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.

Tough Questions with Damon Weaver

These interviews by 5th Grade Student Reporter Damon Weaver are great, but the highlight has to be around the 3:33 mark when Michael Beasley is asked about the presidential election. Great work Damon.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


The Miami Herald is reporting that free agent point guard, Andre Miller, is interested in the Heat if he leaves Philadelphia. Miller is one of the most underrated point guards in the league, but that is probably because he his game is far from flashy. If you look at his career stats you will notice that he is consistently solid in a lot of areas, averaging 14.6ppg, 7.4apg, 4.2rpg, and 1.2spg. The guy knows how to fill up a stat sheet. If he signed with the Heat, he would provide leadership in the locker room, an efficient ballhandler, and better on ball defense than we had with Mario Chalmers. Miller can cover either guard position, which would allow Wade a rest at times on the court.
Still there is always a big question mark with Miller, which is his lack of three point shooting. This past season he connected on 15 total three pointers and the previous season only 3. We got better production from behind the arc over the last two seasons from our fourth string center Mark Blount. So for all of the positives that Miller brings to a team, does his inability to stretch a defense make him the wrong fit next to Dwayne Wade? Or will his ability to get the ball to Wade in his prefered spots make up for his weakness?
In my opinion Wade needs to be surrounded by players who can hit from behind the arc to allow him the chance to operate late in games without the fear of a double or triple team. You look at the shooters surrounding Lebron James and Kobe Bryant, and look how much more attention those guys take from the defense than the players around Wade this season. Too often in the playoffs Wade was forced to go 1 on 5, cause there was nobody else with the ability to put pressure on the other team. While Miller is a steady player, he is not the right fit next to Wade. I would rather see fellow free agent Mike Bibby in a Heat uniform keeping defenses honest.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

This Is Why ZO Will Always Be Part Of The Heat

With the Heat down 0-1 in the series, Alonzo hopped a flight to Atlanta to have a pep talk with Dwayne Wade about defensive intensity. That is the definition of a Heat lifer. He put his body on the line each night he played and still is contributing to the squad even after his retirment.
"I came into town because I didn't like the energy in Game 1."
Alonzo Mourning

HEAT 108 HAWKS 93 Series 1-1

On a night that the Heat needed to find some help for Dwayne Wade to tie the series up, they got it from just about everyone.
  • Before we get to anyone else, I think it is time for the fans to jump back on the Dwayne Wade for MVP train. The guy was the best player on the court last night, finishing with 33 points, 7 assists, 5 rebounds, 2 blocks, and an amazing 6 three pointers. The most amazing one came late in the 4th quarter with time running down and Wade somehow banks one in over Joe Johnson. Just that kind of night for Flash.
  • Daquan Cook joined Wade in the three point barrage with 6 of his own. Combined those two set an NBA record for most 3 pointers by two teammates in a playoff game. This was a sizzling performance for a guy that has been in a slump since the All Star Break.
  • I guess I was wrong about the approach that Jermaine O'Neal should be taking to these games, because we saw last night what happens when he is able to get some touches early and often. He finished with 19 points, 6 rebounds, and 4 blocks, while going 7-8 from the line. A closer look at these numbers shows that he was instrumental in the Heat controlling the tempo as he did all his work around the hoop. Attempting 8 free throws is a result of strong inside play.
  • O'Neal was not alone inside last night, as Udonis Haslem played the 4th quarter like a veteran of many playoff battles should. With Wade sitting due to foul trouble, Haslem hit back to back jumpers that took the life out of the Hawks. This is the value that he brings to this young squad, and it has often gone unnoticed this season, but not last night.
  • Michael Beasley sported some new cornrows, but still made the same amount of knucklehead plays. The frustration with Beasley is so strong because his talent is so immense. On a night when he looked lost, he was still able to 12 points and 7 boards.
  • Mario Chalmers where are you? 7 assists is nice, but don't be afraid to shoot the ball.
  • The Hawks fierce running attack was held in check last night, and like most of the season, their halfcourt offense never got going. Mike Bibby is a heck of a player, but he is not a facilitator at the point guard spot, so they often get stuck playing one on one as the shot clock is running down.
  • If the Heat are to win this series then they will have to keep the Hawks from getting out and running just like they did last night.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

