Heat Notes: Ellington, Carmelo, Gay, Draft

While a few of his Heat teammates – including Dion Waiters and Josh McRoberts – hold player options for the coming season, Wayne Ellington doesn’t have the same sort of control over his future with the team. Ellington’s $6.27MM salary for 2017/18 is non-guaranteed, so he’ll have to count on Miami keeping him on its roster. And as he tells Tom D’Angelo of The Palm Beach Post, Ellington is hoping to stick around.

“This is the place that I want to be,” Ellington said. “This is the place that feels like home to me; that feels really good to me. I feel like the things that we accomplished on the court show that. So we’ll see what happens, man, but I have a good feeling.”

Ellington scored a career-high 10.5 PPG off the bench for the Heat this season, making 2.4 three-pointers per game at a 37.8% rate. As D’Angelo notes, the club would like to clear as much cap room as it can this summer to pursue outside help and retain its own free agents, but Ellington looks like a solid bargain at $6MM+, so it would be a surprise to see him go anywhere.

Here’s more from out of Miami:

  • One person in touch with the Heat tells Barry Jackson of The Miami Herald that he doesn’t expect the Heat to pursue Carmelo Anthony as a trade target this offseason. As Jackson explains, Anthony’s onerous salary and trade kicker make him an unappealing option for the club.
  • Rudy Gay may be a more realistic target for the Heat, according to Ira Winderman of The South Florida Sun Sentinel. However, Winderman doesn’t think Miami would be in on Gay if he’s hoping to match or exceed the $14MM+ salary he’s turning down for 2017/18. Miami’s plans for Justise Winslow and the club’s ability to bring back James Johnson would also be complicating factors.
  • Since the Heat often trade first-round picks and rarely finish in the lottery, the team’s scouting department doesn’t have many chances to target top prospects in the draft. So with an opportunity to pick in the lottery this season, Miami can’t afford to swing and miss, Winderman writes in a separate Sun Sentinel piece. “We probably don’t draft a guy who’s really a project and feel like he’s two or three years away,” said Chet Kammerer, the Heat’s VP of player personnel. “We are not going to gamble quite as much as some other organization because they have two picks in the first round every year. So they look at it a little bit different.”
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