5 Biggest Threats to Miami Heat as Free Agency Opens

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5 Biggest Threats to Miami Heat as Free Agency Opens
Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports
Pat Riley has made it clear -- he wants Chris Andersen back.

Pat Riley grew up watching Dr. Richard Kimble run.

Lately, that chase from the 60s' television show The Fugitive has resonated with the Miami Heat president:

We’re the fugitive, and they’re still coming after us. And that motivates the hell out of me. It really does, because I don't want to get caught, not with what we have. And I don't want the players feeling like they can get caught, either. That's why the improvement needs to come from within and we need to be smart about what we're doing.

They do, but they can't do all that much during this free agency period, not while already being over the salary cap and luxury tax limits.

The Heat have already received some good news in Ray Allen's decision to opt for a second season in Miami when the veteran marksman could have held out for a raise or even signed elsewhere.

As free agency opened on July 1, the Heat were poised to push for the return of Chris "Birdman" Andersen, who was signed at midseason and provided a spark on the floor as well as in the locker room.

Andersen will turn 35 on July 7, but Riley believes that Andersen has a couple of more good years in him. The question is whether Andersen, who is still receiving payments from his Denver Nuggets' buyout, will accept the $1.7 million veteran minimum, the $3.2 mini-midlevel exception or seek more loot elsewhere.

Other than that, Miami will kick the tires on a few players, notably former No. 1 overall pick Greg Oden, and see if it can add one more piece for another title run.

And the Heat will watch others chase, hoping they're just chasing their tails, like Lieutenant Gerard chased Kimble.

What, and who, should the Heat be watching most closely? Let's take a look.

 

All quotes acquired through the author's coverage of the Miami Heat for the Palm Beach Post.

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