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Summer League coverage: Miami Heat 92 – Detroit Pistons 83

[caption id="attachment_1929" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Where's the ball?"][/caption]
Sometimes things that happen in Las Vegas really should just stay here. On the second day of a back-to-back, Coach David Fizdale decided to rest his starters and give the "B" team a chance to show their skills in front of the coaching staff as well as Erik Spoelstra, who was in attendance watching from the stands, for Wednesday night's game against the Detroit Pistons. The new-look Heat squad raced out to an early lead and never relinquished it, though the Pistons did make a late surge that ultimately came up short in an otherwise uneventful game. Led by Weyinmi Efejuku’s 19 points and Garret Siler’s 15 points (on 6-8 shooting) and 7 rebounds, the Heat simply outhustled the Pistons with a lot of the young guys wanting to prove themselves. Spoelstra, Ron Rothstein and Bob McAdoo had to have noticed Siler’s steady rise in production since the beginning of the tournament and he may just have a shot to be invited to training camp, at the very least to be a big body that can give 6 fouls and maximum effort that is surprising due to his large frame. From the two games I’ve seen, Silas rarely forces the issue, doesn’t turn the ball over and has decent footwork to get free around the basket. In contrast, Dexter Pittman has looked too slow and hesitant to use his skills, preferring to simply trying to overpower his opponents which is leading to unforced errors and offensive fouls.

While it was disappointing to not be able to catch Patrick Beverley, Jarvis Varnado, Pittman and Jon Scheyer (who was sent home after sustaining a laceration on his eyelid in the Golden State Warriors game the night before) the players that did stand out besides Efejuku and Siler were Davon Jefferson (15 points) and Mickell Gladness, two lanky but surprisingly skilled big men with great energy and decent skills around the basket.

With the Heat’s roster taking shape with the official signing of Mike Miller, it remains to be seen how many roster spots will be free by the time training camp rolls around so it’s difficult to see how many of these players will stick around to battle it out for what may be just one or two open spots. The next game is scheduled for Friday night against the Milwaukee Bucks and the normal starters will be back on the floor. More is time is needed to properly evaluate their talents but stay tuned for continued coverage of the NBA Summer League tournament here in Las Vegas.