Mason is betting on himself in this camp, literally.
He turned down guaranteed contract offers from Chicago and Oklahoma City to take a non-guaranteed deal — a gamble — to sign with Miami, a team that wanted him five years ago. Mason is a part-time South Florida resident and, with no idea that this camp deal was going to happen, found himself watching and scouting the Heat from the stands during last season's playoff run.
"My agent didn't think it was appropriate for me to take a non-guaranteed one-year contract," Mason said. "But all these guys have sacrificed. I guess I fit in with that reality."
Mason figures to have a big chance of sticking around, particularly since he would fill some of the void left by Miller and already has good relationships with many Heat players. Jarvis Varnado was on the Heat roster last year and certainly wouldn't surprise anyone by being back this time, and Michael Beasley is getting a chance to resurrect his career in Miami, the place it started five years ago.
It all means someone like Eric Griffin knows there's a serious logjam in front of him if he's going to be in uniform with Miami on opening night.
The Heat like Griffin, a guard from Campbell who's probably best known for the YouTube-sensation-level dunk he had against North Carolina A&T in 2011. And Griffin knows about doing things the hard way — he got cut multiple times from teams in middle school and high school, before finally coming into his own as a senior.
"They already know what I can do," Griffin said. "It's on me to just show them why I belong here."