5 Pat Riley Comments from His Miami Heat Presser

Pat Riley held a press conference with media on Friday afternoon, which he usually does following every season. This one was clearly a little different, since he was doing it in October instead of June. Either way, it was still the iconic Pat Riley speaking about this intriguing Miami Heat team led by Jimmy Butler. Here’s what Pat Riley had to say…

Comment #1:

Pat Riley discussed free agency briefly, mostly since he can’t mention other players directly, but said “If there’s a next thing that can take us to the next level, I’m open to it.” I think this comment was pretty known when discussing the Miami Heat, since Pat Riley is always willing to make a move to win now. There are plenty of guys that can take this team to the next level, including via trade and free agency, but the big fish he’s going to be focused on is Giannis Antetokounmpo. He made it clear throughout that having cap flexibility going forward is a priority, and it’s because of that very reason. He also mentioned that the trade back in February for Soloman Hill, Jae Crowder, and Andre Iguodala had a lot to do with staying flexible. When asked about if this team is good enough to grow on their own or if it needs a boost, he said “I’ll kick that around. Are we good enough or do we need to get onto the next thing earlier.”

Comment #2:

After discussing the possibility of needing the next thing to take them to the next level, he also mentioned the other side of things. Pat said, “Do you just run it back without doing anything? I think about that…We were in the finals.” Not only is Pat Riley thinking about that, but I feel that everybody feels the same way about that question. You may have the ability to try and get somebody to take you to the next level, but you also have the ability to take this youth and watch them grow. Pat ends his answer asking, “Can we get to the Finals next year? That’s a question I’ll kick around with Spo.” This team has so many options and Pat Riley is aware of all of them.

Comment #3:

Pat Riley also discussed their 20 year old rookie who had an amazing post-season run. He starts off by talking about how important the mentorship this season was for Tyler Herro. He mentioned UD, Butler, Goran, Andre, saying “All these veterans took them under their wing, because they saw something special in him.” He also talked about the improvements he can make going forward, saying “He will go to another level when he gets older. He just turned 20. My gosh, he had a great year.” He seemed to shed light on all of Miami’s young core, saying “What a young nucleus we have that can play.” He talked briefly about their centerpiece Bam Adebayo as well, but didn’t want to go into the logistics of his contract moving forward. He did make it clear that they “value Bam Adebayo,” and they take care of the players that they value.

Comment #4:

When Pat was asked about this last NBA Finals and what could’ve happened if Bam and Goran never got injured, he said “It’s an excuse.” He also mentioned that they didn’t have enough, which is another small comment that can mean much more. That seems to be another indication of needing the “next thing.” He also praised Jimmy Butler for his finals performance, calling him “Superman,” and saying that those two game were two of the best he has ever seen. He did give credit to LeBron James and the Lakers, saying “The Lakers were great…And they have the greatest player in the game today.”

Comment #5:

And here’s another one of those famous Pat Riley quotes. “This isn’t for everybody.” That’s what he had to say when discussing the culture of this Miami Heat team. It’s clear that a big reason that culture was shown this season was because they were led by Jimmy Butler. Pat discussed Jimmy for a bit as well, which he said “I love Jimmy.” He also said that Jimmy is a different kinda person, and mentioned his relationship with Jimmy being outside of the box. He then said, “As long as he taps and throws me a heart back, I’m cool.” Its obvious Pat has no worry in losing that intense reputation of that Heat culture, when he has an absolute dog like Jimmy Butler as the leader of this team.


Some side notes:

  • Pat Riley mentioned that they will use the 20th pick, but are unsure whether or not they will keep it, which tells me there’s a good shot it ends up getting traded.
  • Goran Dragic will be taken care of by this Heat team.
  • Lastly, although he talks about re-signing and possibly running this thing back, the theme of this presser was the “next thing.” He is always searching for that piece to put them over the top.
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