Tag: Josh McRoberts

Dwyane Wade

Dwyane Wade tweaks knee Thursday, leaves game not to return, could miss time


Dwyane Wade has been carrying the Heat into the playoffs in recent weeks — he’s averaging 21.9 points a game over his last 10 and shooting 38.9 percent from three.

But the knee issues which caused him so much trouble the past couple seasons are still there, which is why this was scary Thursday night.

Wade did not return to the game after this. Officially, the Heat are calling it a bruised knee. The team is not practicing on Friday, so it is likely Saturday before we get a sense of just how serious this was. But it’s not good — Wade hinted he would miss some time in this Instagram after the game.

Miami is already without Chris Bosh (lungs) and Josh McRoberts, to lose Wade too would be devastating. Hopefully, it is not that serious.

The Heat are currently tied with Boston for the final playoff spot in the East, half a game back of Brooklyn. One of those three teams will be on the outside looking in when the playoffs start in a couple weeks.

Heat’s Shabazz Napier out for season after sports hernia surgery

Sacramento Kings v Miami Heat

Shabazz Napier’s up-and-down rookie season has come to an end.

The rookie point guard who appeared in 51 games, but had seen few minutes as of late, is out for the season after undergoing surgery to repair a sports hernia, the team announced Wednesday.

Napier, the Heat’s first round pick last draft, averaged 5.1 points, 2.5 assists, 2.2 rebounds a game this season. He was given a larger role backing up Goran Dragic after the trade deadline, but quickly fell out of favor and had appeared once in the Heat’s last dozen games (he battled what was termed a hip injury in that time as well).

Napier was the Heat’s first round pick — remember he is the guy LeBron James said he wanted. So they got him. And LeBron left anyway.

Injuries have decimated the Heat this season. Their max contract player Chris Bosh is out for the season. Thier biggest free agent acquisition Josh McRoberts is out for the season. And now their first-round draft pick.

Miami is battling to hold on to one of the final two playoff slots in the East, it is the current seven seed but is just one game up on the nine seed. The loss of Napier will not impact that push much at all. However, down the line he could develop into a point guard that would fit in a quality rotation.

Heat sign Michael Beasley to second 10-day contract

Sacramento Kings v Miami Heat

The Heat signed Michael Beasley to a 10-day contract.

In that time, they got some good and some bad from Beasley.

They also decided the good outweighed the bad.

Heat release yesterday:

The Miami HEAT announced today that they have signed forward Michael Beasley to a second 10-day contract.

Announcement: ProBasketballTalk’s partner FanDuel is hosting a one-day $150,000 fantasy basketball league for Monday’s NBA games. It’s just $2 to join and first place wins $10,000. Starts Monday at 7:00pm ET. Enter now!

Miami will get four more games – vs. the Celtics tonight (Comcast subscribers in Boston can watch here), vs. the Nets on Wednesday, at the Raptors on Friday and vs. the Cavaliers next Monday – to evaluate Beasley before having to sign him to a rest-of-season contract or let him walk. Had the Heat waited to sign him until today, they could have gotten a fifth game – vs. the Trail Blazers on March 18.

This is probably a sign they’ll sign him for the rest of the season after this 10-day deal. If they do, that extra game won’t matter.

Beasley, averaging 10.5 points in 23.7 minutes per game, has been alright. The bigger problem is that Miami – tied with the Pacers for eighth in the Eastern Conference – has needed to rely on him so heavily.

But that’s what happens with Chris Bosh and Josh McRoberts out for the season and Luol Deng banged up.

Report: Heat offering two first-round picks for Goran Dragic

Goran Dragic, Luol Deng

Goran Dragic told the Suns he’s interested in signing with only the Lakers, Knicks or Heat this offseason.

That has Phoenix owner Robert Sarver fuming and the Kings slowly backing away.

It also has Miami interested.

Chris Broussard of ESPN:

This offer is not what it appears to be.

Because they owe the 76ers a first-round pick, the Heat could trade only their 2019 and 2021 first rounders together outright. they could also specify trading first rounders two and four years after send Philadelphia the pick, which would be 2017 and 2019 at the earliest. Phoenix, which has a stockpile of draft picks, might not mind the wait as much as other teams. But a delay in when the picks are conveyed could hinder the Suns’ ability to flip the picks later.

There’s also the matter of matching Dragic’s $7.5 million salary. The Heat can’t trade just picks for him, and many of the players they’d likely look to include – Chris Andersen, Josh McRoberts, Mario Chalmers, Udonis Haslem and Danny Granger – have multi-year contracts Phoenix would likely find unappealing. One player Miami could trade straight up for Dragic, Luol Deng, would probably swing this trade too far in favor of the Suns.

After all, even though Dragic said he’s willing to sign with the Heat, there’s no guarantee they keep him. They should be wary of giving up too much for a pending free agent.

How the Heat hurt themselves and Hassan Whiteside with his contract

New York Knicks v Miami Heat

Hassan Whiteside has made an incredible journey – from being heralded as a potential lottery pick to playing in Lebanon to producing like a star in the NBA.

Unfortunately for him, he can’t immediately capitalize on his success. Unfortunately for the Heat, they might not be positioned to keep him once he can.

The key issue: the absence of a team option in Whiteside’s contract.

The Heat – who were over the cap and had available only the minimum-salary exception, which can be for one or two seasons – signed Whiteside to a two-year minimum-salary contract in November. The second season is partially guaranteed. Whiteside’s 2015-16 salary becomes $122,669 guaranteed July 1, $245,337 guaranteed Aug. 1 and fully guaranteed when training camp begins.

