Miami Heat: Tim Hardaway promised Alonzo Mourning the playoffs if traded

The Miami Heat have a rich culture now because of the legends that helped to build it. Heat great, Tim Hardaway, recently told a story about how it all came together.

The Miami Heat are a team that has long been known for what we like to call their culture. It is a culture that is known for outworking opponents and being willing to go harder than they are to get a victory.

That isn’t something that just happened by chance though, as it has been cultivated over time. One of the first pieces of the foundation that built this culture was one of Pat Riley’s early renditions of the Miami Heat. This was an Alonzo Mourning-Tim Hardaway pairing for the Miami Heat.

Tim Hardaway recently spoke about how it all came together in the latest episode of The Knuckleheads podcast with Darius Miles and Quentin Richardson. He said something that really stuck out to me.

After being asked what it means to him to have his jersey retired in Miami, hanging from the rafters, and to know that no one will ever wear it there again, he had an interesting response. His response started at around 52:20.

The Miami Heat have always had a culture of hard work. Tim Hardaway knew that when he promised Alonzo Mourning a playoff berth if traded there.

Well, you know, just like you said, you know, uh. Blood, sweat, tears, from day one. I made a commitment there, I told Zo from day one. I said “If you get me traded here, we gone make the playoffs.

You know, I was true to my word and I knew what they wanted and expected out of me. And I knew what I expected out of them. I heard a lot of things about Pat Riley, that his practices was, you know, tenacious and crazy and going to take years off your body, but you know what, I’ll tell you this man.

I wouldn’t change it for the world man. I had a great time there, you know, with Pat learning a lot about basketball but a lot about the business of basketball. Understanding, you know, how to keep your body in shape. When it was time to play, you know, I just loved to play basketball, so practice wasn’t difficult for me.

Wow! What a quote from Miami Heat all-timer and especially one like Tim Hardaway.

The more things change, it seems the more they stay the same as the Miami Heat’s requirements from their players hasn’t changed a ton. They still are one of the most in-shape teams in the league, while they still require and expect a ton from their players when it comes to maintaining that shape.

When you want great results, you have to put in great work and Hardaway understood that, apparently. He jived well with Pat Riley and Alonzo Mourning. And it showed.

He also promised Zo the playoffs and delivered. That’s what you call betting on yourself.

Again, this was a welcomed nugget from the Miami Heat great. There are quite a few more in there so you should definitely check it out.