A Fresh Start For Oden In … Miami?

– For the latest updates check out: NBA.com’s Free Agent Tracker

HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS — When we spoke in June about wanting to see Greg Oden get a fresh start to this next phase of his career, we were absolutely sincere. We viewed it as a cathartic move for Oden that meant the same for the Portland Trail Blazers and their fans.

Too much has happened to Oden during his time with the Trail Blazers. The injuries and time missed because of them has left a scab that we’d just as soon everyone try to ignore and move on from, if at all possible.

But move on to what?

For Oden, could that next move include relocating to Miami?

Brian Windhorst of ESPN.com’s Heat Index reports that the Heat have interest in the restricted free agent big man, who is expected to be examined later this week to determine when he can return to contact action since his latest knee surgery. Sure, it sounds like a reality TV-dream waiting to happen, Oden teaming up with Miami’s Big 3 of LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh in their second season.

The Heat would certainly provide the fresh start we believe Oden needs. And he couldn’t pick a place more opposite than Portland in so many different ways. How realistic a move this could be will be determined by that examination later this week and by how serious Heat boss Pat Riley is about pursuing a big man with Oden’s injury history, as Windhorst explains:

Oden has a one-year qualifying offer from the Portland Trail Blazers for $8.9 million on his plate at the moment. The most the Heat could offer is the bulk of the $5 million mid-level exception.

For these reasons, it would seem like an easy choice for Oden if he can return to the floor, which could come as early as January. 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.

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.

It happened right up until March, when Mike Bibby gave up $6 million guaranteed for this season so he could sign with the Heat for a few months at a portion of the league minimum.

The Blazers maintain matching rights for Oden but sources say Riley still is interested in making the pitch.

It is apparently one of a number of options the team is considering. According to sources, they also have been in contact with free-agent centers NeneSamuel Dalembert and Kwame Brown.

The financial risk seems minimal compared to the potential rewards, provided Oden can resuscitate his career in a fashion that allows him to stay on the floor and use his sheer size to become a factor. And if we learned anything about the Heat during their run to The Finals last season, it’s that they need more of an inside presence than what we saw in the playoffs (no particular offense to Juwan Howard, Eric Dampier and HT fave Joel Anthony.)

At the same time, it seems a bit twisted to take Oden and thrust him into the fish bowl that will be the Heat locker room this year. If he wanted to find his game again, doing it somewhere without as much glare might make more sense.

Still, the voyeur in us can’t help but be intrigued by the idea of the Big 3 adding Oden to their mix …



  1. Y.S. says:

    hit should get rid of bosh, through amnesty and get a big guy (nene?) in the middle.

  2. Zzoe says:

    We way too sentimental about Oden up here–I wouldn’t have gave him no 8 mill for a year! I say if we get a dependable Joel Anthony or Samuel Dalembert over an UNDEPENDABLE Oden,–then do it, unless u wanna go first round and out again

  3. Cemran "The Kidd" Kirkpinar says:

    That is not an easy choice for both sides. But i doubt that after an injury that big, he would return at %100 power&efficiency..He was my potential go-to-guy when he was drafted though..

  4. Eric says:

    Another great scenario would be Gilbert Arenas being released and signing with Miami for the league minimum to become the PG for Miami, and Miami offering the mid-level exception between Battier and Dalembert! Thus creating a starting line up that is trying to give a PG a second chance at being one of the games best! While also giving Dalembert the chance to be exactly what he is, a rebounding shot blocker! Imagine a line up of:

    PG: Gilbert Arenas/Mario Chalmers
    SG: Dwayne Wade/Shane Battier
    SF: Lebron James/Mike Miller
    PF: Chris Bosh/Udonis Haslem
    C: Samuel Dalembert/Joel Anthoney

  5. Eric says:

    A more realistic Miami team than the ones already mentioned would be:

    PG: Chalmers (Great for steals) Bench: Eddie House
    SG: Dwayne Wade Bench: Shane Battier
    SF: Lebron James Bench: Mike Miller
    PF: Chris Bosh Bench: Udonis Haslem
    C: Samuel Dalembert Bench: Joel Anthoney

    This would take being able to sign BOTH Samuel Dalembert AND Shane Battier! I believe this would make the Miami Heat even more of a force to be reckoned with than it already is. Nene won’t sign as Miami can’t offer enough, Oden is an RFA and Kwame is a joke! Thus Dalembert would be the best choice. Battier would be a major improvement for the Heat off the bench!

