May 30, 2014; Miami, FL, USA; Miami Heat center Greg Oden (right) holds up the conference championship trophy after defeating the Indiana Pacers in game six of the Eastern Conference Finals of the 2014 NBA Playoffs at American Airlines Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Greg Oden wants to return to NBA next season

When Greg Oden decided he wanted to return to the NBA this past season, there were a handful of teams who showed interest.

Oden’s likely hoping that will be the case this time around as he hopes to play in the NBA next year, this according Ethan Skolnick.

“Greg Oden will return to Columbus to work out this summer. He recently said that he was encouraged by some areas of progress this season.”

The former No. 1 overall pick (who, mind you was drafted before Kevin Durant) has struggled with injuries and was thought to be essentially out of the game for good before he worked his way back into NBA shape last offseason.

Oden decided to eventually take less money to join the Miami Heat given their lack of size and the fact they were a championship contender over teams who offered him bigger money, like the New Orleans Pelicans. Now with a partial season under his belt, Oden seems to hope that his solid though unspectacular play this year will help him remain in the league.

Most likely, it will. No, Oden is never going to blossom into the player many hoped he would, but he’s still relatively young. Assuming he can stay healthy (and that’s a huge assumption), he could become a beneficial product off the bench to a team in need of size. Granted, he likely won’t ever be a starter given the wear and tear of minutes would send him back to the trainers office, but for a few minutes a night, he’d certainly be better than a lot of the big men in the league who simply get a contract for their ability to clog the lane.

Tags: Greg Oden Miami Heat

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