Kendrick Nunn

Heat Notes: Roster, Nunn, Adebayo, Mulder

Because of hard-cap restrictions, Miami’s training camp roster is virtually set now that Daryl Macon has been signed to the 20th spot, writes Ira Winderman of The Sun-Sentinel. The Heat can’t exceed a $138.9MM salary limit, and they are so close to that figure that they can’t offer players like Macon more than an Exhibit 10 contract. As things currently stand, Miami will be limited to 14 players on its final roster, with the remaining six battling for a pair of two-way contracts.

The only way to create some flexibility would be to waive Kendrick Nunn, who has just a $150K guarantee on his $1,416,852 salary. However, Winderman doesn’t expect that to happen because the rookie guard showed promise in Summer League and the front office can’t afford to waste $150K. Miami can’t convert Nunn’s contract to a two-way deal without first waiving him and taking the chance that he might be claimed by another team.

There’s more from Miami:

  •  At 22, Bam Adebayo has most of his career ahead of him, but he already feels like a “Heat Lifer” after the team picked up the fourth-year option on his rookie-scale contract, relays Anthony Chiang of The Miami Herald. Adebayo became the first player from the 2017 draft class to earn that distinction, as Miami made it official more than a month ahead of the October 31 deadline. “They’re pushing me to be more of a leader,” Adebayo said. “So, yeah, I do feel like I’ve become a Heat Lifer type of guy and just being more involved and having like a (Udonis Haslem) responsibility when it comes to my teammates.”
  • Team USA won’t have many good memories from this year’s World Cup, but Adebayo believes he benefited from his experience as part of the Select Team in Las Vegas, Chiang adds. “Just the atmosphere, because everybody that comes from different teams are like No. 1 or No. 2 options,” Adebayo explained. “So just being out there with a lot of guys and just hearing the stories from the locker room, their perspective and just sharing mine. It’s just like a cool ordeal.”
  • Mychal Mulder, who signed with the Heat earlier this week, was named to the G League Elite Roster for the 2019 NBA G League International Challenge in Uruguay, Winderman tweets. However, he skipped the event to focus on training camp.

12 NBA Salary Guarantees To Watch In October

The majority of the NBA players who are currently on non-guaranteed contracts won’t have their salaries for 2019/20 become fully guaranteed until January 10. That’s the league-wide salary guarantee date and the default deadline that applies to players who haven’t negotiated an earlier salary guarantee date.

Still, some players did negotiate an earlier trigger date, and the majority of those deadlines will arrive in October. At least a dozen players around the NBA are believed to have partial or full guarantees that will go into effect in October.

Now, it’s worth noting that salary guarantee dates are somewhat malleable. If the player’s camp agrees, a team can quietly move that deadline back, giving the club more time to make a decision on whether or not to fully invest in its player for the 2019/20 season. The player doesn’t necessarily have to agree, but he may be on board with postponing that deadline if the alternative is being waived and receiving none of his salary.

Most of our information related to salary guarantee dates is coming from the salary database at Basketball Insiders, and BI hasn’t published all the details on the latest signings from around the NBA yet. In other words, there could be a few more recently-signed players who have October salary guarantee dates.

For now though, these are the 12 players believed to have salary guarantee dates coming up next month:

Full guarantees:

  1. Ivan Rabb (Grizzlies): Partial guarantee of $371,758 increases to full guarantee of $1,618,520 salary if not waived by October 19.
  2. Chris Boucher (Raptors): Partial guarantee of $125,000 increases to full guarantee of $1,588,231 salary if not waived by first day of regular season.
  3. Malcolm Miller (Raptors): Partial guarantee of $150,000 increases to full guarantee of $1,588,231 salary if not waived by first day of regular season.
  4. Duncan Robinson (Heat): Partial guarantee of $1,000,000 increases to full guarantee of $1,416,852 salary if not waived by first day of regular season.
  5. Kenrich Williams (Pelicans): Partial guarantee of $200,000 increases to full guarantee of $1,416,852 salary if not waived by first day of regular season.

