Greg Oden wanted to do more Tuesday; that's a good sign. The Miami Heat wouldn't allow him; that's a telling sign.

Back in the NBA after being sidelined since Dec. 2009 by knee issues the 7-foot center took the first of what are expected to be several small steps on his way back to the court when he was limited to half of the Heat's first session of training camp.

"They had to pull me off today" Oden said after icing his knees. "I wanted to go out there and do it buy I've got to take steps.

"It felt good. I did the first hour. A lot of non-contact up-and-down stuff but it felt good just being out there first time in a while happy I got it completed."

Coach Erik Spoelstra said the measured approach would continue.

"It's step by step practice by practice minute by minute" he said. "So he was able to do about a half-hour of work today the majority of it non-contact and that was a big bonus and we'll move on from here."

While Oden is hopeful of action during the preseason his return date remains an abstract.

"I don't know" Oden said. "We're just going to keep going do a little bit by a little bit and see how it feels."

Beasley's back

Reduced to trying out for the roster on a non-guaranteed contract Michael Beasley's sixth NBA training camp felt nothing like the previous five.

"I came in today scared kind of nervous" he said. "I didn't know what to expect and if the guys would accept me 100 percent."

While his career path has had many detours Beasley did benefit from having been with the Heat for training camp in 2008 and 2009 before being exiled to the Minnesota Timberwolves and then Phoenix Suns before returning as a free agent.

"Michael looked good" Spoelstra said. "It helped that he's been with us now for the last two weeks so he's able to fast-track and remember some of the things that he used to do with us. And then getting out here today I think it started to come back to him."

So did the memories having previously gone to Heat camp alongside Dwyane Wade Udonis Haslem Mario Chalmers Joel Anthony and James Jones.

"I've been with those guys for my first 2 1/2 years. And then the years I was gone I was still hanging out still keeping in touch with those guys" the versatile forward said. "So just to see familiar faces just to be down here around familiarity is a good thing."