Justise Winslow Wants to Remain Starting Point Guard Even When Goran Dragic Returns

3 Min Read

The rehabilitation of Miami Heat point guard Goran Dragic from December knee surgery resulted in Justise Winslow being inserted into his role.

Neither player has the opportunity to choose who will start when Dragic is able to play again after the All-Star break, but Winslow is hoping that the final decision will point in his direction.

The 22-year-old Winslow made clear that he wasn’t trying to push Dragic, who’s a full decade older at 32, aside:

[xyz-ihs snippet=”HN-300×250-Image”]

“I’m excited to have Goran back. Him being left-handed, there are a lot of things I have taken from him and put in my game. I love playing with Goran. I love his passion and his fight that he plays with.”

However, Winslow will be imagining himself in that starting role once play resumes:

“I’m going to think about that and let my curiosity go crazy during the All-Star break. That’s something that is out of my control. I can say what I would want, but it’s up to the coaches and I am ready to execute whatever role they give me.”

Winslow then stated the obvious:

“I would like to start.”

Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald offered comparative statistics on each player:

“In 26 games since taking over at point guard, Winslow is averaging 14.2 points (which would rank 24th among all NBA points guards if full-season stats for other point guards were used), 5.8 rebounds (fourth) and 4.8 assists (21st) while shooting 38.9 percent on threes (10th).

“Dragic, in 14 games as Miami’s starting point guard before being shut down with the knee injury, averaged 15.3 points (21st among point guards), 4.9 assists (20th), 3.1 rebounds (26th), while shooting 41 percent from the field (26th) and 31.4 percent on threes (35th).”

This season’s numbers on Dragic skew negatively for him in regard to his overall career. That’s especially true of his shooting from beyond the arc, where he has a career percentage of 36.2 percent.

Winslow’ s excitement about the prospect of Dragic returning comes with the awareness that a period of adjustment will be necessary:

“It probably will take a little time for him. He’s been out two months.”

The Heat’s first game after the break will be next Thursday, Feb. 21, when they conclude their road trip with a game at Philadelphia. Two nights later, they return home to American Airlines Arena to host the Detroit Pistons.
[xyz-ihs snippet=”HN-300×250-TextnImage”]

Share This Article
Brad Sullivan is a freelance writer for HeatNation.com, having been an avid fan of NBA basketball for more than four decades. During that time, he's watched the Heat evolve from gestation period to expansion team all the way to three-time NBA champions. He'll follow their quest toward again reaching those lofty heights, and do so by offering some perspective along the way.