MIAMI (AP) -The Miami Heat may be moving toward Plan B in their quest for backcourt help this summer.
Milwaukee point guard Mo Williams moved closer toward signing a $52 million, six-year deal to stay with the Bucks on Friday, the same day that another of the Heat's point guard targets - South Florida native Steve Blake - got a three-year deal to join the Portland Trail Blazers.
Williams' agent, Mark Bartelstein, wouldn't say Friday night that the Heat are officially doomed in their pursuit of Williams, but acknowledged that all indicators are pointing toward the 24-year-old returning to the Bucks.
``I think it's headed in that direction,'' Bartelstein said.
Heat coach and president Pat Riley was not available for comment Friday, but acknowledged numerous times this week that he was hoping Williams could be lured to join Shaquille O'Neal and Dwyane Wade in Miami next season.
``You move on when you move on,'' Riley said earlier this week in Orlando, Fla., where he spent three days watching Miami's summer league team while continuing to negotiate with Williams. ``We've got alternative plans. We're putting all our energy in here and we're keeping other things alive, but this is what we want to try to focus on.''
But the Heat could only offer Williams the mid-level exception, which would be worth around $31 million over five years. Milwaukee was offering substantially more throughout the negotiating process and increased its offer even more on Friday - potentially sealing that Williams, who averaged career bests of 17.3 points and 6.1 assists last season, would stay put.
There are other guards available through free agency, including Steve Francis, who was bought out by the Trail Blazers for a reported $30 million earlier this week and who has been contacted by the Heat in recent days.
Miami is seeking help at the point following two injury-plagued seasons by incumbent starter Jason Williams, who said this week that he is now ``pain-free'' and is anticipating a strong season. Jason Williams is set to become a free agent at the end of the 2007-08 season.
The Heat are also awaiting a decision about next season from backup center Alonzo Mourning, who could announce his intentions to either play one more year or retire as early as Saturday during part of his weekend charity ``Zo's Summer Groove'' fundraiser. Mourning is due about $2.75 million for next season.
Another free agent still on Miami's radar is forward James Posey, who is being courted by several teams after his two seasons with the Heat. Posey is expected to visit at least one team this weekend and may have a new contract by Monday, said Bartelstein, who also represents him.

Top NBA Public Bets

NBA Top Stories

Thumbnail Knicks trade for Derrick Rose The Chicago Bulls and New York Knicks made a big trade on Wednesday when the Knicks acquired Derrick Rose in a...
Thumbnail 2017 NBA Finals Odds With the NBA Finals now complete, here is a look ahead to which teams will be favored to contend for next year’s championship.
Thumbnail NBA Finals Game 7 Pick It’s all come down to one game. Who will prevail in Game 7 of the NBA Finalsas the Golden State Warriorshost the Cleveland Cavaliersat 8PM ET?
Thumbnail NBA Finals Game 7 Total Pick Will Game 7 of the NBA Finalsbe another high-scoring affair, or will it be a grind out between the Golden State Warriorsand Cleveland...
Thumbnail NBA Finals Game 6 Pick Can the Golden State Warriors get back on track in Game 6 of the NBA Finals or will the Cleveland Cavaliers create...
More inNBA Articles  

NBA Team Pages