Since the departure of Dwyane Wade, Hassan Whiteside has become the face of the Miami Heat franchise, due to his ability to score, rebound, and protect the rim. Recent rumors have suggested that Miami may be looking to assess their options by dangling Whiteside as trade bait. This Tuesday night, this was denied by a Heat spokesperson, as per the Miami Herald’s Manny Navarro.
The Heat are currently struggling on the court, hence the interest regarding Whiteside’s availability. The team sit in the 14th spot in the Eastern Conference, with an 11-29 record. Whiteside stated, prior to Miami’s loss to the Golden State Warriors, that he has no interest in the speculation:
“I never really pay attention to (trade rumors),” Whiteside. “If I pay attention to it I wouldn’t be back in the league. There’s all kinds of rumors. A lot of people said a lot of things so I wouldn’t get back in the league. So, I don’t pay it no mind.”
According to the 27-year-old big man, the young team is experiencing a minor blip in it’s overall development:
“These guys care about winning and losing,” he said. “I knew it was going to be a big change when we’ve got nine new guys coming to the team. It’s a whole new team. Those guys they care about winning. It could always be worse.
“I just try to come out here and do the most I can for whatever that is – to try to affect the team in a positive way.”