One longtime member of the Heat left for Chicago this week, but it sounds like another won’t be going anywhere. According to Ira Winderman of The South Florida Sentinel, the Heat are in negotiations with free agent big man Udonis Haslem, and are working toward a new agreement with him. Unlike Miami’s earlier discussions with Dwyane Wade, talks with Haslem are amicable, and are expected to result in a deal above the veteran’s minimum, says Winderman.
Haslem, 36, joined the Heat at the same time Wade did back in 2003, and has been with the franchise since then. The Florida native doesn’t play as many minutes or contribute as much as he once did, having averaged a career-low 7.0 minutes per contest in 2015/16. Still, he provides a veteran leadership that Miami values.
Although the Heat did secure an agreement with Hassan Whiteside, the team is seeking additional frontcourt depth, with Luol Deng headed to Los Angeles, Amar’e Stoudemire unsigned, and Chris Bosh‘s health still a question mark. Re-signing Haslem would be a start, but the Heat have also expressed interest in Derrick Williams, sources tell Ian Begley of ESPN.com (Twitter link).
Winderman adds within his report that point guard Beno Udrih – who was bought out by the Heat earlier this year – is working out at AmericanAirlines Arena. It’s not clear if Miami intends to re-sign Udrih, but the veteran free agent is eligible to return to the Heat at any time, as Winderman notes.