Joe Johnson, who was far and away the best player available on the buyout market this season, has reportedly committed to playing out the season with the Miami Heat. While the Heat are seemingly out of championship contention, this gives him the ability to take on a big role for a playoff team--and live in South Beach. Johnson's reasoning in this case likely has less to do with taking a shot at a ring, and more to do with proving that he can still play so that he can get a new contract this summer. Johnson will be 35 when free agency starts, which is old, but not too old for a 2-year deal if he proves himself in Miami.
Interestingly enough, Ira Winderman reports that Miami will waive another player in order to sign Johnson. While the Heat only have 13 players and could add Johnson to their roster without cutting someone, Miami just made trades at the deadline to get out of the luxury tax, and unless they waive another player AND that player is claimed off of waivers by another team, the Johnson signing will push them back into tax territory. The Clippers are currently well over the cap, but they can claim a player off of waivers using the trade exception created in the Josh Smith trade, as long as that player is on a veteran's minimum contract. Amare Stoudemire and Gerald Green are the only two such players on the Heat.