The arrival of LeBron James to Miami all but guaranteed a roster spot for Jarvis Varnado.
James joining the Heat gives the team three big-time players, with Chris Bosh also signing as a free agent and 2006 NBA Finals MVP Dwyane Wade deciding to return. Those three will eat up a large chunk of payroll, which means team president Pat Riley must find some basement bargains.
That’s where ex-Mississippi State standout Varnado and the other two players Miami selected in the second round of the NBA Draft last month come in. They’ll provide cheap labor as Riley tries to stay under the $58 million salary cap.
Varnado, who was drafted with the 41st pick, can’t wait to play with the NBA’s new Big Three.
“I’m still in a little bit of shock at how all of this came together,” Varnado said Friday. “I’m really excited, and I can’t wait for the season to start. I have the chance to play with three all-stars, and as a rookie, it’s a great opportunity for me to learn a lot from them.”
Brad Locke/NEMS Daily Journal