Right Place, Right Time

HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS — When the credits rolled on the wild and crazy Summer of 2010, the names Dorrell Wright and Hakim Warrick were barely legible compared to the bold type afforded guys like LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh, Amar’e Stoudemire, Carlos Boozer, Joe Johnson, David Lee and many others.

Yet when the midseason report cards get handed out, both Wright and Warrick will be on the honor roll.

While some of the more high-profile movers from the summer are still trying to settle into their new digs, Wright (in Golden State) and Warrick (Phoenix) have made seamless transitions with their new teams.

It’s clearly a case of the right player being in the right place at just the right time. The 19th pick in their respective drafts (Wright in 2004 and Warrick in 2005), neither player had found the right fit, until now. And their new teams are reaping the rewards of these unions in ways their former teams wish they could.

The Warriors uncovered a true gem in Wright, a prototypical small forward who can defend on one end and more than hold his own on the other end with dynamic scorers like Monta Ellis and Steph Curry dictating the pace and tempo. It’s a totally different look for Wright, who was used primarily as a defensive specialist in Miami, if he was used at all.

A casualty of the Heat’s huge summer haul, Wright’s career numbers (15.0 points, 5.4 rebounds, 2.9 assists and 37.6 minutes) must look pretty good to a Heat team scrambling right now to find solid role players to complement James, Wade and Bosh. Wright spent six seasons with the Heat, the team that drafted him, but never could find his niche playing alongside Wade.

The Warriors have tossed around Stephen Jackson‘s name when discussing Wright’s overall impact on his new team. The Warriors are 7-4 and one of the early surprises in the league this season, due in no small part to the contributions of newcomers like Lee and Wright.

And as good fit as he’s been on the court, Wright wasted no time making himself at home in the Bay Area:

Warrick will get his crack at Wright’s old team tonight when the Suns take their talents to South Beach to face the Heat (7 p.m. ET on ESPN). If he plays anything like he has up to this point, the Heat will be hard pressed to slow him down.

All Warrick did was join what is arguably the deepest and best bench in the league and become one of its most unstoppable forces. He too is putting up career scoring numbers (13.1while shooting an outrageous .634 from the field), his best since his second season in Memphis. He’s the Suns’ third leading scorer behind Jason Richardson and Nash and is also playing consistent minutes for the first time in three years.

Before he landed in Phoenix, Warrick had been shipped about the league last season. After four up-and-down seasons in Memphis, Warrick signed with the Bucks last summer and saw his minutes (and his role) fluctuate wildly under Scott Skiles. He was then sent to Chicago in a deadline-day deal for John Salmons deal and, in the summer, Chicago shipped Warrick to Phoenix via a sign-and-trade deal that let them clear room to sign Boozer.

While he’s not nearly as devastating on the receiving end of Steve Nash passes as Stoudemire was in Phoenix, he does bring an above-the-rim element to the Suns’ game that disappeared momentarily when Stoudemire bolted for New York’s millions in free agency. And it always helps to play in a system that caters to your skills, one that employs guards like Nash and Goran Dragic.

“In our system, he’s finding himself,” Suns coach Alvin Gentry said of Warrick to the Arizona Republic. “He’s probably the best roller we have right now. He’s just got to get a bit stronger and be able to step out and hit a 15-foot jump shot and be consistent with that.”

It’s clear both Warrick and Wright have to appreciate their new digs.

“Steve and Goran are doing a great job of feeding me and putting me in great positions where all I have to do is go out there and finish,” Warrick said. “I just try to be aggressive and continue to attack the rim … I’ve been watching and seeing Steve spoon-feeding guys. Knowing I was coming here, I couldn’t wait to get spoon-fed. It makes my job so much easier. If you think you’re open, you know he’s going to find you.”

Being on the right team, in the right place at the right time has a way of making that happen.


  1. […] with the rebuilt Miami Heat alongside LeBron James, Chris Bosh and ex-teammate Dwyane Wade. …Right Place, Right TimeNBA.com […]

  2. Sean says:

    that is the steve nash factor right there, no offence to hakkim warrick but any good player who plays with nash will see their field goal and shooting percentages go up because nash is one of the best passers and play makers of all time to play the game

  3. jigguh says:

    lebron should stop hogging the ball. let bosh have a touch at least every 2 possessions. run pick and rolls with wade and lebron. and run baseline picks for bosh. thats it. no need to do more. no need new players. they need ball movement and player movement. PERIOD.

