It turns out that Ray Allen may have made one of the biggest plays in Miami Heat history since his Game 6 thriller. And it all happened in the offseason.
Okay, so maybe it was nowhere near as big, but convincing Roger Mason, Jr. to spurn more lucrative offers to sign a non-guaranteed contract with the Heat could end up ranking up there as one of those key pieces that the team needed to help get over the hump.
Like Mike Miller before him, Money Mase knows that minutes will be hard to come by so his ability to stay ready is key. But the 10-year vet also knows that to stick around he has to carve out a niche that includes more than just shooting.
“What happens is when you’re a really good shooter, sometimes you get pigeonholed,” Mason said via the South Florida Sun-Sentinel.
“I really looked in the mirror and realized the last three or four years, I didn’t feel like I was using all of my abilities. So I went back to the lab and got to work on ball handling, pick-and-roll, reading defenses, studying a lot of film. I don’t think I’ve had a summer of work like this in a long time.”
And he’s going to need it.
The 6-foot-5 guard will be called upon to play an all-purpose role. On some nights he may be asked to knock down threes and on others he may be asked to rebound and assist — all while playing both guard positions and a little small forward. And that doesn’t count the nights where he’ll be starting for a resting Dwyane Wade.
This sounds like a lot to ask for from a journeyman who’s played for eight teams. Especially one who fans wondered why he would even make the 15-man roster.
“His skills set fits what we do,” Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said, via the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. “That’s one of the reasons why we wanted to invite him to camp… He’s unique with his size, his ability to play two positions… when you put him in a system, because of his experience it looks like he’s played in our system a long time.”
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