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Is it time to give Josh Richardson a bigger role with the Miami Heat?

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With Gerald Green struggling, rookie guard Josh Richardson might see more playing time in the near future.

Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Since the beginning of the season, Josh Richardson appeared in just four of the first twelve Miami Heat games. He did have his first career start against the Utah Jazz on November 12 (when Dwyane Wade was out), but he only averages 11.4 minutes so far in his rookie campaign. So clearly, he is not a big part of Erik Spoelstra’s rotation right now, but this might change soon considering how poorly Gerald Green has played lately.

Outside of his 19-point outburst on opening night, Green has been a disappointment so far this year, especially when you consider his promising performances during the preseason. First of all, he missed four games due to "personal reasons" and two more because of a suspension for "conduct detrimental to the team".

Secondly, when he actually played, the 29-year-old guard was a complete no-show offensively (5 points per game on 18.7% shooting since the first game of the season against Charlotte) and sometimes a liability on the other end of the floor.

To be fair to him, he redeemed himself a little bit against the Philadelphia 76ers Saturday night by making huge free throws and giving good effort on defense, but he has to perform better if he doesn’t want to lose his rotation spot to a second round draft pick.

When Josh Richardson had playing time, he showed everybody his defensive instincts and potential. He is athletic, he plays with energy and can apply a lot of pressure on his direct opponent. Furthermore, he is also good when it comes to closing out on shooters and defending different positions. Against Utah, he even scored 8 points in 21 minutes on 2-3 from downtown and looked like a perfect "3&D" player. In fact, he is the type of guy coach Spo and Pat Riley rave about and it may be a matter of time before he gets consistent minutes.