    • mmmm whatcha say ay? says:

      If he does not hog, then wade will hog, if wade does not hog, then bosh will hog, if bosh does not hog, then arroyo will hog, if arroyo does not hog, then hasleem will hog, if hasleem does not hog, then erik spolestra will hog, etc

  4. Sinarch says:

    YA boi says:
    November 17, 2010 at 7:27 pm

    I think phil jackson should coach the miami heat so he can win more rings. he won 6 with jordan, 6 with kobe, and now it is time for him to win 6*3 = 18 rings.

    6 with Kobe? Did i miss something???

  5. PHX is the deepest team in the NBA. Smallish but deadly when they find the groove which they are more and more. If this PHX team starts to believe in itself, and a back to back win against the Lakers and Nuggets is starting to, then look out. This team is going to do scary things to opponents.

    I mentioned earlier in the season that this team could very well have the wherewithal to leave teams with jaws dropped. Well… I told you so…


    • OJ says:

      LOL!!!!!!!! PHX will be lucky to even make the playoffs! Dont get to ahead of yourselfs guys. Phoenix looks good for now, but wait unti after the all star break to make any predictions. And lets watch the next game between LA and PHX. Highly doubt PHX will have the same results. LOL!!!!! Good laugh though!!

  6. suns #1 says:

    nuggets beat the lakers and the suns beat both nuggets and lakers back to back. that says alot about phx

    • Surge says:

      LOL So u think cause the Suns beat the Nuggets and Lakers there what? its jus one game but if what u say is true..watch out FOR THE CAVS…THEY DID BEAT THE CELTICS

  7. EzROLLN says:

    Wait! Wait!… Riles is still callin the shots in So. Bch. Do some research…LA, NY, Mia… Hush & Learn!

    Right Place Right Time…Exactly! Hakim could always play! Dorrell is living in the spirit of Don Nelson. Do your thing & be disruptive! Be glad for someone else’s success. They never gave up! Check the mirror…dude 😦

    • THEHEATSUCK says:

      Well if Riley is calling the shots, and its spelled Riley not Riles dork! If he is calling the shots hes not doing any better than Spo!

      • YA boi says:

        I think phil jackson should coach the miami heat so he can win more rings. he won 6 with jordan, 6 with kobe, and now it is time for him to win 6*3 = 18 rings.

        He will be a better coach than don nelson when he retires. (No offense don don. I dont want to be insulting as ron ron. so ill continue to shake my pon pon. and see that everyone has won won)

  8. Marv Mav says:

    Also like the article says, Warrick has to work on his jumper from 15ft out consistently & hit a 3pt shot from time to time to really flourish in PHX. The only reason he plays the 4-5 is beczuse he never developed any SF skills, something a 6’9″ 215lb guy should have instead of trying to defend other teams bigs. Not hating on Hakim, I’ve been a fan since Syracuse, he’s doing great so far this yr, but what happens when teams start switching their defense to stop him?? At best I see 16ppg 8reb per game.
    As far as Dorell Wright, I don’t know what the Heat where thinking not getting him into the rotation yrs ago!!! He was always an athletic player who can defend & play above the rim. I’m not even a Heat fan & I was so mad seeing ppl get PT over him like Cook, Moon, Diawara, Jones, all players that aren’t better that Wright. I’m happy to see him get the PT and show ppl what he’s always been capable of doing. The Heat messed up not getting him & Wade on the same page just like Cleveland messed up yrs ago not gettin Shannon Brown in the mix with LeBron, but still played guys that were drafted after him like Gibson & West. For Dorell Wright at best I see 18ppg 6reb.
    Both will be top contenders for Most Improved Player.

  9. Scott says:

    I’m glad both Wright and Warrick are having good years. It’s always nice to see players have a rejuvination of sorts when they find themselves in a new setting.

    In Warrick’s, he has MVSteve to drop the ball into his hands.

    Steve makes everyone look good.