  6. Chase says:

    I really think he should give it one more shot with Portland. Just knowing that the guy who got picked after our guy is now one of the NBA’s elite would make me want to give Oden another chance. Plus I love Greg Oden and haven’t given up on him yet, and seeing him on Miami would be a heart breaker.

  7. Kobex6 says:

    If this man signs with the Miami Heat he will lose the little respect I have for him. The Blazers put up with this 1st pick bust and even ignored some viable trades that would have put them in a better position than they’re in now. If he has a shred of decency he’ll stick with the people who stuck with him.

  8. heat2012champs says:

    If they got nene or oden at center and j.crawford to play pg they’d be unstopable
    That would make them unbielievable.
    (The only way they get nene if if he wants to win instead of getting more money. Oden is more realistic but injury prone.)

  9. Zach says:

    Greg Oden should sign some kind of contract for the Cavs and ignite his career there. Let’s Go Cavs!!!!!!!!

  10. Zzoe says:

    Don’t wait for Oden to get hurt again, afterwards u get zip from him but another contract eater. Trade him NOW. Many poster s on this blog say Oden “owes ” the Blazers a season–problem is, we ain’t got one outta him yet! There’s too many good big men (Marc Gasol, Nene, Dalembert, etc) that have proven more productive than Greg. Otherwise, Blazers, bet ready for about 15 games ’till he goes down again and like an over-the-hill boxer come playoff time–1st round and out!

  11. lakers^^ says:

    1.having a fresh start is like having a ruined relationship and saying “lets start over like nothing happened”. -______- not only is it immature but it is unrealistic.

    reason why oden will never live up to his potential (mind you i was a huge oden fan while playing for ohio) is because he’s not healthy; ill bet any amount of money this dude still plays xbox/ps3 all day (theres nothing wrong w/ that but common man your a professional athlete). he is too busy sending ppl text message pictures of who knows what.

    he would CRUMBLE in miami. and honestly if i was the heat organization i would never take him. that is a step back. a huge step back. if your the heat, you better pray to kobe that you can land NENE. that man is a beast and bet anything that if bosh plays next to nene you will see him way more aggressive.

    as for their pg issue im sticking with chalmers. if ur not satisfied then u better pray to kobe again that you land baron davis and get rid of ice cold bibby.

  12. JKY says:

    Greg oden = 50% of yao ming, excluding any shooting range and including they both have fragile knees
    Nene = 50% of shawn kemp
    Dalembert = 50% of mutombo

  13. Diablo99 says:

    I mean the heat better not get NeNe he is not that physical and gets pushed around by other big guys. Just look at the video above how Oden just grab that rebound from him and put it in the hole do you seriously want this guys to go against a Dwight Howard. LOL Kwame Brown but if his confidence could rise from where it is i’m pretty sure he can prove it to people he still can do something. All he would have to do is get Boards and block shots which i’m sure Spo and Pat will bring it out of him as for Dalambert he is a the perfect fit if he comes to the heat he could start and Anthony off the bench thats great defence. Marc Gasol i doubt the heat can afford this guy nor will he sign with em. Oden if he can remain healthy this time around and stay healthy he can easily get a max contract with the type of talent he poses. He owes Portland though big time big big time. If he comes to the heat and remains healthy i doubt anyone will be able to beat the heat in 7 games if not 6 or maybe the heat might turn into the Lakers when they had Karl Malone, Gary Payton, Kobe, Shaq nd Fisher their where more i just forget their names remember when they got beat by the pistons.

  14. Me says:

    lol @ people still hating lebron. get a life. anyways i bet riley is slick enough to grab nene or oden. the man is a evil genious with multiple rings

  15. juan2010 says:

    I reckon sign oden, trade bosh

  16. BlazeTrails says:

    We have to remember Greg has only played 82 games since being drafted in 07. We don’t even know what kind of NBA player he will be, we know he is big and played well in college against people his age but this is the big time. If he is smart he will tka e the money and develop his game in a city that will come to rejoice him if he shows Portland the same respect they have showed him. Don’t be a fool Greg, Take the money develope your game and see where you want to play when your back on top of your game.

  17. Myers306 says:

    And by the way, I agree with many of the other comments about Oden. It is to much of a risk with his injuries.

