Tony Answers

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May 2014


Brittany
Question: Was it hard to get to where you are today and what would you tell little kids that want to be like you?

Tony: Hi Brittany. I grew up in humble beginnings in the projects of Mt. Vernon NY. I was fortunate that my mom always encouraged my 2 brothers, my sister and me to go to college. I became a high school teacher and coach with a Master's Degree in Counseling. I think if you work hard and have a passion for whatever you want to achieve, opportunities come your way. Don't get impatient or discouraged if there are road blocks along the way. It will make it that much sweeter when you achieve the success you strive for. Remember, education, experience and perseverance are the keys!



Sam Shepherd - Austin, TX
Question: Why doesn't Michael Beasley play extended minutes he seems to play very well and score a bunch of points on a good percentage from the field. Why have the HEAT not played him in the playoffs?

Tony: Hi Sam. Your question is one we get a lot from HEAT fans. The simple answer is that other players are ahead of Michael in the rotation. Coaches will play the players they feel gives them the best chance to win. The fact that teammates are ahead of Michael in the rotation doesn't mean he is not a good player or has done anything wrong. The more reasonable explanation is the HEAT have 15 players who can play and not all of them can be in the rotation. That would be counterproductive.



Oscar
Question: Why does LeBron play point sometimes?

Tony: Hi Oscar. LeBron handles the ball often in the HEAT's offense for many reasons. He has outstanding ball handling skills for a 6'8, 260 lb. player. He is a very intelligent player who sees situations developing where he can take advantage of the defense. He very often draws two defenders when he drives to the basket (sometimes three) which sets up easier shots for teammates. His size, intelligence and ball handling skills create many problems for opponents. Also, handling the ball in the middle of the court creates more problems for defenses than when he attacks from the wing.



Joshua Hernandez - Weston, FL
Question: What is the funniest memory you have had while traveling with the HEAT?

Tony: Hi Joshua. That's an interesting question. We were on the road in the first year of the franchise in 1988. Ron Culp, the HEAT's long time trainer, who is now retired, entered the elevator of our hotel with 3 HEAT big men. They had Miami HEAT across the chest of their warmups. An elderly couple entered the elevator and the woman asked what is the Miami HEAT? Ron Culp, without missing a beat, said "an air conditioning and heating company". The woman asked why are the guys so tall? Ron responded "so they can get into the air vents easier". The woman said "what a great idea".


April 2014


Don Jordan - Pompano Beach
Question: With most people talking about the absence of Mike Miller’s three point shooting, do you think Jones and Lewis, who are also pure three point shooters, can fill the void in the post season?

Tony: Hi Don. They can fill the void of Mike's 3 point shooting & very good all around game but that's not the only way the HEAT can make up for him. Coach Spoelstra has a lot of versatility on his squad and players can come through in many different ways. That is the strength and depth of the two-time defending World Champions.



Gabriel Mendoza - Location: Phoenix, AZ
Question: What is it like working for the Miami HEAT?

Tony: Hi Gabriel. As you may know, I have worked for the HEAT since its inception in 1988. I love working for one of the classiest organizations in pro sports. The HEAT run a first rate operation from the owners Micky & Nick Arison to President Pat Riley to President of Business Operations, Eric Woolworth. I work with professional, hard working, conscientious and creative people which makes announcing HEAT games a lot of fun. The fact that we have such an exciting, championship caliber team makes it even more special.



Roderick Brown
Question: When does the Miami HEAT summer camp begin?

Tony: Hi Roderick. HEAT basketball camp for boys and girls 7-16 years of age starts on June 9th and runs for 8 weeks throughout the summer. All the information you need regarding camp is at HEAT.com in the camp section.



Cathy - Key Largo
Question: I admit I don't know a lot about coaching decisions, I just love to watch the HEAT play. However, I would like to see coach change it up when some of the players are struggling. How will playoffs differ from the regular season in that regard?

