Josh Richardson

Heat Notes: Draft, Richardson, Wade, Haslem

The NBA appears to be holding off a decision to eliminate the one-and-done rule until the 2022 draft, which would be good news for the Heat, writes Barry Jackson of The Miami Herald. That would mean Miami wouldn’t miss out on a potential bonanza in the 2021 class with the top college prospects and high school seniors both available. The Heat are the only team that have traded their 2021 first-rounder, sending it to Phoenix in the Goran Dragic deal. The Suns moved it to the Sixers this summer as part of the package to acquire Mikal Bridges.

Jonathan Givony of ESPN recently reported that teams have been told by league executives that no change in the one-and-done rule will occur prior to 2022. The Heat haven’t appealed to the league to make the change in any particular year, Jackson adds.

Jackson shares more from Miami in the same story:

  • At least one unidentified team offered a first-round pick to Miami in exchange for Josh Richardson during the offseason. The Heat turned it down and have no plans to part with Richardson, who is entering the first season of a four-year, $42MM extension. The team also prefers to hang onto Dragic, Kelly Olynyk, Bam Adebayo, James Johnson and Justise Winslow.
  • Dwyane Wade has less than two weeks to make a decision before camp opens, but at least one Heat official believes he wants to play this season. Wade has been on vacation in California, but will return to Miami tomorrow to open a restaurant with Udonis Haslem, who has been part of the recruiting effort to get Wade to return.
  • Haslem said his “love for the organization” and his teammates was behind his decision to return for a 16th season. “If I was looking for playing time, I could have gone someplace else or played in China or something,” he said. “But at the end of the day, would it have made me as happy as being around this organization and being around these guys? No, I don’t think it would.” Haslem saw minimal action last season, averaging about five minutes per night in 14 games.

Southeast Notes: Spoelstra, Kidd-Gilchrist, Wall

Heat coach Erik Spoelstra will have a difficult time coming up with a rotation after team president Pat Riley failed to address the logjam at several positions, Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun Sentinel notes. With Hassan WhitesideKelly OlynykBam Adebayo and James Johnson on the roster, there aren’t enough frontcourt minutes to go around and keep everyone happy, Winderman continues. There’s also an excess of shooting guards options (Rodney McGruderDion WaitersTyler JohnsonWayne Ellington and Josh Richardson) even if Dwyane Wade isn’t re-signed, Winderman adds.

We have more from around the Southeast Division:

  • The Hornets are thinking seriously about going with smaller lineups more often, featuring Michael Kidd-Gilchrist at power forward and Frank Kaminsky at center, Rick Bonnell of the Charlotte Observer reports. Charlotte has plenty of rotation-worthy options at small forward and shooting guard to allow those position changes to take place, Bonnell continues. If Kidd-Gilchrist logs significant playing time at power forward, Kaminsky could join an unsettled rotation at center and his perimeter defensive shortcomings wouldn’t be as much of an issue, Bonnell adds.
  • This is a pivotal season for Wizards point guard John Wall, Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington points out. Following the upcoming season, Wall’s four-year, $170MM-plus extension kicks in and it’s time for him to show he can lead a major contender, Hughes continues. He must improve his field-goal efficiency and mesh well with incoming center Dwight Howard, Hughes adds.
  • Heat summer-league star Derrick Jones will struggle to find playing time, Winderman wrote in another mailbag piece. Get that info, plus other Miami notes, right here.

Heat Notes: Jones, Richardson, Waiters, Deng

Derrick Jones looked like a star in Summer League, but it won’t be easy for him to get playing time, writes Ira Winderman of The Sun-Sentinel in a mailbag column. Jones was the Heat’s top scorer in the Sacramento league, averaging 21.3 points in three games, along with 7.3 rebounds. A two-way player last season, he appeared in 14 games for Miami and started eight.

Jones, a small forward who signed a two-year deal in July, faces heavy competition for minutes. Josh Richardson will start at that position, and using Jones as a backup means moving Justise Winslow to either power forward or the backcourt and the Heat are already overloaded in both areas. It may take a roster move or two for Jones to get an opportunity.

