Tag: Miami Heat

Shabazz Napier

Report: Miami Heat aggressively trying to move up in first round to draft Shabazz Napier


If the Miami Heat should take one thing away from how the LeBron James era ended in Cleveland, it’s not to let him be the general manager, too. Or, they can ask the Magic about giving up assets to get a guy your star player wants.

Back during the NCAA Tournament LeBron James tweeted how UConn’s Shabazz Napier should go in the potter because he was the best point guard in the draft.

Now, the Miami Heat are aggressively looking to move up in the first round to draft Napier, reports Chad Ford of ESPN.

Three thoughts here.

First, Napier is not the best point guard in this draft. On everybody’s draft boards Marcus Smart, Dante Exum and Elfrid Payton are ahead of him. Personally after that I lump Napier in with Tyler Ennis and Jordan Clarkson as roughly interchangeable.

Second, no doubt the Miami Heat need a point guard and I would take Napier over Norris Cole tomorrow. Napier is a good floor general and can knock down outside shots, he could step right in as the point guard off the bench for the Heat and give them minutes.

Finally, if Miami wants to move up to chase Nappier (who likely goes in the 18-23 range) then go for it, there is no shortage of picks in play (seemingly every one starting with six). But if the offer as rumored is the Heat’s No. 26 pick, Cole and the Heat’s next year’s No. 1 (very likely late in the draft) that seems a little high.

But Miami should go get the point guard its scouts and front office rate the highest, not just chase one because LeBron thinks he’s good. If those overlap, great, but remember players are notoriously poor judges of who would fit best on a team.

How much are max contracts worth?

NBA All-Star Game 2014

In the coming weeks, you’ll surely hear a lot about max contracts.

But how much are they actually worth?

It depends and can vary a great deal.

That’s an unsatisfying answer, but if you’re looking for clarity on the term, it’s necessary to understand.

To start, maximum salaries are based on the salary cap and experience. Experience levels are split into three groups: 0-6 years, 7-9 years and 10+ years. The more experienced the group, the greater percentage of the salary cap that forms a max contract.

However, a free agent can always get 105% of his previous salary – even if that’s more than his experience calls for. This year, four potential free agents – including those who’ve already stated their intention to opt in – are or would have been eligible for a higher max than prescribed by their experience level.

Only the first year of a new contract follows that rule. After that, players who re-sign can get 7.5% raises and players who leave can get 4.5% raises. Players who re-sign can also get five-year contracts, and players who leave can get just four years.

Larry Coon’s FAQ have more information on max contracts if you’re interested.

Based on the projected salary cap of $63.2 million, here’s what max contracts would be based on experience and the four exceptions:

0-6 years

Year Re-sign Leave
One $14,756,881 $14,756,881
Two $15,863,647 $15,420,940
Three $16,970,413 $16,085,000
Four $18,077,179 $16,749,060
Five $19,183,945
Total $84,852,064 $63,011,880

7-9 years

Year Re-sign Leave
One $17,708,257 $17,708,257
Two $19,036,376 $18,505,128
Three $20,364,495 $19,302,000
Four $21,692,615 $20,098,871
Five $23,020,734
Total $101,822,477 $75,614,256

10+ years

Year Re-sign Leave
One $20,659,633 $20,659,633
Two $22,209,105 $21,589,316
Three $23,758,578 $22,519,000
Four $25,308,050 $23,448,683
Five $26,857,523
Total $118,792,889 $88,216,633

Dirk Nowitzki (probably won’t get the max)

Year Re-sign Leave
One $23,857,450 $23,857,450
Two $25,646,759 $24,931,035
Three $27,436,068 $26,004,621
Four $29,225,376 $27,078,206
Five $31,014,685
Total $137,180,338 $101,871,312

Amar’e Stoudemire (declining his early-termination option)

Year Re-sign Leave
One $22,763,888 $22,763,888
Two $24,471,179 $23,788,263
Three $26,178,471 $24,812,638
Four $27,885,762 $25,837,012
Five $29,593,054
Total $130,892,354 $97,201,800

Carmelo Anthony (already committed to opting out)

Year Re-sign Leave
One $22,458,402 $22,458,402
Two $24,142,782 $23,469,030
Three $25,827,162 $24,479,658
Four $27,511,542 $25,490,286
Five $29,195,922
Total $129,135,810 $95,897,375

Rudy Gay (opting in)

Year Re-sign Leave
One $18,783,379 $18,783,379
Two $20,192,132 $19,628,631
Three $21,600,885 $20,473,883
Four $23,009,639 $21,319,135
Five $24,418,392
Total $108,004,427 $80,205,027

The NBA will announce its official salary cap in July, and I’ll update these figures then.