Partial guarantees:

  1. Christian Wood (Pistons): $1,645,357 salary becomes partially guaranteed ($822,679) if not waived before first day of regular season.
  2. Trey Burke (Sixers): Partial guarantee of $405,000 increases to $810,000 if not waived by first day of regular season (full salary is $2,028,594).
  3. Jordan McRae (Wizards): Partial guarantee of $400,000 increases to $600,000 if not waived by first day of regular season (full salary is $1,645,357).
  4. Dragan Bender (Bucks): Partial guarantee of $300,000 increases to $600,000 if not waived by first day of regular season (full salary is $1,678,854).
  5. Ben McLemore (Rockets): Partial guarantee of $50,000 increases to $500,000 if not waived by first day of regular season (full salary is $2,028,594).
  6. Kendrick Nunn (Heat): Partial guarantee of $150,000 increases to $450,000 if not waived by first day of regular season (full salary is $1,416,852).
  7. William Howard (Jazz): Partial guarantee of $50,000 increases to $250,000 if not waived by first day of regular season (full salary is $898,310).

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Heat Notes: Free Agency, Leonard, Okpala, Mooney

The Heat won’t be in the market for any of the remaining free agents unless they trade someone from their current roster, writes Ira Winderman of The Sun-Sentinel. The hard cap that the team has been operating under since the Jimmy Butler sign-and-trade has put a severe limit on its flexibility. Miami is already uncomfortably close to its $138.9MM limit.

That means potential additions such as Jamal Crawford, J.R. Smith and Carmelo Anthony are off the table unless the Heat make another move to open space. They could release Kendrick Nunn, whose contract isn’t fully guaranteed, but Winderman considers that unlikely. If they decide to trade someone in exchange for a lesser salary, Winderman identifies Meyers Leonard, who will earn $11.3MM this season, as a possibility. He adds that they may try to move Goran Dragic by the deadline or save their next significant moves for next summer.

There’s more this morning from Miami:

  • Second-round pick KZ Okpala wouldn’t object to spending time in the G League if it’s necessary to get consistent playing time, relays Barry Jackson of The Miami Herald. Jackson notes that a similar path worked for Josh Richardson, who played four games for Sioux Falls as a second-round pick in 2015. “I trust the staff and whatever they say is best,” Okpala said. “I believe in that and will go into it with a good foot forward.”
  • Free agent guard Matt Mooney, who agreed to sign an Exhibit 10 deal with the Grizzlies last week, received the same offer from the Heat, Jackson notes in the same story. It’s a similar situation to Rayjon Tucker, who recently joined the Bucks, as both players worked out for Miami and were interested in two-way contracts. However, the Heat have decided to let players in training camp compete for two-way deals.
  • Jackson rates the Heat’s potential interest in six players recently identified by former Hawks GM Wes Wilcox as among the most likely to be traded: Chris Paul, Kevin Love, Bradley Beal, Andrew Wiggins, Andre Iguodala and Devin Booker. Miami’s interest in Beal is well known, and he would be at the top of the list if he becomes available. The Heat had discussions about Paul, but won’t make a deal unless they get their two first-round picks back from Oklahoma City. Jackson doesn’t believe Miami would want Love because of his age, contract and injury history, while Iguodala fits better on an immediate contender. However, Jackson sees Booker and Wiggins as possible targets in the future if the Heat can’t land another star in free agency.

Southeast Notes: Winslow, Chalmers, Isaac, Wall

The Heat will need to use Justise Winslow at either point guard or power forward to optimize their other main wing options, Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun Sentinel opines in his latest mailbag. Putting Winslow at the ‘one’ or ‘four’ would allow coach Erik Spoelstra to play rookie Tyler Herro and Dion Waiters more often with the team’s top player, Jimmy Butler. If Winslow ends up playing regularly at small forward, Spoelstra would have to choose between Herro and Waiters as a mainstay in the rotation, Winderman adds.

