Reporting Tim Kephart
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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – The NBA’s 3 p.m. trade deadline has come and gone and not surprisingly, the Miami Heat was not players this year. But, business may be about to pick up for the Heat as some veteran players may be about to be bought out of overpriced deals.
Chief among the players who the Heat will be highly anticipating having his contract bought out will be center Chris Kaman of the New Orleans Hornets.
Kaman’s contract with New Orleans is high and the Hornets could free up a lot of salary cap space with a buyout. If that happens, the nearly 30-year-old Kaman will be getting a recruiting phone call from Heat president Pat Riley.
If Kaman is willing to play for the minimum, he could be the final piece of the puzzle for the Heat to make the charge for an NBA Championship.
Kaman stands 7’ and weighs in the neighborhood of 265 pounds. He’d provide the Heat with a big body to bang around the boards with some of the Eastern Conference’s best centers.
This season, Kaman has been playing just fewer than 29 minutes a game and is averaging 12.7 points, 8.3 rebounds, and 2.1 assists per game. For his career, Kaman averages 12 points, 8.3 rebounds, and 1.3 assists per game.
But, all is not lost if Kaman doesn’t choose the Heat. There’s another big body, whose name should be familiar to Heat fans that may become available shortly.
Jermaine O’Neal, 6’11” and 255 pounds, was seeking a trade from the Boston Celtics up until the trade deadline Thursday. O’Neal asked that if he couldn’t be traded that his contract be bought out.
Multiple reports said that if O’Neal’s contract were bought out by the Celtics, he’d like to come back to Miami to play for the Heat.
While the 15-year veteran isn’t the caliber player Kaman is, he’s still a better big man than anyone the Heat have on the roster, which doesn’t say a lot for the Heat’s roster.