Bergerak-rata-model-identifikasi Investasi valuta asing Stock-call-options-dijelaskan Ta-ut-pengar-hos-forex Trading-indicators-rsi Mnc-forex-company
Rumor Rumit Perdagangan: Nama Besar Melapisi Sebagai Pilihan Pabrik rumor sedang merajalela di NBA, tapi apa artinya New York Knicks Anehnya, ada sejumlah nama besar yang tersedia. 20 Des 2016 Miami, FL, AS Pelatih Heat Miami Goran Dragic (7) bereaksi di tengah lapangan pada babak pertama melawan Orlando Magic di American Airlines Arena. Wajib Kredit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports Pada titik ini di musim ini, diperkirakan bahwa pekerja rumah tangga dan bintang-bintang tidak puas akan muncul di pabrik rumor. Bintang sesekali bisa direferensikan, tapi itu adalah perkembangan langka pada titik awal musim ini. Hari-hari yang telah berlalu dari tanggal 15 Desember membuka pintu air untuk perdagangan, sejumlah besar nama mengejutkan mulai dirujuk dalam rumor perdagangan seputar NBA. New York Knicks tidak berada pada titik di mana perdagangan akan segera terjadi, dan juga pada titik di mana perdagangan sedang dipertimbangkan. Jeff Hornacek dan Co baru saja mulai membangun identitas tim dan seharusnya tidak membiarkan proses itu. Mengetahui pemain yang tersedia dan biaya potensial untuk mereka adalah kunci untuk membangun jangka panjang, bagaimanapun, dan Knicks tampaknya memiliki sejumlah peluang menarik. Dalam beberapa kasus, Knicks bisa mengatasi kekurangan dengan memperdagangkan pemain yang sangat sesuai dengan apa yang mereka butuhkan. Di tempat lain, New York harus menyampaikan kemungkinan menambahkan bakat dinamis yang tidak akan sepadan dengan harganya. Pertanyaannya adalah: rumor perdagangan apa yang sedang menghadapi badai NBA dan mengapa Knicks peduli dengan Heat dan Goran Dragic dilaporkan terbuka untuk berdagang, kesepakatan apa yang masuk akal Miami Heat tidak ke mana-mana. Kata pembangunan kembali mulai dilemparkan sekitar awal pra-musim, jarang bagi tim Miami yang membenci gagasan untuk tidak berkompetisi. (Heat hanya melewati satu musim pembangunan kembali, pada tahun 2008, sejak Dwyane Wade direkrut.) Miami berhasil bertahan dalam permainan lebih banyak daripada tim yang paling buruk - mereka unggul 23 poin, namun berada di urutan ke-28 dalam persentase kemenangan musim ini - Tapi hasil akhirnya hampir selalu sama. Pat Riley tampaknya telah menyerahkan hantu tersebut dan tim tersebut bersiap untuk memancing musim dingin yang panjang untuk mencoba dan mendapatkan Markelle Fultz, Dennis Smith, Josh Jackson, Lonzo Ball atau Malik Monk dalam draft Junes berikutnya. Tapi masih ada hal yang perlu diketahui, dan yang terpenting adalah Goran Dragic. Heat melepaskan pick putaran pertama untuk mendapatkan guard point dinamis dari Phoenix. Serentak telah baik-baik saja, bahkan bagus, kadang-kadang, tapi sepertinya semuanya tidak efektif. Dia tidak pernah berhubungan dengan Dwyane Wade, dan sementara dia dan Hassan Whiteside beroperasi dengan baik bersama, bukan salah satu combo yang lebih berbahaya di liga. Dragic adalah 30 dengan lebih dari 35 juta dijamin tersisa dalam kesepakatan yang dia masuki pada tahun 2015, dan 19 juta owed pada 2019-20 mendapat pilihan terminasi dini pemain, yang berarti dia dapat bermain melalui usia 34 dengan biaya tersebut. Semua ini mengarah pada kesimpulan bahwa Miami memiliki alasan untuk mengejar perdagangan Dragic, dan Yahoo Sports melaporkan bahwa baik Heat, dan Dragic, terbuka untuk sebuah kesepakatan. Dragic adalah dilema. Ketika Dragic memaksa perdagangan ke Miami dua tahun lalu, dia pikir dia bergabung dengan tim satu sama lain - dia - dari pesaing konferensi. Hari ini, dia memimpin daftar nama beberapa kerugian akibat jatuh di bawah Philadelphia di ruang bawah tanah Timur. Dragic terbuka untuk perdagangan, sumber liga mengatakan kepada The Vertical, dan Miami telah mengikuti opsi tersebut. Sebuah musim awal bertukar dengan Sacramento untuk Rudy Gay runtuh saat Heat mencari Darren Collison. Sumber mengatakan, dan tim yang telah menyelidiki Miami tentang Dragic telah menemukan Heat terbuka untuk penawaran. Dan mengapa tidak Dragic berusia 30, dan jika Miami akan memaksimalkan kepulangannya pada guard point All-Star level yang memiliki musim kuat lain, sekaranglah waktunya. Dia adalah aset yang terdepresiasi, bintang yang bonafide, tentu saja, tapi orang yang tidak menarik penggemar (yang mengumumkan penjualan 16.700 pada hari Selasa adalah menggelikan yang mungkin ada 5.000 di kursi) dan siapa yang kemungkinan akan mengalami penurunan saat Riley mampu Remold Heat menjadi pesaing. Nilai aset yang dapat diambil Dragic dalam perdagangan bisa melebihi nilai langsung yang dia miliki terhadap organisasi. Baiklah, jadi pemain bintang prima pada apa adanya, di bawah struktur topi baru kesepakatan yang sangat masuk akal. Bahkan dengan nilai depreciating-nya, seharusnya mudah kembali untuknya. Goran Dragic terbuka untuk perdagangan. USATSI Namun, perhatikan kesepakatan Sacramento Kings tersebut. Menurut Sacramento, Darren Collison, seorang penjaga titik tingkat pengganti dengan masalah di luar pengadilan, terlalu tinggi untuk dipasangkan dengan Rudy Gay, pemain yang telah mereka coba turunkan selama setahun, dalam sebuah kesepakatan untuk Dragic. Masalah terbesarnya adalah posisi Dragics yang spesifik - non-superstar, penjaga titik dominan bola - bukanlah satu hal yang sangat dibutuhkan oleh banyak tim. Berikut adalah tim di mana Dragic akan mewakili peningkatan yang signifikan atas penjaga titik awal mereka saat ini: New York Knicks Derrick Rose telah bagus, namun mengingat masalah daya tahan dan gaya bermain, Dragic akan mewakili peningkatan yang obyektif. Tapi Knicks tidak memiliki aset untuk diperdagangkan, dan memindahkan Rose setelah membuatnya bergerak besar dari musim panas nampaknya tidak mungkin. Dragic over Rose mungkin upgrade, tapi banyak yang melihatnya sebagai langkah lateral. Peringkat bersih Milwaukee Bucks Matius Dellavedova negatif, dan sementara dia menyediakan banyak dari apa yang mereka butuhkan, tidak masalah membawa Delly keluar dari bangku cadangan sebagai counter defensif. Namun, keberhasilan Bucks telah didasarkan pada pembuatan antipartetel Gi Giasa Giotto. Menambahkan guard point yang dominan bola tidak masuk akal untuk apa yang Bucks lakukan. Indiana Pacers Jeff Teague telah mengejutkan baik dalam memilih dan menggulung untuk tim Pacers menengah Teague adalah 10 dalam poin per kepemilikan dalam pick and rolls termasuk lolos, menurut Synergy Sports. Tapi pembelaannya telah menderita, dan Teague hanya menembak 42 persen sendiri, 29 persen dari dalam. Teague sedang dalam kontrak yang kedaluwarsa, yang mungkin berharga dalam pencarian Pat Rileys yang tidak pernah berakhir untuk mencoba dan meminta superstar untuk datang ke Heat dengan status bebas. Selain itu, Pacers memiliki aset yang tipis yang akan menguntungkan Heat dalam jangka panjang, penuh dengan veteran dalam kesepakatan jangka menengah seperti Thaddeus Young dan Monta Ellis. Ini mungkin pilihan terbaik mereka, jika Pacers tertarik pada bagaimana Dragic beroperasi di sistem Nate McMillans, meskipun Dragic merupakan downgrade defensif dari Teague. Orlando Magic Elfrid Angka payton telah dicelupkan ke dalam Frank Vogel dan dia telah masuk dan keluar dari barisan awal. Orlando memiliki beberapa pemain yang mungkin merupakan investasi jangka panjang untuk Miami, namun tidak ada satupun yang membangun pemain blok untuk pesaing kejuaraan yang Pat Riley hidupi. Sulit untuk melihat Magic pergi untuk kesepakatan yang melibatkan Evan Fournier. Tapi itu akan memberi mereka aset yang lebih baik untuk transaksi di masa depan. Its juga sulit untuk melihat Orlando terbuka untuk memindahkan Aaron Gordon dalam kesepakatan untuk Dragic. Plus, tim jarang menggerakkan pemain kunci dalam divisi. Brooklyn Nets Brook Lopez tidak bisa bermain di sebelah Whiteside dan Nets tidak memiliki aset lain. Tidak ada Tidak ada picks, no player, nothing. Id perdagangan untuk Sean Kilpatrick. Tapi itu karena saya adalah Sean Kilpatrick. Jeremy Lin tidak akan menjadi downgrade besar, tapi ragu untuk kontrak yang lebih lama. Philadelphia 76ers Ini jenis yang menarik. Sixers membutuhkan penjaga titik lebih banyak daripada mereka benar-benar membutuhkan sesuatu. Mereka memiliki penembak (ketujuh dalam membuat 3-pointer, 13 dalam persentase 3 poin), dan seorang pria besar yang produktif. Dragic akan membuat mereka jauh lebih baik. Heat telah mengambil taruhan pada pertanyaan karakter sebelumnya, jadi kesepakatan Nerlens Noel akan membuat tingkat masuk akal. Anda bisa memasangkan Whitesides pick and roll dan shot blocking dengan Noel atau Jahlil Okafor. Lempar di Robert Covington. Yang nilainya meluncur, dan Anda memiliki sesuatu yang signifikan. Jika Heat dapat merehabilitasi nilai perdagangan Noel atau Okafor dalam sistem Erik Spoelstras (yang lebih sesuai dengan aslinya), mereka kemudian dapat menggunakan pemain tersebut untuk mengejar superstar yang selalu diinginkan oleh Riley. Sacramento Kings Seperti yang telah disebutkan sebelumnya, mereka adalah tujuan potensial namun akan melunakkan apa yang ingin mereka hadapi dengan Dragic. Denver Nuggets Mereka memiliki pemain muda, kontrak bergerak, veteran yang baik, dan picks, jadi mereka punya potongan. Tapi itu akan membawa Nuggets tidak hanya menyerah pada Emmanuel Mudiay setelah kurang dari dua tahun, dan masih menciptakan masalah jangka panjang dengan Jamal Murray yang terlihat jauh lebih nyaman dengan bola. Dragic juga tidak melakukan apapun untuk memecahkan masalah defensif mereka yang luas, dan jika mereka memperdagangkan para veteran, mereka tidak melakukan apapun untuk mengatasi ketidakcocokan pemain muda dan veteran mereka. New Orleans Pelicans Sebuah ide yang menarik. Liburan Jrue mungkin lebih baik secara obyektif dengan kekuatan dan atletisnya yang defensif, tapi bagaimanapun kekhawatiran cedera yang terus berlanjut dan sistem Dragic dalam Alvin Gentrys mungkin sangat sesuai. Dengan riwayat cedera Liburan dan lemari yang tandus di luar itu, Pelikan tidak memiliki minat terhadap tujuan jangka panjang Heat. Minnesota Timberwolves Offense bukanlah masalah mereka, dan sementara Ricky Rubio telah berjuang dan tidak akan pernah menjadi penembak dalam kapasitas apa pun, Dragic tidak memperbaiki masalah apa yang mereka lakukan. Jika Wolves memutuskan ingin memindahkan Zach LaVine atau Andrew Wiggins untuk menyingkirkan semuanya, tentu saja, tapi jika mereka melakukannya, mereka pasti menginginkan aset yang lebih baik daripada Dragic. Los Angeles Lakers Tim lain Dragic dikabarkan tertarik saat ia memaksa keluar dari Phoenix. Anda bisa bermain di DAngelo Russell dengan dua penjaga, dan Dragic dalam sistem Luke Waltons akan menjadi hebat. Tapi ini akan merupakan pengabaian utama gerakan pemuda dalam menangani aset masa depan yang paling mahal dan mahal. Dallas Mavericks Mereka tidak memiliki aset untuk ditangani. Phoenix Suns Jadi sementara ada beberapa pilihan, triknya sulit ditemukan sangat sesuai. Ini bukan hanya profil Dragics: faktor non-defensif veteran, uang besar dalam kesepakatan jangka panjang. Its bahwa Heat tidak mencari aset masa depan untuk membangun kembali panjang. Kesabaran Pat Rileys akan berlangsung selama setahun, paling banyak. Dia ingin upgrade besar, terus-menerus, dan Heat tidak memiliki potongan untuk dipaket dengan Dragic untuk mendapatkannya, kecuali jika mereka siap menghadapi Whiteside andor Justise Winslow. Sekarang, jika memang begitu, maka Cousins Boogie setidaknya harus menjadi ide yang masuk akal, tapi itu adalah risiko yang bahkan tidak mungkin dilakukan oleh Riley. Panas terjebak di antara batu dan tempat yang keras dengan Dragic. Bagaimana mereka mengetahui jalan keluar dari situ bisa menjadi penting dalam menentukan berapa lama waktu yang akan dibangun kembali di Miami. CBS Sports WriterASK IRA: Akankah Heat melihat untuk lebih memperkuat daftar mereka T: Saya menolak untuk percaya bahwa Pat Riley tidak akan melakukan langkah lagi sekarang karena musim pembelian telah dimulai. Saya tahu seseorang akan terlepas (Jared Sullinger) atau datang dari luar negeri (Jimmer Fredette) bahwa Heat akan menerkam dan mengembangkannya menjadi bintang seperti tidak ada tim lain yang bisa melakukannya. - Robert J: Untuk terlibat, Heat pertama harus membuka daftar nama, dan itu tergantung pada waktu intrik mereka dengan Chris Bosh. Setelah menunggu selama ini, masuk akal bagi Heat untuk disengaja dalam hal itu sesuai kebutuhan. Pada satu titik, saya pikir mungkin Heat mungkin beralih dari Luke Babbitt setelah batas akhir. Sebagai gantinya, dia telah menjadi starter untuk salah satu tim terpanas di NBA, yang menetapkan nada kemenangan hari Jumat di Atlanta dengan 3-pointer awal. Sejauh gagasan menambahkan pemain untuk pengembangan, sebuah kasus dapat dibuat bahwa Heat melakukannya di D-League, dengan Sioux Falls Skyforce, apakah itu bersama Keith Benson atau mungkin dengan pemain yang baru saja ditambahkan ke daftar tersebut. Seperti Greg Whittington atau Johan Petro. T: Saya pikir Mike Scott akan menjadi tambahan yang bagus untuk tim Heat ini, seorang atletik, motor tinggi yang bisa memukul bola 3-bola. Plus Heat dikenal untuk meremajakan karir. Pikiran Anda - Tre, Abbeville, AL A: Scott sedikit mengalami penurunan sejak 2013-14, saat dia rata-rata mengumpulkan 9,6 poin. Dan kemudian ada, dari akun perdagangannya sampai (dan selanjutnya dibebaskan dari) Phoenix Suns, per Associated Press: quotScott masih menghadapi tuduhan terkait narkoba sejak penangkapan pada 30 Juli lalu. Dia berada di sebuah SUV yang digerakkan olehnya Saudara laki-laki yang akhirnya ditarik oleh pihak berwenang di dekat Atlanta setelah mencapai kecepatan 99 mph, kata para pejabat sheriff. Deputi mengatakan bahwa mereka menemukan satu ons ganja dan 10,9 gram MDNA, yang biasa dikenal dengan Molly, di dalam kendaraan. Scott didakwa memiliki ganja dan memiliki jadwal yang saya pakai. Kasus ini masih tertunda tanpa tanggal pengadilan set.quot Dengan kata lain, Scott bisa menghadapi penangguhan diperpanjang berdasarkan hasil kasus tersebut, bahkan mungkin di luar musim penuh. Seperti itu, dia adalah seorang tweener maju tanpa posisi frontcourt yang spesifik. Kirimkan pertanyaan Anda Kirimkan pertanyaan Anda ke Heat mengalahkan penulis Ira Winderman dan periksa jawabannya di sini. Isi formulir online saya. Kirimkan pertanyaan Anda ke Heat mengalahkan penulis Ira Winderman dan periksa jawabannya di sini. Isi formulir online saya. T: Hey Ira, dengan Magic Johnson yang sekarang menjalankan pertunjukan di LA dapatkah Anda melihat Pat Riley di offseason membuat lari pada pilihan Top 3 terlaris mereka yang bertali undian dalam pertukaran untuk Hassan Whiteside dan Miamis di babak pertama, dengan kemungkinan menyerap Baik kontrak Luol Deng atau Timofey Mozgov - Amos, Orlando. J: Banyak yang harus ditelan dan pasti jauh di depan kurva. Pertama, saya tidak yakin bahwa koneksi Riley-Johnson tentu akan memfasilitasi kesepakatan. Tapi Anda membuat poin yang lebih besar, dan itu tentang menunggu untuk mengetahui di mana draf picks akan jatuh sebelum melakukan kesepakatan. Begitu undian selesai, asalkan mereka tidak melakukan playoff, Heat tidak hanya akan tahu penempatan pick draft mereka, tapi juga keseimbangan liga. Kemudian, jika Riley ingin membuat kesepakatan dengan draft, dia akan memiliki rasa posisi yang jauh lebih besar yang bisa dia targetkan, dan karena itu juga mengetahui posisi yang mampu dia tangani. Dengan begitu banyak kualitas dalam draft tahun ini, saya pikir itu adalah salah satu alasan mengapa begitu sedikit pilihan ditangani pada batas waktu. Bola yang memantul di dalam hopper undian kemungkinan akan menentukan di mana tim akan berbalik berikutnya ketika harus melanjutkan perdagangan di lapangan sebelum draft. T: Sepertinya tidak seperti Pat Riley punya rencana untuk masa depan. Sisa liga hanya membantu LeBron James memenangkan lebih banyak gelar. Mengapa Heat hanya ingin menjadi unggulan kedelapan - Jeffrey. T: Apa alasan tidak ada langkah yang dilakukan sebelum batas waktu perdagangan untuk aset masa depan Ini adalah hal yang pasti tim lain akan pergi untuk James Johnson atau Dion Waiters untuk setidaknya memilih putaran kedua. Tolong beritahu saya Heat tidak akan membayar lebih Pelayan dan Johnson tahun depan, mengambil semua ruang kosong dari kontrak Chris Boshs. - Alex, Miami T: Saya senang Heat tidak melakukan gerakan bodoh. Saya lebih suka berpegang pada Dion Waiters dan James Johnson dan mengambil kesempatan bahwa Heat dapat menandatanganinya dengan kontrak yang masuk akal, daripada memberikannya kepada pembalap kedua atau bahkan pembulatan akhir yang terlambat, yang dapat Anda beli dengan uang tunai untuk draft