It's Christmas time, and in workplaces all over the country, offices engage in gift giving programs that often feature a cost cap on how much folks can spend. The idea is to get something that brings the recipient as much value as possible without having the luxury of being able to spend an exorbitant amount of money to achieve this goal.
The NBA is no different, as general managers attempt to give their rosters the perfect "gift" -- a player who fits the team's needs and is extremely productive, but doesn't cost too much money. Last season, we took a look at the NBA's best value deals, and set the cut-off at one-year deals signed in the previous offseason worth less than $3 million. This year, we'll loosen up the restriction to allow for two-year deals signed in the previous offseason worth less than $3 million. As always, we are not taking into account rookie-scale deals, as they feature an artificial subsidy.
2013-14 salary: $1.4 million
2014-15 salary: $1.4 million (player option)
It wouldn't be a stretch to say that without Andersen's contributions last season, the Heat would not have prevailed as champions. And if they have any hope of completing a three-peat, he'll need to be play a major role again. His high motor and above-the-rim athleticism coupled with his size and limberness allow him to play a versatile role as the only "true" center on the active roster. He rebounds well on both ends of the floor (offensive rebounding percentage: 11 percent; defensive rebounding percentage 21 percent), is a high-level rim protector, defends the post well, moves well laterally out on the perimeter and is a smart help defender.