Miami Heat Stars, Coaches Hop Aboard the Tyler Johnson Hype Train

December 15th, 2015 by Zach Buckley Leave a reply »

MIAMI — Listen to Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh and Erik Spoelstra rave about sophomore combo guard Tyler Johnson, and you get the feeling the Heat might really believe in the upstart 23-year-old combo guard.

Then look at the front office's actions, and you know for sure. 

Beloved point guard Mario Chalmers' dismissal last month can be directly traced to Johnson's ascension. Heat president of basketball operations Pat Riley indicated as much after trading the veteran point guard to the Memphis Grizzlies in a four-player swap earlier this season.

"It has a lot to do with the young [players]," Riley said at the time. "We've decided to give these young guys some room to grow and gain confidence, and they're not just going to do it in the D-League." 

Riley mentioned Johnson and rookies Justise Winslow and Josh Richardson by name, but Winslow was logging major minutes before the deal and Richardson still hasn't secured a rotation spot.

The Heat had to free up as much pla ...

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