Kings notes: Aldrich expected on board soon

Published: Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2013 - 12:00 am | Page 5C
Last Modified: Thursday, Apr. 18, 2013 - 7:45 pm

MIAMI – Center Cole Aldrich could join the Kings as soon as today, but coach Keith Smart said Aldrich probably would meet the team in San Antonio, where the five-game trip ends Friday.

Aldrich was acquired from Houston last Wednesday in the six-player trade that also brought Toney Douglas and Patrick Patterson to Sacramento. But Aldrich remained in Sacramento to undergo further medical tests while Douglas and Patterson joined the Kings last weekend in New Orleans.

"He's doing his final testing," Smart said.

Aldrich has been traded twice in the last five months. In October, Oklahoma City shipped him to Houston in the deal that sent James Harden to the Rockets.

Smart said he is looking forward to seeing what the 6-foot-11, 240-pound Aldrich might add to the lineup.

Smart has called the professional approach of Patterson and Douglas "refreshing" and would not mind if Aldrich brought more of that to the Kings.

Smart said he spoke to Aldrich on Monday night.

"He's in great spirits and looking forward to coming out and playing with us and being around the team, which will be good for him," Smart said.

Miami hoops – The Heat isn't the only hot basketball team in South Florida.

The University of Miami men are ranked No. 5 and lead the Atlantic Coast Conference.

"I love it," Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. "I'm a South Florida sports fan. So I'm a fan of the Dolphins and the Marlins, but I'd love to see this town become a basketball town. And hopefully, we're building basketball fans at a young age."

Spoelstra said he has gotten to know Miami coach Jim Larranaga, who was hired in 2011, and his staff well. Spoelstra said he visits the Hurricanes' facility to chat with their coaches.

"I'm definitely a fan of UM athletics," Spoelstra said. "I've been a fan of their basketball program and their football program for a long time; everybody knows that. In particular with this basketball program, I've gotten to know coach Larranaga better than any of the previous coaches."

Loving the fun – When the Heat won the opening tip Tuesday, LeBron James snapped the ball to Mario Chalmers like a center to his quarterback in shotgun formation.

Is that a little childish? No, said Smart.

Smart said he "loves" how the Heat has fun playing basketball.

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