Making room for an extra wing player, the Heat dealt Roger Mason Jr. to the Sacramento Kings on Thursday.
The move at the NBA trade deadline suggests the Heat is still in the market for a shooter, despite Heat coach Erik Spoelstra telling reporters that "we're not looking around saying we need another piece to contend for a title." While that is true — obviously, the 15th man on the roster isn't going to be the reason the Heat defends its back-to-back championships or falls short— there is a sense in the Heat's front office that its roster is lacking slightly compared to the previous title runs.
In other words, the Heat really misses Mike Miller.
Miller was amnestied over the summer to save money against the luxury tax and the Heat added Mason in the hopes the veteran combo guard could fill Miller's role. It didn't work out the way the Heat envisioned. Recently, Spoelstra has gone to a combination of Toney Douglas and Ray Allen to fill in for Wade. That's less than ideal, considering Allen is much older than Wade, Douglas isn't known for his shooting and neither player is a consistent rebounder.
Miller's skill set provided those things for the Heat and, most importantly, he was clutch in the playoffs. Let's not forget, Miller shot 44.4 percent from three-point range in 17 games in the 2013 playoffs and shot a sparkling 59 percent from distance in The Finals. Wade has missed 15 games this season after missing 13 in the 2012-13 season, but the real concern for Miami is that Wade will once again be limited by injuries in the postseason. It has happened the last two years, although Wade has played courageously in must-win situations.
Buyout candidates that could help the Heat include Caron Butler, who is obviously close friends with Dwyane Wade, but also revered inside the Heat organization for his toughness. There is also a possibility the Heat could look at free agents like Stephen Jackson or Richard Hamilton.