Now that the Miami Heat have signed all but one of their offseason priorities (still waiting on Chris “Birdman” Andersen‘s decision), they can now focus on potentially filling the last two roster spots. With James Ennis in the Heat’s summer league proving his worth, there are a few veteran free agents that could help the Heat at a chance of a three-peat. There are three players who could definitely give the defending champs a boost: Chauncey Billups, Lamar Odom and Samuel Dalembert.
Although Billups has been injured as of late, he would bring a veteran point guard presence that could help mentor both Mario Chalmers and Norris Cole. With career averages of 15.4 ppg, 5.5 apg, 1.0 spg and a 38 percent three-point shooting average, Billups would be the perfect fit for this championship roster. Billups wouldn’t be required to average near those numbers, but knowing he could have the potential to is all the more reason to bring him on board.
One of the Heat’s biggest weaknesses since the formation of the Big Three is there lack of size in the paint. Even though they have been to three finals in a row, and have won two of those three, it wouldn’t hurt to shore up their frontcourt presence. This is where Odom comes in. Although he hasn’t played well in the last few seasons, his ability to stretch the floor and rebound would be a great addition to the Heat. It should be noted also that Odom averaged his second career high in points when he played for the Heat organization back in 2003.
Dalembert, the 6-foot-11, 250-pound center, has been circulating the Heat’s rumor mill for the last few years, always ending up with another organization that doesn’t put him in a position to be successful. This could be the year that Dalembert finally ends up in Miami. Bringing him on board would be strictly to defend some of the large centers in the league that have given the Heat problems, such as Roy Hibbert, Tyson Chandler and especially Dwight Howard. If the Heat strike out on Greg Oden in free agency, this is one center the Heat should make a priority to sign.
With the Heat already over the salary cap, the most they could offer any of these free agents is the veterans’ minimum. It would come down to what is more important for these free agents, the money or the chance to help a team three-peat. Two of these three free agents already have a championship ring. It will be interesting to see what the Heat’s organization does in terms of convincing them to leave potential millions on the table.