Kelly Olynyk has an idea about what to expect with the Miami Heat and already is appreciative of the South Florida heat, days after being beaten back by the Boston weather.
“I don’t mind it. It warms the joints,” Olynyk said Wednesday during a visit to the Miami Heat’s youth camp at Miami-Dade College, after dealing with the blazing August sun. “You’re always warm, always ready to go.
“I’ve been here for two days, and I already love it.”
For the versatile 7-footer who signed last month as a free agent, it beat the weather last week in his former NBA home, when his buy-anything-you-want garage sale in Charlestown was rained out.
“It poured, man,” he said with a smile after signing autographs for the youths in attendance. “It was pouring rain. I had some stuff to sell.”
Armed with a four-year, $50 million contract in the wake of his departure from the Boston Celtics, Olynyk said he now is off in search of South Florida housing.
“If it’s furnished, then I guess everything can go,” he said of a potential rescheduled garage sale.
But he said it was about more than finances that led him to the Heat. Instead, having played as an oversized point guard in high school, he said he was intrigued by the anyone-handles approach of Heat coach Erik Spoelstra. That had power forward James Johnson as a primary ballhandler last season, and Bam Adebayo, the center taken out of Kentucky in June’s first round, afforded the luxury of bust-out dribbles during summer league.
“It’s awesome,” he said, “just that freedom to be able to play easy and free and not super-regimented is huge. I think it helps everybody out. It helps everybody’s skills, to be able to just kind of go with the flow and make things happen. That’s something that looking at Miami and talking to Spo and what his vision is and how they play, it’s something that’s very intriguing.”
In his brief time in South Florida, Olynyk said he has had the opportunity to hit the practice court with James Johnson, Tyler Johnson, Wayne Ellington, Adebayo and Hassan Whiteside, who apparently is becoming a fast friend.
“He’s a great guy, a great character, a super nice guy,” he said of their encounters. “But he’s a beast. I’m really excited to play with him and be able to play with a guy of his size and his abilities on the floor, defensively, offensively, on the glass.
“He’s awesome to be around and [I’m] really looking forward to playing with him.”
Olynyk soon again will find himself on the move, to work with the Canadian national team, although he will not play in competitions this summer.
“It has been a whirlwind. It’s a crazy summer,” the 26-year-old Toronto native said. “You never really know about free agency until you actually go through it, and you don’t realize how crazy it really is. But I’m blessed with an opportunity to be down here, really excited to get started down here.”
The attorney representing the wife of former Miami Heat center Willie Reed has issued a statement on her behalf stating she does not plan to press charges in the wake of the Sunday arrest of her husband on domestic-violence misdemeanor battery charges in Miami-Dade County.
The statement released by Miami-based attorney Ivlis Mantilla from Jasmine Reed reads:
“This incident has been totally blown out of proportion. I did not call the police and I did not ask anyone to call the police on my behalf. Willie is a good man and a great father. I have no intention of pressing charges, and I have asked the authorities to immediately dismiss all charges against Willie. This is a private matter between my husband and I and for the sake of our family I would like to keep it that way.”
email@example.com. Follow him at twitter.com/iraheatbeat or facebook.com/ira.winderman
For daily Heat mailbag go to sun-sentinel.com/askira