NBA  > General NBA  > Aldridge: Dampier to sign one-year deal with Heat
November 22, 2010, 11:26 PM
A struggling Miami Heat team will look to shore up the loss of center Udonis Haslem by signing veteran center Erick Dampier on Tuesday to a one-year contract, a league source confirmed Monday night.

The 35-year-old Dampier was in Miami Monday and will sign Tuesday assuming there are no problems with his physical.

Sources had said earlier this month that Dampier had agreed to a one-year deal with the Rockets for the bi-annual cap exception of $2.08 million, but the deal fell apart. League sources maintain that Dampier preferred signing with the Heat or another title contender and wanted to wait and see if a need developed. It did in Miami when Haslem tore a ligament in his left foot during Saturday's loss in Memphis to the Grizzlies.

Haslem is expected to miss several months after having surgery on Tuesday. Miami only has one seven-footer on its roster in veteran center Zydrunas Ilgauskas, and has been hurt on the interior during the first month of the season.

Dampier was waived by Charlotte in September after the Bobcats were unable to find a team willing to take on the final year of his $13 million contract. But the deal was not guaranteed, so Charlotte didn't spend any actual money, and got below the expected luxury tax threshold by getting the contract off its books. The Bobcats had acquired Dampier from Dallas earlier in the summer in a trade that sent center Tyson Chandler to the Mavericks.

CBSsports.com first reported that Dampier had agreed to a contract with Miami.
November 22, 2010  11:28 PM ET

Desperate times in Miami! Question is, will it work out?

November 23, 2010  12:40 PM ET

Look...the math is simple...

Miami has an ENTIRELY new team. I knew it would take time to gel all the pieces together...now, granted, I didnt see them losing this many games this early, but its not like they stink either.

Miller went down, who is ONLY the best 3pt shooter over the last 3 seasons in the NBA. Then Wade has been sick and hurt...toss in Haslem going down now.

I still think it is January before it all comes together but Boston showed last season that you can have a ho-hum regular season and make a deep run when it counts.

I think Dampier will be a good addition for Miami defense-wise and rebounding.

Once Haslem returns, I think you will see Dampier playing a lot more Center with big Z coming off the pine.

Think about it:

James, Wade and Miller outside with Bosh and Haslem/Dampier inside closing out games.

That combo of 6 men has 2 missing and 1 hurt.

That will effect any team.

November 23, 2010  05:35 PM ET

Well, I always thought that since LeBron signed with the Heat, that both LeBron and Wade would be cancelling each other out. With a 6-4 record, I still believe that to be true. Sure, Wade is hurt, but when is Wade not hurt. It's well documented that Wade has had a career of injuries and I don't believe that will change now, but I hope it would because the guy is one hell of a talent. The loss of Udones Haslem is an issue, but I wouldn't put Erick Dampier as the life savior to the Heat's big man issues. I think Dampier is a nice back up, but that is it.

Not certain if Mike Miller was the best three-point shooter over the last 3 seasons however, if so, it's Irrelevant. The Heat have more problems than just shooting and there lack of scoring has little to do with missing Mike Miller. It has more to do with settling for perimeter jump shots and not working the ball in the middle. But again, who do they have as a scoring threat in the 4 and 5 positions other than Bosh....an overated Bosh! Nethertheless, teams with great point guard play are killing the Heat by breaking down their defense. You can give the Heat till January to get things together, but their opponents still won't show any sympathy on the court.

Truth is, the Heat have holes all over the place and it's going to take more than a couple of months or a whole season for that matter to fix these problems. They simply need better pieces which they can't afford and it stands true that three players don't make a team. It takes 12.

November 25, 2010  10:13 AM ET

Well, I always thought that since LeBron signed with the Heat, that both LeBron and Wade would be cancelling each other out. Theres only one ball for two very similar players who are not the pure shooters so its hard to play off of each other, however they do compliment eachother in transition. I dont see how Mike Miller could shoot the ball any better than James Jones has early this season. The Heat should get there weak pg s off the floor and run & gun they dont have the personal to guard the better pg s anyway the way Kobe did Westbrook. I still think the Heat can still turn this thing around Lebron has to takeover and stop being a nice teamate. Anyteam with lebron has a chance

November 25, 2010  10:21 PM ET

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November 29, 2010  11:16 AM ET

Miami needs to change things up, plain and simple.

The chemistry is ugly and the shot selection is worse...

Case in point....Miami takes a 1pt lead vs Orlando, then LeBron comes back in the game and they lose by like 8 or 9 pts??

Big Z and a few others were just taking jump shots.

They got to devise some ways to run pick and rolls that involves both Wade and LBJ.

At this point, when one of them have the ball, the other is a high paid decoy.

Miller will help BIG TIME in spreading the floor....you figure out how to incorporate Wade and LeBron, with Bosh and Dampier down low and Miller on the wing and you got a sick closing combo...get back Haslem for the boards and they improve more.

Miami is on a much larger learning curve than we would like, but in the end, I still think they will figure it out...

And if they dont....Riley will.

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