The Heat continue to shock the world with their amazing 2010 Summer. I am not sure how they are pulling this off. But they continue to bring in players to a team that has already has 3 of the best players in the League. It is just simply amazing. There is one of three things going on here. Either the Heat truly are possessing “magic” and just doing an amazing job. Secondly, these guys could all just be extremely selfless people striving to get a title. Which would be a truly beautiful thing. Or thirdly, something fishy is going on. Like a John Calipari type of sketchyness.
Most thought it would be impossible to get Wade, James, and Bosh on the same team. They did that. Then they signed seasoned veteran Mike Miller. The former Florida standout has been in the League for 10 years now and made nearly 10 million in salary last season. Next, the Heat somehow magically got Udonis Haslem or UD as they call him in Miami to come back. Udonis has spent all 7 of his years in the League with the Heat. This guy is a solid player who is entering his prime and made a little over 7 million in salary last season. Today, the saga continued with the announcement that 12 year NBA veteran and a teammate of James for the last 7, Zydrunas Ilgauskas will be in South Beach next season.
Now none of these 3 guys are All Stars. But they are all seasoned veterans who will help this team get to that championship level. Had Derek Fisher have signed with this Heat team, then I would have gone nuts. I am very reluctant to believe that there is completely fair play going on here, but I also realize that the League is watching this all with a very close microscope. So I thought about rolling through the numbers:
The NBA Salary Cap this year is right around 58 million. Currently the Heat have 7 players on the roster.
Haslem due to his experience would have to make a minimum of 1, 146,337 this year. He made over 7 million last year. Udonis was signed to a deal of 4 million per year. Mike Miller due to his 10+ years of experience would make a minimum of 1.3 million. He made a little less than 10 million last year. Miller signed for around 6 million per year. Ilgauskas also due to his experience would make a minimum of 1.3 million. Lets also not forget that Lebron, Wade, and Bosh all made nearly 16 million last year apiece. They each took a cut in order to help make this happen. All 3 of them will be making around 14.6 million a year, which is 2 million less than the max of 16.6 that they could have made. Wade has stated that he would be fine making around 11 million a year. Finally, the Heat have Mario Chalmers. The former Kansas Jayhawk is set to make around 756,000 or 800,000 this year.
So between these 6 guys, 55.8 million in cap room would be used if Ilgauskas takes the minimum possible salary. So did Miller take 4 million less than he made last year to win a title? Did Udonis take 3 million less than he made last year as he is entering his prime to win a title?
Could there be something going on? I am honestly not sure and I hope not. I know that Pat Riley is a mastermind and one of the finest coaches and executives of all time. Possibly these guys could be demonstrating that sport is about winning and not about the money. Which would be an extremely selfless and commendable act.
I am very curious to see how the rest of the roster gets filled out. Realize that all rookies signed this year make a minimum of $473,604. There are a good 5 more roster spots left. Should be very interesting to see how this works out.
Perhaps the “Magic” has moved from Orlando to Miami in the East?
Stay tuned for the next edition of Sportskraze.