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ASK IRA: Could McGruder fall behind Waiters, Tyler Johnson in Heat rotation?

Q: I thought the way Erik Spoelstra played Tyler Johnson against the Celtics was perfect. There’s nothing wrong with being the microwave. If he’s on, give him minutes. If he’s off, sit him. Tyler was big in his minutes, but don’t stay with him just to stay with him. — Douglas.

A: But in order to even get to Tyler Johnson, Erik Spoelstra had to go 11 deep, which only was manageable this time because of the limited minutes of Kelly Olynyk. In order to get to Tyler with the present roster, the most likely path would be starting Dion Waiters ahead of Rodney McGruder and then likely shuffling Rodney beyond Tyler in the rotation. And that does not even get into what happens when Goran Dragic returns (which will be after the trading deadline, an element that could help thin the rotation).

Q: Hope everyone is ready for this rollercoaster ride. Lose to the Hawks and beat the Celtics all in the same week. Is there anything other than a trade or signing of a superstar that will allow us to have some consistency and get us out of this Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde scenario? — Victor, Bethlehem, Pa.

A: No. No star, no consistency.

Q: Hi, Ira. With news that Sacramento is looking to shift expiring contracts, and with the Kings not having a pick, they obviously want to have a run. This should be music to our ears. James Johnson for Zach Randolph straight up helps them compete and helps our cap future. They can add a second if they’re feeling generous. I’d even take back Kosta Koufos or Ben McLemore and add in someone like Kelly Olynyk. — Daniel, Sydney, Australia.

A: Which all comes down to this: Which do the Heat value more, James Johnson (or Dion Waiters or Kelly Olynyk) or 2020 cap space? And that comes down to this: Would being without James Johnson or Dion Waiters or Kelly Olynyk significantly alter the Heat’s outlook these next two seasons? I’m not sure it would. Follow him at or

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