That’s a perfectly reasonable contract outline for a player like Whiteside.

He hadn’t played in the NBA in two years, so any contract – even a minimum deal – would have appealed to him. Therefore, Miami, holding leverage, fairly sought a cheap second season with no money automatically guaranteed. That way, the Heat would be rewarded for taking a chance on Whiteside if he exceeded minimum-salary production. And if he didn’t, it wouldn’t cost them anything.

After the second season of the contract, Whiteside will become an unrestricted free agent. That’s because there are only a couple conditions where a team can make a player a restricted free agent by extending a qualifying offer:

1. First-round picks coming off the fourth season of their rookie-scale contract

2. All players with three or fewer seasons of experience

Whiteside, a former second rounder who played for the Kings in 2010-11 and 2011-12, will have four seasons of experience after his current contract expires.

The only way the Heat could have made Whiteside a restricted free agent is making him a free agent after this season. There are two ways a team can make a player under contract a free agent – waiving him and declining his team option.

Unguaranteed seasons and team options are (too) often described interchangeably, but there are differences – and one is very relevant here.

If the Heat want to make Whiteside a free agent this summer, they must waive him. Of course, that would never happen – nor work. Every team would jump at the chance to claim Whiteside and inherit the final season of his minimum contract before he ever hit the open market.

But if Whiteside had a team option, Miami could have declined it and make him a free agent without going on waivers. With just three years of experience at that point, he’d be a restricted free agent.

Partial or unguaranteed seasons are not mutually exclusive with team options. The Heat could have kept the escalating guarantees in Whiteside’s contract and added a team option to give themselves another way of making him a free agent in case he blew up (which he has).

This is what the Rockets did with Chandler Parsons. Parsons began his career on a four-year contract with a final season that was both unguaranteed and contained a team option. The Rockets declined the team option to make Parsons a restricted free agent last summer. (That they declined to use their matching rights and let Parsons leave for the Mavericks is another story.)

There’s a key difference between Parsons and Whiteside, though. The Rockets, because they had him for three years, held Parson’s full Bird Rights. If Whiteside had a team option, the Heat would have only his Non-Bird Rights if they declined it and made him a free agent this summer.

Full-Bird Rights allow a team to exceed the cap to re-sign a player to a deal that begins up to his max salary, contains raises up to 7.5% raises and is up to five years long. That’s more than any outside team can offer, so it was impossible for Parsons to sign an offer sheet the Rockets couldn’t match. That they didn’t match Dallas’ was their choice.

Non-Bird Rights, technically a form of Bird Rights, allow a team to re-sign a player for 120% his previous salary or his minimum salary. Since Whiteside is making so little now, the Heat would have been able to offer him a starting salary of only $1,177,618 next summer (with up to 4.5% raises on a contract up to four years). Anything more would have required cap space.

Another team could sign Whiteside to an offer sheet worth up to the max salary. The Gilbert Arenas Provision applies for only players with one or two years experience, so that’s not a factor here, meaning neither are back-loaded contracts like Houston gave Omer Asik and Jeremy Lin. If an offer sheet exceed  what they could pay with their Non-Bird Rights – which it surely would – the Heat would not have had an opportunity to match unless they’d already cleared the requisite cap space.

The Heat don’t project to have space, though, let alone enough to match a big deal for Whiteside. They already have $69,632,912 committed to Chris Bosh, Dwyane Wade (player option), Luol Deng (player option), Chris Andersen, Josh McRoberts, Mario Chalmers, Udonis Haslem, Danny Granger (player option) and Shabazz Napier. Those nine players alone take Miami above the projected salary cap of $66.5 million.

So, it’s quite possible the Heat wouldn’t have declined Whiteside’s team option even if they had given themselves the opportunity.

But by letting his two-year contract run out, Miami still must probably be cap-conscious to re-sign him.

After next season, the Heat hold Whiteside’s Early Bird Rights. Those allow the Miami to re-sign Whiteside on a two-to-four year contract that – using estimated figures until the NBA determines the average salary in 2015-16 – starts up to $5,885,440 and is worth up to$26,190,208 over four years. Anything more would require cap space.

If Whiteside keeps playing like this, he’ll definitely get bigger offers.

Bosh ($25,289,390 guaranteed) and McRoberts ($6,021,175  player option) are Miami’s only commitments in 2016-17. With the salary cap set to spike under the new national-TV contracts, the Heat should have plenty of flexibility to keep Whiteside.

But, if he continues to play like a star, Miami won’t have an will have only a limited advantage in re-signing him. A 27-year-old center who protects the rim and cleans the glass with his eye-popping length and athleticism and adds an efficient scoring touch could fetch max offers. Again, anything more than $5,885,440 would require the Heat to use cap space to re-sign Whiteside, meaning they can offer the exact same contract as all the other teams using cap space to pursue Whiteside.


Update: As Nate Duncan of Basketball Insiders pointed out, the Heat can offer 7.5 percent annual raises, even if they use cap space to re-sign Whiteside. Other teams are limited to 4.5 percent. Like other teams, though, the Heat can still offer just four years. Miami also can’t pay Whiteside a starting salary of more than the projected $5,885,440 without using cap space.


Might it have been easier to clear salary before this July and make Whiteside a restricted free agent? Even if Miami doesn’t want to dump Andersen, Chalmers, McRoberts and/or even Deng, the cost doesn’t seem so high if it would have meant keeping a young and productive big man like Whiteside.

Instead, the Heat literally never gave themselves that option, and Whiteside will have to wait another season to get paid. Now, it’s more likely to be by another team.