Coach Spoelstra keeps cool after Heat star's rant



Miami Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said the team is "moving on" from Hassan Whiteside's rant about his playing time, which the center said he regrets.

Whiteside played just 20 minutes against the Brooklyn Nets in Saturday's 110-109 loss and was not on the court at all during the fourth quarter or overtime.

He had 14 points and six rebounds in the contest, then voiced his displeasure toward the team's late-game strategy with an expletive-filled rant to reporters afterward.

"We've got one of the best centers in the league. Why are we matching up?" he said.

But on Monday he recanted, telling reporters: "I was just frustrated, man.

"I was frustrated that we lost. I really wanted to get in that game... I could have handled it different.

"But I got so caught up in wanting to get that win. I get real competitive. I really want to be out there. But I trust coach's decision."

Whiteside was fined by the Heat for "comments detrimental to the team" on Sunday, and he and Spoelstra had a one-on-one meeting to clear the air.

"I talked to him," Spoelstra told reporters on Monday.

"We're moving on. It's behind us. You can tell right now by the mood of the gym that's long gone. The only reason we're addressing it is out of obligation to all of you because it really is a team matter, a family matter. We're focused on getting the next one and securing our spot in this dance."

Saturday marked Whiteside's second game back from a left hip injury that kept him out of the lineup for nine games.

He has missed 28 games overall this season because of injuries.

Whiteside is averaging 14.1 points to go with team-leading marks in rebounds (11.6 per game) and blocks (1.7).

The 28-year-old is the highest-paid player on the Heat at roughly $24 million this season and has approximately $52 million remaining on his four-year, $98 million contract, which includes a player option for $27.1 million for the 2019-20 season.

Whiteside is averaging 25.6 minutes this season, down from 32.6 last season.

Asked on Saturday if the situation has caused him to question his future with Miami, Whiteside replied: "I don't know. Maybe."

However, he said on Monday he hopes to remain with the Heat.

"Nobody ever knows their future," Whiteside said.

"There's nothing guaranteed except death. I don't know. You never know. This is a business at the end of the day.

"Right now, I definitely would like to be here. But the Heat make all the decisions."