Heat Rumors: Riley, Bosh, Whiteside, LeBron

Team president Pat Riley says the Heat are taking an “open-minded” stance on the health of All-Star big man Chris Bosh, according to Barry Jackson of The Miami Herald. Riley added that there is no expectation about whether Bosh will play again this season. “We’re just supportive of Chris and what he’s going through,” Riley said. “We’re just going to wait and see what the future holds. There really isn’t any comment. I have great empathy for the man. I know how much he wants to play. We’ll just see where it goes.”

Bosh, who hasn’t played since the All-Star break due to blood clots in his left calf, released a statement earlier this month saying that the condition has subsided and indicating that he plans to return before the end of the season. Jackson reports that Bosh has received mixed medical opinions, and Heat officials want to be fully convinced that there’s no danger before they let him play again. Last month, the Heat were reportedly trying to convince Bosh to sit out the rest of the season. The team has reason to be concerned about Bosh’s health, as blood clots in his lungs cut last season short for him and he still has three years and nearly $76MM remaining on his contract.

There’s more news out of Miami:

  • Riley also marveled at the progress of center Hassan Whiteside, Jackson relays in the same piece. Whiteside signed with Miami in November 2014 after two seasons out of the NBA, and he quickly became a shot-blocking and rebounding force who now has a shot at a maximum contract in free agency. “In my 50 years in the NBA, I’ve never seen that kind of phenomenon,” Riley said. “I know that’s hurting me right now as far as his free agency goes, complimenting him. But he’s really grown a lot.”
  • After the Heat crushed the Cavaliers on Saturday, LeBron James offered a hug to his former coach, Erik Spoelstra, and some kind words for the rebuilding job the Heat franchise has done since he left for Cleveland in 2014, writes Ethan Skolnick of The Miami Herald“They’ve opened up the floor a lot more now, with them being able to put Luol [Deng] at the four, and it definitely benefits [Goran] Dragic for sure. He looks to play in the open floor. It definitely helps their tempo,” James said. “And then the kid coming off the bench, Josh Richardson, really gives them a boost as well.”

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