Andre Iguodala

Heat Notes: Dedmon, Stephenson, Iguodala, Portis

When the Heat make the anticipated Dewayne Dedmon signing official, his contract will cover the rest of the season rather than just 10 days, writes Barry Jackson of The Miami Herald. Miami opted for a longer deal, according to Jackson, because it doesn’t expect anyone better to become available on the buyout market. Players who have appeared in at least one NBA game this season must be waived by Friday to be eligible for the postseason with their new team.

The Heat were looking for a big man who would accept not playing every game, which ruled out DeMarcus Cousins, who has since joined the Clippers on a 10-day deal. Jackson lists Ian Mahinmi, Thon Maker, Dewan Hernandez, Skal Labissiere, Tyler ZellerKyle Alexander, Trey Mourning, Kyle O’Quinn, Justin Patton and Anthony Tolliver as some of the names Miami considered before reaching an agreement with Dedmon.

In 2019, Dedmon signed a three-year, $40MM contract with the Kings, but he quickly lost his job as starting center. Poor three-point shooting is a major reason that Sacramento soured on him, Jackson adds, and he was eventually traded to the Hawks and then the Pistons, who released him in November.

The Heat face a deadline to add a 14th player to their roster by Thursday. If Dedmon signs then, his contract will carry a cap hit in the neighborhood of $433K. Miami would be about $314K below the tax line and could add a 15th player later this season without going into luxury tax territory.

There’s more on the Heat, all from Jackson:

  • As Miami considered roster additions, the organization was made aware that Lance Stephenson and Greg Monroe are both hoping to return to the NBA. The Heat got good reports on Stephenson, but they don’t need another wing player and they were looking for more immediate help than Monroe was likely to provide.
  • Some Grizzlies players are still upset about Andre Iguodala‘s decision to remain inactive until Memphis found somewhere to trade him last season. Jackson notes that several Grizzlies felt they had something to prove when they faced Iguodala Monday night.
  • Jackson proposes Bucks forward Bobby Portis as a potential free agent target for Miami this summer. Portis has a $3.8MM player option for next season that he’s expected to decline, and Jackson suggests he could get a $10MM mid-level exception offer as the start of a multiyear deal.

Warriors Notes: Green, Curry, Brown, Iguodala

At ninth place in the West, the Warriors are in a crowded fight to qualify for a play-in game, but Draymond Green doesn’t take any motivation from trying to reach that pre-playoff contest, writes Nick Friedell of ESPN. After winning three titles and playing in five straight NBA Finals, it’s hard for Green to get excited about such a modest goal.

“To be honest with you, I don’t go into these games thinking like, ‘Man, we need to win these games to get to the playoffs,'” Green said after Thursday’s loss at Miami. “I hate losing, so when I step on the floor I want to win. But I’ll be 100% honest with you, fighting for a play-in spot does not motivate me. We’re in what, (ninth)? Fighting for a (play-in) spot doesn’t motivate me at all.”

The change in the playoff system was introduced as part of last year’s restart in Orlando. A play-in game was instituted between the eighth and ninth seeds if they were close in the standings. This year, the system has been expanded to include teams seven through 10 in each conference.

“I want to win,” Green explained. “That’s enough motivation for me, but I’m not going to spend every day like, ‘Man, we’re right on the cusp of that play-in’ — I don’t give a damn about that play-in game. If that’s where we are and we’re in the game, yeah, I’m going to do all I can to win the game. But, the play-in situation isn’t going to get me out of my bed like I got to bust my ass today because we’re fighting for the play-in spot. That ain’t going to push me.”

There’s more on the Warriors:

  • Stephen Curry won’t play tonight against the Raptors, tweets Anthony Slater of the Athletic. Curry had been considering playing back-to-back games for the first time since suffering a tailbone bruise March 17, according to Friedell. Curry scored 36 points in 36 minutes Thursday in his second game since returning. “I gotta see how I feel when I wake up,” he said Thursday. “This is an injury where Monday to Tuesday it was a tough day-after-game feeling. I’m hopefully progressing where I wake up and feel good and know what I’m dealing with and be able to play, but we’ll monitor that.”
  • Green may not be excited about the play-in game, but assistant coach Mike Brown believes any postseason experience will be valuable, according to Drew Shiller of NBC Sports Bay Area. “It would be huge. The playoff atmosphere — not only in your preparation but the actual games — it’s at a whole other level,” Brown said in a radio interview. “For our guys to get a feel of it, a taste of it, would only benefit them for many years to come.”
  • Heat coach Erik Spoelstra believes the Warriors miss Andre Iguodala as much as Klay Thompson, writes Marcus White of NBC Sports Bay Area. Iguodala was an all-around contributor during Golden State’s best seasons, and now he’s playing that same role in Miami.

