5 Players Who Will Not Make The Miami Heat Roster
5 Players Unlikely to Make the Cut for the Miami Heat
As the NBA preseason reaches the halfway point, teams will now prepare, look ahead to the regular season and begin to finalize their rosters.
Front offices and coaching staffs across the country will crunch the numbers, calculate the possibilities and do what they believe is best for their organizations.
Cuts are not easy but are a long practiced custom amongst all sports, from middle school to the professional level. Boys and girls learn the heartache at a young age as their dreams of one day being the face of Gatorade or producing the next big sneaker brand is crushed by a coach with a clipboard.
Unfortunately, cuts are a part of sports and a part of life. A company will interview numerous potential employees but will only pick one. Plenty of boys will try to show a girl that they are the best suitor, but she will only choose one.
20 or so players will try out for a NBA basketball team, but only 15 will make the roster.
For the Miami Heat, five players will meet the chopping block and see their professional hopes sliced into pieces.
After three preseason games, I can make a significant educated guess as to who the five players are this year.
Miami currently has 13 players under guaranteed contracts. Based on the luxury tax and guaranteed money, it would be hard to envision President Pat Riley and Coach Erik Spoelstra severing any of those contracts and eating the loss.
That leaves only two spots and Michael Beasley will earn one of them, barring any behavioral issues or shenanigans. Riley will work extra hard to make something out of the former Kansas State Wildcat. He has played superbly in two preseason games.
That leaves one spot for six remaining players. Here are the five players who will NOT be on the court or Heat bench come the season opener against the Chicago Bulls on October 29.
5. Larry Drew II
Miami has a solid core of guards with Mario Chalmers, Norris Cole, Ray Allen and Dwyane Wade. With only six minutes of playing time this preseason, I do not think Larry Drew II will make it into the guard rotation.
His only action of the preseason came in the opener against the Atlanta Hawks. He committed three turnovers and two personal fouls in that short stint.
Based on the guard situation in South Beach and the lack of intrigue in Drew, he will be looking for a job in November.
4. Eric Griffin
Based on the prediction of Michael Beasley making the squad, there would be no room at the small forward position for Eric Griffin.
The defending champs have a slew of small forwards with James Jones, Shane Battier and LeBron James. Beasley would make a fourth SF on the roster.
Griffin has not been impressive either. In three preseason games, he has averaged seven minutes and 1.3 points. He has yet to stand out or make a reason for Miami to keep him around.
Griffin will be packing his bags and leaving South Beach at the end of October.
3. Charlie Westbrook
Roger Mason Jr. made a strong first impression in his preseason debut with the Heat. He had 14 points, six rebounds and four assists, making him the favorite to become the fifth guard on the roster.
For Charlie Westbrook, that is bad news and dashes his hopes of playing for the best team in basketball.
Although he has played in all three preseason games, he has not had the defining moment. Add in the fact that Mason Jr. has nine years of NBA experience and Westbrook has none, and Miami will be cutting ties with Westbrook at the end of the preseason.
2. Jarvis Varnado
Jarvis Varnado has a small history with the Heat franchise. He played eight games for the defending champs last season, but his averages were minuscule.
With six front court players under guaranteed contracts, Varnado had to have stellar averages throughout the preseason and that has not happened. He will join the five players who will have their dreams crushed by Pat Riley and Erik Spoelstra.
1. Justin Hamilton
A big unknown for Miami (no pun intended) is the guaranteed contract of center Greg Oden. The health and status of the 7-footer is a mystery, but the defending champs want to take a chance on the former Buckeye.
The combination of Oden’s guaranteed money and six front court players on the roster leaves Justin Hamilton the odd man out.
Miami really has no need for another big man, even though no one knows what Oden might do. Hamilton will be the fifth and final player cut from the world champions.