In the meantime, if you’re projecting which teams have room to sign Melo, LeBron James or any other high-level player, these are good baselines for knowing how much cap room is necessary.

Report: Grizzlies, Zach Randolph contract extension talks stall, he could hit free agent market

Zach Randolph

It wasn’t as sure a thing as Dirk Nowitzki returning to the Mavericks, but Zach Randolph signing a long-term extension with the Grizzlies was just pretty much a lock in the minds of many around the NBA.

The Grizzlies want Randolph long term, he wants to stay in Memphis, it was just a matter of finding a number that worked for both sides.

That hasn’t happened. The two sides are at an impasse in negotiations and that could put one of the best low post scorers in the NBA on the free agent market, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports.

The Memphis Grizzlies and forward Zach Randolph have reached an impasse in contract extension talks and the two-time All-Star forward is thinking seriously about triggering his early termination option and becoming a free agent, league sources told Yahoo Sports….

Memphis has held firm on a three-year extension, but Randolph has preferred the security of four years, league sources said.

Randolph, 32, has until June 30 to trigger a $16.5 million player option on the final season of his contract. If he opts out, he can become an unrestricted free agent July 1.

If he hits the free agent market Randolph is not going to make $16.5 million, but he almost certainly would get a four year deal from someone and make a lot of guaranteed money.

Memphis won 50 games last season and has gotten to the Western Conference finals two times in the past four years. Their plan to take the next step banked around improvement with and around their core players — Randolph, Marc Gasol and Mike Conley. With Randolph and Gasol the Grizzlies have as good a front line as there is in the NBA.

Without Randolph, that plan goes the way of the Dodo.

This is the kind of leak put out by one side to put pressure on the other in a negotiation. More than just a cornerstone of the Grizzlies’ on the court plan, Randolph has become and entrenched part of the Memphis community and a very popular player in the city. To lose him would be a blow beyond the court.

Expect the sides to find a way to get this done.

But if not, Randolph will join an increasingly interesting free agent class with LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony and other still good big men such as Pau Gasol.

San Antonio jabs LeBron, Heat with ‘Loyalty > Royalty’ billboard (PHOTO)

Gregg Popovich

The Spurs won the title, and the Heat are (technically) in a state of flux. So, apparently, it’s time to take some shots.

LeBron James opted out of the final two years of his contract on Tuesday to become an unrestricted free agent, but it’s extremely likely that he isn’t going anywhere. Any star player in his prime (see also: Carmelo Anthony) would have done the same in order to sign a longer deal for more guaranteed dollars, and in the end, LeBron may decide to take less than max money in order to provide the franchise with some future financial flexibility to bring in additional talent that would upgrade the roster.

The person behind the billboard, however, probably didn’t take any of this into consideration.

Report: LeBron thinks “strongest option” to return to Miami; NBA executives expect that

Heat Media Day Basketball

Where’s the fun in talking about free agents staying where they are?

So when LeBron James informed the Miami Heat he was opting out of his contract media reports (including PBT’s) and twitter blew up with the possibilities — Chicago, Houston, Cleveland and a couple teams in Los Angeles. It’s not just fans, pretty much every front office around the NBA started drawing up plans, just in case.

However, the reality from the start has been LeBron almost certainly will stay in Miami. He had to opt out to put pressure on the Heat to make roster changes, make sure Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh know he was serious, and most importantly to sign for less to give Pat Riley room to maneuver.

People close to LeBron don’t think he’s leaving, reports Chris Manix at Sports Illustrated.

Thus, James opts out. But it hardly indicates a desire to leave South Beach. In fact, according to a source familiar with James’ thinking, returning to Miami remains the strongest option. James has tremendous respect for Pat Riley. He has developed a strong relationship with Heat coach Erik Spoelstra. He enjoys playing with Bosh and Wade, and still believes that core can win. It just needs a little help.

What about other executives around the league.

“I’d be surprised if he didn’t go back to Miami,” said an Eastern Conference executive.

Added another, “Why would he go anywhere? He has everything he wants in Miami.”

Much like LeBron opting out in the first place, him likely staying is not really a surprise. Pretty much every story on LeBron’s landing spots have said Miami is the most logical answer (including PBT’s).

That’s not as much fun as drawing up complex trades to get LeBron and Carmelo Anthony together with the Lakers or him and Kevin Love pairing up in Cleveland. We can play around on a trade machine and come up with three team deals and try to convince ourselves why they are likely.

But Miami has always been, by far, the most likely destination. LeBron thinks so. Most people around the league know it.