Southeast Notes: Vucevic, Iguodala, Heat, Hornets

Magic center Nikola Vucevic has given the team a feel-good story in the midst of an otherwise difficult campaign, Roy Parry of the Orlando Sentinel writes.

Vucevic, who was named an All-Star for the second time of his career this season, is averaging an impressive 24.6 points, 11.6 rebounds and 3.7 assists per game. He’s also shooting a career-high 41% from three-point range in his 36 contests.

“You get selected among 24 players out of 450 to make it and it’s a special feeling and a huge honor, something I’m very proud of,” Vucevic said. “It just shows that you’ve achieved a great level of respect from coaches around the league, other players around the league, and when you’re able to make it multiple times it kind of fortifies that.”

There’s more from the Southeast Division tonight:

  • Anthony Chiang of The Miami Herald examines Andre Iguodala‘s veteran impact on the Heat. Iguodala, a former Finals MVP, is currently in his 18th NBA season. “He brings that stability on the floor and even off the floor,” teammate Goran Dragic said of Iguodala. “He has got a lot of experience. He has been in a lot of tough games. He won championships. So it’s always nice to have a guy next to you to ask for some advice. He’s like an open book. … Him, [Udonis Haslem], those two guys are tremendous for our team.”
  • Ira Winderman of The Sun Sentinel explores whether the Heat should trade for a star player now — even if it impacts the team’s long-term flexibility. Miami has expressed interest in several combo forwards ahead of the March 25 deadline, winning seven of its final 10 games before the All-Star break.
  • The Hornets have recalled centers Vernon Carey Jr. and Nick Richards from their G League affiliate in Greensboro, the team announced (Twitter link). The team also announced (via Twitter) that two-way players Grant Riller and Nate Darling were transferred from the NBAGL to Charlotte.

Heat Notes: Nunn, Cousins, Iguodala, Front Office

The Heat have benefited from Kendrick Nunn‘s ability to stay ready, Khobi Price of The Sun Sentinel writes. Nunn poured in 27 points, five rebounds, three assists, two steals and one block in the team’s win over the Lakers on Saturday, making an impact on both ends of the court.

“I’m just in rhythm,” Nunn acknowledged. “I’m just in the flow of the game. Just being in the right position at the right time and just being hard to guard.”

The second-year guard also shot 10-of-14 from the field and 5-of-6 from deep in the outing, stepping up in the continued absence of Goran Dragic (ankle).

“We know what he’s capable of, especially on the offensive end,” teammate Jimmy Butler said of Nunn. “He’s been playing great defense too. He’s always ready and I give him props for that.”

There’s more out of Miami tonight:

  • Ira Winderman of The Sun Sentinel explores whether adding DeMarcus Cousins would make sense for the team. Cousins would likely serve as the club’s backup center with the chance to compete for a starting role, which in turn could make big man Kelly Olynyk more expendable in a potential trade for a starting power forward. The Heat have yet to replace versatile starter Jae Crowder, who left the team in free agency last offseason.
  • Winderman examines in a separate story whether the contracts of Nunn and Andre Iguodala could facilitate a trade before the March 25 deadline. Nunn has raised his trade value in recent weeks, while Iguodala is a former Finals MVP who could be added as a salary-filler in any deal.
  • Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald examines the team’s front office and some questionable decisions made prior to the 2020/21 season. Miami made an effort to preserve its salary-cap space for the summer of 2021 (and potentially pursue Giannis Antetokounmpo), choosing not to offer Crowder or Derrick Jones Jr. multiyear deals. Antetokounmpo announced a short time later that he’d sign a five-year, $228MM super-max contract extension to remain with the Bucks.

Southeast Notes: Heat, Harden, Bradley, Richards, Anthony

When they were exploring a possible James Harden trade before the start of the season, the Heat were open to including “a couple” of their young players and their 2025 first-round pick in a package for the star guard, says Barry Jackson of The Miami Herald. However, the Rockets‘ asking price was significantly higher.

According to Jackson, even if the Heat had offered Tyler Herro, Duncan Robinson, Precious Achiuwa, KZ Okpala, and first-round picks in 2025 and 2027 (along with Andre Iguodala and Kelly Olynyk for salary-matching purposes), it’s not clear that would have been enough to satisfy the Rockets.

