[UPDATE: 11:11 PM ET] ESPN’s Marc Stein is reporting that Andersen’s deal will be around the $10 million range over two years.
Chris Andersen and the Miami Heat have reached an agreement to keep the Birdman in South Beach, according to Yahoo Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski.
Chris Andersen — the Birdman — reaches agreement on a multi-year deal to return to the Miami Heat, league source tells Yahoo Sports.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) July 14, 2014
Several teams were reportedly interested in Andersen, but he ultimately returned to the team that gave him his chance at his NBA comeback.
He has been an important part of Miami’s front court since signing in 2012, when he was brought on mid-season and played a memorable role in helping a Bosh-less Heat team get past the Indiana Pacers in the Eastern Conference Finals.
Having the fan-favorite Birdman back in Miami should be key in helping Chris Bosh take over as Miami’s No. 1 scoring option.
Andersen and Bosh had success playing together, but the pair played less than 400 minutes all season (compared to Bosh and Shane Battier logging more than a thousand minutes on the court together).
Meanwhile, Chris and Chris were the best defensive pair of all two-man lineups that logged at least 300 minutes, and were plus-13.4 points per 100 possessions (third among pairs on the team).
Giving the two big men more time on the court together in something that Erik Spoelstra should consider, especially considering that going small will not be as effective without LeBron James to facilitate and score from the post.
After last season, the 36-year-old center opted out of the final year of his contract in which he was due the league’s veteran minimum of $1,448,490.
Also on Sunday, the Heat agreed on a two-year deal to bring back Mario Chalmers.