NOVEMBER 22: Leonard has put pen to paper on his new contract, making it official, the Heat announced (via Twitter).
He’ll get a two-year deal that includes a team option on year two, according to Reynolds, who adds (via Twitter) that the deal is expected to start at around $9MM. It’ll be worth close to $20MM overall, per ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (via Twitter). The second-year team option will allow the Heat to protect their cap room for 2021.
“I wanted nothing more than to come back to Miami. Literally nothing more,” Leonard told Reynolds (Twitter link).
Leonard, 28, was the Heat’s starting center for most of the 2019/20 season, averaging 6.1 PPG and 5.1 RPG with a solid .509/.414/.643 shooting line in 51 games (20.3 MPG). He saw his role reduced in the postseason, but Miami was still interested in continuing the relationship going forward.
Heat president Pat Riley indicated earlier this week that he wanted to “run this thing back” with the squad that made it to the NBA Finals this year, and it sounds like the team is making good on that vow. In addition to reaching an agreement with Leonard, the Heat have already struck a deal to re-sign Goran Dragic.