Hassell (ETO)
Jarvis Hayes (T)

New Orleans

Ryan Bowen
Melvin Ely
Sean Marks

New York
David Lee
Nate Robinson

Eddy Curry (ETO)
Al Harrington (P)
Quentin Richardson (ETO)
Chris Wilcox

Oklahoma City

Damien Wilkins (ETO)
Desmond Mason
Malik Rose
Robert Swift

Marcin Gortat
Jeremy Richardson

Adonal Foyle
Anthony Johnson (P)
Tyronn Lue
Hedo Turkoglu (ETO)


Royal Ivey (P)
Donyell Marshall
Andre Miller
Theo Ratliff
Kareem Rush

Louis Amundson (T)

Matt Barnes
Grant Hill
Stromile Swift

Channing Frye

Raef LaFrentz
Shavlik Randolph
Michael Ruffin

Ike Diogu
Rashad McCants

Calvin Booth
Bobby Jackson
Cedric Simmons

San Antonio

Michael Finley (P)
Drew Gooden
Ime Udoka
Jacque Vaughn

Carlos Delfino
Joey Graham

Shawn Marion
Anthony Parker
Jake Voskuhl

Paul Millsap
Kyrylo Fesenko (T)

Morris Almond
Carlos Boozer (P)
Jarron Collins
Brevin Knight
Kyle Korver (ETO)
Mehmet Okur (ETO)
Ronnie Price


Juan Dixon
Etan Thomas (ETO)

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Offseason Manifesto

The NBA is a copycat league, so it should be no surprise to anyone that most fans of teams not in the league's final 4 are sitting around wondering what separates their teams from the teams left playing. The most simplistic answer would Kobe Bryant, Carmelo Anthony, LeBron James, and Dwight Howard but the truth of it comes down to the supporting cast. The Orlando Magic have a clear advantage in the middle over the Cavs, but had it not been the play of the rest of the roster they would not be up 2-1 in the series. Same with the Denver Nuggets who are giving the Los Angeles Lakers everything they can handle, due to the play of guys like Dahntay Jones, Chris Anderson, and J.R. Smith.

The Magic are able to get good looks for Howard inside, because they are getting the outside scoring from Rashard Lewis, Hedo Turkoglu. However, without the all around play of Rafaer Alston, Courtney Lee, and Mikeal Pietrus, the offensive balance would be out of whack and the Cavs, who were favored in the series, would have the Magic on their heels. The Magic have to be the presumptive favorite at this point, after 3 very good games. Had it not been for some bad calls in Game 2 and a miraculous three pointer by LeBron, the Magic would have been up 3-0 going into tonight's game.

This type of balance is the blueprint for what the Heat needs to take it to the next level. Dwayne Wade is one of the greatest talents in the game, and will always be talked about in the MVP debate as long as he is healthy, but without a strong supporting cast he will always be looking at playoff heartache. If the Hawks series showed management anything, it was that his teammates were not ready for prime time. Injuries kept Jermaine O'Neal from playing up to his potential all year, but will an offseason working in Chicago with Wade's trainer, Tim Grover, get him back on track? When healthy, O'Neal provides the Heat with a guy that can take the offensive pressure off of Wade, and also make up for some of the teams defensive deficiencies by protecting the hoop. He showed flashes of being a go to post player capable of getting 15 points on a nightly basis.

If O'Neal does not return to form, then they need to be find look elsewhere for a second scorer. Ideally it would come from within from the improvement of Michael Beasley. Beasley's game has been analyzed over and over, but the one consensus is that he has a ton of talent. It is the job of the coaching staffs this offseason to find the way to best utilize that talent. Is he a power forward or a small forward? Not sure there is an answer to that question yet. What is known, is that he needs a lot of work on the court and off of it. He needs help with building his confidence and his conditioning this summer. A confident and in shape Beasley would strike fear into opossing teams, cause the skill set is there and will only get better.

Two other young players that should take the jump to the next level of consistency are Daquan Cook, and Mario Chalmers. Both players had some great moments this year and both struggled in the playoffs. Another offseason of hard work, could help take the pressure of Wade. When these two guys were playing well, the Heat were at their best this season, and that is not a coincidence. If they can keep defenses honest and play strong defense, the team will improve.

The Heat does not want to add guaranteed salary this offseason that goes beyond 2010, in order to keep the flexibility to add an All Star next to Wade via free agency next summer, so this offseason will be focussing on adding the complementary pieces. The team needs the most help on the bench, mainly the point guard spot, the center spot, and added scoring off of the bench.

Chris Quinn is not going to cut it as a backup to Chalmers, so they need to add a veteran who can keep the team steady when Chalmers sits. Keep an eye on how the Jamaal Tinsely situation plays out in Indiana. He is not the quickest guy, but he is a veteran who has played in big playoff series, so he should not shrink when the games get important. I don't know whether Chalmers was fatigued against Atlanta or in over his head, but the duo of Mike Bibby and Flip Murray outplayed him every night.

I liked the toughness that Jamaal Magloire brings to the team, but too often this year the Heat's big men seemed like they were standing in cement when playing a more athletic frontcourt. Adding a player like Chris Wilcox or Brandon Bass that can score inside and run in transition is a necessity. I would like to bring Magloire back, to battle the big physical centers and provide leadership in the locker room. The guy can be seen cheering on his teammates every game, and we need more players like that. I am envious of the camaraderie that teams like Cleveland and Denver have shown throughout the playoffs, so it would be a shame to lose a team-guy like Magloire.

Adding athleticism to the team overall is a must this offseason, as is getting more scoring off of the bench. Hopefully with the addition of a backup point and help in the frontcourt the team will help the scoring void they had this year when Wade sat, but it would not hurt to find our very own Flip Murray. A guy that has been overlooked by other teams, but finds a home with a team that is in need of his one skill. Murray was not a great defender or ball handler, but the Hawks were in need of offense off the bench, and he provided just that. These type of players are where a GM's really makes his money; whether it being a cast off from another squad or a late draft pick. I would love to see the Heat use one of their 2 second round picks on a players like Tyrese Rice from Boston College or Tony Douglas. These are two potential picks that are not looked at as potential starters in the league, but made names for themselves being prolific scorers in college, therefore I like their chances of carving a niche on a team with this ability.

The Heat has a tough task this offseason, in building a more competitive team, while not adding long term contracts. Their is obvious room for improvement through the development of the young players, while also having a full season of Jermaine O'Neal and Dwayne Wade together, now it is time to collect the pieces around them. Will Udonis Haslem be used as trade bait to fill another hole on the team or is he too valuable in the locker room to let go? Is Michael Beasley the answer at power forward or is he better suited for small forward? Lots of questions and not a lot of answers just yet. Stay tuned, for analysis throughout the offseason on what the Heat is up to.