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Saturday Jul 22nd, 2017  

 Heat may make run at Greg Oden
posted 5 years ago

The Blazers have already signed Oden to a one-year, $8.9 million qualifying offer, and the Heat don’t have cap room to present much more than a mid-level deal worth about $5 million. But they can offer a fresh start and the chance to play on a potential title team. Don't miss out on the NBA Picks this year along with our UFC Picks.

By making the hefty qualifying offer, the Blazers indicated they have not given up hope even though Oden has only played 82 games since being taken with the No. 1 overall pick in 2007 and not since 2009.

But Heat president Pat Riley is known for his powers of persuasion and last year convinced free agent after free agent to take less money to sign in Miami. Dwyane Wade, LeBron James, Chris Bosh, Udonis Haslem and Mike Miller all took less money than they were offered elsewhere.

Other options at center for Miami include free agents Samuel Dalembert and Kwame Brown. Dalembert is expected to command more than mid-level exception but could take less money to return to South Florida, where the Haitian big man owns a home and has many family members. There will be competition for Brown, as well. The Heat used a combination of aging centers last season, but Zydrunas Ilgauskas retired in the offseason and Erick Dampier and Jamaal Magloire are free agents.

Oden’s agent, Bill Duffy, said: “At this point, I think Greg’s heart is in Portland.” Yahoo’s Marc Spears added Sunday that Oden is “leaning strongly” toward re-signing with Portland.

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