hari. - David T: Jadi tidak ada yang menginginkan Pelayan Dion atau James Johnson dan seharusnya bersemangat untuk menandatangani kontrak dengan 10 orang per tahun - Joel. T: Sekarang Pat Riley bisa membayar lebih Pelayan dan James Johnson - Aura. J: Baiklah, tentang meramalkan penampang yang diterima pada hari Heat tetap berdiri, segala sesuatu mulai dari bagaimana Heat seharusnya menjual rendah bagaimana Heat seharusnya menghabiskan banyak uang untuk pemain sewaan mereka di agen bebas. Pertama, jika Heat bisa mendapatkan putaran pertama berkualitas untuk Pelatih atau Johnson (atau bahkan Wayne Ellington atau Willie Reed), saya yakin langkah seperti itu pasti telah dilakukan. Ada terlalu banyak pikiran cerdas di ruangan itu untuk melewati kesempatan untuk menutup apa yang sebelumnya telah dihabiskan. Tapi, kedua, kemungkinan besar tidak ada nilai yang bisa didapat, karena tidak seperti tim lain di dasar balapan playoff tidak memiliki aset serupa untuk dijual. Dari pertanyaan di atas, pertanyaan yang paling menarik adalah bahwa mungkin biaya itu sama mahalnya dengan perkiraan untuk mempertahankan Pelayan dan atau Johnson, bahwa mungkin pasar berbicara dengan cara pada hari Kamis yang memberi harapan kepada Heat untuk mempertahankan sebagian besar inti ini dan Masih mampu membeli sesuatu yang lain. Tentu saja, ada juga pertengkaran tentang Pat Riley yang begitu paham dengan para pemain ini sehingga mereka sekarang mungkin akan menunjukkan uangnya. T: Alih-alih sebuah pukulan tim, apakah tim sehat Goran Dragic, Dion Waiters, Justise Winslow, Hassan Whiteside yang memulai, bersama James Johnson, Tyler Johnson, Willie Reed, Rodney McGruder dan Wayne Ellington yang datang dari bangku cadangan Jika Anda menambahkan Blake Griffin ke starting lineup dan guard point cadangan sejati (Briante Weber), di mana tim itu berada di Wilayah Timur - Gary, Juno Beach. J: Ini tidak akan ada di mana-mana, karena ini akan menjadi tim fantasi yang tidak bekerja di bawah gaji. Jika Anda ingin menandatangani ulang James Johnson dan Pelayan dengan nilai pasar mereka pada bulan Juli, berikan Reed dorongan gaji yang diperolehnya, dan pilih opsi pemain Ellingtons, Anda praktis bisa berada di luar ruang tunggu, apalagi diposisikan untuk menandatangani kontrak Agen bebas di kisaran 25 juta sampai 30 juta. Ini adalah agen bebas maks luar (jika itu mungkin atau WaitersJohnson) Dan ingat, pemanasan kembali harus datang musim panas ini asalkan Tyler Johnson ada dalam daftar, dan topinya mencapai tiga kali lipat pada musim panas 2018 karena strukturnya T: Miami Heat tidak memiliki siapa-siapa di game Rising Stars, tidak ada orang di All-Star Saturday dan no All-Star. Apakah tim ini membutuhkan lebih banyak motivasi - Luchey A: Sebenarnya, apa yang dibutuhkan Heat Adalah apa yang mereka dapatkan, time off dari dorongan konstan sampai klasemen untuk dekompresi.Anda bisa mengatakan pada kerugian ke 76ers dan Nets bahwa mereka agak berjalan pada asap, bahkan dengan tendangan finishing yang kuat melawan Rockets. Tingkat persaingan Meningkat secara signifikan ketika mereka kembali dengan back-to-back pada akhir pekan ini pada Jumat malam di Atlanta dan kemudian pulang Sabtu malam melawan Indiana. Kelelahan tidak lagi bisa menjadi alasan, karena pada saat itu banyak pertandingan penting bulan terakhir ini, mereka akan berarti Lebih dari dua bulan terakhir ini o Pada musim ini, jika playoff adalah tujuannya. T: Di mana Heat berdiri dengan tenggat waktu perdagangan di sini Apakah mereka mengambil keuntungan untuk terlibat dalam perdagangan sementara pemain mereka meningkatkan nilainya dan mendapatkan aset darinya Atau melakukan perdagangan Panas untuk pemain yang dapat membantu mereka dalam melakukan dorongan playoff - Eldridge , Parra, Filipina. J: Saya percaya ada cara untuk melakukan keduanya. Jika Heat bisa mendapatkan sesuatu dari kualitas draft untuk Dion Waiters, mungkin dari salah satu tim yang tidak berhasil memimpin Lou Williams, mereka kemudian bisa menunggu sampai pasar pembelian, setelah tanggal 1 Maret, untuk mencari penggantinya, setelah sebuah daftar nama terbuka Mengikuti intrik Chris Bosh. Seperti itu, Heat perlu menemukan menit untuk Josh Richardson, yang bisa meluncur ke peran Pelaga sejak pertandingan hari Jumat di Atlanta. Kemudian, jika Heat tetap berada dalam perlombaan playoff, mereka bisa menambahkan pemain yang mungkin terjepit dari tim lain pada batas waktu perdagangan (Marcus Thonton), atau bahkan pemain yang kembali dari luar negeri (Jimmer Fredette). Dengan kata lain, bahkan jika Pelayan (atau Wayne Ellington atau James Johnson) dipindahkan, ada beberapa cara, dalam beberapa hari, untuk mendapatkan penggantian, mungkin dengan menggunakan pengecualian 1,3 juta pemain penyandang cacat, Heat terus sampai 10 Maret untuk bahu Justise Winslows operasi. T: Ini adalah kesalahan besar untuk bertahan pada Pelayan dan James Johnson. Kecuali Heat mendapat persetujuan dari mereka untuk mengambil pengecualian tingkat menengah, Pat Riley akan kehilangan setidaknya satu sekarang untuk apa-apa. Kami melihat itu sudah bersama Joe Johnson dan Luol Deng. Berdagang setidaknya satu dari mereka sekarang dan fokuskan energi Anda pada pendaratan quotwhalequot di musim-off. - Gabriel, Miami J: Itu turun ke apa yang bisa mereka dapatkan. Bagi saya, jika Anda berpotensi menggagalkan dorongan playoff, itu harus dilakukan untuk memilih putaran pertama (bahkan jika dilindungi, bahkan jika di jalan) atau paket putaran kedua (yang kemudian bisa Digunakan sebagai quotsweetenersquot untuk penawaran potensial lainnya di jalan). T: Jika Heat memotong Josh McRoberts pada batas waktu perdagangan mereka akan bertanggung jawab atas gajinya musim depan - Carl, Kapaa, Hawaii. J: Ya, karena itulah sangat tidak mungkin bahwa Heat dapat menemukan pengambil untuk McRoberts pada batas waktu perdagangan. Ini adalah satu hal untuk diperdagangkan agar bisa sampai ke lantai gaji dan secara fiskal keluar menjelang pertandingan. Ini adalah satu lagi untuk dibebani dengan pilihan McRoberts 6 juta pemain untuk musim depan, kecuali jika Anda tetap berharap bahwa cedera akhirnya dapat dihindari. Hasil yang paling mungkin adalah dengan memanfaatkan ketentuan peregangan di luar musim dengan gaji McRoberts 2017-18, sehingga rata-rata bisa mendapatkan gaji yang tersisa selama tiga musim untuk meminimalkan kenaikan gaji tahunan (dan 2017 offseason). T: Ira, setiap pikiran tentang Lakers bergerak menempatkan Magic Johnson bertanggung jawab dan setiap kesempatan dia dan Pat Riley berhubungan dalam satu atau dua tahun di Los Angeles - Douglas. T: Ada kesempatan Magic Johnson mencoba untuk membongkar Pat Riley dari Heat - Marc. J: Bagi saya, ini adalah dua pertanyaan yang berbeda. Pertama, yang pada dasarnya menjadi atasannya sendiri selama dua dekade dengan Heat, saya ragu Pat akan bekerja di bawah siapa pun jika menyangkut personil. Tapi aku bisa melihat Pat akhirnya beralih ke sesuatu yang lebih dekat dengan peran yang dimainkan Jerry West bersama Grizzlies dan terutama sekarang dengan Warriors, di mana dia bisa bekerja sebagai konsultan, pindah saat dibutuhkan untuk langkah yang lebih besar, tapi tidak harus berurusan dengan Kerepotan sehari-hari personil. Mungkin peran seperti itu bisa datang dengan Heat, bersama Andy Elisburg, Nick Arison dan Shane Battier yang menangani masalah personil sehari-hari. Atau mungkin hal itu bisa terjadi di Los Angeles bersama Lakers, duduk di suite eksekutif di Staples Center dan menawarkan saran kepada Magic saat dikonsultasikan atau saat tertarik. Pikiran itu selama ini telah Pat semi-pensiun di beberapa titik kembali ke Los Angeles. Jadi pertanyaannya menjadi apakah akan melibatkan hubungan bi-pesisir dengan Heat atau sesuatu yang lebih dekat dengan rumah dengan Lakers. Saya berharap Riley segera menyampaikan masalah ini, agar tidak mempengaruhi pendekatannya saat berhubungan dengan agen bebas di offseason. T: Ada kesempatan Heat mengembalikan Briante Weber jika Golden State membiarkannya pergi - Wajih. J: Nah, itu terbukti menjadi pendekatan musim lalu, saat Weber menjalani waktu 10 hari bersama Grizzlies setelah meninggalkan afiliasi Heats D-League, dan kemudian kembali ke Heat untuk akhir musim dan babak playoff. Tapi untuk saat ini, angka pada daftar tambahan yang tersisa ditahan sampai setelah batas waktu perdagangan Kamis NBA dan kemungkinan tidak sampai daftar umpan Chris Boshs yang hangat pada suatu waktu di bulan Maret atau sesudahnya. T: Jika ada pasar untuk James Johnson, Dion Waiters atau Willie Reed maka kita harus membuat kesepakatan itu, bahkan jika itu hanya putaran kedua. Orang-orang ini akan mendapatkan agen bebas dan bukan pesaing, jadi mengapa kita tidak mengambil kesempatan ini untuk mengembalikan beberapa pilihan yang mungkin bisa membantu Jika mereka ingin berada di sini, mereka bisa kembali. Saya melihat ini sebagai situasi ChapmanYankees Aroldis. - Jazz. J: Dan saya tidak akan memiliki masalah dengan pendekatan seperti itu. Tujuannya, saya yakin, akan menjadi pilihan putaran pertama untuk Johnson atau Waiters, tapi sementara saya pasti menikmati kebangunan rohani ini, saya menghargai bahwa ini juga tetap tentang masa depan. Jika kesepakatan atau penawaran semacam itu turun, saya akan menerima perspektif Heats. Kecuali, tentu saja, ada diskusi backchannel dengan agen Johnson dan Pelayan tentang kompromi yang mungkin terjadi saat akan menghadiri agen bebas musim panas ini. T: Pager Pat Riley. Pager Pat Riley. Di mana Anda Pelikan melakukan perampokan. Apakah Pat bahkan mengangkat telepon Tolong, jangan katakan bahwa menurutnya Hassan Whiteside ada di kelas DeMarcus Cousins. Pelikan melakukan perampokan dan fakta bahwa Boogie tidak bermain untuk Heat mengatakan kepada saya bahwa Pat tidak mencoba. Bahkan tanpa draft picks, Pat sempat menariknya keluar. - Eric. J: Says yang pada saat ini Heat tidak dapat menjual pick putaran pertama 2017 mereka dan tidak dapat melakukan perdagangan satu sampai 2023, karena peraturan NBA melarang perdagangan putaran pertama berturut-turut. Di luar itu, siapa yang mengatakan bahwa Raja-raja menyukai pemain Heats muda seperti yang mereka inginkan, Buddy Hield Apakah mereka telah mengambil Justise Winslow Tampaknya Vlade Divac terpaku pada potensi penilaian Hields. Saya tahu, setelah berbicara dengan orang-orang selama kunjungan Heats ke Sacramento, Raja-raja tidak tertarik untuk memanggil Hassan kembali. Jadi, tidak peduli apa yang Pat Riley pikirkan tentang sepupu vs Whiteside. Bagian dari persamaan itu diperdebatkan. Yang tidak saya mengerti adalah Raja-raja tergesa-gesa untuk membuat kesepakatan. Dengan kemungkinan kuat Heat akhirnya memegang putaran pertama yang lebih baik memilih Pelikan, Heat bisa merancang pemain untuk Kings dan kemudian menangani pemain itu segera setelah draft (yang diperbolehkan). Banyak hal ini bermuara pada entitas yang tidak rasional seperti kantor depan Kings. Saya akan terkejut - kaget - jika Heat tidak berusaha, pada suatu saat, terlibat dalam diskusi tentang sepupu. Itu adalah keahlian Heat, membangkitkan karir. T: Haruskah kita pergi untuk Matt Barnes - Adrian. J: Tidak cocok. Ya, dia bisa menjadi potensi upgrade Rodney McGruder, tapi apa ini juga melindungi masa depan. Jadi, kaum muda menang dalam persamaan itu. Dan sementara kemampuan Heats untuk membangkitkan kembali disebutkan di atas, itu lebih sesuai dengan pemain muda dan menghidupkan kembali karir. Saya tidak dapat melihat tim ini mengambil tingkat drama dan waktu seperti ini. T: Kesepakatan ada di sana. Tidak ada yang memilih sakit. - Juan. J: Beli Anda juga harus menambahkan perspektif ke tempat orang-orang memilih pergi. Mereka pergi ke Matahari pada waktu Heat memiliki Dwyane Wade dan Chris Bosh dan mencari pelengkap sempurna di point guard. Dan Anda bisa membuat sebuah kasus jika Bosh tetap sehat, kedua kombinasi putaran pertama digabungkan tidak akan menghasilkan seseorang yang produktif seperti Goran Dragic. Untuk semua kekhawatiran tentang di mana Heat berdiri dan aset mereka yang terbatas, jangan lupa kenyataan bahwa pemain dengan bayaran tertinggi mereka telah dikesampingkan oleh penggumpalan darah yang mengancam jiwa sementara, sampai saat ini, tersisa di topi gaji. Apa yang membuat kehidupan yang rumit bagi Heat tidak sebanyak dua putaran putaran pertama ditangani saat kekuatan All-Star maju. Ambil pemain dengan bayaran tertinggi dari daftar nama dan bagaimana aset tim itu terlihat seperti Q: Paul George Jimmy Butler DeMarcus Cousins Pat Riley diperdagangkan untuk ketiganya, benar - Trevon. J: Singkirkan sarkasme itu, saya tidak yakin apa yang harus ditawarkan Heat, karena kebanyakan tim yang menggerakkan bintang cenderung menjadi tim yang ingin membangun kembali. Dan ketika sampai pada pilihan konsep, hanya Brooklyn Nets yang mungkin kurang menawarkannya, saat mempertimbangkan dua lotere potensial mengambil Heat berutang pada Matahari untuk Goran Dragic. Seperti yang telah Anda sebutkan: Pacers mencoba untuk memperpanjang George, tidak menukarkannya (dan sementara George mungkin tidak akan menerima saat ini, uang memiliki cara untuk akhirnya berbicara). Butler, jika ditangani, suka pergi ke tim dengan jumlah besar sekali jumlah draf picks (seperti Celtics). Dan sepupu sudah ditangani. Bahkan jika Heat bersedia menempatkan Hassan Whiteside atau Goran Dragic dalam permainan, saya tidak yakin akan ada bakat pengganti setara yang tersedia sebagai gantinya. T: Apakah ada orang dalam daftar ini (selain Goran Dragic dan Hassan Whiteside) menghasilkan ronde pertama untuk draf yang akan datang Sebanyak yang saya suka menonton James Johnson, tidakkah dia bisa dibujuk untuk menjadi pesaing putaran pertama yang terlambat sebagai rental Kemudian kita akan memiliki dua picks mid-to-low dalam draf dalam ini yang bisa dikemas untuk sesuatu yang lebih baik (atau menghasilkan beberapa pemain muda yang baik untuk dikembangkan). Lalu, jika James sangat menyukainya di Miami (dan menyadari bagaimana Erik Spoelstra memberinya kesempatan untuk membuka permainannya), dia bisa kembali sebagai agen bebas tahun depan, meski dengan label harga yang sedikit lebih tinggi. - Ryan, Gainesville. J: Seperti yang saya tulis di kolom Minggu saya dua minggu lalu, pramuka NBA yang lama mengatakan bahwa dia tidak dapat membayangkan Heat mampu mengumpulkan pick putaran pertama (untuk musim ini, musim depan, atau lotere yang dilindungi) untuk Baik Johnson maupun Pelayan. Sekarang, memang, sebelum Johnson dan Waiters memicu 14 kemenangan di Heats 16 pertandingan terakhir ini. Tapi saya tidak berpikir tawaran seperti itu akan ada di sana. Tetapi bahkan jika memang, kemasan picks di pertengahan putaran pertama jarang merupakan titik lepas landas untuk sesuatu yang lebih baik, sebagaimana dibuktikan oleh Celtics gagal melakukan langkah awal untuk mengemas pilihan tersebut dan beralih ke draft Justise Winslow pada tahun 2015. T: Pada dasarnya Dengan mendapatkan ruang kosong Chris Boshs kembali untuk musim depan, apakah menurut Anda Heat dapat meyakinkan Blake Griffin (dia sepertinya superstar paling mungkin untuk meninggalkan timnya) yang bekerja sama dengan Hassan Whiteside dan Goran Dragic sudah cukup untuk membuat Heat menjadi pesaing. Jika ini adalah nilai jualnya, maka peraih sebanyak mungkin permainan dengan Dragic dan Whiteside memimpin seharusnya menjadi fokus utama Heat. Itu berarti kita tidak boleh menukar James Johnson atau Dion Waiters. - Doug, Placentia, California A: Untuk poin pertama Anda, hanya jeda playoff yang diucapkan oleh Clippers yang mungkin akan membebaskan Griffin. Dan bahkan saat itu, apakah berpasangan dengan Whiteside and Dragic (walaupun di Wilayah Timur) lebih masuk akal daripada tinggal di samping DeAndre Jordan dan Chris Paul Poin kedua Anda lebih meyakinkan. Saya percaya ada sesuatu yang bisa dikatakan tentang merekrut di agen bebas dari tempat yang lebih baik di klasemen, di tempat yang dekat dengan .500 daripada dari tingkat di tengah undian. Thats mana push ini belum bisa menghasilkan dividen untuk Heat. T: Saya sering bertanya-tanya mengapa Erik Spoelstra hanya mempertahankan Wayne Ellington dalam permainan selama beberapa menit di hampir setiap pertandingan. Mereka akhirnya mendapat 3 point shooter yang nampaknya sangat handal. - Larry, Tamarac J: Pertama, sebelum 15 menit di Houston dalam pertandingan Heats terbaru, Wayne telah memainkan setidaknya 21 di masing-masing dari empat pertandingan sebelumnya. Jadi bukan seolah-olah ada yang kehilangan iman. Tapi apa yang telah terjadi adalah backcourt yang kembali sehat, dengan Tyler Johnson dan Dion Waiters kembali, dan Josh Richardson segera kembali. Apa yang telah ditunjukkan oleh Erik Spoelstra atas masa tugas pembinaannya adalah preferensi untuk kedalaman bakat