Pat Riley press conferences never disappoint, so it should come as no surprise that the Heat president fired off a tasty one-liner during Monday's season-ending address.
Wow. Rilley on the uncertainty of building last summer not knowing about LeBron, "No more smiling faces with hidden agendas."— Ira Winderman (@IraHeatBeat) April 20, 2015
Pat Riley on the draft: "No more smiling faces with hidden agendas, so we'll be going in clean."— Joseph Goodman (@JoeGoodmanJr) April 20, 2015
Riley quickly amended his statement to say it referred to "anyone across the board," but the subtext is obvious. Who else other than LeBron James could've possibly had a "hidden agenda" last season?
Riley was blindsided by losing LeBron to the Cavaliers and has said so multiple times. In March, Riley told Bleacher Report that it was "almost shocking" that the situation devolved to the point where James wanted to leave the Heat. There was also Riley's famous press conference last year where he told his players to "get a grip," a move many believe pushed James away.
In this specific context, Riley was referring to his summer plans, beginning with the draft. Many believe the Heat only selected Shabazz Napier in last year's draft to appease LeBron, who publicly supported the UConn guard. Riley has consistently denied this, but his comments on Monday add a layer of legitimacy to the rumors.
Either way, Riley showed he's still not over last summer. It's time to turn the page.