Heat center Greg Oden could play when Miami hosts the Chicago Bulls


Heat fan or hater, it would be inspiring to see Greg Oden accept an ESPY award for Best Comeback Athlete.

Gimpy Greg Oden is expected to be cleared for 5-on-5 workouts next week and could be ready to start the season when Miami hosts the Chicago Bulls on October 29.

The 25-year-old Oden signed a one-year deal with the Heat in August.

After the Heat used the amnesty provision on Mike Miller, the 7-foot, 285 pound Oden chose Miami over the Spurs, Kings, Mavs and Pelicans.

Capturing consecutive Larry O’Brien Championship Trophies in June, the Heat will benefit from Oden’s size, physicality and interior defense.

More importantly, on a squad of stars, Oden won’t face brutal Heat or overwhelming pressure in Miami.

A recovering alcoholic whose utterly shot knees make him less sturdy than Ozzy Osbourne on Bushmills, the former Buckeye hasn’t competed in the association in 1,404 days.

Capable of being a powerful force in the paint, Oden averaged 9.4 points, 7.3 rebounds and 1.4 blocks over 82 games as a Portland Trail Blazer.

Unfortunately, the mammoth center has walked like Keyser Söze since the George W. Bush Administration.

Oden is currently practicing without contact and the organization hasn’t established a timetable for his return.

Regardless, a solid gamble with zero drawbacks, the likable Greg Oden and dominant Miami Heat will prove to be an ideal match.

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