The Heat reportedly pulled out of Harden discussions on December 21. Jackson writes that team president Pat Riley thinks highly of Harden, but would only be willing to make a deal for the Rockets star at “a price that’s palatable to him and the organization.”

Here’s more from around the Southeast:

  • Avery Bradley‘s defense has been as strong as advertised, and he’s also making an impact on offense in his first season with the Heat, writes Anthony Chiang of The Miami Herald. Bradley’s play in the early going has impressed his teammates, as well as head coach Erik Spoelstra. “Avery is a guy that can play in any system,” Spoelstra said. “As long as it’s a contending team, he fits. He’s a really good basketball player. He’s a winner. And he’s a two-way player, a legit two-way player.”
  • Rookie Hornets center Nick Richards has been ruled inactive for today’s game against the Hawks due to the NBA’s COVID-19 protocols, the team announced (via Twitter). It’s not clear how long those protocols will keep Richards out of action, but it shouldn’t have an impact on Charlotte’s rotation, as he has logged just 11 total minutes so far this season.
  • The Magic have a spotty player development over the last decade, having set the franchise back years by failing to get the most out of the likes of Victor Oladipo, Tobias Harris, and others, according Josh Robbins of The Athletic, who examines how the team is looking to avoid repeating those failures with 2020 first-rounder Cole Anthony.

Heat Notes: Iguodala, Spoelstra, Herro, Robinson

The Heat could benefit from testing Andre Iguodala at starting power forward for the foreseeable future, Ira Winderman of the Sun Sentinel opined in his recent “Ask Ira” mailbag.

Iguodala, who was acquired by the Heat last February, has started two straight games after coming off the bench in his first three contests. Miami has started five different lineups in five games, seeking to finalize its group while juggling injuries.

The Heat started Jae Crowder alongside Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo in their run to the Finals last season, though the team opted not to re-sign Crowder with intentions of maintaining salary-cap flexibility for this season and next summer. The club has also tried Meyers Leonard and Maurice Harkless in that position thus far.

Should the Iguodala experiment not pan out (he’s a former Finals MVP, but he’s also turning 37 this month), Miami could test Jimmy Butler alongside Adebayo and start a player such as Avery Bradley instead. The team could also examine the trade market and pursue players such as P.J. Tucker, LaMarcus Aldridge or Blake Griffin ahead of the March 25 deadline if it so chooses.

There’s more out of Miami tonight:

  • Erik Spoelstra isn’t making any excuses for the team’s poor offensive start to the season, Khobi Price of the Sun Sentinel writes. Miami currently owns the third-worst offensive rating in the league at 101.8, according to Price, though the campaign is still young. “It is so early,” Spoelstra said. “You know what we did today? We worked on it. It’s going to get better. We know it will. But there’s no point in me talking about all the little details.”
  • Anthony Chiang of the Miami Herald examines how Tyler Herro has adjusted to his new role as the team’s starting point guard. Goran Dragic unquestionably remains the best point guard on the roster, but Miami has tested Herro with hopes of finding a long-term fit at the position.
  • Ira Winderman ponders in a separate “Ask Ira” mailbag whether another level of play is needed from Duncan Robinson, who’s likely been at the top of opposing teams’ scouting reports this season. Robinson established himself as one of the league’s top three-point shooters last season, with rival teams working to slow him down after a productive campaign. He remains an underrated passer, though his game inside-the-arc is a work in progress.

Southeast Notes: Monk, Hornets, Magic, Iguodala

Malik Monk is waiting for the Hornets to give him a chance after his bout with COVID-19 earlier this month, writes Rick Bonnell of The Charlotte Observer. Monk hasn’t gotten into a game yet this season and is fighting for playing time on a roster that’s much deeper at the wing than it was last year.

Monk will be a free agent when the offseason arrives, and the Hornets can make him restricted with a $7.3MM qualifying offer. He views this season as an audition for his NBA future.

“This is the big one. A big step to show what I can do,” Monk said. “With other teams, not only the Charlotte Hornets. To show other teams what I can do and how productive I can be. I can’t do that if I’m not on the court, but I don’t control that.”

Monk was hoping for better after a breakthrough performance in February when he averaged 17.0 PPG on 46% shooting in 13 games. However, before the month ended, he was suspended indefinitely for a violation of the NBA’s drug policy. Monk said he hasn’t received much feedback from coaches about what he needs to do to earn minutes.

“Super, super, super freaking frustrating (with) the waiting,” he said. “The month of February, I finally became an NBA player, finally got the minutes I thought I deserved a couple of years ago. I was proving myself. And that’s all I really could ask for at that point.”

