Miami Heat Completes Mike Miller Signing

The Miami Heat has taken another major step forward in its attempt to build out its championship-caliber roster, by securing the services of Washington Wizards free agent swingman Mike Miller.

The 6-foot-8 three-point-shooting specialist agreed in principle nearly a week earlier to a five-year deal worth $29 million, but actually signed his contract today.

Miller is considered a vital part of Miami’s offseason plan, which started with the re-signing of Dwyane Wade and the additions of LeBron James — Miller’s close friend — and Chris Bosh. James said he wanted Miller to play with him, even talking the former University of Florida Gator into passing up higher-paying deals for a chance to sign with Miami.

Miller had been heavily pursued, reportedly receiving a five-year contracts from the Los Angeles Clippers and New York Knicks, each worth approximately $50 million, as well as interest from the Chicago Bulls and Cleveland Cavaliers.  But Miller’s future has hinged on LeBron’s, and he graciously took what appears to be a $20 million discount to make it happen.

James, Wade and Bosh did the rest, reducing their starting salaries by $3.5 million to accommodate Miller’s contract, which will start at exactly $5 million. They split the discount evenly, with each player reducing his starting salary by around $1.2 million, which equates to a $9 million sacrifice per player over the course of their six year deals. 

On the request of Wade, the three then further reduced their starting salaries by another $3.0 million to accommodate the five-year and $20 million contract of Miller’s good friend, and fellow Gator, Udonis Haslem. Wade reduced his starting salary a further $1.2 million ($9 million over six years) to accommodate Haslem, while James and Bosh reduced their salaries a further $900K ($7 million over six years).

“We took that stand first of all to say, ‘You know what Riley. We know you have a job to continue to build this team. So here you go. We’re going to take less money to do that,’ ” Wade said. “So we left money on the table for that to happen, and we got the guys that we wanted. We got the Mike Millers of the world, the Udonis Haslems of the world… And we’re still building.”

The plan is to surround Wade and James, the NBA’s most accomplished rim-attackers, with deadly perimeter shooting.

Miller, 30, is one of only two NBA players (Steve Nash) who shot better than 50% from the field, 40% from beyond the three-point line and 80% from the free throw line, while averaging at least 30 minutes of playing time, this past season. He made 48% of his 3-pointers last season for Washington, second-best in the NBA behind Kyle Korver.

Miller has quietly developed into one of the most versatile and efficient offensive players in the game today: He can shoot, he can drive, he can pass and he can rebound. He often plays more than one position during the course of a game, including a point-forward type role in some stretches.

Miller, perhaps the game’s ultimate floor-spacing wing player, figures to get big minutes alongside Wade, James and Bosh. At this point, Miller appears to be a logical sixth man candidate, but if the Heat elect for a small-ball approach, more exciting alternatives could avail themselves, whereby Bosh slides over to center, James to power forward, with Miller at his natural small forward position, Wade at his natural shooting guard position and a yet to be determined point guard. That could produce some of the greatest offensive basketball this game has ever seen.

4 Responses

  1. BillyRush says:

    Do we still ahve a chance to sign Raja Bell and Z ilgaskus?

  2. Albert says:

    Bell and Ilgauskas were each budgeted as minimum contract options. The chances of signing each remains as strong as it ever was.

  3. Remote Heat fan says:

    Let’s see if it is money or disliking Kobe that wins out.

    They can offer Bell more money, and yes, the taxes are a little bit of an impact.

    But does he want to come back home to Miami?

  4. Pimpin Lincoln says:

    Can’t really say I saw much of bell in the last couple of years. Saw him play kobe in the playoffs and that was great, but is he still the same player? I know he got hurt and was out for a good part of the season. Big Z would be nice to have. I think boston figured out how to play orlando. Don’t double D.Howard and foul him hard if he has easy shots lined up. For that though, I think maglore would be just fine. I guess I have to rewatch cleveland vs. orlando two years ago and see how Z did against Howard. I think beating orlando wont be as difficult with Bron and Wade because the one easy way of getting rid of howard is putting him on foul trouble and wade and bron should do just fine. I am more worried how the calvs and lakers matched up. Would be nice to rewatch those games and see what happened.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.