HEAT -vs HAWKS Game 2 Preview

Well game 1 could not have gone worse for the Heat, but no matter if you lose by 1 or by 26, a loss is just a loss. The goal for the Heat was to split the series in Atlanta at one game a piece so that they can go back to Miami with home court advantage. After such a blowout, the question remains is it still possible for this to happen, and I think so. There is no way after watching the whole season, that Atlanta is 26 points better than Miami on a nightly basis. These teams are much more evenly matched than that score would have you believe, but for this to play out Dwayne Wade is going to need a lot more help from everyone than he got the other night. With the Hawks throwing their whole team at Wade, it was no surprise that he struggled to get it going in game 1. Only one other player on the team scored in double figures, which is inexcusable. Michael Beasley, who had been playing great down the stretch, looked like a rookie all night. From his playfulness in warmups to his poor shot attempts during the game, he screamed no playoff experience. The Heat needs him to get his head on straight if they are going to have a chance in this series, cause he is the only one who can compete with the highly athletic front court of the Hawks. Josh Smith, Marvin Williams, and Al Horford put a punishing on the Heat's big men, even Zaza Pachulia even got in the act finishing with 10 points and 10 rebounds. That was exactly the stat line we got from our second best player, and they got it from their second string center.
Things can only get better from this first game, right? You have to believe Wade will find a way to make things happen tonight. For this to happen, he is going to need one of the teams shooters to start making shots, so he can get some looks of his own without 3 defenders in his face. The Heat is not nearly as athletic as the Hawks, but if they can make their jumpers, they can keep the Hawks from getting out in transition so much. Nothing gets a fastbreak kickstarted than long rebounds. Another way to keep the Hawks out of transition would be for Udonis Haslem and Jermaine O'Neal to attack the boards. They finished with 7 rebounds combined. I am tired of O'Neal complaining about lack of touches, when he is providing nothing else on the court. Hit the boards, play tough D, and I guarantee the team is going to reward you with some touches inside.
Game 1 showed us that this Heat team was not quite ready for primetime, but 2 days off should have them with their heads back on straight. A butt kicking will do that to you, and it was a thorough butt kicking they received on Sunday. Have a little faith in Dwayne Wade Heat fans, the guy is truly one of the 5 best players in the NBA, because he never goes down without fight. Expect a battle tonight!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009


  • Could tonight's game have been a battle for a first team All NBA spot? Dwight Howard, Lebron James, and Kobe Bryant are a lock, so there is an open spot in the frontcourt and in the backcourt. Dwayne Wade and Chris Paul are both deserving of that backcourt spot, it should be interesting to see who gets the votes. If only one of them could qualify for that frontcourt spot, cause there is nobody else in the NBA who should be talked about in the top 5 guys on the season.
  • Another first quarter deficit for the Heat, this time 12. When is enough enough? I understand Beasley is looked at as a spark off the bench, but we need an influx of life into the starting lineup.
  • Jermaine O'Neal with a great shot block in transition racing back to stop an easy layup by Antonio Daniels.
  • There is nobody on the Heat who can stay in front of Chris Paul, but that is the same way throughout the whole league. The guy is a blur with the ball in his hands and uses his body to create space as well as anyone I have ever seen.
  • The same could be said for Dwayne Wade, who had an up and down game, but seems to always fill the stat sheets. Tonight he finished with 32 points, 7 rebounds, and 6 assists.
  • However, the most crucial play of his night turned out to be his missed free throw that could have put the game away.
  • Instead Rasual Butler's hit a three with time running out that sucked the life out of the Heat and their fans.
  • The Hornets got their second wind in the overtime, pick and popping the Heat to death. Paul and David West really have a good thing going. Hopefully Wade and Michael Beasley can develop into a duo like that one day.
  • Speaking of Beasley, he played every minute of the second half and overtime, and had a great game. He was active on both ends of the court, and his inspired play lifted the Heat out of their first half daze. The extended minutes looks good on the young guy.
  • Jamaal Magloire and James Jones were also strong off of the bench, but there are still too many holes on the roster.
  • This was a forgettable night all around for Mario Chalmers. Maybe he was reminiscing too much about the shot he hit a year ago today to lead Kansas to the NCAA Championship. He is not Chris Paul's equal on any night, but the Heat needed better than a 1-10 night.
  • Tough loss for the Heat, when take into account that they could have gone up a game and a half on the 76ers for the 5th spot in the East. Instead they are still only up a half a game with 4 to go. Up next Boston, so it does not get any easier.
  • Paul's team got the best of Wade's tonight and maybe that will be the deciding factor in the All NBA voting. Not one game, but the two teams overall records at the end of the season.