 There’s more from the Southeast Division:
  • Terry Rozier and Gordon Hayward have formed an instant chemistry as Hornets teammates, observes Sam Perley of NBA.com. They spent two years together with the Celtics, but Hayward was injured for much of that time. “Based on what I see, I think they play off each other well,” coach James Borrego said. “I’m sure they understand each other’s game at a higher level than if they just came in blindly to this situation. There’s history there, there’s chemistry, there’s connection. I think that helps us right now.”
  • The Magic are enjoying the benefits of their Serge Ibaka trade in 2017, notes Josh Cohen of NBA.com. With Ibaka headed toward free agency, Orlando shipped him to the Raptors at the deadline in exchange for Terrence Ross and a first-round pick. Ross is still a productive player for the Magic, and the pick eventually helped acquire Markelle Fultz from the Sixers.
  • The Heat used Andre Iguodala as a starter tonight, allowing him to extend a streak that began in 2004, tweets Tim Reynolds of the Associated Press. Iguodala has started at least one game in every calendar year since entering the league, but tonight marked his first start since the 2019 NBA Finals.

Heat Would Be Interested In James Harden Trade

Miami would pursue a trade for Rockets star James Harden if the opportunity arises, a source tells Barry Jackson of The Miami Herald. The former MVP reportedly expanded his list of preferred options this week, with the Heat and Bucks joining the Nets and Sixers.

According to the source, at least two members of Miami’s management team have “substantial interest” in adding Harden and there’s no significant opposition to the move. Outsiders have raised concerns that Harden’s ball-dominant style might not fit the Heat’s philosophy, but the belief among the front office is that Harden plays that way because that’s how the offense in Houston is structured.

The Rockets haven’t committed to putting Harden on the market, but the source says the Heat would be among the teams to make an offer in Houston moves in that direction. The source adds that Miami would be willing to include Tyler Herro to get a deal done. The Heat prefer to keep Herro, who made a huge impact during his rookie season, but recognize that players of Harden’s caliber are hard to obtain.

Assessing the situation this week, ESPN’s Zach Lowe suggested Herro is better than any single player that Brooklyn would be willing to part with, though he believes the Rockets would lean toward Ben Simmons if Philadelphia makes him available. Lowe adds that he doesn’t think “any substantive talks have happened with any teams” regarding a Harden trade.

Jackson notes that Miami has financial restrictions to consider. Because the Heat are above the salary cap, they would have to send out close to the $41.2MM that Harden earns this season. League rules state that Miami can take back as much as 125% of the salaries it parts with in the deal, plus $1ooK. Andre Iguodala ($15MM) and Kelly Olynyk ($12.6MM) would likely have to be included in any offer, Jackson states.

Goran Dragic, Meyers Leonard and Udonis Haslem, who all re-signed with the Heat over the offseason, have veto power over trades and can’t be moved before February 6. Free agent additions Avery Bradley and Maurice Harkless also can’t be traded until that date.

Jackson sees Miami’s best offer as Herro, two players from the group of Precious Achiuwa, Kendrick Nunn and Duncan Robinson, along with Olynyk and Iguodala to match salaries and first-round picks in 2025 and 2027. The Heat and Thunder would have to remove protections on the first-rounder Miami owes Oklahoma City in 2023 for that deal to be possible.

Heat Notes: Dragic, Adebayo, Iguodala, Haslem

The size of Goran Dragic‘s plantar fascia tear will determine whether he can return during the NBA Finals, a specialist tells Anthony Chiang of The Miami Herald. Dragic, who suffered the injury in the series opener, and Bam Adebayo are both listed as doubtful for tonight’s Game 3.

“If it’s a relatively large tear, I would say he would be out for the series,” said Dr. Kenneth Jung, a foot and ankle consultant. “If it’s a larger tear, too, there’s a risk that it can go on to a complete rupture with playing on it. At the same time, even if it’s a small tear, if he attempts to play on it then he’s at risk of sustaining a full rupture. With a larger tear, I would expect that his symptoms are worse, too. So he probably wouldn’t feel that he would be able to get back as quickly.”

Jung added that rest is the best way to treat a plantar fascia injury and estimated that a complete rupture would sideline Dragic “for a couple of months or so.” A cortisone shot could reduce the pain, but Dragic would risk further injury by playing. Chiang notes that Pacers guard Malcolm Brogdon suffered the same injury last season and had to miss 21 games, including eight in the postseason.

