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Malcom Huckaby praises Eric Spoelstra on D&C

Posted By Kevin Dillon On June 1, 2012 @ 10:26 am In General | 27 Comments

Former Boston College [1] guard Malcolm Huckaby, who was signed to a one-year deal by the Heat in 1996-97, joined Dennis & Callahan on Friday and offered his opinion of Heat coach Eric Spoelstra. To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page [2].

Huckaby recalled working with Spoelstra during his time as a member of the Heat, when Spoelstra was a video coordinator for the team.

‘€œWhen I was playing down there in 1996-97, the assistant coaches really didn’€™t get the type of credit they do today in terms of helping guys develop and how valuable they are to the head coaches,’€ Huckaby said. ‘€œHe and Stan Van Gundy [3], who was also an assistant down there at the time, these guys would function on about three hours of sleep.

‘€œWe would come back and, prior to moving into the American Airlines arena [4], we had a practice facility and these guys literally would sleep there overnight.’€

Huckaby went on to discuss Spoelstra’€™s role in the development of Dwyane Wade [5], who quickly developed into a star partly due to Spoelstra’€™s coaching.

‘€œObviously, everybody knows that Dwyane Wade is a great slasher, a guy who can get to the hole and is very explosive,’€ Huckaby said. ‘€œBut the thing I think has improved in his game is his consistency of his jumper. He credits Eric Spoelstra for that.’€

Wade made headlines for confronting Spoelstra during a timeout in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference semifinals. Huckaby said he does not see that as a current issue between the two though, as both Wade and Spoelstra appear to have moved on.

‘€œNobody wants to see that happen, in particular when it’€™s your star player going up against any coach, whether it’€™s a veteran coach or a young coach,’€ Huckaby said. ‘€œIt happens, they have moved on, and they have rebounded pretty quickly from that the way Wade came back afterwards and had a pretty good game in that Indiana series. I think that is kind of in the rearview mirror for them right now.’€

Some critics question how much Spoelstra actually influences the Heat with Pat Riley [6] as team president. Huckaby, who considers Riley ‘€œa friend and a mentor,’€ said Riley appears to be staying out of the way.

‘€œI don’€™t think [Riley helps coach in the locker room],’€ Huckaby said. ‘€œI think it actually, probably would hurt his credibility in that locker room if Riley was in there really instructing them. I don’€™t think in front of the players.

‘€Maybe in film session when he is breaking it down with the coaches he may poke his head in there and give some input, but I think right now it’€™s the guys that are on that coaching staff that are really going over that.’€

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URL to article: http://greenstreet.weei.com/sports/boston/basketball/celtics/2012/06/01/malcom-huckaby-praises-eric-spoelstra-on-dc/

URLs in this post:

[1] Boston College: http://media.weei.com/ncaa/boston-college-eagles.htm

[2] Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page: http://audio.weei.com/weei/dennis_and_callahan.htm?resultType=media&media=audio

[3] Stan Van Gundy: http://media.weei.com/basketball/stan-van-gundy.htm

[4] American Airlines arena: http://media.weei.com/basketball/american-airlines-arena.htm

[5] Dwyane Wade: http://media.weei.com/basketball/dwyane-wade.htm

[6] Pat Riley: http://media.weei.com/basketball/pat-riley.htm

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