dari para pemainnya, dan bukannya mengandalkan spesialis 3 poin. Itulah alasan James Jones dibatasi di menit Heat-nya, dan bisa berakhir dengan nasib yang sama untuk Ellington kecuali Heat Backcourt menipis pada batas waktu perdagangan. Jika tidak, Goran Dragic, Waiters, Johnson dan Richardson juga ingin menerima lebih banyak waktu penting daripada Ellington. T: Bagaimana MC berada di Basketball Hall of Fame tanpa T - Nicky. J: Referensi, bagi mereka yang belum tahu, adalah kombinasi Warriors Run TMC pada pertengahan tahun 90an dari Mitch Richmond, Chris Mullin dan Tim Hardaway, dengan Richmond dan Mullin keduanya sudah berada di Aula, dan Hardaway sekali lagi menjadi finalis induksi. Yang menarik, selama bertahun-tahun, tim telah dilantik ke Aula, dengan transformasi Run TMC dengan sendirinya, semacam ekstensi tiga orang dari Lakers Showtime. Berdasarkan Hardaway melangkah maju dengan baik Warriors and Heat, rasanya seperti seharusnya waktunya. Dan saya yakin di minggu-minggu ini juga terdengar kabar baik dari Richmond dan Mullin. T: Ira, Josh Richardson harus segera kembali setelah istirahat All-Star. Tidakkah seseorang harus dibebaskan atau diperdagangkan segera Dimana saya salah - Gabriel, Miami. J: Langkah itu efektif telah dilakukan, dengan berakhirnya hari Jumat kontrak Marcus Georges-Hunts 10 hari. Yang memiliki daftar Heat kembali di batas NBA 15, tidak lagi dengan pengecualian daftar ditambahkan pada untuk pemain yang cedera. Akhirnya akan ada tempat daftar lagi yang dibersihkan begitu Bosh dibebaskan. Ditambah lagi, seperti yang disebutkan di atas, daftar tersebut juga berpotensi menipis pada batas waktu perdagangan Kamis NBA. T: Mengetahui bahwa picks draft tidak selalu berhasil (yaitu Michael Beasley) dan melihat tidak ada agen bebas yang tersedia di luar musim ini yang menurut saya akan membuat kita bersaing dengan Cleveland dan Golden State (permintaan maaf kepada Blake Griffin yang cedera), di mana menurut Anda Pat Rileys mindset is right now in regard to the quick rebuild I know that he is always looking for a quotwhale,quot but the only player that I see as being potentially available that can make a difference is Jimmy Butler from Chicago. Hes an All-Star, a hard-nosed Miami HeatPat Riley player on a reasonable contract, and someone that I feel would fit on a team competing for a championship. What are your thoughts -- Robert, Miami. A: A couple of things I would like to touch on here: First, I think any NBA executive with a team at the bottom of the standings is being shortsighted, at least when it comes to true championship contention. It takes time to build a team back up. It just does. I understand that Pat Riley has created this aura where he has to think big, but sustainable excellence comes with sustainable growth. That means allowing young players to find their way, new players to adjust to the culture. Second, and I know there has been plenty Jimmy Butler speculation: What could the Heat possibly have to convince the Bulls to move Butler To land a star, you have to deal a star. Yes, the Heat traded volume for Shaquille ONeal, but Im not sure the current Heat have anything comparable to the package sent to L.A. for Shaq that included Lamar Odom, Caron Butler and Brian Grant. What would the equivalent pieces be from this seasons Heat: Winslow, Tyler Johnson and Goran Dragic or Hassan Whiteside Sorry, but lottery or lottery, there are no quick fixes, even for a quick fixer. Q: Hi, Ira. Why did the Heat give up so many draft picks when they signed LeBron James and Chris Bosh as free agents I know its been some time since 2010, but those draft picks couldve been helpful. -- David, Orlando. A: First, the dept has been paid in full, so those picks no longer would have been in play. But its much the same reason the Heat gave up two potential lottery picks for Goran Dragic -- to seize the moment. And the Heat had their moments with James and Bosh, and wound up keeping Bosh for the long run. It will be interesting going forward, with first-round picks becoming even more valuable, whether Riley (or his successor) will change the approach. But again, as in the above question, when you choose to live in the moment, sometimes it means mortgaging the future. And, eventually, the future arrives, and the bills have to be paid. Q: Will the Heat ever trade or release Josh McRoberts If so, when and how soon -- Alex, Ogden, Utah. A: Not as long as he has that 6 million player option for 2017-18. If the Heat are unable to trade him, and if they need extra space, the most likely outcome would be waiving McRoberts in the offseason and quotstretchingquot the balance off his contract to ease the 2017-18 salary-cap hit. Q: Safe to safe that Pat Rileys replacement is in the building -- Chris. Q: Is Shane Battier fast-tracking to become a head coach one day -- Mark. Q: I love that Riley is loyal to his former players. -- Olivia. A: The Heats hiring of Battier in an analytics role is more likely the first step toward a ruling post-Riley front-office troika of Shane Battier, Andy Elisburg and Nick Arison. It would provide the Heat with the player insight of Battier, the business-of-basketball acumen of Elisburg and the financial direction of Nick Arison. Based on the Shanes approach to the game, he would appear far more interested in sweating out the analytics than working up a sweat on the practice court like a Juwan Howard or Chris Quinn. The relationship Battier has had with the Arison family dates to his Duke ties, and it almost seemed inevitable that whenever the Riley influence would step back, the Duke influence would increase, albeit not with Mike Krzyzewski, as some initially postulated. And yet, for those who see this as the beginning of an end game with Riley, Im not so sure that he would ever want to fully step away from the game. But I could see Pat moving into more of a Jerry West-type role, there to recruit when needed, but not having to deal with the day-to-day drudgery of the front office. And hes earned that, too. Q: Do you think the reason the reason the Heat signed Marcus Georges-Hunt is they are going to try to move Josh Richardson at the NBA trading deadline -- Trevon. Q: While I wouldnt rule out anything and anyone when it comes to potential Heat moves, the move with Georges-Hunt is more in line with the Heat affording themselves as much institutional knowledge of as many prospects as possible. While Georges-Hunt never got into a game with the Heat during his 10-day contract, there still was enough time in the gym to assess the skill set and the personality for future reference. It often takes a player several bites at the Heat example before a breakthrough, with Rodney McGruder the perfect example. Whether it is with the Heat, Celtics, D-League or elsewhere, you can be assured that Marcus will remain on the Heat radar. Q: So when the Heat waive Chris Bosh on March 1 or thereafter, will they have his salary off the books at that moment to be able to sign other waived players at a higher salary than maybe other clubs can -- Martin. A: Yes they will, which could be an intriguing twist to perhaps sitting out the trading deadline and waiting out which players might be waived. Of course, because this situation is so unique, there is not a definitive timetable of when that potential cap space could come free. Remember, the rule is that a player is playoff eligible as long as he is waived by his team by March 1 (players who were not in the NBA this season can be signed any time before the end of the regular season to be playoff eligible, such as players who played overseas). So, yes, there could be some players dealt at the Feb. 23 trading deadline in cap-related moves who then shake free by March 1. And by waiving Bosh in that timeframe, the Heat therefore would be opening a roster spot. Q: Josh Richardson and Justise Winslow should be the only Heat players safe at the trading deadline (with the exception of if there is a star involved). Everyone else should be on the table. -- Chris. A: There was a point where I agreed with this, and, to a degree, somewhat still do. With this type of record, even with Wednesdays impressive effort in Houston, you have to be open to everything and anything. But, that said, I also believe the landscape has changed with the victories that have moved the Heat out of prime lottery real estate. My initial thinking was that the lottery pick almost assuredly was going to be utilized on a point guard, be it Markelle Fultz, Lonzo Ball or Dennis Smith. However, it now appears the Heat will be selecting beyond the reach of one of those players. Because of that, I believe Goran Dragic might have anchored himself to the future of this franchise, perhaps making himself the untouchable, even more than Hassan Whiteside, based on the direction the NBA is going offensively. (Question: Would you, at this moment, even after what we saw against the Rockets, trade Whiteside for DeMarcus Cousins) As for Richardson and Winslow, I hardly believe they are untouchable, particularly in the wake of the Heat playing their best ball of the season with both sidelined. Q: Do you believe the Heat still have a solid shot at the playoffs -- Joel, Tampa. A: I dont recall ever going as far as quotsolid shot.quot I, in fact, believe it will be closer to a tossup, based on a Heat remaining schedule that has three games left against the Cavaliers and two apiece against the Raptors and Wizards. I would have felt a lot more comfortable had there been any games remaining against the Nets. At 25-32, the Heat would need to go 13-12 the balance of the season to close at 38-44, which appears the bare-minimum cut line for the playoffs in the East. But even then, with so many teams bunched in the contending pack, tiebreakers would come into play, and those losses to the Pistons, Bucks, Bulls and Hornets could hurt. So I think the safe cutoff could be closer to 41-41, which would require 16-9. And that could require a win or two against the Cavaliers or bolstered Raptors. Q: With so much fan interest in trades, you should start a contest to: Name That Trade . The winner that correctly identifies the actual trade the Heat make (if any) wins a T-shirt with your quotAsk Iraquot image on it and autographed by you. The creative submissions should be overwhelming. -- Jack, Fort Myers. A: First, Im pretty sure such a T-shirt would be considered obscene in most public venues. Beyond that, you have no idea how many trade rumors, suggestions, reports come this way (even after impressive victories such as Wednesday night). As with my general reporting, I tend to dismiss or ignore them all, because we simply dont know what the teams know, but do know that there are plenty of people out there, either close to the players or teams, with agendas. I do believe the veracity of many of the reports when it comes to interest from one of the two sides. But it takes two to trade. So the preference here remains to rather focus on the potential value of an outside player to the Heat, or the value a Heat player might have elsewhere. Q: Ira, are you telling me that the Heat could not do better for Serge Ibaka than Terrence Ross and a first-round pick in the 20s What happened to Trader Pat -- Steve. A: Thats exactly what Im telling you, because Im also not sure that the Heat wanted to do better than that for a player who is an impending free agent and whose chronological age might be a bit more advanced than his listed age. First, the Heat did not have a draft pick to offer, unable to trade their 2017 first-round pick because of the possibility of their 2018 first-round pick being due to the Suns from the Goran Dragic trade. Also, Im not sure if anyone in the Heats secondary class of players (beyond Hassan Whiteside and Dragic) was enticing enough, let alone enough of a salary-cap fit. And it became clear that Justise Winslow was simply too promising to move. Beyond that, Tyler Johnson has the right to block any trade until July. So youre basically then down to Josh Richardson. Was Serge Ibaka enticing to Pat Riley Certainly, for basketball and for cap reasons. But it comes down what youre comfortably willing to offer in return. Q: Ira, I was at the game and saw Hassan Whitesides teammates yelling at him over his lack of effort. His motor is non-existent and he sticks out like a sore thumb on the floor with Rodney McGruder and Tyler Johnson and James Johnson. Now that he has a guaranteed four-year contract how do the Heat extract the effort from Hassan -- Jeffrey, Fort Lauderdale. A: First, whether you want to accept it or not, quotmotorquot is like any other skill, be it 3-point shooting, shot-blocking or ballhandling. Some players have it, some players dont. The Heat have mostly been blessed, and searched for players with such aggression. That is not who Hassan Whiteside has been during his time with the team before he signed his four-year, 98 million deal, and likely wont be on a game-by-game basis now that he is financially secure. I dont think the contract has anything to do with it. What will have a lot to do with it going forward is the ability of the Heat coaching staff to keep Hassan as engaged for as long and as often as possible. Remember, a year ago he was being played off the bench in favor of Amare Stoudemire, in what sure seemed like a teaching moment. The Heat know exactly what they have in Hassan. The ongoing issue is what they choose to and can make of him, because he certainly has his own set of unique and rare NBA skills. Q: Do you think that the Heat will bounce back from this current two-game slide With a tough game at the hands of Houston on Wednesday and then eight days off we could potentially be heading into All-Star week with a three-game losing streak. -- Kyle. A: Playing the Rockets in Houston, after beating the Rockets at AmericanAirlines Arena makes this, in my book, as much of a challenge as anything the Heat faced during their 13-game winning streak. So, yes, the Heat could emerge from the All-Star break nine games under .500. The question then becomes whether Pat Riley comes to view this as a team likely to not be good enough to muster a .500 final record, or as a team still on the cusp of a playoff spot. And that can be dangerous, very dangerous, assessing your team in terms of the failures of others. Thats what made the losses to the 76ers and Magic so disheartening. They changed the reality of what could be and now what likely will be. Is 38-44 and playoffs actually meaningful if it comes down to that Q: Ira, was Dwyane Wades interview with the Vertical basically an, quotI was wrong for leavingquot admission -- Rob, Lake Worth. A: That has been the sentiment from the moment he parted with Pat Riley and the Heat in July. Again, as expressed before in this space, had Wade and Riley given the process another 48 or 72 hours, I think both would have recognized the need to persevere with the partnership. But Im still not sure how Dwyane could possibly get back to South Florida next season, no matter what the Bulls do with their roster. As with last summer, the Heats salary-cap resources have to be utilized in a forward-thinking matter. With Tyler Johnsons salary to increase exponentially for 2018-19, this summer has to be the Heats summer of destiny for years to come. The entire purpose of the Heats approach with Wade last summer was to protect cap flexibility for this summer. This is not the point that nostalgia can get in the way. And if you listened close to the podcast, Wade also expressed how his children had acclimated to being back around family in Chicago. So this could transcend both money and basketball. Q: Is Serge Ibaka worth our 20-year-old -- A.F. A: Its interesting the more people I floated that notion toward before Mondays game, the more that glanced back as if I was out of my mind. And thats the thing, Justise Winslow is still 20 and has still only had one true season of NBA experience. Thats a lot to give up on at this stage for a player who is not a game-changer. Im not sure Justise will be a game changer, either, but there still is enough low-cost time to find out. Q: Why does Luke Babbitt play -- Andy. A: Um, because of the threat of 3-point spacing Or perhaps because why break up a good thing during the winning streak Or maybe because there simply is not another legitimate option that still allows James Johnson to thrive in his sixth-man role off the bench. So the greater question is: If not Babbitt, then who Justise Winslow and Josh McRoberts are out. Derrick Williams has been traded. And Willie Reed is not a complement to Hassan Whiteside. So youre essentially asking if it would be better to