Miami Heat 2013 NBA Free-Agency Primer: What You Need to Know

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Miami Heat 2013 NBA Free-Agency Primer: What You Need to Know
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

It's understood that LeBron James and the rest of the Miami Heat need a long and deserved break after taking home their second consecutive title in thrilling fashion, but it certainly doesn't ease the anxiety and withdrawals the fanbase is dealing with due to there being a lack of basketball.

The summer league that begins July 13th will quell that anxiousness, but there's also a free-agency period that should draw plenty of interest. Although the Heat aren't likely to make as big a splash as last year when they signed Ray Allen and Rashard Lewis, or possibly even the year before when they signed Shane Battier, there is a sense of urgency from this offseason that could carry over into 2014.

In 2014, the Big Three will be eligible to opt out of their current contracts and become free agents. Not only that, but several key players will be facing the possibility of retirement, which would leave the Heat down a number of pieces of its supporting cast.

Consider this year's offseason as one that will be utilized for winning now and later. The Heat obviously don't want to be stagnant, but they also have to be cost-effective, choosing players who are willing to accept a minor role on the bench without complaint. It's unlikely Dwight Howard will be joining the Heat, but who knows by this point. Still, there will be several names that could entice Miami into making a deal.

Outside of free agency, the Heat will also have decisions to make of their own within the organization. They have two players who will become free agents, as well as two players whose salaries being cut or traded away could greatly help the Heat come the time when luxury tax begins playing a factor.

The Heat will remain quiet over the next few weeks as they wait for the league's 29 other teams to make their moves. Once all of the primary meat is gone, the Heat will be there to pick the bones and find whatever remnants that could possibly serve a purpose on next year's team.

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