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All is not lost in Miami in the wake of LeBron James' decision to return to play for the Cleveland Cavaliers. The Heat have brought new talent to South Beach, as they have come to terms with veteran small forward Luol Deng.
According to USA Today, the two sides have agreed on a two-year deal worth $20 million for the two-time All-Star.
Before James decided to leave Miami, Deng was on the record as saying he would not take below his market value to play for a title contender. James' decision to head home has worked out quite well for Deng, as he was able to get the money he is worth, and still play for one of the best teams in the Eastern Conference.
Unlike the Cavaliers, who completely fell apart after James left for Miami back in 2010, the Heat should still be a pretty good team. The Heat had enough money to give Chris Bosh a maximum contract, and have brought in Deng, one of the best defensive players in the NBA. It is impossible to replace a James, but Deng is a close as the Heat could get. The native of Sudan, Deng is 6 feet 9 inches tall player with a smooth game who Heat Head Coach Erik Spoelstra will likely fall in love with, as Deng's former coach Tom Thibodeau did during their time together in Chicago.
Deng is coming to Miami by way of Cleveland, where he played the second half of the 2013-2014 season after being traded by the Bulls. In his 10-year NBA career, Deng has averaged 16 points, and 6.3 rebounds per game.
The Cavaliers will be seen as the favorites in the Eastern Conference no matter what happens during the rest of the off-season. However, there is a big question as to who the second best team in the East is. It all comes down to Dwayne Wade, who could re-sign with the Heat or join his hometown team, the Bulls, notes Sporting News.