Miami Heat: Is Erick Dampier The Missing Piece For a Heat Championship

Aly SomaniContributor INovember 8, 2010

Miami Heat bound?
Miami Heat bound?Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

On October 29, 2010, Erick Dampier signed a one-year deal worth $2.08 million with the Houston Rockets. Oddly, 9 days later on November 7, the Houston Rockets and Erick Dampier decided not to go through with the contract.

The 15-year veteran, who played the last six years with the Dallas Mavericks and was waived by the Charlotte Bobcats this summer, Dampier, is once again on the market. In the six seasons with the Mavs, Dampier averaged 6.6 points and 7.6 rebounds.

Prior to the pick up by the Rockets, Dampier was linked to rumors with the Phoenix Suns and theToronto Raptors. But let’s be honest, both of those teams are not doing any damage this season even if they make it to the playoffs.

If Erick Dampier is looking for the perfect marriage which will lead him to his first ring, he has to consider the Miami Heat. Conversely, if the Heat want to seriously compete in a championship series against the likes of Shaq, Kendrick Perkins, Boozer (when he returns), and Superman (Dwight Howard), then Chris Bosh and Joel Anthony are not going to cut it. The Heat need some serious help inside; for instance, Bosh and his fellow big men average 41.7 rebounds a game, which ranks 19th in the NBA.

Bosh has become a no factor on the boards as he averages 5.5 rebounds a game thus far this season. Last season, that figure was 10.8 with Toronto.

He currently ranks third on the team in rebounding, behind Haslem who averages 8.3 and Wade who averages 5.8.  Couple that with Joel Anthony, who although is not a $100 million dollar man like Bosh, is no better averaging 4.1 rebounds per game. 

If the Heat are going to contend against the elite teams in this league, they are going to have to match their offensive prowess with solid rebounding. Their expectations are high, and as such need to consider that Championship teams like the Lakers and Celtics are made of efficient and effective role players.

Erick Dampier could be that missing piece. At his best, he averaged 12 boards a game. With an extra boost of youth by the determination of Miami’s big three, Dampier could get his numbers close to 8 boards a game. Dampier at center means that Bosh could play to his strengths on the mid range area and great floor spacing for the Heat. 

All things considered, with the Heat’s big’s falling asleep on the boards, the potential perfect marriage between the Miami Heat and Erick Dampier could lead to a ring for both parties. Time for Riley to make another great move.