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Omer Yurtseven shines in Heat Summer League opener

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The Miami Heat opened their summer league play against the L.A. Lakers and won 80-78.

2021 California Classic Summer League: Los Angeles Lakers v Miami Heat Photo by Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images

The Miami Heat opened their NBA Summer League schedule with a game against the L.A. Lakers in Sacramento on Tuesday night. The Heat won the game 80-78 in a defensive effort down the stretch.

There were a lot of players of interest, especially as Miami continued to fill out their roster on Tuesday, up to 11 players — it became clear that some of these players may have a chance to make the roster and/or gran a two-way deal.

One name stood out above them all: Omer Yurtseven.

You may recall, the Heat signed Yurtseven at the end of the year last year to finish the season as they wanted a chance to evaluate him. But the Heat declined their option on him making him a free agent just days ago. He remained with the Miami Heat summer league roster.

And he didn’t disappoint.

Yurtseven showed that he can score from all three levels. He can score inside and finish at the rim, he can hit the mid-range pick and pop jumper, and he can score from deep (3-6 from three).

It’s almost as though you can see the vision the Heat have with the 23-year-old Turkish center. He is a project...no doubt. He turned the ball over and got cooked on defense by guards several times. But he has the tools that in a limited role could be beneficial. The Heat would be wise to revisit Yurtseven to a more secure deal moving forward.

Yurtseven had 27 points and 19 rebounds (and 7 turnovers) in the game.

Yurtseven has a future with the Heat. But there was other things to pay attention to as well.

Miami had a balanced attack from other parts of the roster. Marcus Garrett, Micah Potter, Dru Smith, DJ Stewart, and Justin Smith all had solid contributions. Garrett showed his defensive abilities. Potter seemed to be able to do a lot with the ball. Dru Smith was real comfortable with the basketball and was a steady presence. Stewart is a versatile player as well.

All of these guys, as well as Jarreau (who didn’t play — not uncommon for summer league, especially with Vegas looming), will continue to be evaluated for a possible roster spot.

Miami did not play Gabe Vincent, Max Strus, or KZ Okpala.

The Heat played a good game against the Lakers, and despite their 19 turnovers, they won the game 80-78 after Yurtseven hit two free throws with under 7 seconds left.

The Heat play Wednesday night against the Golden State Warriors.