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Line Forms at 36th & Biscayne

The number Heat president Pat Riley spat out last week caught many by surprise. Raja Bell

With the Heat perhaps in better shape heading into free agency than any team in the league, with a superstar in Dwyane Wade likely in tow, plus the flexibility to pursue as many as two more mega stars, we all know Miami will be in play for the top stars on the market.

But when Riley spoke during his season-ending news conference with the media, he took the panoramic view of the free agency snapshot.

"There are 210, 220 free agents," Riley said, clearly looking beyond the top-tier group that will include, Dwyane Wade, LeBron James, Chris Bosh, Amare' Stoudemire and Joe Johnson. "There's a lot out there. You can build your own team a lot of different ways."

Not only will Riley look to get the most for Micky Arison's money at the start of free agency, next season's Heat team will be defined just as much by what kind of bargain buys are had near the close of market.

And the minimum-salary prospects are already starting to form a line.

Raja Bell, a former Florida International standout and respected perimeter defensive stopper, marked his spot among those who will be lobbying Riley this summer. Bell, whose best days came during his stint as Phoenix's supposed Kobe stopper a few years ago, has bounced around in recent seasons. He last was with Golden State after he was dealt by Charlotte last season.

But Bell, who sustained a season-ending wrist injury, is healthy how and hoping to acquire a spot with the Heat. To that extent, he wants to follow in the footsteps of former FIU teammate Carlos Arroyo, who latched on with the Heat last season and finished the year as the starting point guard.

Bell took to the sports talk radio airwaves Monday, when he appeared on The Jorge Sedano Show on 790 The Ticket, and openly flirted with the Heat.

"Miami is my first choice," said Bell, an unrestricted free agent who spent the latter part of the season attending several Heat games after he was released by the Warriors. "Pat (Riley), if you can use my services, give me a call. I'm right around the corner, 36th and Biscayne, give me a call."

Quentin-standalone Bell would be almost the perfect fit in the Heat's rotation in the role of a relentless perimeter defender Riley as searched for since James Posey departed in free agency several seasons ago. Since then, there's been a stream of less-than-stellar candidates that have included Dorell Wright, Ricky Davis, Penny Hardaway, Luke Jackson, Daequan Cook, Dorell Wright, Jamario Moon, James Jones, Dorell Wright again and Quentin Richardson.

Plenty of names. Very few solid answers. Now, the Heat's roster is an empty canvass. Jobs are here to be had.

At best, Raja Bell is better and more consistent than any of those previous low-budget options. At worst, he's just as good as any in that lot. But none has the defensive swagger and reputation Bell has established in his career.

For now, Bell is simply an out-of-work free agent looking for a job, - somewhere among the middle-of-the-pack of 200-plus free agents Riley referred to the other day.

But Bell made it clear Monday. He's in one of two groups the Heat will deal with this summer. There are those Pat Riley will vehemently recruit.

And there are those like Bell, who will be recruiting Riley for a chance to latch onto something special in the MIA if things go according to Pat's summer plan.

(For live news, notes and updates on the Heat, follow me on Twitter @ twitter.com/wallacesports. To post a question or join our live Heat chat each Thursday from 1-2 p.m., click here.)

Comments

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Well for the league min, not bad at all... Great addition at that price... Hell, any average player at that price is a great addition!

But only pick this guy up for the bare minimum... nothing more

who cares about the veggies when you're trying to order steak and lobster?

All aboard the Energy Bus!!

I hope they bring Joe Johnson here so he can tell all you bangwagon fans he doesnt give a shit if u show up haha! na but seriously bring Joe he a beast.

Yea bring him in as the 8th man, seriously Bell is done with.

Bell would be a good pick up...I mean can't be worse than Diawara.

Listen Pat Riley is a big man coach, look for him to reach out to Bosh first. I do believe Bosh and Joe Johnson woul be ideal. If he could some how swing Bell in there that would fit to but keep in mind he has to look at getting the bench a little deeper to go deeper in the playoffs. I think with the right choices the Heat are two years away from the Finals... canefish

Bosh and a REAL point guard !

Bosh and another big man.

Against the Magic, we need to counter D Howard inside and R Lewis outside.

Against the Lakers, we need to counter Bynum and Gasol inside.

yeah bosh and tony parker would be ideal

trade ideas:

1st:

HEAT TRADE: *BEASLEY / COOK / JONES / + PICKS
2010 CLASS (we got 4 picks, 3 of
them is on 2nd rnd, & 1 on 1st
rnd @ #18...) atleast we offer
them 2 of our picks...

TO MEMPHIS: >OJ MAYO pg/sg & >MARC GASOL c


2nd:

HEAT TRADE: SAME OFFER (@1st idea)

TO NETS: >HARRIS pg & >BROOK LOPEZ c

IT COULD BE POSSIBLE THAT ONE THE TRADE IDEA WOULD HAPPEN THIS SUMMER???

CHOOSE 1 TRADE IDEA & THOUGTHS???


we acquire for max deal: >BOSH pf
we acquire UFA: >TRAVIS OUTLAW sf
>RAJA BELL(min.vet)
bring back UFA: >EARL BARRON (cheap contract)
as back-up center...

RETAINED: *CHALMERS / *JOEL ANTHONY

RESIGNED: *WADE / *WRIGHT / *HASLEM

BRING BACK "PAT RILEY" AS HEAD COACH!!!

FOR ME I CHOOSE trade idea #1:

line-up:

pg >mayo / chalmers
sg wade / >bell
sf wright / >outlaw
pf >bosh / haslem
c >gasol,marc / >barron / anthony,joel

i think of MAYO & WADE could play together & MAYO is younger than HARRIS(injury prone)...
for MARC GASOL & BROOKS they both similar has lenght & have wide body to guard bigger center in the league...

if ever this could be done & if we got a salary space cap, im happy to see:

>TYRUS THOMAS pf

(RFA) on our team... he's explosive! tough defender! young! he could bring energy off the bench...

>STEVE BLAKE pg

(UFA) a good veteran pg... he may inspire our
young point guards... (MAYO especially CHALMERS)

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