Heat to sign Gladness to second 10-day deal

MIAMI — Center Mickell Gladness said Tuesday he will sign a second 10-day contract with the Miami Heat. Whatever happens after that remains to be seen.

When his second 10-day deal expires, Gladness could remain with the Heat only if they end up signing him for the rest of the season. But the rookie said team president Pat Riley has been open with him.

“They want to keep their flexibility in case they find a veteran big man who can contribute to them winning a championship more than I can,” Gladness said about the Heat having 14 players signed for the rest of the season and keeping flexibility with the 15th roster spot, which Gladness now has. “They look at me as a guy they’re still developing. So I guess if they don’t find someone by the trade deadline, that would look good for me (as far as staying with the Heat the rest of the season).”

The trade deadline is March 15, and then there is a week after in which players can be bought out in time to join another team for the playoffs. So Gladness might have a period of being in limbo after his second 10-day deal expires.

Gladness, 25, said he also had an offer to sign a 10-day contract with Golden State. But his preference was to remain with the Heat.

“It always feels good that they want me,” said Gladness, who expects to sign his second 10-day deal before practice Tuesday afternoon.

Gladness began the season with the Heat before being waived Feb. 7. He signed his first 10-day deal Feb. 12. After that one expired Feb. 21, the Heat wanted to wait until after the All-Star break to sign him to another.

In eight games, Gladness has averaged 0.3 points, 1.4 rebounds and 3.5 minutes per game.

Chris Tomasson can be reached at christomasson@hotmail.com or on Twitter @christomasson