Originally posted on Fox Sports Florida  |  Last updated 2/6/13
The San Antonio Spurs have the best record in the NBA and the Charlotte Bobcats have the worst. But they have something in common. Mike Conley, the agent for often-injured free-agent center Greg Oden, said Wednesday theyre both teams that interest his client. I definitely can see both of those teams (as possibilities), Conley said in a telephone interview with FOX Sports Florida. San Antonio has an aging front line with Duncan, and with Duncan and the Admiral (retired David Robinson, who still lives in San Antonio), he would have some great mentors. And Charlotte, they are rebuilding. They would be in a better position (than many teams) to take more of a risk. Yes, it would be a risk signing Oden, who hasnt played in an NBA game since December 2009. He has had five knee surgeries since being the NBA's No. 1 draft pick in 2007, but he wants to resume his career next season. Conley, who continues to talk with team president Pat Riley, said the Miami Heat remain in the picture for Oden and that he still anticipates his client will visit with the Heat. Conley said it likely wont be before the Feb. 15-17 All-Star break, but hes trying get Oden to Miami in the latter part of the month to meet with team officials. Thats our goal, Conley said. But were not in a rush to do things. Conley said the chances are becoming less that Oden will sign with a team before the end of this season simply for rehabilitation purposes. If not, Oden, who definitely wont play this season, will choose a team in the summer. A few weeks ago, Id probably have said it was 80 percent, Conley said of Oden signing with a team this season. Now, Id say its 50-50. Conley said he wouldnt be surprised if the chances of Oden signing this season continue to go down. Hes figuring out more and more that it likely will be an extended process for any team wanting to sign Oden. He said teams want to thoroughly go through medical records. The agent said seven or eight teams are in the mix for Oden, who is doing rehabilitation in his hometown of Indianapolis as well as Columbus, Ohio, where he played in college at Ohio State. Others known to be are Boston and Cleveland. Conley said the list has continued to grow and he expects that to continue. He didnt want to get into many specifics, though. Oden met last weekend in Boston with Celtics general manager Danny Ainge, coach Doc Rivers and team medical personnel. He said Oden has met with some other teams already, but he declined to name them. Conley said Oden has not yet had a meeting with Heat officials. He declined to say if there has been a meeting with Cavaliers officials. Not wanting to get any rumors started in the two biggest media markets, Conley did say there has been no interest shown in Oden by the New York Knicks and Los Angeles Lakers. He also said the Orlando Magic wouldnt be a good fit. Theyve got some young big guys theyre bringing along, Conley said. I dont think that would be a possibility. Conley said Oden will spend the next several weeks continuing to meet with teams as he explores his options. He said the meeting with the Celtics included only talks and no court work. Boston was good, said Conley, who said no contract possibilities were discussed. We just wanted to meet with them and get a feel for them. We talked to doctors and with their head trainer. Conley said its too early to say when Oden might be able to work out for teams. He said it definitely would be able to happen during the summer but didnt want to speculate on if it would be possible before then. If the Heat, as expected, sign center Chris Andersen for the rest of the season after his second 10-day contract expires Friday, they would have 15 players (the roster limit) on guaranteed deals. But Conley said it hasnt been ruled out in talks with Miami officials the possibility he could sign with the Heat before the end of this season. Conley said it would be the Heats doing to have a possible roster spot available. If Andersen is retained, that could occur with the waiving a player who has a guaranteed deal or a trade before the Feb. 21 deadline. If Oden were to sign with a team this season, Conley said it wouldnt happen until after March 1, the deadline for teams to buy players out and have them still eligible for the playoffs. But Conley admits the chances continue to decrease that Oden will sign before the summer. Chris Tomasson can be reached at christomasson@hotmail.com or on Twitter @christomasson
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