“You can try to play through it,” Jung said. “But he’s a guard, so everything is speed and quickness. It’s not like he’s a big and lumbering guy that just has to post up in the paint. He’s going to be pushing off, cutting, jumping, jump stops and stuff like that. That’s definitely going to put high stress on that area.”

There’s more on the Heat this morning:

  • Although a decision won’t be made until later today, Adebayo told reporters Friday that he was optimistic he would be ready for Game 3. “Yes, I believe I’ll be in the lineup,” said Adebayo, who is sidelined with a shoulder and neck strain. “I’m feeling better. I believe I’ll play.”
  • Now in his sixth straight NBA Finals, Andre Iguodala tells Ramona Shelburne of ESPN that he’s enjoying his time with the Heat, but misses his days with the Warriors. “I still talk to those guys every day,” Iguodala said of his former teammates. “Like, you’re not allowed to say anything bad about Steph (Curry) around me, or in general. … “I play for the Heat. So I’ll be caught in like these little internal battles. But it is part of the journey. So I’m going to just maximize these last however many days of my career I’ve got left, just try and enjoy it.”
  • Sopan Deb of The New York Times examines how Udonis Haslem has adapted during his long career in Miami.

Andre Iguodala Talks Heat, Warriors, Future, More

The Warriors‘ streak of five consecutive appearances in the NBA Finals has come to an end, but Andre Iguodala – now a member of the Heat – is set to extend his streak of Finals appearances to six in a row.

Having spent six years in Golden State and claiming three championships during that time, Iguodala is now part of another winning organization that is vying for its own third title in the last 10 years. Speaking to Sam Amick of The Athletic, the veteran forward suggested that it’s tricky to compare the Heat and Warriors – who operate on different philosophies – and declare that one franchise is “better” than the other.

“It’s just that you can take two different roads to success,” Iguodala said. “At the end of the day, the principles are still the same. You come in, you work hard, the talent is going to take you to the top. That’s sports in general. The most talented teams are going to get there at the end and are probably going to have the best shot.

“Then however you figure out how to bring together everyone, whether it’s through yoga or meditation (with the Warriors) or here where it’s a little bit of a different type of mindset, where it’s that we’re going to get through this pain together and that’s going to get us to the next level,” Iguodala continued. “It’s just different ways of taking that talent to the next level, and both have had success in the ways that they’ve gone about it. There’s a deep appreciation for both.”

Iguodala’s conversation with Amick touched on several other topics, including his role with the NBPA, how he’s coping with life in the Orlando bubble, and what his plans are once his playing days are over. The Q&A is worth checking out in full if you’re an Athletic subscriber, but here are a few of Iguodala’s most interesting comments:

On his perception of the way the game of basketball has evolved:

“As you see in the bubble, there’s more fouls called than ever. They want high scores. I think more guys are put in a box. It’s catch-and-shoot threes, or catch-and-drive real hard to the basket and dunk finish. The little nuances of the game, gamesmanship, it’s not as appreciated or it’s not as sought after or valued as much.

I know a lot of guys in the league, like a Jrue Holiday or an Eric Gordon, they have so much to their game, but the way the game is played now, they’ve taken that out of their games because they said, ‘All right, we want you to shoot 3s. We want you to defend, put your head down and drive.’ And those are two prime examples, where guys are like, ‘Man, this guy was a monster to deal with,’ but the way the game has changed you’re limiting a lot of guys. That’s just the evolution of the game and where it’s going. I think it’ll come back eventually, but like I said, seeing those things I know my value because of my IQ or even at the next level, if I can get to a front office or head a team.”

On whether he’d have interest in coaching after he retires as a player:

“No. No coaching. I won’t rule it out, but I doubt it. I’ve got little kids, and I want to be present for them. But yeah, like I said, there’s so many opportunities, and that’s probably the hardest thing for me, is to decide which one I’m going to go into or could I still be able to juggle these things when I’m done playing. Can I have a role here, or a role here and a role there? That’s a really hard thing to do when you retire because there’s always that saying: Once you’re out the league, they forget about you. You hear about that a lot.

“But I’ve established myself in other things that I have going on, and I’m really looking forward to those things, and I’m still bringing those things into the basketball world as well, bringing a large cohort of players who I’ve grown with and who I have a relationship with, bringing them aboard with me as well in the tech space.”

On whether he’s serious about playing in the NBA until he’s 40:
(Note: Iguodala, 36, has previously spoken about just wanting to play one or two more years, but said earlier in the Q&A Amick that he could easily play until he’s 40.)

“Nah, I won’t play until I’m 40.”