We have more from the Southeast Division:

  • A reunion between the Heat and point guard Mario Chalmers is unlikely at this point, Winderman writes in another mailbag post. Chalmers, 33, is aiming for an NBA comeback after playing in Italy last season. However, even if the Heat are interested, they’d have to release Kendrick Nunn in order to create a roster spot for Chalmers since the team is hard-capped, Winderman notes.
  • Entering his third season, Magic forward Jonathan Isaac is brimming with optimism over his team’s future after it reached the playoffs last season. Isaac likes the team’s continuity after it re-signed key free agents Nikola Vucevic and Terrence Ross, as he told John Denton of the team’s website. “We’re all hyped up for the season,’” he said. “And I’m sure as guys get together and start playing again, we’ll have more of those talks about, ‘Hey, we can go even farther than we did last (season).'”
  • The Wizards are closely monitoring John Wall‘s rehab process as he works his way back from a ruptured Achilles, Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington reports. They are even providing owner Ted Leonsis with daily progress reports. “I used to start my day reading the Washington Post. Now I start my day reading [and watching] my daily John Wall exercise video,” Leonsis told Hughes.

Derrick Jones’ 2019/20 Salary Becomes Guaranteed

Derrick Jones‘ $1,645,357 salary for the 2019/20 season has become fully guaranteed as a result of the Heat standing pat today. The small forward had an August 1 guarantee deadline on his deal, which meant that if he remained under contract through today’s waiver deadline (5:00pm ET) and didn’t agree to push that date back, he’d be assured of receiving his full salary for the coming season.

Ira Winderman of The South Florida Sun Sentinel wrote earlier today that a source close to the situation stressed there were “no plans” to make any roster moves that would allow the Heat to avoid Jones’ guarantee.

Jones had a promising season for the Heat in 2018/19, averaging 7.0 PPG and 4.0 RPG in 60 games (19.2 MPG). On the opening night of free agency a month ago, it appeared that the 22-year-old might be Dallas-bound as part of the multi-team trade that would ultimately land Jimmy Butler in Miami. However, that deal fell through, with reports indicating that the Heat didn’t want to part with Jones. Now, it looks like a near-lock that he’ll be part of the team’s regular season roster in 2019/20.

August 1 also represented a guarantee deadline for a handful of other players around the NBA. It’s possible that one or more of these players agreed to push his deadline back at the request of his team, but nothing along those lines has been reported.

Unless we hear otherwise, we’re assuming the following players received full or partial guarantees by remaining under contract through today’s waiver deadline:

  • Dwayne Bacon (Hornets): $1,618,520 salary becomes fully guaranteed (Twitter link via ESPN’s Bobby Marks).
  • Deonte Burton (Thunder): $1,416,852 salary becomes fully guaranteed (Twitter link via Marks)
  • Kendrick Nunn (Heat): $50,000 partial guarantee increases to $150,000 (link via Winderman). Nunn is no longer eligible to sign a two-way contract with Miami. His full salary is $1,416,852.

Heat Notes: Salary Guarantees, Two-Way Players, Westbrook, Adebayo

The Heat face three roster decisions this week that will determine how much flexibility they will have heading into training camp, writes Ira Winderman of The Sun Sentinel. Thursday is a salary guarantee date for Derrick Jones Jr., Kendrick Nunn and Yante Maten, and with Miami operating under a hard salary cap, every dollar the team spends will be important.

Jones’ $1.6MM salary will become fully guaranteed August 1, and the Heat are almost certain to keep him, according to Winderman. Jones, 22, has made great strides since joining the organization as a two-way player in December of 2017. He was a rotation player last season, averaging 7.0 PPG in 60 games, and his promising future and low salary appear to make this an easy decision.

Nunn also seems likely to be retained, Winderman adds. He was signed on the final day of the regular season and played well in Summer League in both Sacramento and Las Vegas. He cashed in a $50K guarantee on his $1.4MM salary on July 1 and will have that guaranteed bumped to $150K on Thursday, then to $450K if he makes the opening-night roster.

