Jazz View Heat As Threat For Gordon Hayward

For months, the Jazz and Celtics have been viewed as the most likely landing spots for free-agent-to-be Gordon Hayward. However, according to Marc Stein of ESPN.com (via Twitter), there are increased whispers that Utah is just as worried about the Heat as they are about the Celtics in the Hayward sweepstakes.

Unlike the Celtics, who would likely have to make at least one trade in order to clear the necessary cap room to sign Hayward to a maximum salary contract, the Heat are currently projected to have more than enough space for such a deal.

Miami’s decisions on non-guaranteed players like Wayne Ellington could affect their cap room, and pursuing Hayward would affect the team’s ability to make competitive offers to both Dion Waiters and James Johnson, but landing Hayward would certainly be realistic financially for the Heat.

The Jazz remain the odds-on favorite to re-sign Hayward, since they can go over the cap to lock him up, and can offer him more years and more money than any other suitor. But if Utah is reluctant to put a full five-year max on the table, or if Hayward is looking for a change of scenery, the Heat would be an interesting option. The state of Florida doesn’t have an income tax, and Miami is certainly more of a free agent destination than Salt Lake City, though Hayward has roots in Utah.

Hayward, 27, enjoyed the best season of his career in 2016/17, averaging 21.9 PPG, 5.4 RPG, and 3.5 APG, with a shooting line of .471/.398/.844. He’s considered one of this summer’s top-tier free agents, along with players like Chris Paul, Blake Griffin, Kyle Lowry, and Paul Millsap. Kevin Durant and Stephen Curry are also expected to technically become free agents, though they’re virtual locks to remain in Golden State.

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29 thoughts on “Jazz View Heat As Threat For Gordon Hayward

  1. mcase7187

    The C’s will have to make a trade no matter what so I really don’t see that as a real problem for them they will have money it’s just up to him if I’m Utah I calling them for a sign and trade get something back a least

    Say K.O, M.Smart/T.R and 18 nets pick maybe some 2’s also

  2. koedean

    They always fail to mention. Players pay state tax in every state they play a game. So the non-tax states save only in the games played there. Essentially half the season. Still a boon, but as much as everyone states.

    • formerlyz

      It’s more like 48 games of no tax. Heat play orlando twice in orlando, and each Texas team once, and portland and memphis

  3. formerlyz

    It would be amazing if the Heat got Heyward, but I don’t know who else they can keep/add in that scenario. If they could move Whiteside, it would open space to get Heyward and keep both James johnson and waiters, and maybe grab Favors or Ibaka in FA or keep Reed and figure something out at that 5 spot….

    Heat could also open like $4 million more if they stretch provision McRoberts.

    If they can get James Johnson and Dion Waiters together for $26 million or so, they can use half their remaining cap space to maybe keep Willie Reed at $6-7 million, and Ellington at his number, and/or bring someone in on a cheap deal, or the room exception, to help the 3/4 spots. Winslow and Richardson being healthy should help though. I wouldnt mind someone like Derrick Favors instead of keeping Reed, but I think they’re a bit short on cap space to get him

    That seems like the most simple possibility, but there are obviously potential trades they could make as well. I still would like to see them move Whiteside, but I don’t think they’ll do it at this point

    Millsap and Heyward are both obvious fits, but Heyward is likely to stay in Utah or could look elsewhere, since you have to consider what else the Heat could do if they get him, and Millsap is at an age where it might make more sense to pay a lot less for James Johnson, and therefore use cap space on more pieces…I’ll pass on Blake Griffin

  4. Dionis

    Noooooo, just re-sign Waiters and go for Blake Griffin!!!! Take a chance, forget the injury history he fits in perfectly at the 4

    • formerlyz

      Soft, no defense, plays 3 quarters. Jumpshot improved, but still not consistent range. No thank you

      • Dionis

        He doesn’t need to take over in the 4th, thats what Waiters and Winslow will be for.

        • formerlyz

          And how are we getting Blake and keeping waiters? Also, we already have a soft guy that doesn’t give enough effort, named Hassan Whiteside

          • formerlyz

            Also, he has Chris Paul, but him not playing the 4th quarter has hurt them several times. Dude disappears

          • halos101

            you watch blake griffin at all? he is neither soft and his effort is never an issue. Heat would be lucky to get him, but there’s no way that’s happening

            • formerlyz

              Do you watch Blake griffin? He disappears all the time. He has significantly improved over the years. He made himself into a legit top 10 type of player. He should get props for that. But, even when he dominates, he stops playing.

    • willham

      Any GM who says to themselves “forget about how he gets injured literally every year and is appraoching 30!! Lets just take a chance and give him a max contract!!” Shouldn’t be a GM.

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