There’s more this morning out of Miami:

  • In the same column, Winderman tabs Richardson as the Heat player most likely to raise his game to an All-Star level in the future. Richardson became a full-time starter last year in his third NBA season and responded with a 12.9/3.5/2.9 line. The four-year, $42MM extension that Richardson agreed to last year will kick in this season, raising his salary to $9.367MM.
  • Fans shouldn’t expect too much from Dion Waiters in his return from injury, Winderman cautions in a separate piece. Waiters played just 30 games last year before undergoing season-ending ankle surgery in January. He should improve the team, Winderman notes, but will be competing for minutes with Richardson, Tyler Johnson and possibly Dwyane Wade.
  • The Heat still have little hope of finding a taker for Johnson’s contract, Winderman adds in the same story. The Nets’ offer sheet that Miami matched in 2016 starts to balloon this year, paying Johnson $19,245,370 in each of the next two seasons and giving him the second-highest salary on the team. Winderman notes that the Rockets moved Ryan Anderson‘s similar deal this week, but Anderson agreed to a substantial giveback in the final year of his contract, which Johnson doesn’t have incentive to do.
  • After agreeing to a buyout with the Lakers, Luol Deng is unlikely to return to Miami, tweets Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald. Deng would find minutes hard to come by in an already-crowded Heat rotation and wouldn’t want to risk being stuck on the bench like he was in Los Angeles. Deng spent two seasons in Miami before signing with the Lakers in 2016.

Southeast Notes: Carter, Heat, Winslow, Len

Vince Carter wants to go into broadcasting once his playing days are finished and has no desire to become an NBA coach, he told Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic. One of the reasons he joined the Hawks is that he’ll be in the same city as the headquarters of TNT.

“I enjoy coaching the game, but I don’t want to be a coach,” Carter said. “I think this is another way you can coach the game, but to a different crowd. Everybody watches the game and wonder why do they do this? I can give the inside look as an NBA player on what they think about, what they’re talking about, what teams are trying to accomplish while you’re watching the game.”

The fact that NBA coaches can get fired even if they’re successful is another reason why Carter would rather be a broadcaster.

We have more from the Southeast Division:

  • The Heat are unlikely to trade for a star player during the upcoming season, though they could dump some salary to avoid the luxury tax, Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun Sentinel opines. The current roster doesn’t look strong enough to justify a bold move for a big-time player. Instead, it’s more likely the plan to return to prominence will center around 2020 free agency, Winderman adds.
  • The Heat ought to experiment with Justise Winslow, and Josh Richardson in various situations and positions to find out how they fit into the long-term picture, Winderman argues in another mailbag post. They could look at Winslow anywhere from a backup point to an undersized power forward. They could also take a similar approach with Richardson, even though he’s already signed an extension, Winderman adds.
  • Hawks center Alex Len will play for Ukraine’s national team in the FIBA World Cup qualifying tournament in September, according to the Ukrainian Federation. The news was tweeted by Olesandr Proshuta. Len hasn’t played for his national team since he left for the United States to play college ball at Maryland in 2011, Proshuta notes.

Southeast Notes: Heat, Green, Bass

There have been no shortage of players who’ve stepped up for the Heat over the course of the past two seasons but at the end of the day, the club may need Josh Richardson and Justise Winslow to settle into roles as rotation players, Ira Winderman of the Sun Sentinel writes.

While Richardson and Winslow make for intriguing complementary players, the club may benefit most by channeling its offense through some combination of Dion Waiters, Goran Dragic and Hassan Whiteside.

Richardson averaged 12.9 points per game for the Heat as a 24-year-old last season and Winslow chipped in with 7.8 points per game of his own.

There’s more from the Southeast Division:

  • What exactly should teams look for with their 15th roster spot? Ira Winderman of the Sun Sentinel explores what the Heat have done with the spot in the past and what they should do with presently unsigned veteran Udonis Haslem as the season approaches.
  • The move to Washington will reunite recently signed Wizards forward Jeff Green with head coach Scott Brooks. Green spoke with Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington about his relationship with the man he played for during a rookie season with the Seattle SuperSonics.
  • In a feature celebrating the life of former Hornets general manager Bob Bass, who passed away on Friday, Rick Bonnell of The Charlotte Observer calls the old school executive the most impactful that the city has had.

Heat Notes: Richardson, Newman, Okafor, Babbitt

The Heat had calls from teams wanting to trade for Josh Richardson this summer, but Miami isn’t looking to move him, according to Manny Navarro and Barry Jackson of The Miami Herald. The organization wants Richardson to take a larger role on offense, with team president Pat Riley telling him that he should be able to average 18 points per game.

Richardson put up a career-best 12.9 PPG last season while shooting .375% from 3-point range. The authors say Richardson has been concentrating on shooting off the dribble and creating his own shot during offseason workouts.

Teams may have been trying to take advantage of the Heat’s desire to shed salary, but Richardson has an affordable deal that will pay him nearly $42MM over the next four seasons, including an $11.6MM player option in 2021/22. If he is able to increase his scoring numbers, Richardson’s contract might look like a bargain.