Tony: Hi Cathy. Coach Spoelstra does a great job of utilizing the talent and versatility of his players. With Dwyane Wade missing 28 games and other HEAT players missing games due to injury and sickness, he guided his team to 54 victories and second seed in the playoffs. In the playoffs, a coach in general will give less leeway to a player struggling a little. There is more immediacy to winning the game and surviving to the next round.


March 2014


Chloe Ives
Question: Hi Tony. I have been a fan of Chris Bosh ever since he joined the HEAT, and he has been my favorite player on the team. Do you think that Chris has improved in his game and how does the future look for him?

Tony: Hi Chloe. Chris Bosh is a better player today than he was when he came to the HEAT. He has improved as a defender especially off the ball. He has improved his shooting range out to the 3 pt line; he has learned to to move and play off the ball which has made him a better offensive player. As for the future, Chris has a chance to one day to make the basketball Hall of Fame.



Ron Lee
Question: Question: Tell me about your golf game and also why is it you are such a strong supporter of the organization Lauren's Kids?

Tony: Hi Ron Lee. I play golf recreationally. I belong to Grande Oaks golf club and have a 19 handicap. Lauren Book is a young lady I have known for 13 years and her dad, Ron Book , has been a friend for almost 20 years. When Eric Reid and I extended our celebrity golf tournament and established the Call of the Game Dinner, we added Lauren's Kids as a charity we would raise money for along with Dade School's Athlectic Association. Lauren and her dad are doing incredible work helping sex abuse victims and trying their best to help avoid future abuse. Raising money for Lauren's Kids is helping to save lives and we appreciate everyone who supports our cause.



Andrew - Scarsdale, NY
Question: Tony, do you think the HEAT are actually better as a road team this year vs previous years given the experience they now have together? You are one of the few people who see every game on the road.

Tony: Hi Andrew. The HEAT have been great at times on the road (w/o LeBron, a one point win at Portland on a Chris Bosh 3 at the buzzer; a 22 pt win at OKC; a 4 pt win at the L.A. Clippers & a one pt win at Golden State on a LeBron James 3 at the buzzer. The HEAT have also faltered at times during the season. It all comes with an 82 game schedule. They do have valuable experience playing on the road in difficult venues and that experience will help them in the playoffs.


February 2014


Maddy, Milwaukee, WI
Question: I think it's awesome that Dwyane, Chris and LeBron made the All-Star game again. How impressive is it to you they have each made it to at least nine straight All-Star games

Tony: Hi Maddy, Lebron & D-Wade have played in the last 10 All-Star games. LeBron has started all 10, D-Wade has started the last nine. With Chris Bosh being a nine time All-Star as well, we are fortunate to have all three here in Miami and competing for a third straight title. It is also impressive how all three handle themselves with class - on and off the court!



Kathryn, Antigua
Question: Are there any camps for my sons to attend in Miami the week of July 7 to 11th?

Tony: Hi Kathryn. The HEAT has 8 weeks of BB camp over the summer at 3 different sites. The HEAT has camp at Nova HS in Davie the dates you are inquiring about . HEAT.com has all the info you need re: camp including dates and locations. I hope to see & work with your sons at camp this summer.



Lily Feist
Question: Hi Tony do u think if LeBron was more selfish with the ball it would make him even better?

Tony:Hi Lily. I'm not sure how LeBron can be even better than he is. In my opinion, his greatest asset is his unselfishness and ability to find open teammates and deliver them the ball in rhythm to shoot. He makes his teammates better and that may be the most intangible attribute an athlete can have.



Osmail
Question: Hi Tony, I would like to know when Toney Douglas is going to play with the team and if Spoelstra has planned in the future to add Greg Oden as a regular player.

Tony: Hi Osmail. Toney Douglas is best at defending opponents shooting guards. He is a defensive specialist and will be used that way when the need arises for the HEAT.
Greg Oden has made great strides in coming back from 5 knee operations. Through his hard work and the work of the HEAT's excellent training staff, he has slowly been inserted into the lineup and has contributed. Coach Spo and his staff will moniter his progress and play him accordingly.


