Greg Oden taking talents to South Beach, makes 'Decision' to sign 2-year deal with Heat

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 4 years ago '04        #1
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Motion 817 heat pts817
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Greg Oden taking talents to South Beach, makes 'Decision' to sign 2-year deal with Heat
 

 

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Greg Oden to sign with Heat
Updated: August 2, 2013, 11:42 PM ET
By Marc Stein and Jeff Goodman | ESPN.com


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Source: visit this link http://espn.go.com/nba/tr .. ign-miami-heat

Greg Oden's NBA comeback will be launched on South Beach.

Oden told ESPN.com on Friday night that he has chosen the two-time defending champion Miami Heat as his new team, capping a monthlong recruiting process which culminated with Oden spending this entire week making his final selection from a list of six suitors.

Referring to Miami, home of the two-time reigning champions, as the "best place" and "best fit" after years of knee troubles, Oden will report to the Heat on Monday and, according to sources close to the process, sign a two-year deal at the league minimum with a player option for Year 2.

The contract will pay $1.03 million in 2013-14 and $1.14 million in 2014-15 if Oden picks up that option. The 25-year-old has earned nearly $24 million in salary since being drafted No. 1 overall by the Portland Trail Blazers in 2007 but has appeared in only 82 career NBA games because of his many knee troubles.

Oden chose the Heat over San Antonio, Dallas, New Orleans, Sacramento and Atlanta, teams that -- with the exception of the Mavericks -- all sent representatives to Indianapolis last week to watch him work out in person. He called officials from each of the finalists Friday night to inform them he was headed elsewhere.

In a Friday night phone interview after Grantland reported that he had chosen the Heat, Oden described the mental toll from his time out of the league as a lot of "ups and downs."

"With more downs," Oden said.

He's not sure yet how soon he'll be ready to play in actual games, saying that he hopes to lose even more weight after slimming down to his current 275 pounds.

"I could be ready to go but it's still a work in progress," Oden said. "My minutes and amount of playing time and all that is going to have to be monitored."

Oden said it was a "big deciding factor" that Heat officials made it clear to him that he "wouldn't be needed as much early in the season" as he works his way back from more than three years out of the NBA.

"When I had a conversation with Coach [Erik] Spoelstra and hearing how much he knew about the training stuff that I was already doing, it kind of made me feel like they know what's best for me," Oden said.

Oden added: "I'm not going to sit here and say I'm 100 percent. I am moving [well] and I am feeling good, but I have a lot of work to do."

In addition to the push from Spoelstra and Heat president Pat Riley, who began recruiting Oden in the spring, Oden said Heat star LeBron James recruited him via text message. Sources said Cleveland, Boston and Memphis, in addition to the other five finalists, all expressed interest in Oden since free agency began July 1, but those three teams declined to make a formal offer.

New Orleans, sources said, was one team that offered at least twice what Miami was offering for next season. But Oden scoffed at concerns that he's needlessly thrusting himself back into the spotlight instead of launching his comeback with more of an under-the-radar franchise.

"Obviously the chance to play with the best player in the world and compete for a championship was a big selling point," Oden said. "But more than that, what I really liked was how they thought I could really add something to their team. They’ve won back-to-back championships without me, so for them to pursue me as hard as they did meant a lot, especially given all that I’ve gone through."

According to Oden, "There’s a lot to be excited about in joining the NBA champions, getting to play with some great players, and living in Miami. But honestly, the thing I’m most excited about is just being able to play basketball again. It’s been a long and challenging road back, so just having the chance to play the game I love again has me more excited than anything else.”

“The cool thing about playing for the Heat is when you’re LeBron’s teammate and you screw up, nobody gets mad at you for missing a shot or turning the ball over — they get mad at LeBron for passing to you in the first place,” Oden joked.

Asked about his expectations for the coming season, Oden added: "I want to be able to finish the season healthy. [After] everything I've been through, I want to be able to say I played the game and I had no problems."

Signing Oden will cost the Heat roughly $2.6 million in luxury tax after the coming season and nudge their overall projected tax bill for 2013-14 to just under $19 million based on a $101.5 million payroll. But Miami is cautiously optimistic that adding a rejuvenated Oden to the re-signed Chris Andersen -- after the bargain acquisitions of Shane Battier and Ray Allen before them -- will address their size issues after longstanding concerns about their team rebounding and rim presence defensively.

