Despite repeated calls from team president Pat Riley not to split up the defending NBA champs, Miami Heat owner Micky Arison — facing a $33 million luxury tax bill — has decided to amnesty veteran forward Mike MIller. The team confirmed the move on Tuesday afternoon (Miami saves $17 million in taxes, though they still owe Miller $13 million in salary over the next two years.) Per the Sun-Sentinel: “Mike Miller said he found out late Monday that he would be an amnesty release by the Miami Heat. The amiable 3-point shooting specialist said the next 24 hours, before the team’s formal announcement, brought mixed emotions. Tuesday, in the wake of formally being waived, the 33-year-old veteran of three consecutive appearances spoke. […] Q: Were you working with the Heat on this, with Pat Riley saying he first tried to trade you? A: ‘No, I was unaware of that. I didn’t know. I knew they had to make moves and things like that. Listen, after playing this many years, I’ve come to understand the business side of it. It is what it is.’ Q: What are the emotions of the moment, knowing your Heat career is over, not being here to go for the three-peat, not being here to go for a fourth consecutive NBA Finals with these guys? A: ‘It’s tough. I think what people really don’t understand is how much time we put into it. And then you also have to factor in the family stuff. You can talk about being amnestied and being traded all you want, and the fact that you may know it’s coming. But when it hits, so many things hit in your head of what you have to do now. What do you do with your family? Where am I going to be? What do I do with the kids in school? And things like that.’ […] Q: What’s next for you? A: ‘I feel great. I feel great. I’m excited about the next spot. I’m re-energized. I really am. I’m just feeling healthy. I’m ready to play. I started get back in there again last week and I can’t wait to play again next year. Honestly, it’s disappointing, because, I think, being a part of this and going for a three-peat would have been an unbelievable ride and a story. But I’ve been blessed, as well. I came here and got two championships and I can’t thank them enough for that opportunity.'”
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