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Here We Go Again: Pat Riley Could Unseat Spoelstra upon Free Agents' Request

DENVER - DECEMBER 08:  Head coach Pat Riley talks with Dwyane Wade #3 of the Miami Heat as they face the Denver Nuggets on December 8, 2006 at the Pepsi Center in Denver, Colorado. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, user is consenting to the term and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.    (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
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Michael SchwarzbaumContributor IIMay 3, 2010


You know that feeling? 

The feeling that Cory got in Boy Meets Worldwhen Shawn had Cory babysit his girlfriend until he was ready to date her himself.  

It's not a good feeling, I'm sure.

Miami Heat President Pat Riley has said today that he will take over the coaching duties of the team if that is what a prospective free agent requests.

Which means that Riley will coach the team next year.

What is going to happen to current Heat coach Erik Spoelstra?

Well, let us look at some history. Stan Van Gundy left after Riley took over. Ron Rothstein returned to his previous post as assistant coach.

And to those reading this article and saying that neither of these people were fired, maybe the terms "leave of absence" and "stepping down" are not synonymous. But usually, they are.

Riley tends to like taking over for good teams.

Stan Van Gundy took a leave due to family issues, to let Riley take over for the championship season. He soon got a job with the Orlando Magic, which makes people wonder the severity of his familial issues.

Ron Rothstein was asked to coach for a duration of the season, Miami's worst, in which Riley didn't want to bare the pain of watching his team's demise.

I love Riley. I love the Heat.

What I don't love is the situation Riley has put Spoelstra in.

Spoelstra has just been notified that if they get a good free agent, then he will be reassigned.  

If no big move is made, then he will resume his duties as the coach of a bad team.

I think that it would be much more respectful to Coach Spoelstra if he were to be fired.

No conditions. No catch. Just a pink slip.

I wish luck to the whole Heat organization.

And to Spoelstra, if you choose leaving over a demotion, I wish you luck.

And if you choose demotion, I believe we shall see you on the Miami Heat sideline again.

When the Heat play poorly again.

When Dwyane Wade retires.

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