Once Pat Riley steps aside in South Beach, Miami Heat great Tim Hardaway says he’s ready to take over the franchise’s front-office. Hardaway has done a ton in the last few years to repair his image, and feels prepared to assume a bigger role (he’s currently a scout with the team.) Per Fox Sports: “Yes, sir,’ Miami scout and former star point guard Tim Hardaway said when asked if it’s his desire one day to be the Heat’s general manager. ‘That’s my goal. That’s why I’m here every day. … Everything is realistic. You just got to believe and make connections.’ When he was a youngster and competing on the playgrounds of his native Chicago, it seems Hardaway was preparing for more than just an NBA playing career. Hardaway, who primarily starred for Golden State and Miami during a career that spanned from 1989-2003, said he always was interested in building teams. ‘I always figured myself as a GM because I always put teams together when I was little,’ said Hardaway. ‘I’d put teams together to go out and win eight to 10 games in a row. I was putting my team together, understanding what it takes to go out and win ballgames.’ Hardaway is optimistic one day he will doing that in the NBA. ‘I (have) expertise on understanding what to put out there on the basketball court, what type of talent goes with talent, what type of attitudes go with attitudes,’ said Hardaway, who credits having learned plenty from Hall of Famers Riley and Don Nelson, once his coach at Golden State. ‘I understand this collective bargaining agreement. I understand how to put teams together. I understand how to maneuver contracts.’ That Hardaway, 46, eventually could become an NBA general manager might have seemed implausible six years ago. In February 2007, Hardaway made anti-gay comments that resulted in him being barred from NBA All-Star Game events that month and threatened how much he might be involved in the league in the future. […] ‘I’ve changed a lot,’ Hardaway said. ‘I hear my (2007) comments today and I cringe because those were bad comments. It was like I was telling people to go bully them, beat them up, you can commit suicide, all the bad things, and that’s the way it sounded. I wanted to make amends to myself and make amends to everybody and make sure that they understand totally that wasn’t me. I made a big mistake and I just wanted to change it.’ As much Hardaway regrets the comments, he said they at least resulted in dialogue he believes ultimately advanced society.”
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