  18. Myers306 says:

    Im not so much worried about the HEAT getting Oden, he would be a great addition, but Anthony is a good rebounder and defender. All that I am worried about is them getting Battier, he would be a great addition to the HEAT’s offense and defense

  19. Everyone for got its a 66 game season. this year would be the year to get such great talent, even if he’s injured prone….

  20. Ghost says:

    ODEN to the SPURS… DALEMBERT to the HEAT… NENE to the KNICKS… HOWARD to the LAKERS???

  21. a says:

    I think miami should get Tim Duncan to grab some rebounds and experience as well.

  22. Benoit says:

    Nene would also be a great fit in Miami

  23. karo says:

    Oden should consider PHOENIX SUNS as they could resurrect him as they did to AMAR’e

  24. Spamtastic says:

    if i were Oden i will transfer to miami heat becoz miami has a chance to go in finals and maybe miami will become champion this year if he will join in miami.. its better to have a champion ring before players will retire in nba when they get old. if miami will become champion this season and and Oden joined them thats the time he will demand of increasing his salary and more teams will offer him if plays good in miami.. 😀

  25. Tom says:

    the heat can sign oden, but they better watch out for injuries coming from him

  26. Byrdman says:

    I think Oden will stay in Portland because he owes to much loyalty to them for all he has been through…Nene will be a in New York along with CP3; which will put them over Miami. Dalembert is an average center and can run the floor, but he gets pushed around easily when posted up and is not consistent..and I know because I am a Sixers fan and that is why we got rid of him..just like we need allot of changes still. The best thing for the Heat is to see if they can get Marc Gasol who might come cheap or see if big Z would come out of retirement and play him more than they did before..Another solution is if the Big 3 take another big pay cut fr the team to go after Tyson Chandler, but that’s unlikely since he wants to go back to Dallas..maybe they can trade a draft pick to Dallas and get Haywood.

  27. barelylegalCORN says:

    taking oden should be a good move for miami…he could give confusion to opposing teams because he looks like lebron….

  28. JohnZ says:

    God,if your out there,you will send Kwame Brown to Miami.You gave them the Big Three,now it’s time to give them the Minus One.

  29. Jonsey says:

    signing oden would be awesome for him and the heat. he is only 23 remember, he could become an all star within a couple of injury free months or years. did i just read the words kwame and brown? if the heat sign him i no longer will be a heat supporter, seriously.

  30. lebron mafia says:

    what if heat sign tyson chandler and waive anthony

  31. lebron mafia says:

    what if the heat trade bosh for pau gasol beacause bosh is not a good rebounder but pau is

  32. lebron mafia says:

    how about the heat trade bosh and get howard or pau gasol that would be exiting but unrealistic

  33. MaFox says:

    i lol’d when i saw kwame’s name

  34. Green Archer says:

    Miami is a great team but they are just relying on outside shots, wherein other teams are dominating the board that decrease their offensive set. A strong, Dominant, Physical Big man inside will bring relief to all Miami fans. Greg is qualified however, morally speaking, he has to prove Portland first two thing, He is worthy or not. One more season Greg for Portland, let the people of Portland judge you, keep yourself healthy and play-a-monster as you are way back in your college days, then if you do so and still they are not satisfied then have a taste of other team who’ll surely appreciate your caliber. Dalembert or Nene would have the nice fit for the Team, signing this two would be a great Idea but it’s business, so I’ll pick Dalembert, He is fit for this running-team, I’m not saying Nene can’t do the same thing but money wise, Miami should take a thrift shift somehow now as a preparation for more team changes in the future. If Nene will sign, then it’s a good decision of His, but if not, let’s respect him. Personally, I want a Bosh trade, Tyson is a great Trade for Bosh, but Tyson will play forward. PG- Chalmers SG- Wade SF- James PF- Chandler C- Nene/ Dalembert … it’ll be magnificent.

    • jesse says:

      chandler for the boshtrich no way chandler great in finals last year defensively but bosh better all around

  35. Jon says:

    I use to be a Heat fan. However, all of the individuals who out of the blue became Heat fans, after Le’Bron signed, make me sick. Therefore, I hope they don’t get any of the centers they are pursing and have another wasted season. 🙂

  36. robbay2 says:

    the heat should just settle for dalmbert anyways, he looked great last season and is quite sturdy. I would lol if somehow they got nene, I dont see how that would work out with bosh and him.