  10. Peter says:

    Yeah Amare Stoudemire should never had left. But this gives players like Hakim Warrick to finally shine in the NBA. For real, I love how Dorell Wright is playing right now. Very good for them two guys. I’m happy for them.

  11. SimplyMe says:

    Good for both of these players. As it stated in the blog, right time, right place for them. Now that they have found a place where they fit, they will continue to improve their games and become good role players for their team.

  12. bk says:

    Warrick FG% is up 10% and Stoudemire FG% is down 10% from last year. It speaks for itself.

    • Isabel says:

      @ bk

      Maybe the 10% FG fluctuation for each player could have something to do with…THE NASH FACTOR…

  13. John says:

    People should pay Steve Nash to play with him.

  14. e-Roc says:

    When will Miami realize they need a person who demands respect to manage the ego’s of his flailing team? If Spoelstra is anything like his meek courtside attitude, he is not Professional Sports material.

    • JJ says:

      You have to realize you put out a point that has been said numerous times, if you were the first then you’d be the one being paid big bucks. You have to understand that there are people on the Miami back office that know what their doing and 10 games is too small of a sample size to be concerned. People in sports are too result oriented, there are so many factors in a basketball team. In any case your comment has barely anything to do with this article.

      • OJ says:

        The only way this heat team has any chance of winning a championship is to trade one of the 3. Its obviously not working. People keep giving this team excuses, the same way they have given lebron excuses his whole career saying its only 11 games into the season. While that is true, if lebron and this team had such great expectations before the season started. Because if i recall the NBA trophy was pretty much handed to this team before they even played one game. Now things arent clicking to well, this excuses start to flow. Back to my point, if lebron is so fablous, and if this team was suppose to be so great. Why do they need half the season to get it going, when the celtics got it going as soon as their big three was assembled. And when Gasol came to the LAKERS he fit in right away. Heat fans need to face the fact that they gotta trade away one of the big three so that they can AFFORD to bring in better role players. The role players that are on this squad now are weak and wont take this team far.

      • JP says:

        OJ are you alright? Seriously man.. So you are saying a team needs to peak straight away? or else they cant win a championship.. The celtics got off to an awesome start that year something like 27-2, awesome start but ended up with only the second best record in the east, and it isnt about the best record it is how your team has meshed, knowing where players are going to be, finalising your last plays, and knowing who is rotating where defensivly.

        The Lakerss lost to the celtics the year they got gasol as gasol wasnt fully adapted to the triangle offense and was pushed around by Kg and perkins, he got used to the offense and got stronger in the post defensivly and offensivly, and now the Lakers are two time champs.

        All Miami needs to do is stop awesome point gaurds, what teams have they lost to? (NO, UTAH, BOSTON) who have point gaurds doing as they will and dishing out on average 15+ assists, they dont need anymore role players, they have Udonis, Z, and mike miller, that fit fine, all they need to do is wait for chalmers to get healthy and stop gambling or trade for a point gaurd defender, like holiday.. no need to trade bosh wade or bron..

      • OJ says:

        @JP You pretty much made my point for me, thanks dude! What i am saying is its funny how people, probably like yourself gave the heat the trophy when this team was brought together. Doesnt look like this team is championship material, to me. Now people go from handing the trophy to the heat at the start of the season to making excuses for this team. Saying its going to take them a while to mesh. Im not buying that. If this team is soooo good like people talked about in the beginning, if lebron is sooooo great, this team should be doing better than they are right now. Bynum not playing in 08 had a little to do with the LAKERS losing. Although some people like to deny that. You said yourself all miami needs to do is stop awsome point guards. They wont be able to do that on a consistent basis. Their point guards are weak, just like their center position. Look at the teams they are losing againist, teams that they will face in the playoffs! Boston, Utah! Orlando will beat the heat in the playoffs. Come on dude, this team is going no where with the current roster. Exciting team yes, championship team no!

      • OJ says:

        And i just cant laugh hard enough about the comment Big z being a role player! That guy is soft! Dwight Howard will man handle him in the playoffs! And wait for chalmers to get healthy, oh yea, he will stop RONDO! Yea right! And if they were smart they would trade Bosh! Use that money to bring in better role players!