The Miami Heat pulled off a stunning coup by uniting LeBron James and Chris Bosh with Dwyane Wade. There are countless angles to the story that are being explored, but the one I'm focused on is whether the Heat will be able to contend for a title in year one.
The Heat will have many challenges, from whether coach Erik Spoelstra can handle three big egos, to who will take the last shot in games, and whether there are enough touches to satisfy all three players.
But these are problems any team would love to have. The challenge that will immediate concern the Heat is getting a full rotation together.
After trading away Michael Beasley to Minnesota, the Heat currently have one player under contract, Mario Chalmers. The Heat also have a qualifying offer for big man Joel Anthony, as well as three second round draftees, Dexter Pittman, Jarvis Varnado, and Da'Sean Butler.
But the Heat don't want to depend on second round rookies to make the rotation. The problem of course is whether they'll have enough cap space to plug their remaining holes.
We still don't know how much of a pay cut James, Wade and Bosh are going to take, and we have to assume that most remaining signings will be at or near the veteran's minimum. So who can the Heat get to fill out their roster for the right price that will fill their needs?
Update: The Heat managed to sign Bosh and James to sign and trade deals, which allows them to give them a 6th year and bigger yearly raises. With this extra money, Bosh and James were willing to sign for a starting salary of $14.5 million.
It appears that Mike Miller and Udonis Haslem will be the primary beneficiaries of this. However, the Heat had to give up four first round draft picks in these two deals. Granted, these picks are likely to be low, but that means the pressure is on to use the money now to put together a quality rotation.
In the next Collective Bargaining Agreement, the mid-level exception might be axed, so without future draft picks, the Heat really need to pick the right players now.