January 2014


Ivan - Dallas, TX
Question: Tony, what did you think of Greg Oden in his debut with the HEAT? I think he played well and had a good presence down low.

Tony: Hi Ivan. Greg worked hard for over 4 years to get back on the court in an NBA regular season game. He endured multiple knee operations, went through intense rehabilitation in the weight room and countless drills on the basketball court. Seeing him play in D.C. against the Wizards was an inspiration to his teammates and all of us who have watched his progress. He had an outstanding debut. He reminded everyone, that when healthy, he can be a dominant big man again in the NBA.



Sandra - Miami
Question: Hi Tony. I have been a fan of Norris Cole ever since he joined the HEAT, and he has been my favorite player on the team. Do you think that Norris has improved in his game and how does the future look for him?

Tony: Hi Sandra. Norris has earned the respect of his teammates, coaches and opponents with his tireless work ethic. He has watched hours and hours of tape to learn the NBA game as well as the strengths and weaknesses of opponents. He has worked countless hours on the court with HEAT assistant coach Dan Craig to improve his shooting and decision making. Norris Cole, as a point guard, will have a long and productive NBA career.



Martan
Question: Do like the team members ever go and like help the community?

Tony: Hi Martan. Since the Miami HEAT started in 1988, the organization and the HEAT players have spent countless hours doing community service work. Since owner Micky Arison became the managing general partner of the HEAT and his hire of Pat Riley as president and head coach in 1995, the HEAT has been at the forefront of any pro franchise anywhere helping the less fortunate of our community and honoring returning war veterans with the Home Strong Program. Players make holiday hospital visits, hand out turkey dinners at Thanksgiving to hundreds of needy families, aid the Make-A-Wish foundation, help celebrate Hispanic Heritage, visit Learn and Play centers and the list goes on and on. Many players also have their own foundations which help many in need. True Champions on and off the court!



Nick
Question: Mario Chalmers is a tremendous player I think he is growing into a leader. What are your thoughts on Rio?

Tony: Hi Nick. Rio is in his 6th year in the NBA and in a HEAT uniform. He has made tremendous strides as a point guard. He has learned to make solid decisions with the ball which comes from recognizing mismatches favorable to the HEAT. He has always brought to the table very good defensive instincts and has become one of the best 3 point shooters among point guards in the league. Big Game Mario is an important member of the HEAT and one of the reasons the HEAT is 2 time defending World Champions!


December 2013


Steve - Miami
Question:Earlier this month, the HEAT wore there home white uniforms in Detroit, very strange. Why did they use them on the road?

Tony: Hi Steve. The HEAT wore white uniforms that night in Detroit because the Pistons requested it. I believe Detroit was wearing their new alternates.



Andrew Condon
Question:Hey, what's your favorite D-Wade performance of all time?

Tony: Hi Andrew. My favorite Dwyane Wade performance spans 4 games. As you may recall, the HEAT were down 0-2 to the Dallas Mavericks in the 2006 NBA Finals with games 3, 4 & 5 in Miami. The HEAT came back and won all 3 games and then went to Dallas and won a very close game 6 to win their first NBA Championship. Dwyane averaged nearly 40 pts per game in those 4 games, making spectacular shots from everywhere. It was an incredible beginning to a Hall of Fame career. Still gives me goose bumps!



Javier
Question: Where did UD's minutes go?

Tony: Hi Javier. Udonis started the first 6 games of the season as you may know. Then he got hurt. While he was out, the HEAT were playing very well with Shane Battier in the starting lineup and with Rashard Lewis and Michael Beasley coming off the bench in the front line. Coach Spoelstra and his staff decided to keep the rotation in tact. The HEAT, at 22-6, have the 2nd best record in the East Conf. and 5th best in the NBA. Players are comfortable with their roles. Udonis continues to work hard and stay ready when Coach Spo calls his number again.