Navarro and Jackson pass along some more Heat info in the same piece:

  • Miami wasn’t swayed by Malik Newman‘s experience with the Lakers when the team opted to sign him this week. The 21-year-old guard inked a two-way contract with L.A. at the beginning of July, but spent less than three weeks with the team before being waived. A source said the Heat were “intrigued” with Newman because of his outside shooting prowess and his performance with Kansas in the NCAA Tournament. At 6’3″, Newman will have to learn to play point guard to succeed in the NBA, the source added. His contract is believed to be a training camp deal.
  • Even though the Heat have roster openings, they never considered trying to sign free agent center Jahlil Okafor. The No. 3 pick in the 2015 draft agreed to a partially guaranteed deal with the Pelicans today after disappointing performances with the Sixers and Nets. Miami only has 12 players with guaranteed contracts, along with a two-way deal for Duncan Robinson, but the team believes it has enough centers with Kelly Olynyk and Bam Adebayo backing up Hassan Whiteside.
  • Veteran forward Luke Babbitt, who finished last season in Miami after a February trade from the Hawks, continues to examine offers in Europe. Babbitt, 29, is hoping to find a place where he can get more playing time after barely being used by the Heat. He appeared in 13 games after the deal, averaging 11.2 minutes per night, and played just three total minutes in the postseason.

Heat Notes: Trade Talks, Johnson, Whiteside

The Heat have been looking to shed salary, having made Hassan Whiteside, Tyler Johnson, and Dion Waiters available in trade talks, two rival high-ranking executives tell Barry Jackson of The Miami Herald.

According to those execs, however, Miami has been unwilling to attach a future first-round pick or a young player like Justise Winslow or Josh Richardson to those highly-paid veterans. As Jackson details, the Heat’s preference would be to move a big contract like Johnson’s for a lesser-paid – and perhaps less effective player – or a draft pick.

Whiteside, Johnson, and Waiters aren’t bad players, but they’re not positive trade assets on their current contracts, which span multiple seasons and will pay them $25.4MM, 19.2MM, and $11.6MM respectively in 2018/19. As such, the Heat will likely have to adjust their expectations and their asking price if they hope to move any of those players.

Here are several more notes out of South Beach:

  • In an article for The Miami Herald, Barry Jackson explores the Heat’s options with Tyler Johnson‘s contract and notes that agent Mark Bartelstein isn’t ruling the possibility of Derrick Walton returning to the Heat. Miami withdrew Walton’s two-way qualifying offer earlier this week.
  • Heat head coach Erik Spoeltra appears committed to a fresh start with Hassan Whiteside, telling reporters this week that he has been in “constant contact” with the veteran center this summer (link via The Miami Herald). “I’m looking forward to the start of the season with a healthy Hassan. I know he’s looking forward to that,” Spoelstra said. “And we still have a good part of the summer to get better. I think Hassan having an opportunity to start off the season healthy will be a really big boost for us.”
  • The Heat remain on the lookout for under-the-radar free agents who are participating in the Las Vegas Summer League or holding individual workouts in Vegas this week, writes Ira Winderman of The South Florida Sun Sentinel. “Guys are getting two-ways during Summer League right now,” assistant GM Adam Simon said. “So those guys come off the table. So my job, our job, is to make sure we’re aware of all players that are available and then when it’s time to make decisions, then, as a group, we make those decisions.”
  • In a separate article for The Sun Sentinel, Winderman examines how the Heat will handle their logjam at shooting guard with Wayne Ellington re-signing and a Dwyane Wade return still in play.

Trade Rumors: Clippers, Mavs, Richardson, Lakers

The Clippers aren’t overly interested in taking back Wesley Matthews in a trade sending DeAndre Jordan to the Mavericks, reports Marc Stein of The New York Times (via Twitter). Los Angeles’ reluctance to accept Matthews makes some sense — while his salary is a little more affordable than Jordan’s, his contract expires at the same time, and the veteran swingman doesn’t really fill a major need for the Clips.

In order to work out a deal with the Clippers, the Mavericks will have to come up with an alternative trade scenario for Jordan, Stein notes. However, if the two sides can’t reach an agreement, that doesn’t necessarily mean Dallas is out of the running for Jordan, since the standout center could always decline his player option and sign with the Mavs as a free agent. If Dallas can work out a trade for Jordan, the team could theoretically preserve a good chunk of its cap room for another signing.

