The Heat completed their training camp roster Tuesday evening, signing former Missouri guard Drew Smith. He is the 20th player to come into contact, the maximum allowed during training camp.
Smith, who was an All SEC in Missouri in 2020-21 as a senior, played in three Summer League games with the Heat in July and averaged 12.0 points, 3.0 steals, 1.7 rebounds and 1.7 assists while shooting 46.4 percent off the field. .
He appeared in 10 games (five starts) with Miami’s G League affiliate, Sioux Falls Skyforce, last season and averaged 8.0 points, 3.3 rebounds, 3.1 assists, 1.2 steals and 27.5 minutes.
Smith started all 25 games he appeared in as a senior in Missouri in 2020-21, averaging 14.1 points, 3.9 assists, 3.5 rebounds, 2.04 steals and 33.9 minutes, while off the field at 44.4 percent, three-point 39.8 percent off limits and 83 percent off foul lines.
He became the first player in school history to be named to the SEC All-Defensive Team, leading the conference in steals for the second consecutive season.
The Heat have 14 players signed to standard contracts, two players on two-way deals (Darius Days and Marcus Garrett) and four other training camp deals: Smith, center Orlando Robinson, guard Jamal Cain and guard Jamari Bouya. All four of them are expected to start the season playing for the Heat’s G-League team in South Dakota.
The Heat opens training camp in the Bahamas next Tuesday.
The Heat used a two-way contract as well as it could possibly stop Caleb Martin last summer.
Miami is expected to have similar success with LSU rookie and former Spurs Summer League player Darius Days. Unlike Martin, Days to the Heat comes with no NBA experience.
And Dez is much larger (6-7, 245) than Martin (6-5, 205).
But Days has similar defensive versatility and three-point shooting prowess. He also has bulk and adds depth to the power forward, the biggest question mark on the roster.
“She’s got good shape [6-7] To be a versatile defender,” said an Eastern Conference scout, who saw him at LSU and during the summer league for the Spurs. “Rugged player. He can defend multiple positions. he can protect the trio [small forwards] and fours [power forwards]But best suited for guarding squares.
“He can bang with them for size wise. He is physical, plays with energy. His three-point shoot is not bad. He needs to develop aggressively. He has a chance.”
We heard that the Spurs were surprised when Days signed a two-way deal with the Heat. San Antonio had planned to bring him to camp and compete for a two-way contract.
Another team (not the Spurs) offered Days a two-way deal, but Days liked the opportunity in Miami and the fact that the Heat have a good track record of developing young players.
Days, 6-7, have long arms and 7-1 wings. The Heat told him that he had similarities in his game with PJ Tucker, who left for Philadelphia.
He shot 40.0 and 35 percent of the previous two years at LSU, making almost two threes per game.
His average at LSU last season: 13.7 points, 7.8 rebounds, 0.9 assists, 1.3 turnovers, 1.5 steals and 0.3 blocks.
He shot 43.4 percent from the field, which is significantly lower than his first three seasons (48.5 but in just three games; 48.6 in 31; 51.9 in 28 games).
This drop in shooting percentage manifested in two-pointers and three-pointers.
The two-way contract allows him to play in 50 of the Heat’s 82 games.
more scout feedback
The scout, who has admired Bam Adebayo over the years, admitted that after watching his playoffs, “The thing that worries me is that Bam has to be the more skilled scorer in the five. Right now aggressively.” His advantage is that he is handling the ball, playing five men.
“But to push him ahead of other teams that some might consider ahead of him, like Milwaukee and Boston, I think the scoring has to be as efficient and productive as the five. He delivers scoring sometimes but all the time. No. He doesn’t punish you aggressively enough to warrant it” for fear of protecting him.
That scout said he wanted to see Adebayo power forward with a shot-blocking five, but acknowledged Eric Spoelstra’s reluctance to play Adebayo with a big one who isn’t a floor-spacer.
That scout said of Victor Oladipo: “I hope he gets better this season. People forgot how good a defender he can be. He’s still trying to find himself on the offensive. There is an all-star level player who is trying to find the rhythm.”
We’ve heard that Jay Crowder would welcome a return to the Heat and ESPN’s Brian Windhorst – not to mention the Heat or any team – said that the Suns are “in trade talks right now. A lot of them are centered around Jay Crowder.” J Crowder is one such player that is available in the market right now.”
The problem is formulating a deal within the wage limit rules, which would satisfy both teams. It would be surprising if the Suns were prepared to take on Duncan Robinson’s $75 million deal for the final four years and Crowder, who owes $10.2 million in a termination contract. It would be surprising if the Heat were willing to offer a first-round pick in a trade for Crowder.
Dwayne Deadmon and Oladipo cannot be traded until January 15th, and Oladipo can veto any trade this season. Other players on the Heat’s roster don’t seem to have the same pay needed to facilitate a deal without getting too creative, or involving a third team.
After being acquired on trade deadline, Crowder, 32, was a key player for the Heat team that progressed to the 2020 NBA Finals. He averaged 9.4 points and 5.3 rebounds in 67 games (all starts) for the Suns last season, shooting 39.9 percent off the field overall and 34.8 at threes.
This story was originally published September 20, 2022 4:17 PM.