Miami Heat’s roster for 2023-24 NBA season appears set after recent moves

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Rich Storry-USA TODAY Sports

The Miami Heat made multiple roster moves on Saturday with their 2023-24 regular-season opener against the Detroit Pistons just four days away.

The NBA regular season will begin on Oct. 24 when the Los Angeles Lakers take on the Denver Nuggets.

Firstly, the Heat inked guard Dru Smith to a multiyear contract and converted forward Cole Swider to a two-way deal.

Also, the Heat waived forward Justin Champagnie and big man Cheick Diallo. The former played for the Toronto Raptors and Boston Celtics during the 2022-23 regular season while the latter hasn’t played in a regular-season game since the 2021-22 season, when he logged three appearances with the Detroit Pistons.

Smith was inconsistent for the Heat during preseason. He had solid games against the Brooklyn Nets on Oct. 18 and San Antonio Spurs on Oct. 13, seeing as he how he finished with nine points and 10 assists against Brooklyn and 13 points and three assists against San Antonio.

But against the Houston Rockets on Oct. 20 and Charlotte Hornets on Oct. 10, Smith was a nonfactor. The 6-foot-3 guard scored two points and converted just one of his five field-goal attempts against the Rockets. Against the Hornets, Smith missed all six of his shots from the field and finished with just as many turnovers (three) as assists.

Swider was also inconsistent for the Heat during preseason but showcased an impressive ability to score the ball from behind the 3-point arc. Notably, against the Hornets, he knocked down five of his nine 3-point attempts in a little under 14 minutes of play and finished with 17 points in the preseason win. Also, he dropped 15 points against the Nets and made three 3-pointers in that game.

Swider and Smith likely won’t see the floor consistently during the 2023-24 regular season, but their preseason stints seemed to have impressed the Heat, considering they’ve both been rewarded with contracts. Smith’s playmaking chops and Swider’s knack for spacing the floor make them both intriguing prospects who are worth holding onto.

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Jesse is a 23-year-old sports journalist with extensive experience covering the NBA.