Reporting Tim Kephart
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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Now that the Miami Heat has secured the services of sharpshooter Ray Allen for the next three years, it leaves the team with little to offer other veterans. Still, more veteran stars are coming to visit the team in free agency.
Sixteen-year veteran center Marcus Camby is set to visit the heat on Saturday, according to Ethan Skolnick of the Palm Beach Post. Then on Sunday, the Heat will welcome 6’11” swingman Rashard Lewis in for a free agent visit.
Camby and Lewis have both made more than $100 million throughout their careers. If both wanted to sign as free agents with the Heat, both would be paid the veteran minimum of $1.35 million for next season.
Like Allen, Camby is nearing 40 years old. Still, Camby averaged 9 rebounds per game last season and nearly 1.5 blocks per game. Down the stretch for Houston, Camby averaged 24 minutes per game and scored 7 points and grabbed 9.3 rebounds per game.
If the Heat can convince Camby to take less money, it will arguably have the most complete roster of any team in the NBA. But, Camby has several suitors and can get more money elsewhere. Then again, as Skolnick pointed out, the Heat could try to increase their offer in a sign-and-trade for Camby.
Then there is Lewis. He was a shell of his former self last season while dealing with a knee injury that forced him out for the season in late February. New Orleans acquired Lewis’ horrible contract last season and bought it out at the end of the year for more than $13 million.
Lewis would be brought in for a similar role as Ray Allen, hit the open perimeter shots. For his career, Lewis shoots 39 percent from behind the 3-point line and is an 81 percent free throw shooter. Lewis averages 16.1 points and 5.6 rebounds per game for his career.
Unlike in his former stops, Lewis would come off the bench and give Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra more shooters to play with if LeBron James or Dwyane Wade is off the court.
Don’t put it past Heat president Pat Riley to pull off signing either or both of these players. He’s proven that he is the best recruiter/closer in all of sports by signing the Big Three, Shane Battier, and now Ray Allen.
If he can acquire Camby, the Heat is the Eastern Conference favorites starting today, if they weren’t already. Add Lewis on top of that, and other teams may start to just throw their hands up saying it’s just not fair anymore.