start Okaro White. Does that significantly change the equation Q: A Josh McRoberts and Winslow trade for Serge Ibaka works money wise. -- Taylor, Christiansburg, Va. A: Thats not the reason I downplayed the permutation yesterday. My emphasis was that the Magic gave up Victor Oladipo and the draft rights to No. 11 2016 first-round pick Domantas Sabonis, as well as functional power forward Ersan Ilyasova (an eventual trade chip for the Thunder) in exchange for Ibaka. Therefore, I would find it difficult to fathom that less than a year later the Magic would cash that all in for what essentially only would be Winslow, a player who will miss the balance of this season following shoulder surgery. Now, if you throw in Tyler Johnson or Josh Richardson and the necessary filler, that could at least serve the Magics purposes. Obviously, the most tangible targets for the Magic would be Goran Dragic or Hassan Whiteside, but not only do you run risks with Ibakas expiring contract and impending free agency, but Im not sure an argument could be made that Ibaka would have more value to the Heat than Whiteside or Dragic going forward. (What makes Ibakas 18.4 million cap hold so tempting, is that you could then keep Dragic and Whiteside, re-sign Ibaka at the back end of free agency, and then also have the cap cash to retain James Johnson or even Dion Waiters, if all goes as planned when it comes to reclaiming Chris Boshs cap space.) Q: I think the team is set at point guard with Goran Dragic, with Tyler Johnson and Josh Richardson as backups. -- Gerard, Paraguay. A: If youve read my postgame blogs, you can probably tell that I disagree. While I can appreciate Johnson as a combo guard, Im still not sold on him as a primary ballhandler. Opponents routinely challenge his ballhandling and the Heat offense tends to bog down until a secondary playmaker takes over the possession, be it James Johnson or Dion Waiters. In fact, Im not sure if the Heat arent somewhat retarding Tyler Johnsons growth when they play him as the primary ballhander. It was, of course, easier when Justise Winslow or Josh McRoberts were also available to facilitate from the frontcourt. But if these recent weeks and recent games have been a trial run, then it should open the Heats eyes to Tyler Johnsons best fit going forward. Q: Ira, is the tank back on -- Y.S.B. Q: At this rate, you wonder how much the Heat will have left in the tank come the end of the season. -- Kirk. A: Or before. It was apparent on Saturday night that the Heat were running on fumes. Saturday night resembled one of those games when you fight back from a sizable deficit only to fall short. By falling 19 games below .500, the Heat left themselves with minimal margin for error. It makes Mondays home game against the Magic all the more important, especially considering how the Heat punted away the teams previous meeting in a double-overtime loss the last time the teams met at AmericanAirlines Arena. The Heat follow that game against the Magic with a Wednesday game in Houston before their eight-day All-Star break. The last thing a team seven games under .500 can afford is a three-game losing streak going into the All-Star break. The Heat winning streak was going to come to an end at some point. The question now is whether the overall success can be sustained. A return to health, including the return of Dion Waiters should help. The Heat certainly could have used Waiters on Saturday night. Of course, they also could have used a far more aggressive Hassan Whiteside. Q: Hi Ira, how about Josh McRoberts and Justise Winslow for Serge Ibaka Does that work cap-wise or Orlando-wise -- Marc, Pembroke Pines. A: No. And I doubt it. First, McRoberts and Winslow are on the books for a combined 8.4 million this season, compared to Ibakas 12.3 million expiring contract. And it would make little sense for the Magic to have to commit to McRoberts 2017-18 player option. Beyond that, I dont see how the Magic could essentially trade Ibaka for Winslow, after giving up so much to the Thunder for the one-year rental of Serge. Beyond that, there is the issue of whether the Heat or any team that trades for Serge would then be able to re-sign him, or also risk losing him for nothing in return in free agency. For the Heat to trade for Ibaka, it basically would close the door on returns for Dion Waiters and James Johnson, essentially forcing the Heat to commit all their cap resources in his direction. Q: Ira, due to the Heats recent success, the Heats first-round draft pick has been devalued. Could they now look to trade the pick for a star with an expiring contract that we have Bird Rights on -- Jeffrey, A: No. Well at least right now. Because the Heats 2018 first-round pick is due to the Suns, the Heat are not allowed to trade their 2017 first-round pick ahead of the draft. However, they are allowed to select a player for another team. But the Heat, like every other team, also recognize the value of draft picks under the impending collective-bargaining agreement. So I believe no matter the draft slot, the Heat likely will attempt to make something out of their 2017 first-round selection. Q:James Johnson absolutely deserves a big contract from Miami in the summer. We should give him 60 million over four years. -- Hector. A: Got to admit, Ive come around to some of that thinking, especially with the limitations the Heat have at forward. I think thats the difference between James Johnson and Dion Waiters. The Heat are loaded at guard, when counting Goran Dragic, Josh Richardson, Tyler Johnson and the team option they hold on Wayne Ellington. But if the Heat arent able to land a franchise forward in free agency, then James Johnson might be worth the type of investment you suggest (which is what I think its going to take). The Heat are not going to find such ready-to-go versatility with a forward in the draft, and were still not such what level Justise Winslow can reach as a two-way player. Question: Is Gordon Hayward worth twice the money Q: Imagine if Tyler Johnson wasnt out of control and turning the ball over -- M.L. A: I dont blame Tyler. Its more a case of the current composition of the roster and the ongoing attempt to convert him into a point guard. To their credit, the Heat, in Dion Waiters absence, have done a quality job of keeping James Johnson on the court alongside Tyler Johnson, to provide a relief playmaker. But even with his build, Tyler Johnson is a shooting guard, with the athleticism of a shooting guard, if not the size. Tyler would be best paired with a taller point guard who then could take the defensive assignments at shooting guard. Its something the Heat have to consider when building their roster going forward. Q:When Miami gets that No. 8 or 7 spot. I dont see how anybody can even think about Trading James Johnson or Dion Waiters. Its working. -- Will. A: Because the bigger, long-term picture is about more than a No. 8 or No. 7 seed. And thats why its important to have a general manager to take care of the long-term view, while the coach can live in the moment. Look, if youre going to live moment-by-moment, then you can make the argument that since the Heat didnt have Waiters these past two games they therefore dont need him. And that would be as shortsighted as saying this is the Heats roster of the future. So enjoy the moment. Allow the players to enjoy the moment. Allow Erik Spoelstra to enjoy the moment. And keep in mind that the spreadsheet of Pat Riley, Andy Elisburg, Adam Simon and the rest of the front office goes beyond the Feb. 23 trading deadline, beyond the end of the season and beyond 2017 free agency. Q: Its interesting to note that the 12-0 run has happened without both Justise Winslow and Josh Richardson, previously (and still) considered two of the keystones of the Heats future. Will their return, even if its next season, as in Justises case, make the team better -- Hanan, Tel Aviv. A: This has been the elephant in the room now for weeks. While Josh has displayed NBA-level 3-point ability, especially during last seasons playoff run, weve yet to see the outside range on the NBA level that Justise offered during Dukes championship run. And you are correct in your allusion to the fact that much of the Heats success during this run has been built on outside shooting, be it Rodney McGruder starting in place of Winslow at small forward, or Wayne Ellington and Dion Waiters getting minutes at shooting guard that might otherwise have gone to Richardson. I believe it is clear that its become shoot-or-die (OK, maybe thats a bit extreme) when it comes to lineups and rotations that work. For Richardson, it means reclaiming what he previously displayed. For Winslow, it means as much time on the Heats practice court as necessary for the team to see whether an NBA-level stroke is attainable or whether there has to be a Plan B regarding his career arc. Q: Ira, its funny how over the past few years LeBron James tries to bring so much Heat culture to Cavs -- Dacota. A: Isnt it. First James Jones and Mike Miller. Then Chris Andersen. Followed by a tryout for Mario Chalmers and now Derrick Williams. It makes you wonder if there is substance to the Dwyane Wade speculation or that if Chris Bosh could turn in LeBrons and Clevelands direction if there is a comeback. LeBron clearly loves him some Heat. He apparently just doesnt love it if it is in Miami or under Pat Rileys control. So now the real question: Does it mean a Dion Waiters free-agency return to Cleveland is next this offseason (Yes, surely I jest). Q: Ira, as well as Dion Waiters is playing, it seems the Heat have to look to trade him. We have three other shooting guards under contract in Tyler Johnson, Rodney McGruder and Josh Richardson. -- Michael. A: (And you left out Wayne Ellington, with the Heat holding his 6 million player option for next season.) I dont think its a matter of quotlooking.quot I believe its more a case of listening. If a first-round pick is offered, even one lottery-protected or for a distant future season, then it has to be considered and, most likely, accepted. Waiters will be a free agent in July, meaning if the Heat want to extend the relationship, they could do it just as easily then after a brief parting. But otherwise there is the risk of losing him for nothing in return. Now, if Waiters agrees to pick up his 3 million option for next season, then the thinking would totally change. But there is no way that Waiters, prior to the trading deadline, is going to make such a commitment (nor should a player who has yet to get his quotcareerquot contract). Q: Everyone is worried about Heat draft picks in June and if we finish in the seventh or eighth seed, it is a wasted year. Is there a better sports story in Miami than the Heat Just let this team play it out and lets see where they end up. That is the beauty of sports, no one knows the outcome. -- Stuart, Miami. A: The concern from those who take the long view -- which I can appreciate -- is whether these weeks of satisfaction are worth the tradeoff of not securing a high lottery pick. The response to that should be Kawhi Leonard, the No. 15 pick in the 2011 draft. So heres the tradeoff: If the Heat want to be good now, then the front office has to be even better when it comes to wherever the Heat wind up selecting in the first round. You can get a quality player beyond the initial lottery picks. Its just that the margin for error is slight. What makes the lottery truthers so prevalent this season is their awareness that the Heats 2018 first-round pick is most likely going to the Suns as the first of two such payments for Goran Dragic. Beyond that, Tyler Johnsons salary-cap hit goes into the stratosphere starting in the 2018 offseason. Thats why there hashad been so much focus on 2018 having to be transformative. And it probably has to be just that. So, basically, Pat Riley, Andy Elisburg, Adam Simon and Chet Kammerer will have to do this summer what their players are doing right now. work some magic. Q: When Hassan Whiteside plays focused, the kid is unstoppable. -- Lue. A: Part of that, though, is what happened Wednesday in Milwaukee, namely his teammates being focused on his possibilities. When it became apparent Hassan could beat the Bucks over the top, his teammates offered a relentless volley of alley-oop passes. Some clicked some didnt. But they allowed Hassan to maximize his matchup. The next step is doing it against higher-tier centers, and dealing with the adversity when every shot isnt going in. Q: Maybe Erik Spoelstra discovered talent on this team that other coaches arent good enough to see. -- Will. A: That certainly is an element. But I think the greatest compliment belongs to the players who embraced the need to get into the best shape of their careers and commit to a team focus. I wrote in December about the Heats dramatic impact on the physiques of James Johnson, Dion Waiters and Wayne Ellington, and now were seeing the payoff of those summer sessions. This all began way before the start of this winning streak. Q: Although fun, this win streak has blinded Heat Nation. We are overreacting to what we are seeing. Wake up. Eleven games is impressive, but look at who weve beaten. The Warriors and Rockets are the only two impressive wins (beating the Hawks isnt impressive). Ira, youre saying Goran is the point guard of the future I love Goran, but he cant be. Hes already 30. Can we pump the brakes on Dion Waiters Im seeing tweets and articles about him becoming a star and potential max guy. Youve got to be kidding me. This is a classic example of quotregression to the meanquot and a byproduct of favorable scheduling. We were not as bad as we started and not as good as were playing now. We are not a contender. Pat Riley would make a huge mistake not to sell off for future assets by All-Star break. Its not what people want to hear but we have to rebuild. Its the cost of having the Big 3 Era and years of being the favorite. -- Erik. A: And none of whats going on, beyond the winning, has to get in the way of never losing sight of the future. The reason Ive pointed out Gorans play and strengths is because if you are well-positioned at a position, it allows you to focus elsewhere. But I would have absolutely no issue if the Heat were able to flip Waiters or James Johnson for a first-round pick at the Feb. 23 NBA trading deadline. You can still enjoy a moment while also preparing for the future. The players are playing to win. The coaches are coaching to win. Thats what they should be doing. But that doesnt mean Pat Riley and his staff also arent planning for bigger and better things down the road. Q: Who do we want in the Finals: Spurs or Warriors -- Drew, Coral Springs. A: Theyve already shown they could compete with the Warriors at Oracle and have beaten Golden State at AmericanAirlines Arena, so I would have to figure on that being the Heats preference when they get to the NBA Finals. Q: I think its time to start Okaro White at the four over Luke Babbitt. Maybe try and trade Babbitt away or waive him and get another young prospect. -- Taylor, Christiansburg, Va. A: Or enjoy the fact that theyre 10-2 with this current starting lineup that has Babbitt opening at power forward alongside Hassan Whiteside, Goran Dragic, Rodney McGruder and Dion Waiters. Babbitts spacing works with the first group, with James Johnson still getting the significant minutes for the Heat at power forward. And, to be honest, Im not sure there is an area of need at the moment for the Heat to have to clear a roster spot. Q: Ira, to everyone who said the Heat had to trade Goran Dragic really bad words. Why would anyone be surprised he can play like this What first-round pick is going to come and give what hes giving now Enter the Dragon. -- Leif. A: The problem with so much of the Dragic conversation both before this 11-game winning streak and even during this run are all the wrong comparisons. It doesnt matter that this draft offers the likes of Lonzo Ball, Markelle Fultz and Dennis Smith that becomes a question of how long youre willing to wait. And it doesnt matter that the Heat gave up a pair of potential lottery picks for Goran you cant move forward while concerning yourselves about what already has been done. So step back into a vacuum and ask yourself this, and only this: Would you be content with this Goran Dragic, playing this way, being your point guard going forward next season, the season after that, and possibly beyond Franchises spend years attempting to find their point guard of the future and their center of the future. Could it be that the Heat already have those elements of the