Erik Spoelstra Rumors
Miami Heat coach Erik Spoelstra took the somewhat extraordinary step Thursday of confirming to Goran Dragic that there was no truth to the recent report of the guard being part of trade discussions with the Sacramento Kings. While the Heat typically dismiss trade rumors, Dragic said Spoelstra spoke to him about the latest swirl during the morning shootaround at the Spectrum Center, in advance of Thursday night’s exhibition against the Charlotte Hornets. “Spo came over and did that today,” Dragic said. “He just said those rumors, they’re not true.”
Asked what he would think the next time that he is mentioned in a rumor if Spoelstra would not offer the same type of denial, Dragic smiled, instead grateful for Thursday’s gesture. “That was really nice from Spo,” Dragic said. “That’s not his job to come to the players to say it, so I understand.” Dragic said he appreciated that there will be times when management and the coaching staff might not be able to be as forthcoming. “This is business,” he said, “so I have no problem with that.”
When Erik Spoelstra was asked Monday about the battle for the final roster spot between Beno Udrih and Briante Weber, he gave a very interesting answer. “It’s not a competition just between those two,” Spoelstra said. It turns out that Udrih and Weber aren’t just competing against each other for Miami’s 15th roster spot. The pair of point guards are also competing against 25-year-old shooting guard Rodney McGruder. “Yeah, he is,” Spoelstra said Wednesday when asked if McGruder is still in the race for a roster spot. With the Heat’s roster still at the NBA preseason maximum of 20 players, Miami must cut its roster to the regular-season maximum of 15 players by Monday’s deadline. With 14 players pretty much guaranteed a spot on the roster, that leaves Udrih, Weber and McGruder fighting for the final opening.