Round Table Discussion: Reacting to Goran Dragic, Trade Deadline


Welcome to another Miami Heat Round Table Discussion. On today’s agenda, we’ll be reacting to the Chris Bosh news, welcoming Goran Dragic and saying goodbye to Norris Cole after the trade deadline.


David Ramil (@dramil13): Yes. Yes, it is. It’s an exciting addition to the team, for sure, and clearly the theme for the season – good news followed by bad news (or vice versa). Still, I’m looking forward to him developing some chemistry with the players available this season and getting glimpses of how dangerous this team can be when (and if) Bosh returns to full health.

Allana Tachauer (@ChiTownHeiress): AND ZORAN DRAGIC. In case anyone tries to call me out on this, yes, when I first heard about the Miami Heat’s push for the Dragon, I was against it. But that was only because of the rumored terms! While I knew we needed help, I was not in agreement with giving away half of our team to get it. But you better believe I am thrilled with the way things turned out. And to me, it goes beyond straight numbers. Dragic (and/or the brothers Dragic…it feels so wrong leaving Zoran out all the time) brings a totally new and uplifting energy to the squad.

Chris Posada(@CpoTweetsStuff): I’m pretty sure I got nothing productive done in the three hours prior to the deadline, as I was immersed in any potential Dragic deal. It was worth it. The Heat got the point guard they have so desperately needed, thus changing the playoff picture in the East. Well, until the Chris Bosh news hit. I still think that once Dragic gets comfortable in the Heat’s offense – pretty sure he knows zero sets at this point – everything will click. Next season will have a lot more optimism.

Wes Goldberg (@wcgoldberg): And we got rid of those pesky contracts of Danny Granger and Shawne Williams, too. Goran Dragic can be the best player on the floor at any given time and, probably, often will. Dragic is going to change the identity of this team to something more familiar to Heat fans. They are going to play fast. Once Dragic and the rest of the team figure each other out, this is going to be fun.

2. The news about Chris Bosh is really sad but, luckily, it sounds like he’s expected to make a full recovery. How should the Heat go forward without Bosh for the rest of the season?

Ramil: Signing another player is imperative and one that can provide some offense. Thomas Robinson seems to be the name a lot of Heat fans want but his effort and grit don’t add the floor spacing and points vacated by Bosh’s absence. Andray Blatche seems like the next best fit and I’m not as concerned as others are about the potential headaches he might bring to the team. So, having said that, I actually think Michael Beasley is the best answer. I’ve been critical of what he brings (and doesn’t bring) to the team but his familiarity with Miami’s front office, coaches and personnel would be a plus. Beasley 3.0. Make it happen, Godfather.

Tachauer: Honestly, my jaw is still on the floor about the entire Chris Bosh situation. One minute Heat Nation is elated over attaining Dragic and living the dream and then suddenly, we are in the middle of a nightmare. I am so incredibly glad that they caught the clots in time though, and of course wish nothing but the best for him and his family. Is there a way to fully rectify the situation? No. But I still have faith in Hassan Whiteside’s potential. And hear that Luol Deng has been busy studying tapes of Bosh every since the news broke. I might even be warming up to the idea of bringing Michael Beasley back…

Posada: First and foremost, thank goodness that Bosh is going to make a full recovery. That’s the absolute best news possible. As for the matters on the court, the Heat would need another big man, possibly one that he stretch the defense, opening up Dragic and the pick-and-pop game. Someone like Andray Blatche would fill that role. Personally, I’d like to see them go more athletic, like with the recently bought out Thomas Robinson, who is averaging 10 points and 12 rebounds per 36 minutes. Heat can play him at the 5 in small-ball sets, also pushing the pace with Dragic. Regardless, no one will replace Bosh on and off the court.

Goldberg: I don’t know. Replacing Bosh is impossible but the team needs to sign another power forward because Udonis Haslem isn’t going to cut it. Andray Blatche, Michael Beasley and Thomas Robinson are the most popular recommendations–and the Heat have been rumored to be interested in each of those guys. Lemme throw a few more names out at you: Earl Clark and Al Harrington. Of those five, I like Robinson. He doesn’t come close to replacing Bosh as a stretch-4. More about that here. But he could offer the Heat a different flavor and allow them to play fast.

3. Now that Norris Cole is gone, don’t you kinda miss him?

Ramil: Yeah, no doubt. That’s probably more a result of what the past three years of his career meant to Heat fans in general. Those were incredible teams (some of the best of all-time) and anyone who was a part of that for as long as he was holds a special place in my cold, black heart. There’s a hole there, now, perfectly-shaped like a flat-top fade haircut. Sniff.

Tachauer: Is this a direct jab at me AllUCanHeat? Cole scored 12 points, 6 rebounds, 3 assists and 1 steal in his debut as a New Orleans Pelican, ok? And in case you have not heard, even Erik Spoelstra felt the weight of the decision to trade him. So there. *Mario Chalmers face*

Posada: I mean, of course I will. Cole was a key rotation cog for the last three seasons, and you hate to see someone that you’ve watched since his rookie year be sent away. The tribute on Saturday night was well deserved, and I’m glad the Miami crowd gave him the ovation he deserved. While things didn’t go so well for him this season, I hope he bounces back in New Orleans.

Goldberg: I did when I saw him playing for the Pelicans. But I won’t be missing him. That probably says more about me than Norris, though. Look, it was a cool three years, but the change of scenery is just as good for him as it is for the Heat.

4. Be honest, you were doubting Pat Riley before the trade deadline. Now how do you feel?

Ramil: I didn’t think Dragic was a possibility, nor would he have been if not for his request to be moved to just three teams. While the Suns didn’t have to honor his request, it did force Phoenix’s hand and Riley swooped in for the kill. The sacrifice of the players on the roster hurts (a bit) and the draft picks might be useful in the future. But who cares? It’s always been about living in the moment with Riley and the Heat and I love the move.

Tachauer: I was definitely confused by what seemed to be a reluctance to do anything besides waiting to deal with the free agent class of 2016. But even so I backed him, strictly because Pat Riley has always been and will always be, a boss. It seems that no other president has ever pulled off such unexpected yet brilliant moves, and pulling the trigger on this year’s deadline only solidified my admiration.

Posada: Until the Dragic news broke earlier in the week, I didn’t think the Heat would do anything more than pick up a rotation piece to come off the bench. Once Dragic made it clear he wanted out, and Miami was on the short list, I knew it was a foregone conclusion. I wrote about it on Tuesday, thinking that the Heat would have to move Deng to get it done, but what they wound up giving up was far better. Suns owner Robert Sarver tried everything in his power to try to gain leverage, but it was over before it started; he was just the last person to realize that. While this season might end with a first round exit, next season’s possible rotation of Dragic/Wade/Deng/Bosh/Whiteside, with McRoberts/Birdman/Chalmers/Ennis/Napier off the bench, could be a lot of fun.

Goldberg: Pat Riley is not a coach. He’s not a GM. He’s a master negotiator. That’s why he springs on players who are unhappy with their current teams. It gives him leverage. Remember how the Suns were all like “we want multiple picks and a potential all-star player.” Riley said “fine, we’ll just wait until free agency to sign him.” It went down to the wire, reports of the Suns GM saying he wasn’t going to trade Dragic surfaced. It was a power play. Riley didn’t blink. The Suns finally caved, knowing they would lose Dragic and get nothing in return, and settled for the best offer. Two wayyyy in the future first round picks and a couple of bad contracts. Riley wins.

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