equation answered Q: Im really enjoying watching this team come together. Even with some salaries much higher than others, this is really just a bunch of role players figuring it out and playing good basketball. Imagine if Chris Bosh had played this season. I know we wouldnt have seen as much of James Johnson and Willie Reed, but I think we would have had a much better record. -- Tony, Big Sur, Calif. A: First, Im not sure I would group Goran Dragic and Hassan Whiteside in as quotrole players.quot But, to your greater point regarding Bosh, thats where there remains the need to add another alpha-talent, someone like a Bosh. Of course, had Bosh been able to play, the composition of this roster obviously would be significantly different. And that also is worth remembering if it gets ugly over the Heats parting with Bosh -- he is exactly the type of player they could use, and a player they would love to have had (safely) available. Q: Lets all stop fawning over Briante Weber. When Josh Richardson returns, Weber would have been the sixth guard on the Heat roster. To your point, a specialist like this can carve out a role on a team with Hall of Fame-caliber 3-point shooting, as opposed to a team who cant withstand his offensive liability. -- Rich, West Palm Beach. A: And also dont lose sight of the reality that a 13th man hardly is the concern of a team still looking to move toward a winning record. Just because he has been out of view due to his injuries, Richardson was the better play when both he and Weber were on the roster together. Now, if the Heat lose both Dion Waiters and Wayne Ellington in the offseason, then there could be a need for another guard, and its not as if the Heat havent revisited certain players multiple times. Even Weber made it clear in a follow-up tweet that he meant nothing untoward regarding the Heat when he mentioned how he bypassed a return because the Heat already had, by his count, 17 guards. A: I dont see anything other than the No. 8 seed being available to the Heat from its current position because I believe the Bucks are poised to take a quantum leap with Wednesdays return (ironically against the Heat) by guard Khris Middleton. Middletons scoring should provide Milwaukee with the exact type of relief needed to safely settle into a playoff spot. So what this could come down to would be the Heat chasing Dwyane Wade and the Chicago Bulls for the right to play LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers in the first round of the playoffs. Q: Is it realistic to think James Johnson and Dion Waiters might recognize that some of their newfound success is due to Heat culture, chemistry, etc. to the degree that they would sacrifice dollars to enable the Heat to retain them and add the pieces necessary for the team to go deep into the playoffs -- David. A: No, that is not realistic, with both players looking for the first true payoff of their careers, especially at a time when the league is oozing free-agency cash. If the Heat cut into their overall stockpile for supporting pieces, they then could again be positioned without enough to support. The only way sacrifice would work is if both would agree to put their salary demands on hold for another year or two, getting at least to early-Bird Rights if not full Bird Rights. And thats not happening. Q: Hi, Ira, Heat fan from Sardinia (Italy) here I love how the Heat are playing right now. I just dont understand why lot of fans (are they real fans) are complaining about the victories. Its a shame. This team is good, we just had too many injuries at the beginning of the season (and still now). I think that this team can be a playoff team and it will be a good thing because it will build confidence in our players and, more importantly, we will attract more free agents. -- Luca, Cagliari, Sardinia, Italy. A: In defense of the fans, many have been around when the Heat won titles in 2012 and 13, and some even from back in 2006. So I can appreciate where the bar is set, which is considerably higher than just being good enough to make the playoffs. Each of those title teams was bolstered by the highest of lottery picks, be it Dwyane Wade and Shaquille ONeal (and even Alonzo Mourning) in 06, or then Wade, Chris Bosh and LeBron James in 2012 and 13. And I do understand how being caught in the middle can be one of the most dangerous places in the NBA, falling short of the playoffs with something along the lines of the No. 14 pick. I do believe there will be an organizational decision on the direction going forward by the Feb. 23 NBA trading deadline. Q: I wish Hassan Whiteside played around this level most games -- Galindo. A: So, of course, do the Heat. But you take what you can get, and the Heat were smart enough to recognize what they could get with Joel Embiid and Jahlil Okafor out Saturday night for the 76ers. Now, if Hassan can back this up against Karl-Anthony Towns on Monday night against the Timberwolves, that would be another step. But just as important Saturday night was teammates recognizing the mismatch and feeding the beast. What Saturday showed was the inside-outside potential of this revised Heat mix, especially with the Heat now loading up on 3-pointers. The ultimate lesson from Saturdays game might be as simple as get Whiteside involved early. Q: I dont know how we have a 10-game winning streak I feel like Im in a bad dream -- Julio. A: You people are relentless. And for your information, Pat Riley was in his usual courtside seat on Saturday night, not at the UCLA-Washington game scouting Lonzo Ball vs. Markelle Fultz. (But with plenty of time to catch it on television, just in case.) Even now, as I wrote in my Sunday column, the playoffs still remain somewhat of an abstract. And if there is a slide back to the Heats previous reality, you can bet the Heat will quickly pull the plug, rather than wind up with something like the No. 14 pick. Q: Briante Weber will be one that got away. -- David. A: Sort of a Patrick Beverley of 2017, eh Thats why it will be interesting to see how the Heat, and other teams, approach the concept of the two-way player starting next season with the new collective-bargaining agreement, knowing they can both develop a prospect and retain their rights. The Heat almost assuredly would have utilized the approach this season with Weber and Okaro White. But with the Heat putting such a emphasis on development, Briante likely wont be the last one to get away. The Heat also helped develop Ian Clark, and he now is a teammate of Webers with the Warriors. And even Willie Reed got away from the Heat during 2015 summer league before he was added last summer. The bottom line is that Weber is far better suited to setting up 3-pointers with the Warriors than having to take them with the Heat. And, still, it doesnt mean he doesnt come free yet again, as he did for the Heat to re-sign him after his 10-day tour last season with the Grizzlies. Q: Ira, I wouldnt take the chance on a long-term deal for James Johnson. In fact, I dangle him now to a contender and get some picks. One good year (at his age) doesnt guarantee a similar performance next year, and I think you and Pat Riley would agree. With the state of this team and the free agents in play, I wouldnt risk it, even if he has an amazing year next year. Give me Paul Millsap, Serge Ibaka, Gordon Hayward or keep the money for 2018. -- Gabriel. A: Truth be told, I was going to write my Sunday column weighing in on that subject, about whether to sell high on both James Johnson and Dion Waiters by the Feb. 23 NBA trading deadline. And then I spoke to an NBA scout who told me, in his view, that there is no way the Heat could get a first-round pick, either for this June or even protected into the future, for either Waiters or Johnson. I have to admit that surprised me. He said second-round picks were possible. Im not sure I would rip apart an element of Heat Family merely for a second-round pick or picks. Q: If the playoffs started today, and the Heat were in, I dont think there is a team in the league that would feel comfortable playing them. If the Heat maintain their current level of play its essentially a given that we make the playoffs. Given the fact that nobody in the East looks dominant right now, how far do you think this team can go Regardless of the end result, I really like this team. -- Brian, Mount Vernon, Wash. A: Nothing, when you are 10 games below .500. even when on a nine-game winning streak, is a given. And if the first-round opponent is the Cleveland Cavaliers, getting a single game would be the ultimate challenge. If the Heat can get to No. 7 in the East, the playoffs could provide some kicks and giggles. But thats also about this. The playoffs are about singular stars stepping forward. This is a team still in search of that component. Q: This team is surprising me in ways I never hoped. We still arent there yet, but this team is clicking at a time when giving up is an easy way out. -- John, Rhode Island. A: The period between Jan. 1 and the All-Star break tends to be the dog days of the NBA season. So, yes, to be playing spirited ball at this time of year is commendable. But it also means getting opponents pushing through dog days of their own, especially playoff contenders who still see a distant finish line. That will make the three games against the Cavaliers after the deadline particularly interesting, and perhaps leaving the Heat longing for having gotten them before that. Q: Its not yet the All-Star break, but for my money there is no way James Johnson loses the Most Improved Player award, even if the Heat lose every game going forward. What he has done is outstanding. To think, I always just thought of him as the guy with the headband. -- Patrick, Hollywood. A: Considering the season that Gianni Antetokounmpo is having, and, for that matter, teammate Jabari Parker, that might be a stretch, unless Milwaukee continues to go into the tank. Then there is Isaiah Thomas, who has gone from All-Star to something closer, believe it or not, to superstar. And there also are the candidacies of Harrison Barnes, Nikola Jokic, Myles Turner and even Zach LaVine. But merely the fact that James Johnson has gotten himself into the conversation speaks volumes, and likely will add volumes to his asking price in free agency. Should the Heat continue to push up in the standings, Johnson might not only find himself in the conversation for Most Improved Player, but possibly for the Sixth Man Award, as well. Q: Do you think this is a good analysis: The reason for the Miami Heats win streak is because the players have become comfortable with Erik Spoelstras system, plays, defense, which Spoelstra is able to implement better because he doesnt have superstars like LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh. Instead, Spoelstra has a bunch of talented non-stars who have to listen, who are open to learn and implement his system, his philosophy, the Miami Heat culture - Vip, Manila, Philippines. A: If youre asking whether Erik gets the most out of his players, then I would agree, as was the case when Stan Van Gundy took over from Pat Riley. And yet Im sure Erik also would be the first to agree that you win in this league with stars. There was no need to develop with James and Bosh, but even then, both became better during their tenures with the Heat. So I think what youre seeing is the continuation of the Heats developmental culture. And yet, all of that said, I am sure they would trade in this mix in a heartbeat for something with more star potential. Q: I know Feb 23 is coming up, but if theres no movement from the Heat we are dead. Mediocre for years. -- Marcus, Washington, D.C. A: I dont know if I would get than funereal, but that also is why the Heat very much could turn around and trade some of these latest contributors at the NBA trading deadline. This team needs to restock with draft picks. Last season, the Heat took a forward-thinking approach when it came to the luxury tax. This season, the long view could be restocking a barren plate of draft picks. Q: When do you think the Heat will bring up Briante Weber before a team snatches him up -- Victor. A: That likely will come down to how much longer Josh Richardson is out. If Richardson remains sidelined, then the Heat could utilize that absence for another roster exception once Okaro White is taken care of with the anticipated waiving of Derrick Williams, as soon as this weekend. But if Richardson returns, then there not only would not be a roster spot for Weber (with White taking Williams roster spot), but also not likely room in a backcourt rotation that includes Richardson, Goran Dragic, Dion Waiters, Tyler Johnson and Wayne Ellington. And thats why Im not sure if Weber doesnt ultimately wind up elsewhere, still available to be signed by any NBA team. Now, if the Heat were to thin their backcourt at the Feb. 23 trading deadline, that would be another story. But, at the moment, there neither is room at the inn on the roster or in the Heats backcourt. Q: Pat Riley is falling for the leagues plan to keep the Heat mediocre. -- Shad. A: The timeline and inbox continued to be loaded with these. Again, if the Heat didnt start so poorly, this never would have been about the lottery and tanking. So just because it started that way and is playing out this way, its as if the Heat are blowing something. Face it, if someone told you 50 games into the season that the Heat would be 20-30, there would be anger at the poor performance. Its as much about how this has played out as the record itself. And there still are three weeks left before the playoffs. Q: Im just in awe by this Heat team. James Johnson and Dion Waiters have to be re-signed -- Didier. A: And this is why you need executives capable of operating in a bubble beyond the standings. Because this also has to be about more than the moment. With everything that has transpired to this point, it still behooves the Heat to investigate what packages of draft picks could possibly be mined for Waiters and Johnson by the Feb. 23 NBA trading deadline. Because as much as there is an enjoyable moment transpiring, there also is a future that any respectable NBA executive also has to consider. Q: Do you think Justise Winslow will develop into more than James Johnson is right now If not, maybe the Heat should consider signing Johnson to a long-term contract and using Winslow as a trade chip. Im not advocating that the Heat give up on Winslow -- despite his youth, he is already mature and contributes in a lot of ways. However, there is probably a trade market for him, and, as you have already pointed out, the Heat cant re-sign everyone on this team. Maybe Johnson is the long-term answer and not just a rental player. Alternatively, do you think the Heat can eventually play Winslow and Johnson at the same time -- David. A: If Johnson continues to shoot 3-pointers as he has to this point, then I think there would be enough shooting on the court when Johnson and Winslow play together. But keep in mind that Winslow remains on the rookie scale for another two seasons, at a price point likely to be less than one-third of what Johnson could secure on the free-agent market. So in a salary-cap world, you have to calculate the value-per-dollar when it comes to cap resources. The greater question is whether Johnson, who has been utilized in a reserve role, could thrive as a starting power forward, which is a position of need for the Heat. Johnson likely will earn starters money in free agency. So is he a starter As it is, the Heat soon will be playing Tyler Johnson starters money quite likely to play off the bench. Q: I trust all doubts and trade talk about Goran Dragic have been shelved. His value to this team is immense. -- Ernie, Aventura. A: Look, any team has an obligation to explore any and all possibilities when it comes to upgrading the roster, especially a roster that remains somewhat flawed. So many times it goes beyond the productivity of a player, but rather to how a team can best address the totality of roster composition. And if the Heat should wind up with one of the elite point guards in this years draft, then there certainly would be areas of greater need than having a pair of high-level starting-quality point guards. Until a team reaches championship level with its starting five, anything and everything has to be in play. Including Goran Dragic. Including Hassan Whiteside. Because even when healthy, the upside of this roster probably tops out somewhere near .500, anyway. Q: I dont know about anyone else, but Im having a ball watching the Heat play like their culture is