MIAMI (CBSMiami) — The Heat rookies are making some noise.
Justise Winslow and Josh Richardson have sent shock waves into a playoff push… whether it’s hitting a big 3, guarding the opponents’ best players or just celebrating on the bench.
“You get a lot of energy from the bench when they’re hype and celebrating. Things like that. We just try to bring the energy being the young guys. You know it’s unique to be 22 and 19 years old in the NBA,” said the former Duke star Justise Winslow, taken 10th overall by Miami in the 2015 draft.
“They can trust us when we’re on the court. It’s great to have a coach that’ll give you an opportunity to do that. Especially when you’re so young,” said Josh Richardson, who was a psychology major at Tennessee before the Heat took him with the 40th pick.
Their careers are just starting to blossom and their confidence is growing, but leave it to veterans like Chris Bosh, Dwyane Wade and Udonis Haslem to calm them down even after a big game.
“Chris will walk by and just be like ‘Rook,'” said Richardson. “He’s always like, ‘you should’ve done better but you played decent.'”
Wade says they like to talk even though Winslow can seem a little quiet. Keeping the young guys humble is a role veterans like Haslem enjoy.
“We’re going to figure that out. They’re starting to talk more and more each day. So we’re going to figure that out,” said Haslem.
Wade has his own method of keeping them humble.
“Rook 1 and Rook 2, go get me something. Get me Gatorade, Rook. Go do this, go do that. After you score 20 and everyone’s on your jock,” said Wade.
Rook 1 and Rook 2 may be getting comfortable but they know there’s a line you can’t cross — that is, calling these aged veterans “old.”
“No way! That’s a no-no,” laughed Richardson. “I know that one.”
When asked what their worst hazing moment was, CBS4’s Mike Cugno got a simple answer.
“No comment,” exclaimed Winslow.
“Their confidence is a little too high. I heard him say he wasn’t a rookie no more — they weren’t rookies no more. Now I have to bring them back down to rookie life,” said a determined Wade.
Joking aside, Winslow and Richardson are making an impression, and maybe, even causing a little heat déjà vu.
“They play like they have chips on their shoulders and have something to prove. That’s something Dwyane and myself both played with as rookies,” remembered Haslem.
But did Wade and UD have nicknames like Rook 1 and Rook 2?
“Nah,” said Wade.