Thursday, April 2, 2009


Well this is not the kind of aggressiveness that I had in mind when talking about Mario Chalmers yesterday, but that is the kind of aggressiveness we ended up with and it lost us the game. With roughly 7 seconds left, the ball in Chalmers hands, and the whole stadium thinking that the Heat would call a timeout, Coach Spoelstra opted to go for the win on the run. This was a bold call by a rookie coach looking for a big win for his young team, but it just was not the right call at the time. When you have Dwayne Wade on your team with the time running down you need to do anything in your power to get the ball in his hands and last night that meant calling a timeout. Chalmers did the right thing by trying to get to the hoop, but he is just not used to moments as big as last night, and his enthusiasm got the best of him. Who knows what would have happened had Spoelstra called a timeout, but it was the move we had to make.

With last nights loss the Heat falls a percentage point behind the Philadelphia 76ers for 5th place with 7 games left to play. This gives the team no chance to get any rest for Wade, as each win is a must. 4 games on the road, which does not bode well for a team that has struggled all season away from home. There are no easy games down the stretch, as all but one of these teams is fighting for their own playoff lives or a better seed. The Heat have a day off before they get back to back road games at Charlotte and Washington. It would be huge if they could turn around their fortunes and get 2 wins on the road.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

HEAT -vs- MAVERICKS preview

The fans in Dallas will never forget the 2006 NBA Finals, nor will the players on that squad as the Mavs have won 9 straight regular season games. Since the finals the Heat has struggled to find their identity, automatically fading into a rebuilding mode, while the Mavs tried to keep their core together as long as they could. After 2 straight playoff collapses, that started against the Heat, the Mavs attempted to inject some veteran leadership into their squad by adding Jason Kidd. However, this move did not work as planned and the Mavs now look farther away from a championship than they have in ages.

This years Mavs team looks like a lock now for the 8th seed in the West, with the Suns fading fast, yet they have no shot getting past the first round. Their squad is still led by Dirk Nowitzki, a perenial All-NBA forward, who is 2 years removed from winning the NBA MVP award. He is a matchup nightmare for most squads with his inside outside game, but Udonis Haslem is one of the players who has a history of playing well against him. Haslem is physical enough to keep Dirk from getting comfortable at the high post, while being quick enough to keep him in front of him while he tries to put the ball on the floor. This is an important matchup in this game.

The other major matchup in the game will be in the backcourt. Everyone knows that Dwayne Wade's eyes light up when he takes on the Mavs, but how will Mario Chalmers deal with Jason Kidd? Kidd has slowed down over the years, but he is still a savvy veteran. Will this be the difference or will Chalmers be able to take advantage of his quickness? Kidd has been burned by quick guards all season long, so I expect Coach Spoelstra to have Chalmers to attack Kidd all game. When Chalmers is aggressive he provides Wade with the perfect complement, cause he does not have to carry the load all on his own.
With the Heat struggling over their last 5 games, this win is crucial to keep from having to play the Orlando Magic in the first round of the playoffs. Wade and the squad know this, and will play accordingly.
It is fitting that the first Heat jersey to be retired was Alonzo Mourning, because nobody in Heat history to that point had truly been a fan favorite like Zo was. When Pat Riley took over in 1995-96 season he brought in Zo to be the face of the franchise, and the rest was history. Zo, the warrior, took this team to levels that they only dreamed of, with division titles and playoff battles. It was a shame that he never was able to lift his teams to the NBA Championship, but it was fitting that when the Heat finally did collect their first ring, Zo played a role. He was not the same dominant player that he had been, but it was a testament to his character that he battled off the bench nonetheless for a franchise that he loved so much. Zo gave his heart and soul to Riley and it was our joy as fans to watch him on Monday night be rewarded with his jersey lifted to the rafters. Zo will always be remembered by us as a competitor who caught a few bad breaks, but never stopped fighting for this squad. Congratulations Zo, you deserve the honor.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

HEAT -vs- BULLS Preview

It seems like we are always playing against the Bulls these days. Not much has changed in terms of the teams approach since the last match up, but Derrick Rose has been out for the Bulls. He should be a game time decision after hurting his wrist on a dunk attempt the other night. If Rose is out, the Heat should have an advantage in quickness. They better be quick tonight, after last nights embarrassing defeat handed to them by the lowly Indiana Pacers. I expect a much better effort from Dwayne Wade, who always plays well against the Bulls.