set, instead of just tanking. -- Richard. A: I think a lot of this tanking vs. not-taking debate has been a factor of how the Heat have built their current record. If the start had not been as poor, if all those home losses had not piled up, then, like many of the expectations after an encouraging preseason, there probably would not have been tank talk in the first place. Instead, there would have been daily tracking of playoff position, as there was when the Heat pulled within 4 12 games of the Easts final playoff spot after Mondays victory over the Nets. When youre not among the five or six worst teams in the league, you generally do not think in terms of lottery seeding. You just go out and play your season. And this certainly could turn again, with six of the next seven on the road after this four-game homestand concludes Saturday against the 76ers. So there still could be ample time for the tank talkers to get back to their favorite subject. I believe a lot of the answers, when it comes to direction, will be offered at the Feb. 23 NBA trading deadline. I doubt the Heat will be buyers. But will they be sellers Q: Ira, have you seen anything in both Tyler Johnson and Josh Richardsons games that say they will be better than Dion Waiters All three are in their mid 20s. I think the combo of Goran Dragic and Waiters is much better than what Johnson and Richardson have to offer. -- Rodney, Sarasota. A: I. Dont. Know. The sample size is still too small with Dion, and to a degree with Josh Richardson and Tyler Johnson, as well, with their injuries. The thing is, until these past few weeks, I would have quickly dismissed such a notion. But the question remains about the roles were are talking about. If youre looking for a volume scorer, then, yes, Dion has shown more of an ability during his career. But if youre looking for defense or floor spacing, then the conversation might tilt the other way. With Josh Richardson under contract at a minimal salary for next season, he still remain a value player, more of a value player than when Waiters returns to free agency in July. Where it gets interesting is here, in two parts: 1. Is it possible to put together a contract for Waiters going forward that is more economical than what remains on the final three years of Tyler Johnsons deal 2. And, if so, is there is team that would be willing to take on the final three seasons on Tylers contract (quotHello, Nets, about that interest you had in Tyler last summer. quot) Q: Development or no development, Dion Waiters is a big-time NBA talent. I come to the AAA to watch talent. -- Stuart. A: And an unrestricted free agent in July, with the Heat holding no Bird Rights. And that 10 million estimate for his 2017-18 salary probably way lower than how it will play out, no matter where he signs. Q: So what happens with Okaro White Someone has to go, right, since Josh Richardson is coming back -- Will. A: First, there will be no rush back for Josh Richardson, so this could last all the way to the Feb. 23 trading deadline. But heres one thought: Waive both Derrick Williams and Udonis Haslem (calm down, Ill explain). With so many teams under the salary floor, both could be claimed and then immediately waived, with their full 2016-17 salary figures counting against the new teams cap but only their remaining salary to be paid. Then, after Team X signs and cuts Haslem, re-sign him to Justise Winslows 1.3 million injured-player exception to give him a nice bonus for services rendered. That not only would open a roster spot, provide a cash bonus for Haslem, but also get the Heat under the cap so a three-year contract can be offered to White. But it has to be done soon, like right away. Q: Given the current win streak, which really came about because the core developmental players were injured, doesnt Heat management have to give strong consideration to keeping the likes of Dion Waiters, James Johnson and Wayne Ellington Waiters has been developing nicely and he is only 25 years old. There is plenty of upside left. He and Goran Dragic are playing so well together. With their inside-outside games they really do stretch the floor. James Johnson and Wayne Ellington are 29, but there is definitely mileage left there. Given the way that these three, plus Willie Reed, have delivered, there must be a way to keep these guys at least for another year or two while the developmental youth matures. -- Michael, North Miami A: First, even with the reclaimed salary-cap space from Chris Bosh, Im not sure the Heat would have enough cap space to even keep what they have in place, if they also keep their current featured players. Next seasons salary cap is expected to fall into the 103 million range. So start with Hassan Whiteside, Goran Dragic and Tyler Johnson thats 55 million. Then factor in the options with Josh McRoberts (a player option) and Wayne Ellington (essentially a team option) thats another 12 million. So that gets you up to 67 million. Then there are the salaries of Justise Winslow, Josh Richardson, Rodney McGruder, and I would suspect Okaro White thats another 6 million. So that gets you to 73 million. So if you put James Johnson and Dion Waiters each in the 10 million range in this crazy NBA economy, youre up to 93 million. And, face it, Willie Reed is moving closer to a mid-level salary, which would be about 8 million. So, right there, youre just about at the cap. Without adding a single free agent. Thats why youre going to have to pick and choose, and possibly shed some salary, if that is even possible. Q: Is this seasons priority the draft or the playoffs If they push for the playoffs, that leaves their spot in the draft in a less-than-ideal place if theyre aiming for any of the top-tier prospects. If the focus is the draft, then theyre not doing themselves any favors by keeping together a team that apparently can win games. -- Brian, Mountain View, Calif. A: Heres what happened this season: The Heat piled up so many losses so early that all the outside focus turned to the draft, began to froth at the possibility of the likes of Lonzo Ball, Markelle Fultz, Dennis Smith or Josh Jackson. But inside the organization, there always was a measured approach, about both the season and the draft. There is enough institutional awareness to know that you dont know until you know. So you try to maximize what you have on your roster, and you make sure you scout all levels of the draft, from early lottery, to mid-lottery to players in the teens and beyond. And then, when you know where you stand, you make the decisions. The Heat arent drafting this week, this month or any time before June. And until Feb. 23, at the NBA trading deadline, there still is time to recalibrate the roster. So you let the games dictate. The Heat arent losing out on top picks, because in their view they never had a top pick (or any other pre-determined pick). Q: Pat Riley said he wants to get two first-round picks for the 2017 draft, which means youve got to tank for one and trade for the other. -- Aura. A: Or you get one at No. 12 or No. 14 or No. 16, and then you trade for or buy one at the end of the first round. Voila, two first-round picks. Q: How can you explain this win streak Have the Heat finally turned it around -- Doug. A: Part of it, which has been by necessity, has been taking their foot off the developmental portion of the agenda, with both Tyler Johnson and Josh Richardson sidelined. With those two out, it has been easier to ride the veteran savvy of Dion Waiters and Wayne Ellington, without any sense of robbing the prospects of their developmental minutes. It is safe to say that had Richardson and Johnson been playing, Ellingtons minutes might have been erased, not there to deliver the daggers against the Nets, Bulls and Pistons. And with Tyler Johnson having led the league in fourth-quarter minutes for most of the season, who knows if Waiters even would have been on the court at the finish against the Warriors and Nets Similarly, it is easier to go with James Johnson for whatever timeframe is needed, such as Saturdays 32 minutes, when Justise Winslow is not getting required minutes. That has been the balance all season. Waiters, Ellington and James Johnson all can bolt in the offseason (the Heat have to decide on Ellingtons non-guaranteed 2017-18 salary at the start of the offseason). It all has put the Heat more in the moment than at other stages of the season. Q: What do we make of the emergence of Willie Reed this season I mean, is he starter worthy And, if so, does that make Hassan Whiteside dispensable in a trade -- Matthews, Weston. A: A lot of this, as also was the case with Whiteside, is a matter of right player in the right system at the right time. Can Willie Reed be an NBA starter Yes, with the right team that has the proper expectations. Willie holds a player option at the minimum for the 2017-18 season that Im sure he can exceed on the open market. So the question for the Heat becomes how much the Heat would be willing to pay to continue the relationship. Q: Hi, Ira. What do you make of Dion Waiters Is it Linsanity Part 2 or is he finally maturing Remember Lin was a superstar for two weeks then regressed to the norm. -- Daniel, Sydney, Australia. A: Again, it is a player finding his special place, a place that might not necessarily exist going forward, based on the health of Tyler Johnson and Josh Richardson. But, remember, Dion was drafted with this type of potential in mind. So there were many who anticipated not only this type of surge, but perhaps something that could be sustained, as well. And, truth be told, Dion has had similar clusters of game previously. But you also have to appreciate the patience the Heat have had, including nights such as Saturday, when he was 1 of 9 on 3-pointers. The difference is Dion also had a game-high seven assists, showing he can be more than just a scoring specialist on this roster. Q: What are the rules on long-term options for Okaro White should Heat decide to -- C.K. A: The Heat likely will move ahead with a contract with White similar to their agreement with Rodney McGruder, something along the lines of a three-year deal (which will safely get them to Bird Rights), with the required guarantee for this season, a partial guarantee for next season and then a third year that becomes vested if White is with the team prior to that season. The Heat have had success with these types of cap-friendly deals for the prospects theyve developed. Josh Richardson, in fact, is in the midst of a three-year deal at the minimum. Q: I assume that this next 10-day contract for Okaro White is just the Heat needing 10 days to see who to let go. -- Jordan. A: No, its because thats the way of doing business in this situation. It could be that the Heat simply keep Josh Richardson inactive until the Feb. 23 trading deadline, so they can keep Derrick Williams contract in case his 4.6 million is needed to facilitate a trade. The Heat cannot release Josh McRoberts because then his 6 million salary would automatically vest onto next seasons contract. Of course, another injury could quotcrop upquot that would allow the Heat to retain a 16th player, and its not as if Udonis Haslem hasnt dealt with his share of tendinitis over the years. Much of what will transpire for the Heat over the next three weeks will involve keeping as many options as possible in play at the trading deadline. I also dont believe the Heat would in any way dare risk their cap space going forward by waiving Chris Bosh earlier than needed. Q: The Heat will regret not being in better position come draft time. This is chess not checkers. The goal is to win it all. -- Y.S.B . Q: Is it Or is the goal to present compelling competition Last season, when the Heat stood within one victory of the conference finals, it sure felt that the Heat were within reach of a goal at the time. Only one team wins a championship, which means that the average team would win a championship once every 30 years. So if its title or bust, then there will be a lot of misery for a lot of years. Having a team that can compete every night and in the playoffs is not a bad place to be. Winning is fun. These past six games have been fun. Getting into the playoffs would be fun. And, either way, the Heat will have the resources to be better, if only because of the Chris Bosh salary cap. It is OK to smile without a championship. And it is OK to smile when your team has won six in a row. Winning is good. Q: What makes you think Pat Riley will have any different result in free agency than what happened with Kevin Durant He cant lose what he has now, and then will have enough money in case Dwyane Wade wants to return. -- Arnold. A: I agree that if the plan is to go all-in for another top-tier free agent, then it could be another offseason of middling results, with players again to be off the market by the time the Riley gets his quotwhalequot resolution. But lately Ive been getting plenty of feedback on not only retaining Dion Waiters, but also bringing back Dwyane Wade (should Wade opt out of the second season on his Heat contract). The problem with that thinking is there simply are not enough minutes to go around when also factoring in Goran Dragic, Tyler Johnson and Josh Richardson. In fact, if Johnson wasnt sidelined with his shoulder injury, it is doubtful Waiters would have been given such an extensive showcase over the past week. There also is another factor in perhaps deferring the spending of the salary-cap space expected to be recouped through Chris Boshs release: Johnsons salary will have the Heat hard up against the cap in the 2018 and 19 offseasons. That makes this offseason either a summer of dramatics for the Heat, or an acceptance of making what currently is on the roster (with perhaps some minor alterations) work over the long run. So the question then becomes: How far can a team go with a lottery pick, Dragic, Waiters, Hassan Whiteside, James Johnson, Tyler Johnson and the other young players on the current roster Q: I get the flash-in-the-pan skepticism about Dion Waiters, and you can throw in Goran Dragic, Luke Babbitt, James Johnson and Wayne Ellingtons recent successes. But I also recall Birdman and the Heats success with reclamation projects like him. Could it be the teaching reputation of the Heat staff is beginning to sink in If we see more successes from our quotone-year rentalsquot it might be too soon to trade them with the trade deadline only weeks away. I say let this season play out and see if the recent growth of our veterans along with their professed desire to stay (quotwe found a homequot) comments might yield a long-term value. What say you -- Jack, Fort Myers. A: I say I also recall a similar atmosphere last season with Joe Johnson, with the Heat and Johnson talking about extending the commitment. And then, at the start of free agency, Johnson was gone. The difference with Johnson is the Heat had no option to turn Johnson into something tangible. That is something the Heat will be able to do at the trading deadline, replenish the type of future draft choices that have been dealt away. So, as with the response above, it comes down to whether you are willing to move forward with mostly the same group. Because the Heats free agents will want to get paid, because thats what free agents do. And in this salary-cap economy, players will be paid this summer. Now, if the Heat had held team options with Waiters, Ellington or James Johnson, it would be a different story. Q: If Chris Bosh is waived before February 23, his salary comes off the cap at that moment, right The Heat can then take in trades without having to match salary. -- Martin. A: There still will be several administrative matters to deal with once the Heat waive Bosh, including needed confirmation from an independent doctor that Chris ailment is career-ending. Such timing also could then backfire in free agency under the longshot chance that Bosh finds a team willing to play him for 25 total games over the remainder of the regular season and playoffs. While the Heat are making a move from their season-long spot near the league basement, there still will be some sort of losing record at the Feb. 23 NBA trading deadline, so it is doubtful they would jump in and make a move with salary-cap space. More than likely, a vacated Bosh roster spot would allow the Heat to add another developmental player, possibly Briante Weber or Keith Benson from their D-League affiliate. Q: So who is going to get waived when Miami loses its roster exception Because there is no way it will be Okaro White. -- Mac, Toronto. A: You raise a really interesting