Monday's Heat News: Rodney McGruder made roster due to perseverance, grit

Heat excited about Dragic-Waiters backcourt: Heat guard Dion Waiters said weeks ago that he never asked for any assurances about starting when he signed here, and that he would be fine with a starting or bench role. But on Monday, he expressed excitement about the prospect of starting, at least to begin the season, and spoke of the vast potential of a backcourt pairing with Goran Dragic. -- The Miami Herald

Heat guards will have to play up in weight class this season: Lost in the wake of roster cuts that left Goran Dragic as the Miami Heat's only true point guard is that Justise Winslow stands as the team's only true small forward. That means the Heat's shooting guards not only will have to take on additional ballhandling responsibilities, they also will have to play up in weight class in three-guard alignments. -- South Florida Sun-Sentinel

McGruder’s perseverance and grit rewarded with Heat’s final roster spot: Rodney McGruder was at an FIU open basketball scrimmage Saturday morning supporting former Kansas State grad assistant Erik Pastrana when he looked down at his cell phone and saw his agent was calling. “You know it’s news,” McGruder said with a smile Sunday morning recounting the moment he learned he was making his first NBA roster. -- The Miami Herald

With his point guard skills developing, Tyler Johnson sees Manu Ginobili-like role with Heat: In his quest to continue developing his playmaking skills, Tyler Johnson said he asked the Heat to provide video for him this summer of Cleveland’s Kyrie Irving, San Antonio’s Manu Ginobili and Houston’s James Harden so he could study how they attack in transition and off pick-and-rolls. -- The Miami Herald

Miami Heat roster: Goran Dragic and a bunch of combo guards: The makeup of the Miami Heat roster has its roots as far back as last season when Tyler Johnson started sharpening his point guard skills. Then Josh Richardson emerged and Dion Waiters was signed. Now, with a plethora of combo guards, a young player like Rodney McGruder was able to stick rather than retaining a true point guard like Beno Udrih. -- The Palm Beach Post

Udonis Haslem draws parallels to his journey, one taken by Rodney McGruder: For Udonis Haslem, it was like 2003 all over again when watching someone like Rodney McGruder earn an NBA roster spot for the first time. “He worked for it, he earned it,” Haslem said today. “Nobody gave him anything from Day 1. He saw a crack in the door and he kind of kicked the door down. It took everything that he’s got." -- The Palm Beach Post

Heat's Tyler Johnson preparing for backup point guard role: Heat guard Tyler Johnson was given the title almost by default. With the team only having one true point guard on the roster, Johnson has inherited the backup position. Johnson spent last season learning the position but will spend even more time there now because the lack of point guards. -- South Florida Sun-Sentinel