Trading Wayne Ellington and Tyler Johnson has led to a more coherent rotation for the Heat and the players appreciate that stability, Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald reports. The team was overloaded at the guard and small forward positions before the logjam was broken. “It’s calming knowing you’re going to play X amount of minutes every night,” Josh Richardson said. “We love those guys [but] before, it was different. Now the guard rotation is thinned a little bit so we can play through stuff a little more now instead of it being the other way around.”
We have more from the Southeast Division:
- Heat big man Kelly Olynyk will likely lose the $1MM bonus in his contract because he’s not on pace to reach 1,700 minutes. However, Olynyk is not fretting over it, according to Jackson. “It’s not something you can control,” Olynyk said.
- Wizards guard Bradley Beal took some time during All-Star weekend to do some recruiting, Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington reports. Beal wouldn’t name the players he spoke with because he wanted to avoid any league discipline. “The recruiting process is really going alright. It’s going alright. I’m trying,” Beal said. “This is new for me. I’m definitely getting some ears and seeing what guys are looking for.”
- Beal declared he would never demand a trade from the Wizards despite injuries and deals that have changed the outlook of a once promising season, Hughes writes in a separate story. “I always feel like if I requested a trade, and I didn’t get traded, there’s no way in hell I’m gonna be able to go and play with my teammates who know I don’t want to be here. That’s mind-boggling to me,” he told Hughes.
- Kemba Walker dropped a hint during All-Star weekend that he’ll stay in Charlotte if the money’s right, according to Shaun Powell of NBA.com. The Hornets point guard, who will be an unrestricted free agent this summer, says the thought of playing in the same place throughout his career holds a lot of appeal to him. “There’s something to be said for being on a team for your whole career,” he said. “Not many players have done that. Only a select few. That’s a goal to accomplish.”