Pat Riley Wont Coach Miami Heat
Despite speculation that he may move back into the head coaches role at the Miami Heat, current president Pat Riley has ruled out the possibility that he will replace Erik Spoelstra as head coach next season.
Following the Heat’s capitulation at the hands of the Dallas Mavericks in the NBA Finals, there was speculation that Riley would take over as coach next season, however that rumour has been all but squashed now.
“No I am not going to,” was Riley’s blunt response when asked if he would consider coaching again.
“It doesn’t mean that I don’t have the fire. But we’ve got a great young coach here, and I want to support him. And hopefully he can grow like I did. We’ll bring Erik back, definitely.”
There have also been rumours that Miami would look to break up the bug three of Chris Bosh, LeBron James and Dwayne Wade, but Riley was quick to quash them too.
“With the exception of the Miami Dolphins undefeated Super Bowl season of 1972, the greatest thing in the history of South Florida sports was those three guys coming together,” Riley said.
“Did we make some mistakes along the way? Yes. Would they like to take back some of the words? Yes.
Jackson was also quick to come to the defence of LeBron James, who has come in for much criticism since Dallas clinched the title.
LeBron was down in all facets of the game during the playoffs, however Riley believes it’s unfair to place the blame on one player.
“We don’t have an easy answer for that (LeBron’s playoff struggles), but it’s wrong to lay it all on him.”
LeBron was widely criticised prior to the season for saying that Miami could win any number of championships. However Riley still believes that is a very strong possibility, despite what happened in the NBA finals this season.
“I can say this. We will be a multiple championship contending team. This was a great year. It was a disappointing ending. I know what everybody expected here, but it didn’t happen. We are good enough. We have enough. We will do all the things we need to do to get better.”
Riley played in the NBA for ten seasons, claiming the 1972 championship with the LA Lakers, before embarking on a successful career as a coach.
He coached the Lakers to four titles in the 80’s and was also in charge of the Heat when they last won the NBA Finals in 2006. Riley was also named NBA Executive of the year in 2011, for his role with the Heat.