point, because not only cant the Heat afford to expose White to other teams, they have to now step forward and sign him to a contract that also keeps him out of free agency this summer. I dont think its enough to make the Heat move with haste with Chris Bosh (although thats a possibility), but I can assure you that White has made himself a keeper, very much as a man of the moment. So when Richardson returns it could possibly be the end of the Derrick Williams era. Otherwise, I cant see them parting with Udonis Haslem or eating the option year with Josh McRoberts. Okaro White has created a problem for the Heat. A good problem. Q: Ira, are you ready to get on the Dion Waiters bandwagon with me Ira, you cant say that youre not impressed. -- Will. A: Yes I am, and no I cant. But that never was the crux of my perspective. Instead, the Heat have to break out their actuarial charts and determine what Waiters market price will be in free agency this offseason. And then they have to decide what their other options will be with that cap space. And they have to decide that by the NBAs Feb. 23 trading deadline, or otherwise could see Waiters walk for nothing in return. I like Dion and I like his attitude. But he is a high-volume shooter and a high-volume ballhandler. So how does that fit going forward, when Tyler Johnson and Josh Richardson are available Thats something that also needs to be considered. But for the moment, Im like everyone else, savoring this life in Wait County. Q: Hassan Whiteside needs to stop trying to make Erik Spoelstra look bad. If your ankle hurt, dont go in. Dont make Spo look bad -- Horace. A: Or make himself look bad. Or put the Heat behind the eight-ball. There was no mention of an ankle issue for Hassan going into the game (although the Heat can be very protective of such information), but also no mention in Spoelstras postgame comments. For all of Whitesides second-guessing about deciding to play (which can be an admirable attribute), those are the time when you have to be proactive. If a limited Whiteside didnt play, perhaps the Heat dont fall behind by 18 points in the first place in Brooklyn. Q: Can we hire somebody to take Goran Dragic on a temporary involuntary vacation -- William. A: Ah, the irony: The time when Goran Dragic starts playing like the Goran Dragic that so tantalized the Heat at the 2015 trading deadline also is a time when some have become more forward thinking with their Heat perspective. And yet some also point out to how Goran deferred to Dion Waiters at Mondays close against the Warriors, just as he did to Dwyane Wade the previous two seasons. What Goran has provided are the types of game-long contributions that have allowed the Heat to remain competitive so that the closing minutes will have meaning. This no longer can be a case of dumping Goran for salary-cap space. He has made himself so much more valuable than that. So unless the trade offers include some tantalizing in the draft, you sit back and wait. Ultimately, there is no guarantee that those two first-round picks offer anything more tangible to the Suns than what the Heat could derive from Dragic over the next three seasons. Q: I have respect for Erik Spoelstra and the team. They have brought full effort every game despite injuries and less talent than opponents. -- C.J. A: Actually, there had been a few when that wasnt the case, which is why any notion of a playoff run is way too premature. But perhaps it speaks even greater volumes that a team can fall 19 games below .500 and still fight as hard as the Heat have in recent weeks. This often can become a white-flag juncture of the season for teams at the bottom of the standings. The Heat instead are pushing through with the good fight. Q: Hi, Ira. I cant help but be bothered every time I hear about Chris Bosh either giving All-Star votes to Dwyane Wade or being a cheerleader at the Bulls game. What issues does he really have with the Heat, that they dare put his health first Shouldnt he be supporting the team hes still contracted with I mean, its silly enough he has negative feelings with the front office, but I swore he was a quotfriendquot to some of the players still currently in Miami. -- Marc, Pembroke Pines. A: And he remains friendly with those players, spending New Years Eve with Udonis Haslem, Josh McRoberts and others. I am surprised that the familial Heat couldnt make it work better with Chris, even if the goal has to be excising his salary-cap hit. Even when it has been business with the Heat, there mostly has been the ability to maintain a cordial relationship. That this was allowed to go so wrong is a shame for a player whose jersey one day will be hoisted to the AmericanAirlines Arena rafters. Q: The schedule only gets easier from here. The Heat are about to take a chance missing out on a potential future franchise player -- Y.S.B. A: Its amusing, first of all, how some are now looking at it that way, with overwhelming underdog status, which was overcome Monday against the Warriors, now essentially put on hold until Feb. 15 in Houston. Until then, the schedule reads: at Nets, at Bulls, vs. Pistons, vs. Nets, vs. Hawks, vs. 76ers, at Timberwolves, at Bucks, at Nets at 76ers, vs. Magic. Of course, every one of those teams also is likely looking at the Heat through a similar lens. But lets not forget the Heat also are 15-30. Win ALL of those games, and youre still four games under .500. And the Heat are not winning them all, not stringing together a 15-game winning streak. So then you get the flip side of it, of fooling around and falling out of lottery love, winding up somewhere in the middle of the non-playoff pack. To that I say, dont worry. There will be enough teams playing to win over the seasons final two months, that you basically can get the record to square where you need it, especially with the Feb. 23 trading deadline approaching. So whether you consider the current glass half full or half empty, at least this is not as rancid as it had been over the seasons first two months. Q: Ira, if Dion Waiters keeps this up then do you think Pat Riley will give him the keys to the house the Dwyane Wade built I mean, Im impressed -- Will. Q: Time to sell high on Waiters. Trade, Trade, Trade -- Rafy. A: Contrasting opinions offered for your benefit, followed by perspective: You dont overstate two games, and you also dont overstate how the trade market might change because of two games. What you do is sit by the phones, see if Waiters has created a market in time for the Feb. 23 trading deadline, and then weigh the odds of re-signing him vs. acquiring something tangible in advance of his return to free agency. Q: In the fourth quarter against the Warriors, Hassan Whiteside didnt touch the ball once with undersized Draymond Green guarding him and in one instance with Klay Thompson on him. Who do you blame for this the players or Erik Spoelstra Also, I partially blame Whiteside. He had to learn how to seal his man when he goes low. -- Joel. A: You answered part of your question. But the other part of it is a lack of true playmakers, with Dion Waiters forced into such a role because of injuries, and with Justise Winslow and Josh McRoberts out. Ive noticed numerous times this season where Whiteside has flashed open without the Heats guards noticing. But Whiteside also has to provide an aggressive target, one with two feet in the paint, if possible. Its almost as if the Heat got too caught up in the alley-oop game with him. Q: Dion Waiters scores 33 points and you report why the Heat should trade him. You are a moron. -- Nate. A: I did. And I might be. But there has to also be a critical lens for what this team can look like going forward. Even if the Heat reclaim Chris Boshs salary-cap space, as is expected, if it is reinvested in this current roster, then basically. you would have the same roster coming back. If, for instance, Dion puts together a few more games such as Saturday, then in todays NBA economy, he is going to be starting a new contract at 10 million or beyond (money he might have gotten this past summer if the Thunder had set him free earlier). Similarly, an equal case could be made for James Johnson. And neither have Bird Rights with the Heat, meaning their share would have to come out of the Heats cap space. So my alternate theory (moronic as it might seem to some, or at least one), is instead to try to spin both into tangible currency, namely draft picks, at the Feb. 23 trading deadline, or perhaps even a low-priced veteran with Bird Rights. It beats the alternative of Waiters and Johnson potentially walking out that door in July for nothing in return. The enduring contribution from Johnson and Waiters could be what they deliver to the Heat in terms of long-term currency. The exception would be if Waiters would agree to pick up his player option for 2017-18 in advance, thereby having Early Bird Rights in the 2018 offseason. But why exactly would he settle in advance for a 3 million 2017-18 salary Once a player plays above his current pay grade, it is incumbent on any front office to consider the ramifications going forward. Q: Why would Erik Spoelstra opt to utilize Okaro White instead of giving Derrick Williams a chance to play and up his confidence He played well in the preseason, right -- Roy. A: This also sort of goes to the above. Derrick Williams essentially is a one-year rental. If his play is off, he likely is not asked to return. And if he thrives, he likely moves on to his next contract elsewhere. But White could be a pipeline player going forward, perhaps even on a two-way contract next season, once that process begins with the new collective-bargaining agreement. Yes, at the moment, a hearty argument could be made that Derrick Williams is the more NBA-ready player. But not a lot about this season is about this season for the Heat. Instead, it is about who can, will or should be a member of this roster going forward. Q: Kaboom We have no future -- Bruno, Fort Lauderdale. A: This whole lottery thing is getting out of control. Are you telling me people are actually booing in some places when the Heat win this season I guess you can lose for winning. Q: Ira, whats your take on the speculation of Dwyane Wade possibly leaving Chicago Is he Cleveland bound I dont see him back in Miami just yet, as we are searching for an identity and lets not forget the way free agency 2016 unfolded. Time definitely heals all wounds, but I think its too soon, possibly too late, to expect Dwyane to come back. -- John, Rhode Island. A: Dwyane prioritized money last summer to the degree that I cant see him walking away from the 23.8 million player option he holds for 2017-18 with the Bulls unless another team is willing to even come close to that figure for next season. And I dont see that happening, either. But if the Bulls do move toward a total rebuild, then I would think Dwyane would sooner move to the 8 million mid-level alongside LeBron James in Cleveland (or perhaps Chris Paul in Los Angeles, or maybe Carmelo Anthony in New York). And then theres the Heats perspective, where Im not sure after moving to excise Chris Boshs cap space and, before that, limiting the offer to Wade, that there would be any inclination to spend even the mid-level on such a move. Now, if youre talking about 2018-19, when Wades Chicago contract expires, then I could see an amenable resolution between Wade and the Heat. Q: Doesnt the Tyler Johnson injury show that going for Okaro White over Briante Weber was a mistake Now we have no backup for Goran Dragic. -- Seth. A: Remember that Okaro is on a 10-day contract, so an adjustment can always be made there. Also, there is no certainty (at least from what the Heat are saying) that Tyler will be out for an appreciable period. If Johnson is out for more than a few days, and if Richardson remains inactive with his foot issue, then I would think another ballhandler would be essential. If this was a win-at-all-costs season, Im not sure that an additional ballhandler wouldnt have been brought in as soon as Richardson went down, just in case of this type of Tyler Johnson eventuality. Q: Its a little sad that some fans get upset when the Heat win. But I agree with you, if youre going to have hope for any players on this current roster playing a role on future ones, then you need to see they have the ability to win some games. I watch each game for the potential entertainment value of that specific game. I dont think about past losses, etc. Its a much easier approach to this particular season. Viewed in that light, there have been a lot of entertaining games, including (mostly) the losses. -- Matt. A: Ive been saying this all season, that when it comes to the games, themselves, thats the time to suspend all other concerns and appreciate that there is NBA basketball in South Florida and on South Florida televisions, and that if its not the Heats night then its an opposing player creating reason to watch. The reality is that half the teams lose every night and that only two of them make the NBA Finals (and, candidly, you can make an argument that only the Cavaliers, Warriors, Spurs and maybe even one or two other teams are even in contention). (Todays mailbag is presented as a matter of throwing ones hands up and allowing the readers to take over.) Q: A two-game winning streak is worthless at this point in time. First off, you have no business being competitive against the Rockets, and against the Mavs (who also want to be very bad) is a must-lose game. You complain about all Heat fans who are rooting for losses, but Id argue we are true diehard fans wanting whats best for the franchise. Sure, you want the young guys to grow and develop, but they had been doing that just fine playing competitive but losing every game late. However, on the bright side, nights like Thursday sell what kind of player Goran Dragic can be to another team. -- Taylor, Christiansburg, Va. A: I guess your ultimate ending therefore would have been when Rodney McGruder defended Harrison Barnes 3-pointer at the buzzer on Thursday night is that he should have made sure he fouled, since it was a four-point game (I spoke to Rodney afterward and he acknowledged he was admonished for defending on a play when the best defense was no defense.) Q: So, despite the fact that Markelle Fultz is being labeled as the best prospect at point guard to come out of a draft class since Kyrie Irving, despite the fact that point guard will clearly be a need for Miami to address in the foreseeable future, considering the fact that Goran Dragic turns 31 in four months, and despite the fact that the Heat still owe the Suns two of their four upcoming first-round draft picks, between 2018 and 2021, essentially leaving us with little to no error in terms of selecting a prospect in this years draft. we suddenly are just going to start winning Just in time to barely miss the playoffs while simultaneously falling out of the lottery Top 10 Yeah, Im just going to assume that this is a Pat Riley plan for bringing up the stock of Goran Dragic and other movable pieces before the trade deadline. -- Jean, Miami. A: So, based on Thursdays mundane performance by Hassan Whiteside, I guess theyve not decided to showcase him, as well Yes, the Heat already have sent in their scorebooks for all games after Feb. 23 with Ls in them. Q: I dont get why people are upset that we won against the Rockets. Root for the team, and for growth. Securing the worst record doesnt guarantee the top spot in the lottery, anyway. The only part I didnt appreciate about the win is that, because it had been so long since they won, I forgot about the Papa Johns deal the next day. -- Matt, Boynton Beach. A: See. discounted pizza, thats why this winning ultimately makes too much sense to bypass. Q: Think Pat Riley is rethinking trading Goran Dragic No pick next year can do what Goran is doing. -- Goigi. A: Two things: First, who says Pat Riley has been thinking about trading Goran Second, next season hardly figures to be one of top-tier contention for the Heat, anyway, so its not as if the development of a lottery pick would set the process back. Beyond any of that, there still is plenty of math in play, with recouped cap space from Chris Bosh, to be able to add a top-tier free agent, select a lottery pick. and still retain Goran Dragic. The primary thought with Goran should be this: Will having Goran Dragic on the roster when the Heat are back in contention make the Heat significantly better He certainly looked like a keep Thursday night against the Mavericks. Q: Hi, Ira. The Celtics got outrebounded by 20 by the Knicks in Boston. Do you think