by Marcel Mutoni

Can you blame the guy?

Decimated by injuries and old age, the Miami Heat have the second worst record in the NBA. And with talk that his players have begun to tune him out, coach Pat Riley is leaning towards giving up the coaching gig after this season. He would stay on board as team president.

“Sometimes, just with me, I feel like now, more than ever, I might be butting heads with both jobs,” he said. “And I’ve revisited that over and over again.”

“I was much better, I believe, just as a president,” he said, “because I wasn’t having to deal with the personalities.”

If Riles wasn’t entirely convinced that it’s time to step aside, a loss to the lowly Timberwolves last night surely edged him closer to that decision.

Even though everyone rolled their eyes in disbelief when he made a promise this past summer to coach for the next three seasons, the Heat and its fans should be thankful that Riley is at least giving them the courtesy of an early warning, instead of just suddenly walking away as had become his custom.