The Miami Heat had to do something, and that something is signing Josh McRoberts and Danny Granger. Not as a contingency to plan, but as a way to show LeBron James they’re moving on with their retooling of the squad, adding players that should help them and him rebound from a disappointing NBA Finals series.
McRoberts played for Charlotte last season, averaging 8.5 points, 4.8 rebounds and 4.3 assists. He isn’t exactly a superstar, but he is an athletic big man who is a very good passer and is quite efficient at stretching the floor, hitting 36.1% of his shots from beyond the arc. He’s also capable of letting the offense flow through him, doing some point-forwarding for the Bobcats (now Hornets) last season.
While McRoberts is 27, Danny Granger provides another veteran (31 years old) with his best days behind him, mostly because of injuries. He played 41 games last season for the Pacers and the Clippers, averaging eight points per game. When healthy, Granger is more than just a guy who can pull up for 3’s but also a decent defender and can make some plays with the ball, but it remains to be seen if he can pull that off over a long period of time before his body breaks down.
McRoberts, who had a third of the NBA trailing him, signed for the mid level exception, keeping him with the Heat for $23 million over four years. Granger signed a two-year deal worth $4.2 million, now playing for a team that was something of a rival to him while he was playing for the Pacers. LeBron James hasn’t commented on the signings, but sources suggest he was informed of the moves being made by the Heat.
It’s all about keeping LeBron James, but it might also mean that the Miami Heat are giving up on Chris Bosh. Bosh is being offered a max deal by the Houston Rockets, and even though his initial intention was signing with the Miami Heat and playing next to LeBron James, the longer this free agency games goes on the closer he gets to accepting the new deal from the Rockets, getting paid the kind of money he probably won’t be by the Heat.
James is still looking at the max contract, with the Heat or with someone else. One interesting thing that has come up over the last 24 hours is the difference of opinions between him and his agent, Rich Paul. Sources suggest Paul is the one pushing for James to end up with the Cleveland Cavaliers, while James himself is more inclined to stay with the Miami Heat. Whatever the disagreement may be, their hesitation is holding the breath of half the NBA.