Tough Decisions Await Miami Heat During Their Break

By Daniel Carpio
Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports


The Miami Heat players may be resting after a long road trip, but the team’s front office doesn’t have that luxury at the moment.

The Heat are still in some ways looking for a big man that pound the boards to help the team, and they have possibly two roster spots opening up.

The team currently has two players under ten-day contracts, Jarvis Varnado and Josh Harrellson. Miami is only allowed to sign either player to another ten-day contract before having to decide if that player will remain on the roster for the rest of the season. Given the Heat’s needs both players are under the microscope.

Judging from how they have been used in the road trip, Miami head coach Erik Spoelstra seems more comfortable with Varnado than with Harrellson. Both players were part of the Heat’s training camp squad. Varnado was cut due to an injury while Harrellson made the Opening Night roster. Despite Harrellson being on the team longer, the presence of Dexter Pittman and the fact that they were both projects as far as skill went made him expendable when the team decided to address their rebounding challenges. Varnado is also affected by Pittman as he takes the spot he had in the active roster.

With Pittman now back from the D-League both Varnado and Harrellson face the prospect of not being brought back. If the Heat have to choose between the two, Varnado will likely come out on top. There is no guarantee though.

While the market for free agent big men of very slim, Miami has been looking. The team could see if the conditioning of Chris Andersen, who was brought in for a workout twice, has improved enough to give him a shot. The Heat has also contemplated giving a roster spot to Greg Oden, knowing full well that he won’t play at all this season, to monitor his rehabilitation from surgery. Should Miami decide that there are no suitable big men available, the team may reach out to Oden to get a head start on next season’s plans.

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