After a short hiatus, NBA Draft Blog is back and fully rested. For the next 10 days or so, I will be looking at each of the NBA teams’ off-seasons to date. Now you may be wondering why a “draft” blog would spend time looking at what the NBA teams do- that should be left to the professionals. I will be doing it with a bit of a twist. After a brief summary of the moves made, I will be analyzing how these moves affect the recent draftees and other rookie signings. Will that big free agent signing reduce the rookie’s possible playing time or even jeopardize their chance to make the team? I will hope to answer those questions.
To start things off, let’s take a look at what the Miami Heat did this off-season. They did sign a guy or two, right?
Off-season Recap – Miami Heat
Michael Beasley – F – Traded to Minnesota
Daequan Cook – G – Traded to Oklahoma City
Lebron James – G – Trade from Cleveland
Chris Bosh – F – Trade from Toronto
Zydrunas Ilguaskas – C – Free Agent from Cleveland
Mike Miller – G – Free Agent from Washington
Eddie Jones – G – Free Agent from
Juwan Howard – F – Free Agent from Portland
Free Agents Re-Signed
Joel Anthony – F
Carlos Arroyo – G
Jamaal Magliore – C
Udonis Haslem – F
James Jones – F
Shavlik Randolph – F
Kenny Hasbrouck – G
Dwayne Wade – G
Draft Picks & Other Rookie Signings
Dexter Pittman (2nd Round, #42)
Jarvis Varnado (2nd Round, #41)
Da’Sean Butler (2nd Round, #42)
Draft Pick & Rookie Outlook (Based on Roster as of 7/30/10)
Ok, ok, the Miami off-season has been analyzed from every conceivable angle. But my concern here is not the free agents, it’s the incoming rookies. As of today, Dexter Pittman is the only rookie under contract, but I expect Varnado to be in camp. Butler is a different situation. Currently, he is rehabbing his ACL injury from the Final Four, but before the injury, he was a borderline first round pick. I would expect the Heat to offer him a non-guaranteed contract with the opportunity to work off the rust in the D-League. If he comes back strong, he could be a solid bench contributor down the stretch of a playoff run. With Ilguaskas and Magliore already signed, Pittman will have the opportunity to work on his conditioning before he will need to log serious minutes. If he does play himself into shape, he can be a great space-eater in the post and can clear out some big lanes for Wade and James, while freeing Bosh from having to spend a lot of time on the boards. Varnado may be the odd man out here, as the Heat have loaded up a large veteran presence around Wade, James and Bosh. Look for Varnado to spend the season in Europe or the D-League polishing his offensive game to match his prodigious shot-blocking ability.
Tomorrow, we head to the “other” Florida team, the Orlando Magic, and up the coast a bit for the Charlotte Bobcats. Make sure to use the comments section for all feedback.