Heat cut three; two more coming

The Miami Heat reduced their preseason squad by three on Monday when they waived forward Jarvis Varnado, guard Larry Drew II and guard Charlie Westbrook. Head coach Erik Spoelstra says releasing Varnado was very difficult.

“It’s tough when you build a connection with a player, a couple training camps but also a world championship,” Spoelstra told the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. “But he had a very good summer and fall with us. He belongs in this league. He knows that. We know that. We know that sometimes there are circumstances that we can’t control.”

Miami’s roster is now down to 17 and the team is expected to waived center Justin Hamilton and forward Eric Griffin to get down to the 15-man limit by Monday’s deadline.

The Heat will open the season $11,750,239 over the tax line, which translates to a $20,625,598 tax bill next July.