Joey - Colorado
Question: When did Miami HEAT get started, and when did they move into the AAA?

Tony: Hi Joey. The Miami HEAT's inaugural season was 1988 and played in the Miami Arena. Head Coach was Ron Rothstein and Dave Wohl and I were the assistant coaches. We won only 15 games that season with 6 rookies on the roster but it was a very exciting time for South Florida to have an NBA franchise. The players played hard every night for Coach Rothstein and the home crowd appreciated their effort. The HEAT moved into the AmericanAirlins Arena in Jan. 2000 with Pat Riley as President and Head Coach. Alonzo Mourning & Tim Hardaway were the stars of the team.


November 2013


Nicholas North - Virginia
Question: James Jones is doing great this year. Will he get more playing time?

Tony:Hi Nicholas. James is a specialist - an outstanding 3pt shooter. He doesn't play much but he is the best at staying ready when Coach Spo calls on him. James is a highly intelligent, strong minded person who understands he will probably get sporadic minutes throughout the season, He works very hard to stay ready when the team needs him. He started when the HEAT played at Orlando on Nov. 20th with Dwyane Wade out and hit five 3s scoring 17 points in 20 minutes to help Miami win. Only a special person and shooter could do that.



Jonathan A.
Question: Tony, Which player on the HEAT do you think will be a pleasant surprise this season?

Tony: Hi Jonathan. So far through 12 games the two biggest surprises to me are Rashard Lewis and Michael Beasley. Rashard is showing everyone that he's healthy and is not just a very good long range shooter but can penetrate and hit open teammates, he can rebound and is playing solid defense. Beasley has matured since drafted by the HEAT in 2008. He is early to the gym to get extra workouts in w/ the coaches and is making big contributions off the bench especially scoring wise.



Alvaro - Miami
Question: I was thinking on a play to avoid a loss in the last 0.6 seconds. I'm just a fan of basketball, but in this particular play I'll bring my 5 players out to the three-point line, facing the opponent and leaving the two point area free.

Tony: Hi Alvaro. I like it, your suggesting an out of bounds play to help the HEAT win. The HEAT coaches are very astute diagramming end of game or end of quarter plays. It depends on defensive match-ups, whether you need a two pointer or a three, where you're taking the ball out, and how much time is on the clock.



Said
Question: Hi Tony how many new faces do we have this year, and who are they?

Tony: Hi Said. The HEAT have 12 players back from last year's World Championship team and have added 3 new players. An NBA team is allowed to carry 15 players max. 6'10 forward Michael Beasley, 6'5 guard Roger Mason and 7'0 Center Greg Oden. Each come with different skills to help the HEAT win games and pursue a third straight championship!


October 2013


Anniston - Chatsworth, GA
Question: How often do the HEAT practice during training camp, and how hard are those practices?

Tony:Hi Anniston. Training camp is tough on the players. It's a time in which they are working themselves into game shape. Coach Spoelstra, I believe, had 2 days of two practices each day to begin training camp. Usually in this situation, the players go very hard for about 2 hours in one practice and do a lot of cerebral work in the other practice which is a lighter practice. If the players come into camp in relatively good shape, which is the case with the HEAT, they handle the double sessions a lot earier.



Jojo
Question: Hey there, my name is Jojo. Who will replace Mike Miller's roll in the playoffs?

Tony: Hi Jojo. No one player will replace Mike Miller in the playoffs. It depends on the opponent and what strategy the HEAT will use to win that series. For ex., the HEAT can go big with Greg Oden if he is healthy, Chris Bosh and LeBron up front. 7'0, 6'11 and 6'8 - a big front line or the HEAT can go small with Chalmers or Cole at point, Ray Allen & Dwyane at the wings, LeBron & CB up front. Udonis Haslem, James Jones,Shane Battier, Rashard Lewis, Joel Anthony and Chris Andersen are also available to contribute



Sekwan
Question: I have been a fan of the HEAT since 2003, the year they drafted Wade. My question is this, with Wade's past knee issues, do u think he can take his game to a new level? I hope so, he is my favorite player.

