The Miami Heat have already had a busy offseason by signing sharpshooters Ray Allen and Rashard Lewis, but they still have a little room to solidify their rotation. Not only would bringing in Andray Blatche give Miami a solid rebounder to boost the frontcourt depth, but the signing also has a lot of potential to be a key factor down the stretch.
Blatche, coming off a rather disappointing season, has yet to reach his prime years at the ripe age of 25. The near seven-footer has great athleticism for his size, meaning he could keep up with Miami's run-and-gun approach. At the price Miami could grab him for, consider the potential signing to be a steal.
The Heat could really use some more size in the paint defensively, and Blatche would be a factor for now. He's not the best one-on-one defender and does lack some strength, but he has underrated ability when it comes to being an asset. Putting him with a team built around defense would only help draw out his ability to be productive.
While this signing still wouldn't benefit Miami's need for a legitimate center, there isn't much available for them to snag right now. Names like Darko Milicic linger but do not fit the playing style that suits the Heat best.
However, what Blatche does bring to the table is a guy who can score in bunches and give Miami that sizable option off the bench. He's not going to dominate the paint, but he can stretch the floor and draw defenders out. He's a streaky shooter but should get plenty of opportunities to knock down shots with the team's ability to utilize role players.
Blatche has had some character issues, yes, but I'll reiterate the fact that he's only 25 years old. After being amnestied by the Washington Wizards recently, look for him to show he can be an asset on and off the floor.
The talent is there, but Blatche must prove he can avoid being a distraction off the floor. Putting him around guys with high character and winning ways should benefit the forward in many ways.
Seeing as the Syracuse native hasn't drawn much interest in the free-agency field, it is likely for him to settle on a one-year veteran league minimum deal. If he doesn't prove to be valuable to Miami, it's not going to tear the team apart morally or financially,
Blatche has to realize this would be a golden opportunity for him. Not only could this deal let him be a contributing part of a championship contender, but it could be the rejuvenation needed to get his once-promising career back on track.
Miami doesn't need Blatche to win their second consecutive NBA championship. They already have a core that meshes well together and a group that can shoot the lights out while running the floor. However, he would only add to the list of players who could be weapons when called upon.
We all witnessed how much the loss of Chris Bosh hurt Miami in last year's playoffs. The Heat had struggles finding that third option to be a consistent scorer, which almost became a factor in a potential early exit. It wouldn't be a stretch to say Blatche could be a bulk scorer who stepped up if this exact unfortunate situation happened again.
While Ray Allen will likely lead the bench unit in scoring, Blatche is a high-reward guy who would not alter Miami's winning approach. Giving the young forward a chance would only make the Heat a deeper team with another option off the bench to be an asset.