4 role players from the past who are perfect fits for the Heat in 2023-24

2012 NBA Finals - Game Three
2012 NBA Finals - Game Three / Ronald Martinez/GettyImages
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Loul Deng

Luol Deng
Miami Heat v Charlotte Hornets - Game Six / Streeter Lecka/GettyImages

Two-way play is immeasurable in today's game. Loul Deng was a tough, hard-nosed, versatile wing who would bolster this Heat roster. In 2016, he could dribble, pass, and shoot while being able to guard two through four; he'd be a shoo-in to every playoff team's rotation today. 

During the 2016 playoff run, Deng averaged 13.3 points while shooting 42% on four attempts. He was adept at attacking closeouts when defenses rushed to him in the corner. 

At age 30, Deng was at the tail end of his prime but still had spry legs. He consistently punished closeouts with thunderous booms at the rim. He was a dependable player, and Erik Spoelstra wouldn't have to worry about mental lapses with Deng in the lineup.

This Heat team's next-man-up mentality shines bright each game. Deng fits in that mold and adds great depth. He'd be another guy Spo could throw at the Tatums, Giannias, Bancheros, and Randles of the world. He'd be a Swiss Army knife defender, able to hold his own against quicker shooting guards in switches. 

It wouldn't surprise me at all if Deng closed games out at the four with Jimmy and Bam in the front court beside him. Butler and Deng would be reunited, and Deng would team up with peak Butler instead of the baby from Chicago. The Heat would have another player who had unexpected performances, and the basketball world would again ask, " How do they do it?"  -- Brennan Sims

Grading the Heat’s top 5 players three quarters through the season. dark. Next. next