The upcoming NBA season should be a big one for Miami Heat small forward Justise Winslow. Winslow missed most of the 2016-17 season after tearing his right labrum, and while he is nearly fully recovered, the former Duke University standout has much to prove.
Winslow recently spoke with Sports Illustrated to discuss who he wants to base his game off of, where the Heat see next season going, and more.
When asked how he has been trying to add to his game, Winslow listed some of his favorite players as inspiration:
“I’m working on all aspects of my game. I want to be a force of nature in transition,” he said. “As the NBA continues to change, you see these versatile players. Guys like (Andre) Iguodala who can do everything on the court, or LeBron (James), who is everything. Those type of guys are who I want to be. I never limit myself in anything that I do.”
Winslow also discussed his role in recruiting stars to play in Miami during free agency. While he admitted he takes part, he also knows that he is a young player in the league and is more focused on his own progression first and foremost.
“This summer I knew we were trying to get Gordon (Hayward). I gave him my number if he ever wanted to talk about anything, I was there. He had a couple questions,” Winslow admitted. “I’m still trying to do my thing and focus on my recovery process. A lot of the other stuff is out of my control.”
Finally, Winslow touched on where he sees the Heat’s upcoming season heading. For him, and the team, it’s championship or bust every season.
“I don’t want to put a ceiling on us, all that’s going to do is limit us. We’re going for it all. That’s the culture we have in Miami. The culture that Coach (Pat) Riley has implemented is: We’re going for it all. Every year we’re trying to win a championship. Even last year that was the goal,” he explained. “That doesn’t mean we didn’t have fun. But we’re trying to win a championship and that’s something that’s never going to change in Miami. And that’s what I like about the culture.”
While the 21-year-old still has much to learn when it comes to becoming the dominant force the Heat hoped he would develop into when they drafted him 10th overall, it’s clear that Winslow has the desire to win and commitment to improving as a dynamic player in this league.