With all the buzz around Jimmy Butler potentially being traded to the Miami Heat, Pat Riley addressed the team and put the rumors to silence, for now. The name centered around the Wolves desires was Josh Richardson.
And he’s showing everyone why.
Maybe others didn’t see it. Who is Josh Richardson anyway? A former second round pick that just got a decent 4-year contract and known for his defense first, he’s now turning some heads on the other end of the floor.
And it’s all too apparent in the Heat’s first game. With the game on the line, they didn’t turn to Dwyane Wade, they gave it to Richardson. And although that turned out poorly, that’s not the point. The point is that the torch is being passed. Richardson is the focus of this team now, and the hope is that it only gets better.
And that’s exactly what needs to happen.
Richardson is averaging 24.5 PPG through the first two games and that is despite some poor shooting. When he gets into a little better rhythm and comfortability out there as the leader, he could be something special. And it all is compounded by the fact that he is a defender first. He prides himself on that side of the ball, shutting his man down.
And now, he’s leading the charge on offense. He’s had back to back games on 38 minutes and 8-21 from the floor. That’s not efficient, but it’s coming we think. And that’s because he takes efficient shots...not fade-aways or contested shots.
And the beauty is that he could find more space on the floor when Wayne Ellington returns.
The Heat are putting their trust in the young player and there’s no reason they shouldn’t. Let’s see what happens.