Udonis Haslem is a Miami Heat legend. Even though he has never been one of the best players on the roster, he has been a certified leader in the locker room for well over a decade. Despite being the oldest player in the league, Haslem continues getting contracts from the Miami Heat to be a veteran presence on the bench.
As Haslem turned 42 in June, many have been wondering when he finally hangs his sneakers up and decides to retire. That is a decision that he will make on his own time because he is guaranteed a contract from the Heat for as long as he wants to make up for all the sacrifices he made over the years to enable the team's success.
Haslem appeared on teammate Duncan Robinson's podcast and addressed fans that attack him for 'taking up a roster spot' every year, even though his best playing days are far behind him.
“Another misconception is that I take up a roster spot. People don’t know that we got the most undrafted people in the NBA on our team. There’s literally something going on here, people, which you dumb motherf***ers can’t understand. You’re so focused on my age and why I’m here. There’s a reason why I’m f***ing here.”
Haslem touching on the undrafted player's point makes his motivation to stay clear and why the Heat wants him to stick around as well. When it comes to making a career out of nothing in the NBA, Udonis is the one that can lead a player through that process the best considering he lived it and has become a team legend, regardless.
He has said he is not sure on what comes next for him after last season but everyone will be hoping to see him back on the team.
His utility on the court has passed, but the knowledge in his brain needs to be passed onto the next veteran cornerstone that Miami may want to have or just give Haslem a coaching job after he decides to retire as a player.