Pat Riley seemingly protects Tyler Herro as he takes exception to Udonis Haslem’s comments'
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Miami Heat president Pat Riley apparently had an issue with team legend Udonis Haslem’s recent comments about guard Tyler Herro.

Earlier this month, Haslem was on ESPN and stated that Herro is better suited as a sixth man in Miami.

“I think for Tyler, his role, I think he’s great as a sixth man,” Haslem said. “When he won Sixth Man of the Year, I think that’s a great role for Tyler. I think moving into the future, in today’s NBA, you can still be sixth man. You can still get all your money. You can still get All-Star. You can still do all of that in today’s NBA.”

The Heat legend even went as far to suggest that the Heat are better off when Duncan Robinson is in the starting lineup over Herro.

“That takes nothing away from what Tyler does as a basketball player, but for our chemistry, we’re better when we got Duncan Robinson in the starting lineup making plays, being that trigger for us, and spreading and creating for other guys,” Haslem said.

Riley was not a fan of Haslem’s comments, calling Herro a “starter” in his recent press conference.

In addition, Riley pointed out that Haslem works for the Heat and should not have made his comments on ESPN.

It’s certainly a tricky situation, as Haslem is a legendary member of the Miami organization, but Riley and the rest of the Miami front office certainly don’t want Haslem undermining what the team is building on the roster.

While Haslem may feel that Herro is better suited as a sixth man, the Heat clearly haven’t felt that way in recent seasons.

Herro has started 107 of the 109 games he’s appeared in during the regular season the last two seasons. He made 40 starts in 42 appearances this season, averaging 20.8 points, 5.3 rebounds and 4.5 assists per game while shooting 44.1 percent from the field and 39.6 percent from beyond the arc.

With Jimmy Butler out for Miami’s playoff series against the Boston Celtics, Herro was forced into a lead role on offense alongside Bam Adebayo. The Heat guard averaged 16.8 points and 5.4 assists per game in five playoff games.

Hopefully, Riley and Haslem can get on the same page when it comes to their thoughts on the roster, especially if Haslem plans on making any more public statements about how he believes players should be utilized.

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Peter is a graduate of Quinnipiac University where he covered the MAAC and college basketball for three years. He has worked for NBC Sports, the Connecticut Sun and the Meriden Record-Journal covering basketball and other major sports. Follow him on Twitter @peterdewey2.