Tony: Hi Sekwan. We know Dwyane is a champion warrior and has done everything he could to be ready for another pursuit of a championship. He had a bone bruise in the latter part of the season and the playoffs which limited his production. Nonetheless, he came through (as he always has) when the team needed him most and helped lead the HEAT to their third World Championship and second in a row.



Alex
Question: Hi Tony, I am a great shooter and an amazing defensive player. Except I have not perfected the drive to the basket and score. What do you think I could do to help the LeBron James part of the game?

Tony: Hi Alex. Practice,practice,practice. Set up on the perimeter, fake a shot and drive to the basket finishing strong. Use the least amount of dribbles as possible on your drives. Work on driving to the rim with either hand and finishing with either hand. Practice makes Permanent. Good Luck!


July 2013


Patty - Wayne, NJ
Question: How much stock do you put into Summer League? I believe it's a good way to develop talent.

Tony: Hi Patty. The summer league is a good way to find and develop players for the future. In the past, the HEAT invited free agents Keith Askins, Joel Anthony and Udonis Haslem to play in the summer league and they have contributed to the HEAT's success respectively as mainstays on the HEAT roster over the years.



Yinsef - Boca Raton, FL
Question: What is our draft pick James Ennis good at? Do you think he can make the team this season?

Tony: Hi Yinsef. I haven't seen 6'7" James Ennis play a whole lot as yet. From what I've seen so far, he is a very good athlete who can be a good long range shooter and competes on a high level.  It appears he has to work on his ball handling



Sam - Los Angeles
Question: Tony, how does this championship compare to the others? The chances seemed faint after a seven game series in the ECF and then down 3-2 in the finals.

Tony: Hi Sam. Each of the 3 championships was a test of will, determination, hard work, excellent teamwork and outstanding coaching.  Every series presented a different challenge and the HEAT found a way to endure and win the championship. I have always enjoyed the journey and all it's obstacles, especially our '13 championship, quieting all the doubters and winning back to back titles. (Only 6 franchises in the 67 year history of the NBA have accomplished that!)



Armani Bulit - Hialeah, FL
Question: How was it, being an assistant coach for the Miami HEAT?

Tony: Hi Armani. It was a very enjoyable and rewarding experience to coach on the highest level of basketball and to be working with first class people. Ron Rothstein, first Head Coach of the HEAT, brought me to Miami in 1988 to be on the original coaching staff.  Ron did an incredible  job of creating a firm foundation for the franchise to grow. I spent my last 4 years as an assistant coach on Hall of Famer Pat Riley's staff. Working for one of the best coaches in the history of pro sports was an endearing experience I very much appreciate.


May, 2013


Andrew smith
Question: Why does it seem that Chris Bosh is always around the 3 point line, why can't he get any closer?

Tony: Hi Andrew. The HEAT want Chris Bosh to play a lot on the perimeter because he is a very good mid-to-long range shooter. He is usually guarded by a good, big, defensive opponent who is drawn away from the rim to guard CB. This opens up the lane for LBJ & D-Wade to penetrate to the rim. CB can also drive by his big opponent with either hand and finish strong at the rim. He has that skill set.



Josh H. - Kendall, FL
Question: What are the asst. coaches responsible for during games; monitoring player minutes, observing offense & defense, following individual players etc.?

Tony: Hi Josh. Assistant coaches have a myriad of responsibilities during a game. For the HEAT, one coach is in charge of knowing the plays and play calls of the opponent. Two of the HEAT assistants are usually in conversation with Coach Spoelstra regarding, among other things, matchups, flow of the game, substitutions, calling timeouts and pointing out anything that will benefit the HEAT in winning the game. The trainer or one of the coaches will keep track of personal fouls and timeouts.



Roberto
Question: Hi, it sounds a bit odd but the players change shoes every game?