the Celtics could use Hassan Whiteside Its not like Markelle Fultz or Lonzo Ball are going to step in right away and replace Isaiah Thomas. Hello Brooklyn pick and other assets. -- Rich, West Palm Beach. A: Except a draft pick is not a sure thing, not even one among the first three or four (as the Heat can attest to the last time they were in this position). While I have played along with the Whiteside discussion, its always been when a youthful, proven-perimeter talent has been mention, as with the C.J. McCollum discussion. Yes, Fultz could prove to be special, as could Ball or one of the other young, dynamic one-and-done lottery picks. But then consider the void the Heat had the middle after the departures of Shaquille ONeal and Alonzo Mourning, until Chris Bosh was spotted into the middle. Dynamic big men come around even less often than unproven lottery picks flourish. Thats why I could accept something more apples to apples when eying a lottery pick, at least knowing there could be a replacement in the pipeline for Goran Dragic with such a selection. Q: Do you think Dwyane Wade would have been a difference maker with us this season Honestly, I dont see the Heat being in the playoffs even with Dwyane Wade still here. -- Gunter, Berlin. A: That depends: Are we talking healthy, every-day Dwyane Wade Because with all the close losses, the question would have been whether Dwyane would have been available in those games Yes, if the Heat retained Dwyane, I believe they would, at worst, have been contending for a final playoff spot. But Im not sure a first-round matchup against the Cavaliers exactly moves your franchise forward. Q: Tuesday was a pointless win that gets us further from a rebuild. This does nothing for the future but make it worse -- Joel. Q: In the long run, I prefer the Ping-Pong balls. This was like the Dolphins winning meaningless games and losing out on Andrew Luck. -- B.D. Q: I would give up Tuesday night for the number-one draft ball. -- Marcelo. Q: I would still prefer Markelle Fultz over wins like this. -- Shad. Q: Whats fun about this We need as many Ls as possible to secure a Top 3 pick. Lonzo Ball would be fun, as would Josh Jackson -- Bai. A: Welcome to Heat 2016-17, when even pure joy has to be tempered. Yes, the NBA draft system favors those who improve their lottery odds. But there also has to be an allowance for pride, professionalism, productivity. And for nights like Tuesday against the Rockets. I can appreciate those Heat end-of-season games when they made losing the priority, like in Toronto and Philadelphia. But you cant be taking that approach in January. To do that is to say that every single player on your roster will be gone and that there is nothing to develop. If you are going to grade Heat players on their development, then you will have to excuse them if they actually grow enough to win a game here or there. Sorry you had to suffer through the Heat finishing a game with more points than the other team. Q: How will the injury exception for Justise Winslow help the Heat -- Damito. A: Likely not at all, since the 1.3 million allowance received is barely above the minimum, anyway, with it cheaper from a salary-cap standpoint to simply sign a player to the minimum (which also would allow for a multi-year deal). But it could help at the Feb. 23 trading deadline, potentially even leaving the Heat with a trade exception going forward. Q: Ira, of all the forwards on our D-League affiliate, Keith Benson holds the most interest to me, more than Okaro White. I like what I saw of him in the preseason, and what hes done so far at Sioux Falls this season. -- Matt. A: But Keith is more of a center, or at least power player, than Okaro, and the Heat are set in the middle with Hassan Whiteside and Willie Reed. Im not sure that Okaro is going to get a chance to play, anyway. But I believe the Heats commitment was to first take care of White contractually, with an NBA 10-day contract paying more than a full-season contract in the D-League. Perhaps Benson or Briante Weber get the next call. Q: The talent pool is just too short to simply make a take-it-or-leave-it approach with James Johnson, just because the guy has to be paid more. The Heat gave him a second life. Does he stay to say thank you Or now that he is a valuable commodity he can take more money andor play for a contender. -- Richard. A: When it comes to players who have been one thing most of their careers and then have a breakout season with a team at the bottom of the standings, I think opposing general managers take pause, as might the Heat front office. What Ive stressed is that while I dont believe James Johnson will receive a break-the-bank offer in free agency, I do believe he has positioned himself at least close to the new 8 million mid-level exception. And Im just not sure that a team looking to maximize cap space can set such an amount aside (which the Heat have never done before when utilizing major cap space). Beyond that, while Johnson complements the second unit with what the Heat currently are working with, it is safe to say that there could be an entirely new chemistry next season. So, as Ive said, if Johnson is willing to meet the Heat halfway, it could be a more workable situation, perhaps taking longer years for lesser annual salary. But you are correct that moving back into a winning situation, such as where Johnson stood last season with the Raptors, could prove the most tempting after enduring this type of season. James Johnson has proven to be a terrific one-year rental for the Heat. We will see soon enough if it only was meant to be a fling. Q: Heres how I see it, Ira: Hassan Whiteside is good and can be the third-best player on a championship team, but not the best player. He is not a leader. He is not consistent enough. I know the hope is he can become more and be that cornerstone, but I feel that he is much better suited to be utilized as a trade asset. -- Connor, Wyoming. A: Whoa. There is a pretty wide berth in the NBA between being a leading man and being trade fodder. Hassan received his contract from the Heat because of his unique skill set. And sometimes you pay a premium for such a unique skill set. But just because he cant be a leading man in a perimeter-based league (and when you look back at it with the Heat, was Alonzo Mourning the leading man when Tim Hardaway was in place, or Shaquille ONeal when Dwyane Wade was alongside), it doesnt mean he cant be a franchise cornerstone. What the Warriors, Cavaliers and Spurs have shown is that you need multiple leading men. Hassan can be that. What this season compared to previous seasons has demonstrated is that Whiteside is best when surrounded by talent. With 40 million in potential cap space this summer (as well as a lottery pick), the Heat will have the resources needed to surround Hassan with the required support system. Even Tuesdays victory over Houston showed how much more efficient Whiteside can be when others are working well around him. Being a part of success should be Whitesides ultimate goal, and the Heats ultimate goal for him. Q: It is very likely the 2017-18 Heat will look very similar to what were seeing now, and well just have to hope some of our young guys blossom into stars. -- Kevin, Pa. A: Actually, there is one aspect that is different: the Heats 2018 first-round pick is only protected through the first seven selections, so there wont be nearly the same level of draft certainly a year from now. It is among the reasons the Heat may attempt to fast-track things. The ultimate failure next season would be to wind up with the No.8 pick, have to send that to the Suns, and then wind up nowhere in the standings and with nothing from the draft. Based on the Heats draft position going forward, an argument could be made that if the Heats turnaround is not rapid, it might not be at all. Q: Ira, unless Im wrong, the Heat again will roll Dion Waiters out with the starters Tuesday night. And he again will not be bashful about shooting. Youve written about developing Tyler Johnson and Josh Richardson (when he was healthy), so how does this help -- Vic. A: I have been open to Dions possibilities since he arrived at the most reasonable of price points in the offseason. And he offered the Heat needed scoring before he went down with his groin injury. But I am beginning to wonder if the play at the moment by the Heat might not be trying to build up Dions value by the Feb. 23 trading deadline in order to get something in return, likely in the form of a draft pick. When Waiters is at the top of his game, he is a player who can help a playoff team, as he did with the Thunder last season. If that is the logic at the moment, I would consider it sound. As it is, with Richardson and Justise Winslow out, its not as if Dion is getting in the way of player development. And while Wayne Ellingtons shooting might be of greater benefit in spacing the floor for Hassan Whiteside, its not as if Ellington has long-term prospects with the Heat, either. Q: Okaro White intrigues me with his size. Do you see him potentially finding a place on the team moving forward, or is he more of a stop-gap solution amidst all of the current injuries -- Doug, Cincinnati. A: I have no idea, because for all of Okaros D-League success, its not as if he has been doing it against NBA competition. The only way to make a legitimate judgment is to get him on the floor during this impending tryout. As with Waiters, its not as if Derrick Williams or Luke Babbitt are part of the Heats future, so why not spot White as often as possible as soon as he gets up to speed Q: Hey Ira, I like Justise Winslow, but Pat Riley should have drafted Devin Booker. That kid is tearing it up right now and is on fire. Thoughts -- Guillermo, Biloxi, Miss. A: First, never draft backward. What happened, happened. And there is not a single draft that you cant restructure the lottery to a more sensible conclusion. But, again, when Justise Winslow was drafted, the Heat had a healthy Chris Bosh and an all-in Dwyane Wade. A rebounding, facilitating, defending wing certainly made sense at that time with that No. 10 pick in 2015. If the Heat knew that Bosh would be out and Wade would be gone, then, yes, Booker should have been the pick, both at the moment in hindsight. But you dont draft in hindsight. Q: Are the Heat really looking into sending Goran Dragic to the Magic -- Yung. A: First, this all started with reports of Magic interest in Goran, not about the Heat soliciting interest from the Magic. But this, again, is where timing becomes the issue. While the Magics lottery pick would be the likely centerpiece in a trade, Orlando remains within contention of making the playoffs, and certainly would have no incentive to tank once such a pick is dealt. The last thing you would want is to trade into the lottery and then not wind up in the lottery, instead selecting at No. 15 or No. 16. Goran Dragic stands worth way too much to the Heat to be dealt for a pick into the middle of the first round. When it comes to dealing for potential lottery picks, you have to make sure theyre actually in the lottery. In this case, patience equals prudence. Q: The Heat should try to trade Derrick Williams while he still has some value. Its useless to pay him nearly 5 million to sit on the bench every night. -- Doug. A: I believe its safe to say there is little to no market for Derrick at the moment, and likely nothing close in free agency next summer to what he received last summer from the Heat, with his one-year, 4.6 million contract. If teams call the Heat about expiring contracts, James Johnson and Wayne Ellington are far more likely to be the ones to create interest. And, again, if a quality draft pick can be secured, it would behoove the Heat to consider such overtures, unless James Johnson makes it known he would be willing to re-sign on the Heats budget. Q: Ira, I have a retort for Masoud from Tucson. Micky Arison, Pat Riley amp Co. will come out this JuneJuly looking like the usual geniuses. After we secure Lonzo Ball or at minimum Josh Jackson, we will only retain (if reasonably priced) James Johnson from our roster. Erik Spoelstra will then move Goran Dragic to shooting guard to give the main offensive responsibilities to Lonzo. Once we secure the most exciting player in this years draft, the implosion of the Clippers will have an effect on Blake Griffin. We are the most logical landing spot for him in the East. Yes he has to come East. Boston or Toronto dont have enough money compared to us. After the Griffin signing look for Pat to get a player like Rudy Gay for small forward. Our Biscayne Babies will be best coming off the bench. Those assets will also be the best selling point to Blake. Our bench anchored by James Johnson amp Tyler Johnson, Justise Winslow, Josh Richardson and one additional role player, maybe Willie Reed will turn what you deem pathetic into a top 2 contender instantly in East. Also towards March of 2018, Dwyane Wade will be bought out and will return to the Heat for a final Eastern Conference championship push against the Cavs. -- Marcus, Washington. A: OK, works for me. But to land Ball, you likely will have to wind up with one of the first three spots in the draft, which will have as much to do with lottery luck as placement in the standings. And Im not sure with the new maximum contracts that you can have enough remaining cap space for a free agent of any pedigree if you sign someone like Griffin and also choose to retain Dragic. In addition, that certainly will be nice of the Bulls to offer such a buyout. When it comes to actual realities, dont forget the trade market, which could have a significant place in any Heat makeover. And do have patience, because going from 25 wins to something playoff worthy doesnt necessarily happen overnight. Q: Hi, Ira. Im actually somewhat nervous about the Heat potentially having so much cap space. In a market where demand exceeds supply, dont you feel the potential to overpay for players is a concern Lets not forget, this is no longer the Big 3 Era, when players were willing to take a discount to come to Miami. -- Richard, West Palm Beach. A: Rule No. 1 in free-agency club is you overpay. Rule No. 2 in free-agency club is you never talk about Rule No. 1. With so much cap space available, with an NBA salary cap soon to soar to 120 million, there is little need for anyone to take a discount, which is among the first things LeBron James said when he was preparing for his move back to the Cavaliers. About the only money to be left on the table will be with players who change teams and give up higher raises they could receive, since the final years of such deals tend to be player options, anyway. And dont kid yourself, the Heat overpaid when it came to Hassan Whiteside last summer, because thats what cap space forces you to do in free agency. But dont forget, cap space also can be utilized on the trade-market, where there is cost certainty when it comes to contracts. I think many are overlooking that possibility with the Heats impending cap space. Long before Pat Riley was tossing rings in front of free agents, he was cooking up winning deals on the trade market. Q: Why the assumption in many questions that multiple lottery picks are the answer to a rapid Heat resurgence The Lakers, Wolves, and 76ers show that one-and-done players mean talent but hardly meant instant victories. The lottery process seems contrary to Pat Rileys past, present, and the patience of Heat fans. -- Ed, Miami. A: Im not sure anything is quotinstantquot anymore in the NBA, but you are asking me if I would trade the Heats entire roster and draft situation for that of the 76ers or the Timberwolves, I would do it in a heartbeat. Those two teams should be set for years to come, either when it comes together with their young players, or the ability to utilize their younger players as assets. Q: Mr. Ira Winderman, go ahead and keep on supporting this pathetic team. I write to you and present legit and good questions, but you answer two out of three questions from Douglas. This is a horrible team and you never get to the basics and just support this pathetic team. Well, you have to make a living. Why dont you post my correct and legit questions, instead of answering these stupid questions by these people like Douglas I will never write to you and will never root for this team, again, ever again. I go another way and good luck to you and the worst team in this league, called the Miami Heat. I am so sorry for you, for doing this. Very sorry. -- Masoud, Tucson. A: Well, now you did it, got Douglas good and angry.