“There are obstacles, but there are no obstacles.”
It didn’t make sense when Pat Riley said it a little over a week ago. In fact, it was so odd that it made some Miami Heat fans angry.
Anyone want to offer Riley an apology?
Miami is finalizing a trade to send center Hassan Whiteside to Portland for Mo Harkless and Meyers Leonard, league sources tell ESPN.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) July 1, 2019
He told you that the Heat could move their worst contracts if necessary.
(He also told you that Hassan Whiteside would come to camp and compete and that Goran Dragic was his starting point guard, but I told you to ignore all of that.)
In less than 5 months Pat Riley shed the previously thought-to-be unmovable contracts of Whiteside and Bumpy Johnson to make room for the Heat to complete a Jimmy Butler sign-&-trade. The Godfather
— ___ (@dru_star) July 1, 2019
Today, Riley and the Heat dealt one of the worst fits for their culture in recent memory, sending Whiteside to Portland for Meyers Leonard and Maurice Harkless. Who the Heat got back almost doesn’t matter, though both Leonard and Harkless are better complimentary fits here, provided neither is dealt elsewhere. The point here is, Whiteside had to go. It was long past time. And it was unfair to Erik Spoelstra to put him through another season of managing his situation.
Basically, Blazers fans, this is the Whiteside experience:
He’ll have a game where he just KILLS the other team with lobs and putbacks and a big block and flex.
And then there will be three where you notice the weakside is ALWAYS open because he’s chasing blocks.
— Hardwood Paroxysm (@HPbasketball) July 1, 2019
We agree with that more than this…
Neil Olshey, Trail Blazers president of basketball operations, with some incredible moves this offseason. Adding Hassan Whiteside to the mix without giving up a core piece is masterful. Portland is a real championship contending force.
— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) July 1, 2019
It’s not surprising that the Blazers wanted Whiteside. They wanted to max him in 2016, when the Heat probably should have let them. And Jusuf Nurkic, their center, may miss significant time with a major injury. Whiteside is close with the Blazers’ elite backcourt, Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum.
Harkless and Leonard make a combined $22.3 million next season. But are on the final year of their deals.
Whiteside makes $27.1 million next season. So trade saves the Heat about $5 million.
— Anthony Chiang (@Anthony_Chiang) July 1, 2019
It saves something else.
Us from having to watch players who didn’t care enough consistently.
Love love love that deal for the Heat
— Five Reasons Sports Network (@5ReasonsSports) July 1, 2019
Do you like the trade?
It’s polling 97-3 in favor on the @5ReasonsSports account.