That was just a bad loss all around. Not only are the Heat battling to keep their playoff position, but they lose what looked to be an easy win matchup wise. No Mike Dunleavy and an early injury to Troy Murphy, should have resulted in an easy win, but the team never got it together. Dwayne Wade struggled to put the ball in the hoop, and the rest of the team did not pick up the slack. Udonis Haslem had a great game, scoring 18 points and pulling down 15 rebounds, but the rest of the team just did not come to play. Their was no answer for Danny Granger or the 2 headed point guard monster of TJ Ford and Jarret Jack. Once again Mario Chalmers got torched on defense and Luther Head provided no relief on the defensive end either. This was a game to forget.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009


It is safe to say that the rest of the league is looking at Dwayne Wade as a real MVP candidate these days. In the last 2 games he has powered his team to wins over Detroit and Memphis. The Detroit game showed off his clutch defense, as he had the big block down the stretch on Rodney Stuckey and then saved the ball from going out of bounds to seal up the win. Then last night against Memphis he made the plays early and often for a blow out win. He set a new single season scoring mark for the Heat topping his previous high in the 2005-06 season. Wade's versatility is on display every night and that is the mark of a true MVP candidate.
He has propelled a team that would have been lottery team into the playoff race easily. It does not look like they are going to catch Atlanta for home court in the first round, but getting the fifth seed and playing that Hawks team is better for them than dropping to the 6th seed and having to deal with Dwight Howard and the Orlando Magic. Jermaine O'Neal has a much better chance of playing Al Horford evenly than he does of competing with Howard at this point in his career. Howard is just too physically gifted to contain, and the Magic have surrounded him with a group of great outside shooters, which makes it tough to double down on him. Horford on the other hand, is flanked by a bunch of good players, but yet reached the point where he needs to be double teamed every night. Earlier this year he did put up a 20-20 game on the Heat, but he can't do that for a 7 game series, whereas Howard can.
This is where Wade's brilliance comes in. He is far and away better than anything either team has to offer, and if the frontcourt is evenly matched up, no team with a player as good as he is can be counted out. They say that in a 7 game series, that the best team will win, well what about the best player? The true testament of a great player is that he makes everyone around him better, and Wade does that. Congrats to Wade on a new scoring record, and with the playoff seeding hanging in the balance I fully expect that record to get demolished here in the last few months as he puts this Heat team on his back.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

HEAT -vs- PISTONS Preview

The Heat takes on their old playoff nemesis today, this time it is in a battle for seeding in the East. Both teams have fallen off from being the top teams in the East, but they still have some fight left in them. For the Heat they seem to be on the way back up, and for the Pistons they want to show the world that they are not done just yet. They have had an up and down season, in part due to the Chauncey Billups - Allen Iverson trade, but there are some pieces in place to still get it done. They are a team you do not want to play in the playoffs, cause their core guys can beat anyone on any given night. As for this night? I think the Heat's need to salvadge this road trip will be the inspiration to get it done. I expect Dwayne Wade to lead the way often and early, and the Heat to follow suit. If Jermaine O'Neal can get some scoring opportunities the Heat should win this game.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

CELTICS 112 HEAT 108 in OT

  • So this is what life without Dwayne Wade looks like and it started very ugly.
  • Looks like Wade will not be reaching his goal of playing in all 82 games this year.
  • The Celtics shot 68% in the first half despite missing Kevin Garnett, Ray Allen. That is just unacceptable if you are Coach Spoelstra. Stopping Paul Pierce had to be the agenda, and 12 points in the first quarter is not the way to do it. Double Team Him!
  • Once again the Heat found itself down after the 1st quarter, this time down 34-21.
  • Beasley came out aggressive to start the 2nd quarter scoring and the squad followed his lead. He needs to a consistent effort like this when Wade is not playing if the Heat is going to beat anyone.
  • He scores the majority of his points with face up jumpers, but if he is going to be a star in this league he is going to have to work on his post game this off-season. The Heat need him to be a guy that can get easy buckets on the block.
  • Luther Head continued to play strictly as a 2 guard. He is a good scorer, that will be a nice addition in the playoffs.
  • James Jones is shooting the rust off. Just in time to secure his spot in the rotation. He played decent defense too.
  • Chris Quinn had a nice first half, but there is no reason to have the guy on the court in the 4th quarter guarding Rajon Rondo.
  • Paul Pierce is too good not to double team him. With so many injuries on their squad, why does the Heat not treat Pierce like teams treat Wade and double him as soon as he touches it. Double Team Him!
  • Eddie House is joining the list of Heat killers. The only guy on the court outside of Pierce that could hit a jumper and the Heat still could not stop him.
  • This is the kind of game the Heat needed to play, a shootout without their leader Dwayne Wade to take over. Chalmers was very aggressive attacking the hoop for layups and kickouts. I like it.
  • The Miami Heat were 5-0 going into overtime, but the poise of Pierce and Rando was just too much.
  • I like Chalmers attitude, he was pushing and jawing with Rando on and out of bounds play, then hits a three in his face with the shot clock running out. Then hits an off balance 3 pointer to cut the game to 3points, yet it was just not enough.
  • A tough loss for the standings, but a moral win for a young squad trying to find themselves. If they can get an effort like that from Chalmers, Beasley, and O'Neal this team is going to make a stir in the playoffs. We know what Wade is going to give us, so if the supporting cast steps up, watch out.