Tony: Hi Roberto. It's not odd Roberto for some players to change shoes every game. In fact, sometimes a player may change shoes at halftime. I think most players would like to "break in" a pair of shoes in practice before wearing them in a game.



Alison Medeiros
Question: What is the highest amount of points that Miami HEAT has ever scored?

Tony: Hi Alison. The highest HEAT total points in a game is 141, which you can see the HEAT has done twice in its history.
Feb. 14 1991 - Miami - Denver 112
Feb. 26 2013 - MIami 141 - Sacramento 129 (2OT)


March, 2013


Javier Milian
Question:Hey Tony, hope you’re having or had a good day, what happened to Ray in the starting lineup? I feel UD's toughness, stamina, and scoring is needed later in the game like that Kings game ( 2 OT ).

Tony:Hi Javier. Most basketball fans get caught up in who starts when it is more important who finishes. The HEAT have the best record in the NBA. The players know their roles. The HEAT coaches know what they're doing. The rotation is pretty good as it is.



Michael - Ashburn, VA
Question: I make a lot of my 3-point shots, but my coach wants me to play down low. What should I do?

Tony:Hi Michael. Listen to your coach. It may be more beneficial for your team for you to play closer to the basket. The team always comes first.



Doc Holiday - Philadelphia, PA
Question: You seem to understand the game very well. Where and how did Tony gain all of his knowledge on basketball?

Tony: Hi Doc. I worked the 5-Star basketball camp for years when I was a high school coach in NY and learned much from coaches like Hubie Brown, Ron Rothstein, Mike Fratello, Rick Pitino and many others. I also had the privilege of working with Coach Rothstein & Coach Riley in the NBA - priceless experiences!



Angelo
Question: Hello Tony, I am a longtime HEAT fan. What do you think Tim Hardaway's chances are to get in the Hall of Fame this year?

Tony: Hi Angelo. We are all rooting for Tim to make the BB Hall of Fame. He had a great career and was outstanding in a HEAT uni. This is his first time on the ballot. He may have a better chance in the future. Even Reggie Miller did not make the HOF on the first ballot.


February, 2013


Luis Gamez
Question: Hi Tony, I loved seeing all the HEAT participants during All-Star weekend. How do you think they did?

Tony: Hi Luis. It was great to see the HEAT represented so well All-Star weekend. They participate in many events over the weekend including helping the less fortunate. LBJ, D-Wade, CB, and Spo always carry themselves with class. They represent themselves and the organization in a respectful way.



Jim R. - Pembroke Pines, FL
Question: How long until we see Chris Andersen on the starting lineup? His rebounding and energy has been a godsend for this team.

Tony: Hi Jim. As you know, Chris Andersen is a high energy, high motor type player. He is most effective for this HEAT team coming off the bench. He can go all out for short minutes and impact the game.



Becky - California
Question: Hi Tony, a month or so ago Mario Chalmers scored 10 threes. Is that the HEAT record for most three-pointers in one game?

Tony: Hi Becky. Rio shares the HEAT record of 10 3s in a game with Brian Shaw. Brian did it @ Mil in 1993 with 15 attempts. Rio had 10 3s @ Sac with 13 attempts.



Carli - Dentan, TX
Question: Lately it seems like The HEAT are getting a lot of fast breaks. Moving forward are they going to make it a point to continue to force turnovers?

Tony: Hi Carli. The HEAT's defensive startegy is to be disruptive and force opponents to rush passes and shots. Forcing turnovers is a by product of that defensive pressure.


January 2013


Danny - Miami Springs
Question: I love the White Hot jerseys and the Christmas Day jerseys, from this year. What are some of your favorite HEAT uniforms?

Tony Hi Danny. I like the White Hot uniforms but my favorite are the black ones. I think the HEAT look majestic in them!



Andy - Miami, FL
Question: I think the HEAT should try Josh Harrellson at the 5 position and bring Chris Bosh back to 4? Do you think that will help with rebounding?