  37. robbay2 says:

    if oden takes a contract that is even a dollar above the lowest amount possible in whatever cba this is now, and THEN gets injured again

    I am going to cry.

  38. Rage_Quit says:

    LOL I know the national media likes to ignore us and NBA.com has dubbed Portland a remote outpost in the past, but at least do a little homework before you back rumors to gather site hits. Big market bias still going strong at NBA.com. Oden is an RFA as you well know, and the heat can only offer up to the full MLE, please let this be true and have Riley make that offer so the blazers can match that offer, blazer fans definitely deserve locking this guy up for the next 4 years at 5-6 mill a year though so maybe just this being posted will lead someone as obvlivious as David Kahn to somehow make this offer and allow us to match, if Oden were to sign that offer sheet.

  39. ronald says:

    i think… dalembert would be ok for miami…..

  40. Jimmy Flywheel Naismith says:

    Portland is comitted to giving Oden 9+ mil right now and can match any offer. If Oden accepts a 5 mil offer from Miami, Portland will say, “thanks for saving us 4 mil!” Stupid article! If Riley talks to him it will be about next year.

  41. Nixon says:

    Portland would be stuped if they do that . that would give miami its championship all you need from greg is 20 games in the playoff

  42. God says:

    Oden playing with Aldridge would be a lot better than oden and duncan playing on the same team. Duncan is old now and can’t play defense against better power forwards in the league

  43. blackmamba24 says:

    i would like Oden to go to any team besides the Heat and be on that loser team with LeBroom. Seriously, but I dont think Blazers are going to let him go, they’re gonna give him another year to reedem his self.

  44. 17,6 says:

    on paper i’ll repeat it again ON PAPER felton, a healthy roy or a overachieving wes matthews, g. wallace batum off the bench, aldridge and oden wit veteran camby off the bench sounds pretty nice no durant westbrooke and harden but hey u never know i say he sticks around and like one of u said earlier said in this blog he kinda owes it 2 portland common

  45. guy says:

    The best move for Oden is to go to the heat, where he doesn’t have to consistently pound the ball in paint and doesn’t have to do anything but grab rebounds and since Bosh “bulked up” doesn’t have to play heavy minutes in the back-to-back-to-back games and relieve stress on his joints

  46. Lapinnoir says:

    Sekou What are you smoking?

  47. Chris says:

    How about a trip to San Antonio, twin towers version 2? Coach Pop and the team are more than capable of renewing Oden’s career. Oden you out there? Think about it?

  48. michael paras says:

    how about a trade from chris bosh. he is a thin player who sannot rebound for tyson chandler… heat pls sign chandler

  49. cactusbylin says:

    With the Heat having so much offensive talent, Odem would only need to scrape the defensive boards and kick it out for the fast break. That would alleviate the stress of having to be dominant on both ends of the floor, which would reduce the chance of re-injury. In other words, his job would be much easier with the Heat. I like Pat’s strategy on this trade.

  50. bob says:

    I think greg oden should stay in portland he truly does owe them a season. i think the heat will do better with Nene than oden.

  51. Simond says:

    I don’t think Oden would be a perfect fit for the up tempo Miami team… With how the team plays I would doubt he will be able to finish even a half of the season (this season which is very short) without being injured… I would rather have Nene in the middle complimenting the 3 stars… That would be very unbeatable…

    • NBEATZ says:

      Dalembert would be the perfect fit for this team, he is a proven center ready for running the floor, finishing around the basket, blocking shots and changing much more. He played with the running sixers, the young and fast kings last year. He is good for 8-10 point, 8-10 rebs and about two block shots a game. He can gaurd most power forwards at times, and he has the heigth, lenght and streangth to go up against almost all centers in the leaque, (Howard).
      Dalembert is 30 years old and has 3-5 good years left in him. He is willing to come play with Miami and is wanting that ring. get him and multiple rings will come to miami, bron, wade and bosh.

  52. riley says:

    wow if they got nene that’d be insane:
    PG: Chalmers
    SG: Wade
    SF: James
    PF: Bosh
    C: Nene

    that team would finish 1st or 2nd seed in east NO DOUBT
    but i doubt nene will be a heat

  53. wdf says:

    love Jesus

  54. DrPepper434343 says:

    That would be sick, too sick.