HEAT -vs- CELTICS Preview

After winning 3 out of 4 games last week in memorable fashion, the Miami Heat got a much needed couple days of rest to start this week off. They are back at it tonight against the same undermanned Celtics team they beat last week by 8 points. The Celtics have struggled of late, due to their injuries, dropping 4 out of their last 5 games. Tonight they again will be missing their star inside, Kevin Garnett, but unlike last weeks game, they will have starting point guard, Rajon Rondo, back. Rondo has become the motor of their squad and is a good player for our own Mario Chalmers to model himself after. Rondo came into the league as nothing more than a pesky defender, but he has turned himself into one of the best penetrators in the league, while continuing to develop his outside shot. That matchup tonight will be very interesting to watch, cause when Chalmers plays well the Heat usually collect a win.

With Rondo back a lot of the load no longers falls on Paul Pierce and Ray Allen's shoulders, but unless they can get some help inside, the Celtics are going to have a hard time collecting a win. Leon Powe, who has been filling in for Kevin Garnett, hurt his knee the last night and is questionable for tonights game. This should allow Dwayne Wade to attack the rim without much opposition. The Heat need to get the ball early and often to Jermaine O'Neal and Michael Beasley inside, cause Kendrick Perkins and Mikki Moore are no match for them. O'Neal has scored 20 or more in his last 2 games.

The injuries to so many key players for the Celtics put them at a considerable disadvantage going into tonights game. However, any team that has Paul Pierce, Ray Allen, and Rajon Rondo can't be taken lightly. Hopefully the two days of rest did Dwayne Wade good, cause we are going to need a big game out of him again if our inside guys do not play up to their potential tonight. This is the type of win a Heat team trying to lock up the fifth seed in the Eastern Conference has to win.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009


He is a household name now, but most of us came to know of Dwayne Wade in the 2003 NCAA tournament when he put his Marquette team on his back and took them to the Final Four. In honor of that coming out party, here are some of Wade's best college highlights.
An Insane Shot:

Marquette's Final Four Video:

Friday, March 13, 2009


With the Heat having the night off, I thought it would be a great time to analyze the Shawn Marion for Jermaine O'Neal and Jamario Moon trade. A lot of fans have been hard on the trade, because O'Neal has not been the dominant force on the boards that they had hoped, but they are missing the big picture. Yes, if they are to succeed in the playoffs, he needs to be grabbing 8-10 boards a night instead of 6. However, this was a 2 for 1 trade and the numbers of both must be taken into account. Combined, the Heat brought in roughly 20 ppg, 10 rpg, and 3 bpg. Those are numbers that would be a dream out of one player, but hey I will take it from two guys if I have to.
Shawn Marion was not fitting into the system run in Miami, and it was obviously clear to management that the best thing to do would be to move him while still adding value to a team that is going to be in the playoffs. What did the team really lose in Marion? Defense? I would say that Moon has been just as solid as Marion was on the perimeter, but he has not been able to cover players in the post as effectively. That is where the addition of O'Neal comes in. Granted he is not on the level of the great big man in the league anymore, but no longer do we have to worry about guys like Brad Miller lighting us up. O'Neal has given the team a scoring presence inside, a much needed dynamic since they reelied too much on perimeter play. This has not fully taken form yet, as the squad still manages to forget he is on the court after the 1st quarter most of the time, but each game has been a bit better. It is the job of the coaching staff to keep O'Neal active even when he is not getting his touches, so when the 4th quarter comes around he can be that featured low post scorer that can get a few easy baskets.
Playoff basketball is played at a slower pace, and O'Neal's skills were brought in for just that. Marion was not a guy you could throw the ball to anywhere on the court and expect a bucket, unless he was wide open under the hoop. O'Neal is aplayer that can work on the block or the hight post. Since the trade Moon has really come on as a solid wing player. He has energized the squad with his wicked dunks, mostly a result of a Dwayne Wade alley oop, and he has also hit is fair share of three point shots, something Marion was not so good at.
Shawn Marion's contract runs out after the season, but the Heat were not going to use the money saved on him to add any big name players in the offseason, cause they are structuring the finances of the squad to make a push to keep Wade in 2010, while also adding another big contract. With this in mind, the deal makes great sense. Moon's contract runs out after this season and O'Neal's after next year. They have been using the 2nd half of the season to see if Moon fits in with the squad, which I would say he does. Expect management to try to sign him to a cap friendly deal, if they can find a way to move James Jones and his long term contract. O'Neal will be gone after next year, unless he is willing to take a minimum contract, so the Heat is positioned perfectly to make a play for a big named complement for D.Wade in 2010.
In order for the deal to be a smashing success, they are going to need to get production from the two players in the playoffs. Something that is going to be easier now that the roster is more balanced. No more Joel Anthony, Jamaal Magloire, or Mark Blount starting in the middle, which has to make Coach Spoelstra the happiest man in the league. Nice trade by the Heat.

