Southeast Notes: Richardson, Hezonja, Napier

Josh Richardson‘s ability to play both guard positions may help him earn playing time with the Heat, according to Ira Winderman of The Sun Sentinel. Responding to a question in his weekly mailbag, Winderman said Richardson’s flexibility may help him stay in Miami rather than be sent to the D-League. The columnist expects Richardson to get more playing time in the Heat’s next two games to show if he belongs in the NBA.

There’s more from the Southeast Division:

  • Magic rookie Mario Hezonja is quickly developing a reputation for toughness, Winderman writes in a separate story. During last week’s game with Miami, the Croatian stood up to veteran Amar’e Stoudemire when the veteran objected to a screen that Hezonja set. “I’m not allowing anybody to be offensive with my teammates and especially not with me,” Hezonja said afterward.
  • Even though the Magic traded for Shabazz Napier over the summer, he’s not a lock to make the team, according to John Denton of Magic.com. Miami shipped the second-year player to Orlando in a cost-cutting move, and now Napier is battling for a roster spot. He and Keith Appling are both hoping to become the third-string point guard behind Elfrid Payton and C.J. Watson. However, with a wealth of perimeter players who can initiate the offense, Denton speculates that the team could keep an extra big man and let Napier and Appling go. “Shabazz has a slight frame,” said coach Scott Skiles said. “It’s not that he’s not tough. There are bigger bodies. He’s always going to have that [size disadvantage]. So he’s just got to make up for it with his ability to shoot.”
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3 thoughts on “Southeast Notes: Richardson, Hezonja, Napier

  1. formerlyz

    Josh Richardson is really impressive. He can guard 1-3, seems to make good decisions, doesn’t try to force things, can shoot the 3 a lot better than was initially thought when he was drafted, and really seems like he brings a lot of energy. It should be fun to watch his development alongside Winslow.

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  2. Arthur Hill

    Do you expect him to be in the Heat’s rotation from the start of the season? Or will he need some time in the D-League?

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    • formerlyz

      It depends on what they do with Chalmers. If he is traded by opening night, I think he splits some time with Tyler Johnson and James Ennis off the bench

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