Miami Heat Rumors: Latest Buzz on Potential Free-Agent Signings and More

Sam Richmond@srichmond93Correspondent IJuly 31, 2014

Miami Heat Rumors: Latest Buzz on Potential Free-Agent Signings and More

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    Although they lost LeBron James to the Cleveland Cavaliers, the Miami Heat have remained a staple in the NBA's rumor mill throughout the latter stages of the offseason.

    With the team having three roster spots remaining and details continuing to emerge about James' exit, there's plenty going on that involves the Heat right now.

    We're going to take a look at the latest buzz around the team, which includes information such as possible free-agent targets and how LeBron might have misled team president Pat Riley and Co.

Heat Want to Add Wing Player and Big Man

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    Pat Riley stated on Wednesday that the Heat are interested in adding a wing and a big.

    "The one area we want to shore up is another perimeter player who can swing between 2 and 3, maybe 2, 3, 4. We’re not in a rush now. Another wing man and also another big. We’ll be scanning the market," he told reporters.

    Acquiring a shooting guard to play behind Wade is a must given the current state of the roster, so Riley's admission shouldn't exactly surprise anyone.

    While the Heat have already have Chris Bosh, Udonis Haslem, Josh McRoberts, Chris Andersen and Justin Hamilton in the fold, Miami could certainly use some insurance down low as well.

Heat Considering Bringing Back Michael Beasley and Greg Oden

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    Two guys that ultimately could fulfill Miami's desire to add another wing and big are former Heat players Greg Oden and Michael Beasley.

    Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald reported on July 25 that Miami was entertaining the possibility of re-signing both players.

    Riley confirmed the interest on Wednesday, saying Beasley remains "a consideration" and Oden is "still on our board."

    It's fair to say that Beasley and Oden disappointed last season with the Heat. By the end of the year, the two were benchwarmers who didn't contribute throughout the playoffs.

    With that said, Miami is running out of options at this point. Beasley and Oden are young and boast potential, which could result in both returning.

    Beasley averaged 7.9 points and 3.1 rebounds while Oden averaged 2.9 points and 2.3 rebounds last season.

Heat Have Interest in Chris Douglas-Roberts

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    According to Jackson, another wing player Miami's considering is former Charlotte Bobcat Chris Douglas-Roberts. 

    While Douglas-Roberts isn't a game-changing player, he has the type of versatility that the Heat would want. He's a capable defender and, at 6'7", is able to guard shooting guards and small forwards. He also emerged as a solid three-point shooter this past season, which is a valued ability in Miami's offense.

    Douglas-Roberts averaged 6.9 points (44 percent shooting from the field and 38.6 percent shooting from beyond the arc) and 2.4 rebounds per game with Charlotte in 2013-14.

    As a no-risk, veteran's-minimum-salary signing, Douglas-Roberts would be a fine pickup.

Heat Will Play Cavaliers on Christmas Day

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    Jackson also reported that LeBron will almost certainly make his first trip back to the AmericanAirlines Arena on Christmas Day.

    "Though the NBA’s schedule will not be finalized and released until mid-August, an unofficial internal schedule of select games has Cleveland playing the Heat in Miami on Christmas on ABC, according to a person familiar with the situation," he wrote.

    Besides James' first game in Cleveland, a Heat-Cavaliers Christmas Day game would likely be the most anticipated game of the regular season.

    This is basically a no-brainer for the NBA's schedule-makers, so consider us truly shocked if this isn't included in the final schedule.

Did Pat Riley Feel Misled by LeBron James?

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    It's fairly well-known that the Heat were confident throughout James' free-agency process that he was returning to Miami.

    According to Jackson, it appears that confidence in part stemmed from LeBron not telling Riley to operate as if he weren't coming back:

    Riley said he went into free agency "with the thought he was coming back. I was selling that to players.”

    He told LeBron before free agency he would tell players that. “He never said to me, No don’t do that. I went in with that premise and found out on the 10th [that wasn’t going to happen]. We were both very shocked when he did not come back. I was thinking all along he would come back.”

    While Riley said he didn't feel misled by James, it would seem the opposite is true when reading between the lines.

    "There wasn’t anything in that meeting that told me that wasn’t going to happen [that LeBron was going to leave]," he said in reference to a July 9 meeting with James.

    Still, Riley mentioned that LeBron was not responding to his texts and emails, so there were certainly signs James was heading elsewhere.