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Agent says Greg Oden to sign with Heat

Portland's former No. 1 overall pick plans to take his talents to South Beach
08/02/2013 10:09 PM ET
By The Associated Press

Greg Oden last appeared in an NBA game for the Portland Trail Blazers on Dec. 5, 2009.(AP)
MIAMI (AP) -- Greg Oden is coming back to the NBA with the Miami Heat.

Mike Conley Sr., one of Oden's agents, said Oden has informed the Heat that he will accept their contract offer, a process that will likely be formally completed early next week.

Oden will sign a contract that will pay him about $1 million this coming season. He will have a player option for the 2014-15 season.

''He just thought that it was the best fit for him, where he's at and especially for how it relates to him coming back,'' Conley said Friday night. ''He can be on a winning team and be working his way in slowly.''

Oden's decision ends months of suspense that saw several NBA teams line up for a chance to sign the former No. 1 pick whose career has been derailed by a series of knee problems. Conley said Oden was also very interested in learning from Tim Duncan and playing for Gregg Popovich in San Antonio, that he was impressed when he met with Dallas owner Mark Cuban, and that he's had a close relationship for some time with New Orleans coach Monty Williams.

But in the end, the Heat won out. They had been widely believed to be the frontrunners to land Oden for some time, and now get to add a 7-footer to a team that's won the last two NBA championships.

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