Tony Hi Andy. The HEAT have been playing Joel Anthony and CB together to get a bigger lineup. I like Joel at center rather than Josh because he can also block shots!



Tj Thomson - Georgia
Question: Why doesn't Dwyane Wade take as many threes as he use to in '06?

Tony Hi Tj. In the 2005-6 season, Dwyane was 13-76 (17%). After 32 games this season he is 9-29 (31%). Dwyane is not a 3pt shooter per se. He is shooting 51% overall in FG%, the best in his career. He shoots 3s when the team needs him to. He is more experienced and smarter and it reflects in his highest FG%.



Ced - Pompano Beach
Question: Hi Mr. Tony I was curious on why the HEAT has not been playing Rashard Lewis since the season started?

Tony Hi Ced. The HEAT need to rebound the ball better to beat the better teams in the NBA. Rashard Lewis' forte is shooting the 3s, not rebounding. He will be part of the rotation again against certain teams and help the HEAT be successful this year. He is handling it well and stays ready to contribute, which is the HEAT's culture!


December 2012


Jack, New York, New York
Question: Hi Tony. I am a big heat fan. I noticed that Chris Bosh is doing amazing in scoring but is a center. Do you think that he should be put into the position of a Power Forward?

Tony: Hi Jack. Thank you. Chris Bosh helped the HEAT to their 2nd NBA championship in 6 yrs playing center last season and is having an outstanding season so far this year. Why would you want him to play power forward?



George Pena
Question: Who has the most 3's in HEAT history?

Tony: Hi George. Tim Hardaway has the most 3s attempted and made (806) in the HEATs 25 yr history. After Tim in 3s made, there's (in order) Eddie Jones,Glen Rice,Voshon Leonard Dan Majerlie, Mario Chalmers, Dwyane Wade,Jason Williams, HEAT asst coach Keith Askins & Daequan Cook.



Randall
Question: Why don't we run the pick and roll with LeBron and Ray?

Tony Hi Randall. Very good question. I think Coach Spoelstra is saving that for a special play at the right moment. It would be a very hard play to defend and even harder on the defense if they have never prepared for it!



Diego
Question: Why doesn’t LeBron James play Power Forward and move Battier to small forward, with LeBron's size advantage? Being that rebounds and getting scored on in the paint is a big problem so far early in the season, might as well try it out right? LBJ is also posting his highest rebounding numbers of his career so far too. Let me know what you think of this idea coach.

Tony Hi Diego. You're getting caught up in semantics. As you noted, LBJ is avg 8.8 reb PG this season, up from his career avg of 7.2 PG. Battier takes some pressure off LBJ having to guard bigger opponents so he doesn't get into foul trouble. LBJ can also play the passing lanes at times, get steals and get out & attack in the open court. Besides, LBJ does play power forward at times when the HEAT needs him to.


November 2012

Mike - Homestead

Question: Coach!! I love all the scoring but, What is happening to our defense? Because defense is what got us to the finals.

Tony: Hi Mike. The HEAT's defense is not up to par yet but it will get there. The HEAT's mantra is defense and with some real practice time, the HEAT will become a good defensive team again.


Justin - Dayton, Ohio

Question: Tony, what was the best 3 point shot you’ve seen from Ray this season?

Tony: Hi Justin. The winning 4 pt play vs Denver. I have a feeling we will see many more.


Dillon Gonzales

Question: If you take out the starting five players for the HEAT they still have an extraordinary second squad, probably better than any other NBA team. With this team I think the HEAT have a chance to be good for awhile. What are your thoughts?

Tony: Hi Dillon. The HEAT have good players off the bench. As the season progresses they will get comfortable in their roles.


Tom - Hollywood, FL

Question: It seems Mario Chalmers is having a tough time finishing in traffic? Are the coaches working with him to better protect the ball to be able to score those points?

Tony: The HEAT coaches work with Rio on every skill he needs to have to be a very good point guard in the NBA including taking hits in the lane area. He was very effective in the finals taking the ball to the rim and finishing.