The reality, though, is that Oden hasn't played in an NBA game since Dec. 5, 2009. And he underwent his third career microfracture knee surgery as recently as February 2012.

Over the first 21 games of the 2009-10 season, Oden averaged 11.1 points, 8.5 rebounds and 2.3 blocks per game before succumbing to injury again. He said Friday night that he never imagined making an NBA comeback until last October.

"That's when we started back from the bottom," Oden said. "That's when I said, 'Let's go, this is it, this is going to be my give-it-your-all [last stand] to try to get back on the court."

Mike Conley Sr., Oden's primary agent and a gold medalist in the triple jump at the 1992 Olympics, said: "After three years of not playing, getting himself all the way back to play the sport at such a high level, he's a hero in my book."

Said BDA Sports' Bill Duffy, another of Oden's main advisers: "As he gets his bearings and learns more about his body and his diet and all those things, we're still hoping that this can be a Grant Hill- or Zydrunas Ilgauskas-type story where [Oden] gets past all the injuries and hopefully has the successful career he was always hoping to have."








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Last edited by Motion; 08-03-2013 at 01:20 AM..

250 comments for "Greg Oden taking talents to South Beach, makes 'Decision' to sign 2-year deal with Heat"

 4 years ago '06        #2
jj01 
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$44,942 | Props total: 4632 4632
not surprised

hopefully he can be somewhat healthy. would be nice to see him play steady throughout the season.
 4 years ago '11        #3
KING JAYY 535 heat pts535
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$52,263 | Props total: 19971 19971
Inb4thatkneepops
 4 years ago '13        #4
Chrisdunk 20 heat pts20
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$2,276 | Props total: 5 5
Prime Oden
 4 years ago '10        #5
Dextromethorphan 217 heat pts217
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man.
 4 years ago '10        #6
Two02x3 1 heat pts
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$7,586 | Props total: 6700 6700
Link?


Low risk high reward for Miami...good pickup


3 years of rehab huh. If he goes down again, it's time to call it a career
 4 years ago '12        #7
moth818 29 heat pts29
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[pic - click to view]



Last edited by moth818; 08-02-2013 at 09:41 PM..
 4 years ago '06        #8
O Nasty 96 heat pts96
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$20,419 | Props total: 288 288
why greg
 4 years ago '07        #9
YoungFresh2Def 5 heat pts
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 jj01 said:
not surprised

hopefully he can be somewhat healthy. would be nice to see him play steady throughout the season.
SEASON!?!?!!? Heat don't need this dude for the season, only the playoffs, he will be fine, and the he will aid them to their 3rd ship
 4 years ago '10        #10
Trill Livin 65 heat pts65
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$14,408 | Props total: 6235 6235
Pat the don
 4 years ago '08        #11
Arson 84 heat pts84
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$40,103 | Props total: 23318 23318
lets get this sh*t poppin like Oden's knees
 4 years ago '11        #12
maxnn 129 heat pts129
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$12,180 | Props total: 1034 1034
Watch Greg Oden stay healthy and put up 18-15 per 36
 4 years ago '10        #13
Fly Elroy 321 heat pts321
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$19,394 | Props total: 474 474
 4 years ago '04        #14
GarySanchize24 239 heat pts239
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$55,669 | Props total: 13065 13065
 maxnn said:
Watch Greg Oden stay healthy and put up 18-15 per 36
if that happens
 4 years ago '10        #15
Dextromethorphan 217 heat pts217
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 maxnn said:
Watch Greg Oden stay healthy and put up 18-15 per 36
he gonna have a monster game against us max
 4 years ago '11        #16
maxnn 129 heat pts129
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$12,180 | Props total: 1034 1034

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He about to be on his way
 4 years ago '10        #17
Dextromethorphan 217 heat pts217
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$27,807 | Props total: 13 13
in b4 someone posts his c*ck


doubt it would fit in the first page
 08-02-2013, 07:55 PM         #18
Cheeze 
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 jj01 said:
not surprised

hopefully he can be somewhat healthy. would be nice to see him play steady throughout the season.
I doubt they play him reguarly during the season like THAT

This is more so to help them against the verticality bullsh*t that is Roy Hibbert

Solid move tho for minimum
 4 years ago '12        #19
SHADOW 326 heat pts326
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$8,652 | Props total: 322 322
Lawrd half mercy on the league
 4 years ago '10        #20
smokinthe420 4 heat pts
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$15,424 | Props total: 6601 6601
The league is on lock for a quad-peat
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