The Heat’s roster currently stands at 19 players, which is four over the regular season maximum. This places a number of young players on the bubble, with each of them hoping to be a member of the team when the regular season kicks off, Ira Winderman of The Sun Sentinel writes. The signing of Beno Udrih has made the path to a regular season spot more difficult for Briante Weber, whose contract includes a partial guarantee of $218,659, but the guard hasn’t let that discourage him, Winderman adds. “My mindset is never going change, no matter who’s in front of me, no matter how many people it is,” said Weber. “I’m just going to be me. I’m not going to change anything about how I do my things. I’m not going to try to be a different person.”
Here’s more from South Beach:
- In response to a reader question in his latest “Ask Ira” column, Winderman notes that a strong defensive guard like Weber is something the team could use, given the playing styles of the other members of Miami’s backcourt. “It is surprising that Weber could be squeezed out despite having three-eighths of his 2016/17 contract already guaranteed,” Winderman opined. “One thing the Heat have lacked for years has been a lock-down defensive point guard, one who could pick up full court and wear down an opposing ballhandler. It is not what Goran Dragic does. Not what Beno Udrih does. That’s what has made Briante so intriguing. But what we haven’t witnessed are the Heat’s private drills, and it’s possible that Josh Richardson or Tyler Johnson have turned into such defensive prospects/pests, perhaps reducing the need for a specialist at point guard such as Briante.“
- Stefan Jankovic, another member of the team who isn’t assured of a roster spot this season, was offered a chance to tryout for Serbia’s National team, but declined it because he had already made a commitment to play for the Heat’s summer league squad, Winderman tweets. Jankovic, 23, appeared in eight games this summer for Miami, averaging 7.0 points, 2.4 rebounds and 1.0 assist in 13.9 minutes per outing. His shooting line was .444/.333/.786.