Thursday, March 12, 2009


The Heat keep the streak alive against an undermanned Celtics squad. It should have been a much easier win, but in the end they got it done.
Here are the highlights:

Wednesday, March 11, 2009


It is an interesting game to prepare for tonight, because Boston will be missing two starters and three key reserves against the Heat. Most notable of these absences are forward Kevin Garnett and point guard Rajon Rondo. Garnett has missed 8 straight games and Rondo is sitting for the second straight game. Newly acquired Stephon Marbury started in Rondo's place the other night and had 4 points along with 0 assists. Not the kind of production the Celtics were hoping for when they signed the mercurial star, but they are hoping that is just takes a little time for him to get into game shape and learn the teams system. While 2 major stars are missing tonight for the Celtics, they still have 2 All Stars playing great basketball, Paul Pierce and Ray Allen. These 2 will have to carry the load tonight if they are to have a chance against Dwayne Wade and the Miami Heat.
Wade is coming off of when of the all time great performances Monday night against the Chicago Bulls and looks to capitalize on that. He did not get much help on the offensive end the other night, except for the 2 rookies, so look for the team to try to get Jermaine O'Neal a lot of looks early. When O'Neal gets in the flow early in the game, he is usually more connected throughout the game. He was ineffective most of the night against Chicago, but did have 2 huge shot blocks in the 4th quarter. Coach Spoelstra needs to find a way to get O'Neal going, because he is a proven offensive commodity that they need to take some of the load off of Wade and Michael Beasley.
While Beasley has been a nice complement to Wade, the team still needs to find a 3rd scorer. There have been times during the season when it has looked like Mario Chalmers or Daquan Cook would be that player, but both are still too prone to mental lapses to be that guy. So the burden falls on O'Neal, and tonight's matchup with the Celtics could be just what he needed. Without Garnett, Glen Davis, or Brian Scalabrine up front, the Celtics are left with Kendrick Perkins, Leon Powe, and Mikki Moore, all of which are no match for O'Neal. Powe is the best player of the bunch, but he does not have the height to take on O'Neal for most of the game. I would expect that he is going to be matched up with Beasley and Udonis Haslem tonight. Perkins and Moore should be considered nothing more than 12 fouls at this point.
With the Celtics missing so many key players, the Heat might finally have come across a team that they can afford to rest Wade against without fear or a run by the squads second unit. Expect Spoelstra to limit his stars minutes, while trying to get guys like O'Neal, Chalmers, and Cook back into the offensive flow. With the season closing and the battle for the 4th spot in the East heating up, every win is vital. The Heat can ill afford to lose especially to a team so banged up.
Prediction: Heat by 10

Tuesday, March 10, 2009


If there was anyone who did not believe that Dwayne Wade should be in the MVP debate, then all anyone needs to show them was highlights of last nights thrilling double OT win against the Chicago Bulls.
Wade's numbers on the night: 48 points, 12 assists, 6 rebounds, 4 steals, and 3 blocks.