Here are a few more trade-related rumors from around the NBA:

  • Several teams called the Heat to inquire about Josh Richardson during the draft, but Miami showed no interest in moving him, sources tell ESPN’s Zach Lowe. If the Heat hope to re-sign Wayne Ellington or use their mid-level exception, they’ll almost certainly have to shed salary, but Richardson isn’t a player the club is willing to lose.
  • The Suns made Marquese Chriss available in trade talks on draft night, according to Lowe. The ESPN.com scribe adds that the Suns, who are in the market for a point guard this summer, have yet to show any interest in trading for Dennis Schroder of the Hawks.
  • Multiple sources tell Tim Bontemps of The Washington Post that the Lakers and Nuggets have discussed a trade that would send unwanted salary and a draft pick to Los Angeles. Reports earlier this week indicated that the Lakers were exploring ways to acquire another first-round pick to sweeten a potential offer for Kawhi Leonard.
  • In a piece for ESPN.com, Bobby Marks examines some of the more intriguing expiring contracts and trade chips around the NBA.

Heat Notes: Richardson, James, Wade, Ellington

Heat forward Josh Richardson is confident that Miami can put a contending team around LeBron James if he decides to come there in free agency, relays Manny Navarro of The Miami Herald. Richardson, who is working out in Santa Barbara, California, and trying to add bulk to his 205-pound body, believes James could be the “transformational player” that team president Pat Riley has talked about acquiring.

“I think we have great pieces to offer to play around him,” Richardson said. “We play with a lot of intensity. We’ve got a lot of dog in us. You need that in the trenches. That’s all I can really say about it.”

The dilemma for Richardson is that trading him might be James’ only path back to Miami. The Heat have 11 players under contract next season totaling about $120MM, putting them close to the projected $123MM tax line. Their only realistic hope to acquire James through a trade, and Richardson would be among their most desirable assets in any deal.

There’s more today from Miami:

  • Richardson, who has quickly developed a reputation as one of the league’s best defenders, was angry about being overlooked for this year’s All-Defensive team. He thought he earned the recognition after recording a career-best 121 steals during the season. “I still think I’m one of the best defenders in the NBA, but I can’t sit around and sulk about it,” Richardson said. “I’m not too bent out of shape about it anymore. But it’s definitely one of my goals to make those teams.”
  • Dwyane Wade, who is one of James’ closest friends and a former teammate in both Miami and Cleveland, said he can’t provide any insight into the thought process of the Cavaliers star. “Let’s let the record show … I don’t have any inside information whatsoever about his decision!” Wade tweeted this week.
  • Shooting specialist Wayne Ellington, who set an NBA record for most 3-pointers by a reserve in a single season, may be too expensive for the Heat to re-sign given their cap situation. Frank Urbina of HoopsHype looks at potential destinations for Ellington, naming the Hornets, Pistons and Warriors as possibilities if he leaves Miami.

Southeast Notes: Oubre Jr., Richardson, Magic

The Wizards will have until October to offer Kelly Oubre Jr. a contract extension, but their current financial outlook makes that unlikely. As a result, Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington writes, the 22-year-old heads into the offseason with every reason to hone his game; his performance in 2018/19 will determine his next deal.

Oubre Jr. took a step forward in his third season with the Wizards, averaging 11.8 points and 4.5 rebounds in a career high 27.5 minutes per contest. While those aren’t exactly max-contract numbers, he’s an intriguing young piece that could slot in alongside some highly-paid teammates as an additional component of the Wizards’ expensive, homegrown core.

The Wizards will have over $90MM tied up in contracts for John Wall, Bradley Beal and Otto Porter in 2019/20. Oubre Jr. will look to add to that figure by convincing the club to bring him back as a restricted free agent, similarly to how Porter signed his most recent deal back in 2017.

There’s more out of the Southeast Division:

  • Steady improvement through his first three seasons has Josh Richardson in a position to make a name for himself in 2018/19. The swingman, who signed a contract extension that will keep him with the Heat through 2021/22, wants to take another step. “I’m capable of being a great player in this league and I think I showed flashes,” he told Ira Winderman of The Sun-Sentinel. “I think I just have to do it consistently.”
  • The Magic have been strategically tight-lipped when it comes to their head coaching search, Josh Robbins of The Orlando Sentinel writes. Team president Jeff Weltman has made an effort to avoid leaks throughout the process and it’s highly likely that the team has interviewed more candidates than the few that have been reported.
  • Fifteen-year Heat veteran Udonis Haslem doesn’t have a decision as to whether or not he’ll return next season. The 37-year-old tells Ira Winderman of The Sun-Sentinel that it comes down to “having no regrets.”