Miami Heat Fine Frustrated Big Man Whiteside Over Public Comments
Hassan Whiteside has had enough.
The Miami Heat announced Sunday that they have fined their centre an undisclosed amount for “comments detrimental to the team,” in response to Whiteside’s expletive-laden tirade following the Heat’s 110-109 OT loss to the Brooklyn Nets.
Whiteside’s frustration boiled over after being sat for the game’s final 21-minutes, including the entire fourth quarter and overtime.
“A lot of teams don’t have a good center,” Said Whiteside. “They are going to use their strengths. It’s bulls—. It’s really bulls—, man. There are a lot of teams that can use a center.”
As more teams have shifted towards small-ball and 3-pointers, Whiteside sitting on the bench at the end of games has become a common sight. While the Heat star averaged 32.6 MPG in 2016-2017, that number has been reduced to 25 minutes, as the team has often elected to go with the shooting of Kelly Olynyk.
“The minutes have been like that all year,” the big man commented. “It’s really frustrating… It’s tough. I don’t know, man. It’s crazy. I don’t understand it.”
Miami needs to find a way keep Whiteside happy, while putting a strong product on the floor. With the 41-36 Heat headed towards a likely playoff matchup with the Toronto Raptors or the Boston Celtics, a discontented Whiteside is the last thing the team needs. As Whiteside, the Heat’s highest-paid player, is under contract for at least another year, the team is likely stuck with him for the time being, for better or worse.
Hassan Whiteside can still be an impact player. The challenge for the Heat will be to find a way to keep him involved, while moving forward in a changing NBA.