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Udonis Haslem returning to the Heat

Jul 12, 2010, 4:06 PM EDT

uhaslem.jpgFor once, it wasn’t about the money.

Udonis Haslem got much larger offers from the Dallas Mavericks and Denver Nuggets and is returning to the Miami Heat, according to our own Ira Winderman (writing for the South Florida Sun Sentinel.).

Haslem had wanted to stay in Miami, but he wasn’t sure how much the Heat could offer after signing LeBron James, Chris Bosh and re-signing Dwyane Wade. Estimates were he could get up to $4.3 million, maybe less.

Meanwhile, both Denver and Dallas offered the full mid-level exception of $5.8 million. Both are competitive teams, both good franchises, both have good fan bases.

But they were not home. Miami was home — and that’s where he is staying.

Oh, he makes them considerably better now, too. They are getting some depth. The Heat will bring Haslem and Mike Miller off the bench. However, the Heat still need to find a center to play some defense in the paint (not Bosh’s forte) and a point guard.

  1. johnmaine - Jul 12, 2010 at 4:10 PM

    The new 68-team NCAA Tournament format has just been released by the Division I Men’s Basketball Committee:

  2. GetReal - Jul 12, 2010 at 4:13 PM

    Must be tampering, right Cuban?

  3. hnirobert - Jul 12, 2010 at 4:15 PM

    They do not need a point guard. Dwyane handled the ball for the Heat most of the time for the Heat last year and LBJ handled the ball most of the times for the Cavs. They need a couple of bodies to throw at Dwight Howard and they’ll be fine.

  4. Craig W. - Jul 12, 2010 at 4:23 PM

    Fisher was being interviewed for his championship leadership experience and possible spot-up cluch shooting, not his PG skills. Oh, and to reduce the Lakers’ ability to compete.
    No, the Heat surely are not going to need a traditional PG.

  5. Dennis - Jul 12, 2010 at 5:20 PM

    Reduce the Lakers ability to compete. Are you from Mars?

  6. David - Jul 12, 2010 at 5:42 PM

    Listen MIA bandwagoners.. You’re still not as good as the Lakers. This is all.

  7. Benz - Jul 12, 2010 at 6:34 PM

    Allen Iverson, point guard “CHEAP” exactly what Miami needs.

  8. phil collins - Jul 12, 2010 at 8:31 PM

    they should pick up a cheap back up point, but dont need to bring in a starter. better to play lebron in a legit magic-esque point forward role, make him more of a distributor in order to both take advantage of his skill set and keep him and wade from butting heads. wade should be the volume scorer on this team. i think bron would look much more natural focusing on running the offense and keeping everyone involved than trying/needing to get 30 every night for his team to win.

  9. JD - Jul 13, 2010 at 12:56 AM

    How is Haslem going to help with bringing back some depth? He’s 6’7 or 6’8 at the most. Just look at the Jazz struggle with Okur hurting. You might be physical but you still need size to compete with the likes of Garnett/Perkins or Dwight Howard or Bynum/Gasol/Odom.
    1. Lakers
    2. Celtics
    3. Magic
    4. Mavericks
    5. Heat

  10. Allen - Jul 13, 2010 at 2:00 AM

    As a Laker fan I don’t like this move for the heat BECAUSE Haslem is a solid PF. He’ll give them quality minutes. They are getting too many good players for cheap. If Shaq goes there, even at his current state, it won’t be fair. Right now they can start:
    PG Wade
    SG LeBron (can play 1 – freakin 4)
    SF Miller
    PF Udonis
    C Bosh
    Even though, if you’re the Heat, you don’t want bosh at center…that’s a damn good line up already! Insert shaq and chalmers as starters then you got Miller and Udonis off the bench? Does this sound fair?!
    Whatever I’m just hating.
    Hey T-Mac, be our 7th man over in LA and I’ll be less worried.

  11. JH - Jul 13, 2010 at 8:40 AM

    Point Guard?: The Miami Heat already have two of the best ball handlers in the game, so I’m not sure what a different point guard would do for them. They need a good shooting guard, someone who can spread the defense and hit from the perimeter – and they may have that now in Miller. Haslem is also a good scorer, so with that re-signing they are coming together now. They do need a center of two (interior defense, rebounding) and depth at lots of positions, but for a week or so after the LeBron decision, they’re doing pretty well.
    But Basketball (even) is a team game. A team needs at LEAST 8 players, and probably more to compete because of foul distribution and rest needed to play the game at today’s pace, and to bridge the gap from injuries. Both the Lakers and (even more so) the Celtics had very important contributions from players other than their top three guys – and the Heat will need that also. None of the top teams would be where they are without a lot of guys playing very well. Yes there are stars at the top, but by focusing on the stars the media tends to marginalize the importance of the other players on the team in winning. Kendrick Perkins isn’t one of the top stars and headline grabbers on the Celtics – but where would they be without him? Well – I guess we found that out in game 7 this year.
    Cav’s owners Donald Gilbert was totally out of line with the real world in his rescent criticism of LeBron, and so have a lot of the talking heads on TV (who have been criticising LeBron). It is abundantly clear that LeBron would have liked to have remained in his hometown of Cleveland. But at the same time free agency doesn’t come up very often in today’s world of long NBA contracts, so this was one of the few times in his career where he could make a move. It was now, or wait until he’s in his 30’s – which a long way down the road for a professional athlete. This was his chance to exercise free choice in his life, and given the actually NBA rules in place today he had every right to do so.
    But Gilbert’s outburst showed us nothing more than poor sportsmanship, and a lack of understanding employee / employer relationships in a modern day business. Players are not bonded servants; they are people, and they have rights, including things that the average American takes for granted – like the right to decide where to live, and what company to work for. In the past professional sports franchises (think the old reserve clause in baseball the prohibited players from changing teams) did have a death grip on their players, but that didn’t pass muster as being legal in our country and is now ancient history.
    Sports teams still do get away with a lot of monopolistic control over players (at least for now) like the process of holding exclusive rights through the league draft, and rules that make 18-year olds (who are legal adults and are old enough to fight in the armed services, among other things) ineligible for employment. Can you imagine bankers like Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan holding a draft to select graduating MBA’s from the nation’s top business schools? That would be ridiculous – the big banks and other employers have to recruit because employees have freedom to choose. Someday the world’s pro sports franchises may have to do that as well, even for players graduating from college or otherwise seeking employment as professional athletes for the first time.
    However now that Dan Gilbert has shown the world what he’s really made of I’m not sure how excited future free agents will be about signing with the Cavaliers. I’m not sure how excited future college stars will be about coming to the Cav’s either. Gilbert gained nothing by lambasting LeBron, but he lost credibility as a reasonable person at the head of his team. The fan’s in Cleveland should be mourning that loss of leadership a whole lot more than the loss of LeBron because that shortcoming could have a much larger and much longer lasting negative impact on the Cavaliers down the road that the outcome of this year’s free agent season. You can all if a form of the “Donald Sterling” effect – if you like.

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