If the NBA season doesn’t resume, that will likely mark the end of Udonis Haslem‘s long career, writes Ira Winderman of The Sun-Sentinel. The veteran forward, who will turn 40 in June, returned for another year because he didn’t want to leave the league after a non-playoff season.
Haslem didn’t commit to retiring when asked about the possibility last month, but he has gotten into just three games this year and has played a combined 21 minutes. It’s his fourth straight season with minimal court time as he has evolved into more of an assistant coach than a player. Winderman is confident that Haslem’s number will be retired after 17 years with the Heat.
There’s more this morning from Miami:
- After the Heat signed Kendrick Nunn off the Warriors‘ G League affiliate late last season, Golden State has done the same thing to Miami by taking Mychal Mulder from the Sioux Falls team, Winderman notes in a separate story. When Mulder signed a 10-day contract with the Warriors in late February, Heat officials expected him to eventually return to the organization. Instead, he had a strong performance in his tryout and earned a multi-year deal. Winderman adds that Miami elected to give a two-way contract to Gabe Vincent rather than Mulder.
- An associate of Goran Dragic tells Barry Jackson of The Miami Herald that the point guard expects a sizable one-year offer from the Heat this summer, likely around the $19MM he is currently making. Dragic will be a free agent after five and a half years in Miami, and Jackson notes that his friendship with Jimmy Butler provides extra incentive to keep him around. “We’ll see,” Dragic responded when asked about signing for one season. “A lot of different factors, my family, myself. I would say it’s too soon to talk about it. I’m not thinking about my next contract. I’ve always been a guy in the present.”
- The Heat can create more cap room this summer than any other playoff team, but they might opt to keep the current core together, Jackson adds in the same piece. Opening cap space would mean renouncing most of their free agents — a group that includes Derrick Jones Jr., Jae Crowder and Meyers Leonard as well as Dragic. Jackson doesn’t see any free agent targets worth that gamble, unless Anthony Davis decides to leave the Lakers, while the potential loss of revenue from the league shutdown makes the salary cap unpredictable.