With teams around the league sensing that there’s tension between Dwyane Wade and the Heat, a handful of clubs are pushing to lure the veteran guard away from Miami, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical. Wojnarowski reports that the Bulls, Mavericks, Nuggets, and Bucks are courting Wade, with multiple multiyear offers in the $20MM-per-year range on the table for the Heat star.
Wojnarowski suggests that the Heat have been reluctant to offer a deal in the $20MM range so far, and Jason Lieser of The Palm Beach Post echoes that sentiment, tweeting that Miami’s opening offer was closer to $10MM. While the Heat will probably willing to increase that offer eventually, especially if Kevin Durant doesn’t choose Miami, it still makes sense that Wade would explore the market. Even if he doesn’t sign elsewhere, there’s so much cap space available around the league that he could improve his leverage by fielding offers from other teams.
Earlier tonight, we heard that the Bucks and Knicks were looking to set up meetings with Wade, and while Wojnarowski confirms Milwaukee’s interest, he doesn’t mention New York. ESPN’s Marc Stein reports (via Twitter) that the Knicks have made a four-year offer to Courtney Lee, and the club is also reportedly in the mix for Eric Gordon, so Wade may be a backup plan for Phil Jackson‘s club.
As for Milwaukee, Wojnarowski suggests that the Bucks don’t currently have the cap space to make Wade a competitive offer, and the team isn’t sure whether to fully commit to pursuing him. While Wade did attend Marquette University, it’s still hard to imagine him returning to Milwaukee at this stage in his career.
Meanwhile, K.C. Johnson of The Chicago Tribune confirms (via Twitter) that the Bulls are in talks with Wade’s reps, adding that the two sides are discussing a two-year deal. According to Wojnarowski, Chicago and Denver have been the most aggressive suitors for Wade so far.
Finally, the Mavericks may be a long shot to add Wade, but after missing out on their top two targets – Hassan Whiteside and Mike Conley – it makes sense that they’d at least kick the tires on other top-tier free agents.