Monday, March 9, 2009

HEAT -vs- BULLS Preview

The Heat take on the Chicago Bulls tonight at American Airlines Arena and try to rebound from a tough loss on Saturday to the Cleveland Cavaliers. The Heat overcame a 14 point first quarter deficit in that game to make it close, but the Cavs were too strong down the stretch, frustrating Wade with their physical defense. The Heat look to find a way to start the game off strong tonight, and their old rival Bulls might be the perfect team to do that against.
The Heat has beaten the Bulls twice this year, both times with strong play from their backcourt. We will get another chance to see the top pick from last years NBA draft, Derrick Rose, take on our rookie point guard, Mario Chalmers. In the matchups so far Chalmers has played Rose evenly, but Wade's outstanding play has been the real difference. Wade loves to play against his hometown squad, so this should be a fun one. Wade will be matched up tonight with offensive stud Bed Gordon and defensive annoyance Kirk Hinrich. Hinrich is a master at grabbing Wade when he is moving around screens. It often gets missed by the referees, but not by Wade, who has been injured before by Hinrich from such a move. The Bulls backcourt is tough, but no team has had an answer for Wade so far this year, so the Heat have the edge.
Both teams frontcourts have been a work in progress all season long. Both squads made a move to improve this issue at the trade deadline and are working to get acclimated with the new pieces as the season progresses. The Bulls, Luol Deng will miss this game with a leg injury, so the frontcourt scoring will fall on new arrival John Salmons. Salmons is a smooth scoring wing player, from the U, who has averaged 22.0 over his last two games. The rest of their frontcourt is manned by one dimensional players. Tyrus Thomas is developing into a good defensive player, who gets his points off of transition buckets. Joakim Noah is another guy who can not create his own offense, but can make a difference with his hustle. It will be the job of Jermaine O'Neal and Udonis Haslem to keep those guys off of the boards. The Heat need O'Neal to keep up his offensive output, but really need stronger play on the boards. He is due that breakout game, and hopefully tonight will be that night. Jamario Moon's scoring has been up and down since his arrival, but tonight's matchup with an uptempo squad should provide him opportunities to get out in transition early and get into the flow.
The Bulls best players off the bench are Hinrich and Brad Miller, so the Heat should have the edge with Daquan Cook and Michael Beasley. It would be nice to see the addition of Luther Head pay off tonight, but it is more likely that Cook and Beasley will be the only bench players making a difference. Both players have been scoring the ball well as of late, and the Bulls provide them with good matchups to keep that up. Do not underestimate Beasley's drive to outperform Rose, who was picked one spot ahead of him in the draft, and was getting all the Rookie of the Year talk during the first half of the season. A great game tonight could put Beasley back in the talk for R.O.Y. as the season comes to a close.
Dwayne Wade is just too much for the Bulls to compete with right now. Heat by 5.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

HEAT 135 SUNS 129

So this is what the Heat connecting on all cylanders looks like...and I like it. From the opening tip to the final buzzer, they played their hearts out. Chasing down loose balls, getting in the passing lanes, and hitting the offensive boards.
  • The young guys, Mario Chalmers, Daquan Cook, and Michael Beasley, really came to play last night
  • Dwayne Wade played like an MVP again last night, but is that surprising anymore? It was nice to see his patience in the halfcourt offense last night, after it was questioned in the 4th quarter collapse against Cleveland.
  • Wade's block on Grant Hill in the 4th quarter left Reggie Miller with nightmares of Tayshuan Prince again.
  • 16 assists for Wade has as much to do with him as it does with his teammates finally hitting shots. He tied his career high and now has 45 assists over the last 4 games.
  • How great is it to look at a box score and see Cook and Beasley with 27 points and 28 points respectively.
  • Cook finally broke out of his shooting slump in a major way with 6 three pointers. Maybe the addition of Luther Head inspired him?
  • Beasley had his best game of the season last night, finally putting together a complete game. 28 points, 9 rebounds, and 2 steals is a major night for the rookie. It was great to see Beasley attacking the rim and not just spotting up for jumpers.
  • The Suns really missed Amare Stoudamire, who held Beasley to 0 points in their first meeting.
  • Shawn Marion had to be envious of the alley oops that Wade was throwing last night. Jamario Moon with the dunk of the year, a la Grant Hill when he was at Duke.
  • The high scoring game does not take away the fact that the Heat gave up 129 points, but the tempo that Phoenix plays at makes it difficult to play your normal defense. Their '7 second or less' offense is just too chaotic to really prepare for. The Heat played the best they could, switching between man and zone. Good decision by Coach Spo.
All in all a great win by the Heat. So good in fact, that I did not even mention that it was the return of the Shaq.
With Dan Majerle back in the house as a coach of the Suns, it is time to rehash one of his greatest highlights:

Wednesday, March 4, 2009


I personally can not wait till March 30th when the Miami Heat retire a jersey for the first time of a player that actually played a minute of basketball for them. Alonzo Mourning's number 33 will be hung from the rafters in a home game against the Orlando Magic, and it could not come soon enough. I am a huge fan of Michael Jordan and Dan Marino, but come on couldn't we have at least hung their retired jerseys out by the food court at the arena, instead of from the rafters? Zo deserves the honor for your years of excellent on the court and in the community. So it got me thinking, for a team that has 7 division titles in its 20 years lifespan, who else might warrant a retired jersey?

