Miami Heat Offseason Wish List: Greg Oden Is a Chance Worth Taking

By Devin O'Barr
Greg Oden holds the basketball
Craig Mitchelldyer-USA TODAY Sports

Ever since Chris Bosh and LeBron James joined Dwyane Wade with the Miami Heat, the franchise has struggled to find an effective seven-footer. While the organization is fresh off of its second straight NBA title, the team is still in need of a stout defensive stopper.

When the team brought in Chris Andersen on January 20th, the 11-year NBA veteran thrived in the role and impressively shot 57% from the field in 2013. While the “Birdman” got the job done and has a championship ring to show for it, the crazed center is now an unrestricted free agent. Additionally, Andersen is rather one-dimensional and lacks the ability to play as physically as a guy like Greg Oden.

Yes — the same Oden who was a the first overall pick in the 2007 NBA Draft, but has only played 82 professional games.

Given the team’s lack of production at the center position, Oden has been linked to the Heat before, yet the two sides have never agreed to a contract. With that being said, the departure of Andersen and constant Bosh trade talks make the timing perfect.

Obviously, the health of Oden will be the deciding factor, but if No. 52 is healthy then the Heat have no reason not to bring him in. Considering he was compared to the likes of Bill Russell and Shaquille O’Neal, Oden could definitely give the Heat yet another weapon in 2013-14. Any talk about Bosh, Andersen and Oden prior to July 1st is simply that — talk. However, team president Pat Riley always has a plan and Oden could easily be the next member of the Heat and Oden’s agent Mike Conely has already confirmed his client will meet with Riley on July 1st.

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