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Grant to work out with Zo
Forward nixes his travel plans
BY BARRY JACKSON
[email protected]

Heat forward Brian Grant said Wednesday he has canceled summer travel plans to work out in Miami and become more comfortable playing alongside Alonzo Mourning.

''I usually leave for a month and a half, but I canceled all my trips to stay here and work out with the coaches and Zo, so I can really get to know his game and he can know my game,'' Grant said. ``We can have a summer together rather than passing each other by and coming together during the season.''

Grant, who underwent shoulder surgery a month ago, has been cleared to start shooting. ''It will be sore for another three weeks,'' he said.

Grant doesn't want to hesitate when he gets an open shot. He said he's also ``working on being able to put the ball on the floor . . . and take it to the hole and being a better passer.''

With Mourning sidelined 69 games because of kidney disease, Grant moved over to center and averaged 15.2 points and 8.8 rebounds in 2000-01. With Mourning's return last season, Grant moved back to power forward and averaged 9.3 points and eight rebounds.

''I didn't give him enough backup center minutes last season,'' coach Pat Riley said. ``He had a great first season here, and the majority of his minutes were at center. That's why he's so valuable.''

Said Grant: ``It doesn't matter what position I'm playing. When you put myself, Alonzo, Eddie Jones . . . Rod Strickland and a [small forward], there's no way that team shouldn't get it done. Whatever the Heat will do, hopefully they will do it early so we'll know who's going to be here.''

Grant addressed the fans at the Heat's predraft party.

''Last year was a fluke,'' he told them. ``That's not going to happen again.''

TRYOUT CAMP SET

The Heat will hold a tryout camp in the next week to fill out its roster for its summer-league team that will compete July 9-13 at Orlando and July 16-21 at Long Beach, Calif.

The Heat's team will include its draft picks, undrafted prospects, Malik Allen, Ernest Brown, Mike James and Ken Johnson.

The Orlando event will not be open to fans, but the Long Beach event will be.

Brown, who said his partially guaranteed option was picked up, will compete with Johnson, the Heat's second-round pick last year, for a reserve center role.

''Ken's still learning,'' Brown said. ``Decisions will be made on whether we're both going to be here.''
 
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