What about Tim Hardaway? He is the Miami Heat's all time leader in assists and three point field goals, but did he shoot his hopes in the foot with his anti-gay comments in 2007? Glen Rice? 6 seasons does not make a retired jersey. Steve Smith? Again, not enough seasons on the Heat. Shaquille O'Neal? No chance, 2 good season does not make a retired jersey. What happens if Dwayne Wade bolts Miami in 2010 when he becomes a free agent, would you still want to retire his jersey for how excellent he has been since being drafted?



Tonight marks the eagerly anticipated return of former Heat big man, Shaquille O'Neal to American Airlines Arena. It is his first time back since he was traded last season, since he is playing his best basketball in years, it is fair to wonder if the Heat made a mistake by trading him for Shawn Marion in the first place?

When Shaq was traded, the Heat were last place and the future looked dim , while he and Dwayne Wade missed game after game with various injuries. It became obvious to the Heat front office that the leftovers from their championship run in 2005-06 were not a nucleus they could not succeed with anymore. Therefore it was a practical move at the time to trade him for Marion and Marcus Banks. Those players would not put Miami back into contention by themselves, but it was feasible that they could help Miami transition into a up-tempo squad, while also putting themselves into position to get a top draft pick.

While the Heat never quite became that high octane squad, they were able to get Michael Beasley and Mario Chalmers in the draft. This marked a turning point for the franchise as they were able to get 2 foundation players in one draft. Add these 2 guys to an MVP season for Dwayne Wade, a healthy year for Udonis Haslem, and the Heat quickly jumped back into the playoff hunt. Marion provide the Heat with strong play from both forward positions, but he was not good enough to keep Beasley off the court so he became expendable. So the Heat moved him along with Marcus Banks to Toronto for oft-injured center Jermaine O'Neal.

Jermaine is not the All Star Center that he was in his Indiana days, but when he is healthy he can still get a double double and play solid defense. That is more than they Heat was getting from the center by committee they were using before. With playoffs a guarantee, barring a Dwayne Wade season ending injury, the Heat needed to get bigger upfront. So bringing in Jermaine made sense, as he is a solid complementary piece to the young core. He has been through his fair share of grueling playoff series, which is essential when you have so many core guys that have never been in a single playoff game.

As Jermaine has struggled a bit to fit in with the Heat, Shaq has played his best basketball in 3 years, so the debate is on, but if the Heat had not gotten rid of Shaq when they did, they would not have the young nucleus they have now and Wade would not be the unquestioned leader. It is interesting to note, that as well as Shaquille has played for Phoenix this season, he was still being shopped heavily at the trade deadline. I guess that hefty contract and even heftier ego can weigh heavily on a squad. In that case, Jermaine is the better fit, now if only we could find a way to get him rebounding again. Here is to hoping that headband helps him hit the boards tonight.



The Miami Heat added scoring guard, Luther Head, to their roster, taking the spot left vacated my Marcus Banks when he was traded at the deadline to Toronto in a 2 for 1 deal. Since the All Star Break, the Heats bench has been struggling to find some consistent scoring. Forward Michael Beasley has been the only threat, because Daquan Cook seemed to leave his shooting stroke in Phoenix at the 3-point contest. In hopes to fill this need the team has signed Luther Head. Head is a 6-3 guard out of Illinois who has played both guard positions in his 3 year career, but will be used primarily for the Heat at the point guard spot. The combination of Mario Chalmers and Chris Quinn has not been working out recently, so Head could get lots of minutes right away. Head is not a traditional point guard, but that is probably not needed with Dwayne Wade being the lead guard in the 4th quarter. Head can focus on what he does best which is space the floor with his outside shot, while Wade penetrates and dishes. He is a career 39% 3-point shooter, who connected on 177 3's only 2 seasons ago. He is never going to be thought of as a lock down defender, but he has the size and quickness to make much more of a mark on that end than Quinn had been. Opposing point guards eyes light up when Quinn covers them, and that has been an issue for the Heat all year. Chalmers has been great as a rookie, but as we saw the other night in the Cleveland game, he is still just a rookie, and can not be expected to be at the top of his game on a consistent basis. The Heat hope that in adding Head they can put a 2nd unit on the floor that can really fill up the hoop, with Head, Cook, James Jones, Beasley.