  55. QueenJAMEsCHOKE says:

    —>who cares.. they’ll choke anyway.. Miami will never win a title ever again.. not 1.. not 2.. not 3.. BUT NOTHING.. this isn’t childs play Lechoke James…you have to cry like Bosh with blood to win..Miami Heat is a bunch of losers.. no offense Riley.. Maybe you should get the BIG 15 roster just to win..ur big three is a JOKE!

  56. Lanre says:

    I think that Oden would be better off with a promising team like the Knicks. I personally do not like Ronny Turiaf, and I don’t think he should be a starter on any team. We should sign Oden and get rid of Shelden Williams, Jared Jefferies, and Roger Mason. I would also sign both Shumpert and Harrelson to their rookie contracts. If we get Oden and trim off all of the fat, the Knicks can become a contender in the East.

    • Blackmamba24 says:

      You wish….You’ll never get thru Celtics, Heat or Bulls… but atleast you BELIEVE…


    • RedRiddler says:

      Sign Oden? and how do you expect to do that? Oden is a RESTRICTED free agent, meaning if you guys offer him a contract and he accepts Portland has 3 days to match… the only thing you can offer is Full MLE (5 years 20 million) Which the Trailblazers have emphatically said they would match within the hour…so good luck with your PF who’s knees are up next year 40 minutes per gamehahahaha………..

  57. Look suckers. You guys need top realize the truth. If Oden can go in a heat training camp with fastbreaks every play, pick and roll, a coach yelling at you to finish on turnovers then talk with oden Heat. Dalmebert is a way better choice because he’s more healthy. Pat riley will not be able to work his magic with Nene, but Dalemebrt has already said playt in Miami “would be fantastic”, Let’s get thest three centers in a Miami Heat workout and then choose. Don’t choose someone we’ll regret. I’m the leading score at my Grayslake High school, i know which guys are worth talking about and which guys are just backup nobody’s.

  58. riverman says:

    Oden owes Portland big time. They have put all the effort into getting this guy back on the floor and paid him a bundle to rehab. If he lieaves Portland, I’ll be extremely disappointed. He’ll become Darius Miles to every Portland fan. Portland has a deeper team than Miami period! Miami needs to understand that they gave all their cash to 3 guys already. This is sort of what the lockout was all about anyway. Portland is a small market and the big guys can’t dismantle the smaller markets every season. They should be trying to get Pryzbilla.

  59. God says:

    Oden’s gonna stay in Portland. So dream all you want Miami. Cuz it ain’t happening.

    • Greg says:

      +1. Miami is at the cap already isnt it? and greg is gonna be pricey, so you’d have to get rid of like 5 players to fund him.

  60. Homer Page says:

    A fit, healthy Oden would be a God-send for any team, especially the Heat as they are in desperate need of a quality big man. And he is young too, which would give them someone going forward. But I just dont know if I can trust his banged up knees to get thru an entire season and deep into the playoffs…..reminds me of Shaq in 2010 – The Cavs were killing it all year, 60+ wins, LeBron back to back MVPs….then Shaq gets thrown into the lineup for the Boston series and the entire team collapses – Shaqs injuries throughout the season left him unfit and unprepared for the playoffs….same thing happened last year with Mike Miller, and I dont want it to happen this year with Oden.

    • Gary says:

      Yes it’s a big gamble for anyone to take Oden. I don’t understand Miami’S thinking because they have Z who is 7 ft and can shoot. They just need to work him into their system better.

  61. Nate` says:

    i’ll puke seeing oden in a miami jersey. after all we’ve put into this dude, that would be so effed.

  62. Martin from Austria says:

    I know it sounds unrealistic, but maybe Riley and the Heat can work their magic once again.

  63. William says:

    Hate to say it, but Greg kind of owes Portland at least one season.

  64. Gary says:

    Miami is my favorite east team and Portland my favorite west team. If he’s able to play on either I’ll be happy.

    • David says:

      Oden looks like he is 45 yrs old, lol. It will be nice for miami to get him, but frankly he is not worth anything above 4 million due to his chronic injuries. Miami will have to find another center if they plan on getting oden.

  65. SuperCactus says:

    I literally laughed when I read that after saying Oden, you have to include Nene, Dalembert and…. Kwame Brown, who doesn’t deserve to even be in conversation with these guys, let alone being considered to be payed money to play basketball. If the Heat sign Kwame I may just eat my goddamn clothing

  66. Blueprint says:

    Miami’s talking with every single free agent center this season LOL.