Chris Andersen – the famous Birdman – has agreed to a one-year contract to return to the two-time defending NBA champion Miami Heat, league sources told Yahoo! Sports.
Andersen was the top free-agent priority for Heat president Pat Riley and coach Erik Spoelstra.
Andersen played a telltale part in the Heat's championship run, signing in January and immediately impacting the Heat during a 27-game winning streak that turned into a prelude to another NBA title. The Heat were 37-3 in the regular season with him.
Andersen, 34, was spectacular in the Heat's Eastern Conference finals series against the Indiana Pacers, making 15 consecutive shots.
In less than 15 minutes a game, Andersen averaged nearly five points and four rebounds for the Heat. He also gave Miami a formidable and physical presence around the basket.
Andersen played 32 games for the Denver Nuggets in the 2011-12 season, before the Nuggets used the NBA's amnesty clause to waive him. He's played parts of 11 seasons with Denver, New Orleans and Miami.
After enduring a two-year ban for violating the NBA's substance-abuse policy from 2006-08, Andersen has had a strong second phase of his NBA career, including a stretch as an important member of Carmelo Anthony's supporting cast with the Nuggets.
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