Maten has already received a $100K guarantee and is due for another $50K on Thursday ($150K in total). Because he is already guaranteed more than $50K, he is ineligible for two-way status, and a shaky Summer League performance may make him expendable.

There’s more this morning from South Florida:

  • The Heat are one of just two teams that haven’t filled any two-way slots yet, and Winderman suggests they could go to two of the three players who will come to camp on Exhibit 10 contracts — Chris Silva, Jeremiah Martin and Kyle Alexander. All three were signed at the end of Summer League.
  • Even if the Heat had increased their offer for Russell Westbrook, it may not have been enough, Winderman observes in a separate story. The Thunder were willing to give Westbrook his first choice, which was to play alongside his long-time friend James Harden in Houston. Also, the Rockets parted with a generous package of draft picks that was better than what Miami had available.
  • The invitation to Team USA’s World Cup camp gives more exposure to Bam Adebayo, which should boost his trade value at least slightly, Winderman writes in another story. Adebayo and Kelly Olynyk will both have the chance to improve through this summer’s international competition.

Heat Notes: Butler, Adebayo, Nunn, Paul

The Heat won Jimmy Butler over in their free agent meeting by emphasizing a commitment to conditioning, toughness and winning, writes Anthony Chiang of The Miami Herald. Team president Pat Riley made a “strong impression” during the four-hour presentation on June 30 and was focused on getting a definitive answer before it was over. Butler had more meetings scheduled, but canceled them and committed to Miami.

Butler was being sought by other teams in better position to contend right away, such as the Clippers, Lakers and Rockets, or he could have stayed with the Sixers, but he liked the idea of being the first star for the Heat to build around. He also remembered the words of former Bulls teammate Dwyane Wade.

“He would always say, ‘It would be a place for you,” Butler recalled. “The type of guy you are, the mentality you have, the Heat culture, it just fits.’ We laugh about it now, but looking back it’s like: Damn, he kind of called how it could happen and how this would be a place that just fits me to a T.”

Here’s more from South Florida:

  • Bam Adebayo tells Ira Winderman of The Sun-Sentinel that he expects a different atmosphere this season with Wade and Josh Richardson both gone and Butler now serving as the team leader. “Instead of J-Rich and the goofiness, it’s kind of Jimmy Butler,” the 22-year-old Adebayo said. “So it’s kind of more serious. He’s older than us.”
  • Kendrick Nunn‘s outstanding Summer League performance may not translate into more playing time once the season starts, Winderman observes in a separate piece. Nunn averaged 21.0 PPG in four games and ranked third in assists in Las Vegas at 6.3 per night. However, Winderman notes that his breakthrough wasn’t as dramatic as Derrick Jones Jr.‘s last summer, and Jones didn’t have a significant role during the regular season while the roster was at full strength. Winderman forecasts more playing time for first-round pick Tyler Herro.
  • Bradley Beal‘s situation in Washington could affect the Heat’s willingness to trade for Chris Paul, Winderman suggests in another story. Beal will become a free agent in 2021 if he turns down a three-year, $111MM extension offer that the Wizards can make starting Friday. Miami wouldn’t have enough cap space to pursue Beal if it takes on Paul’s sizable contract. A source tells Winderman that the Heat would demand multiple first-round picks to accept Paul.

Heat Notes: Herro, Paul, Robinson, Maten

Tyler Herro has been making a strong impression in Summer League, enough that Miami was reluctant to include him in trade talks for Russell Westbrook, writes Barry Jackson of The Miami Herald. Herro, who signed his rookie contract earlier this week, was the 13th player taken in the draft. Known mostly as a scorer at Kentucky, Herro has displayed the potential to become a multi-dimensional talent.

A league source tells Jackson that Herro’s Summer League performance has surpassed the expectations of Heat officials, especially in 3-point shooting, passing and ball-handling. He posted a 19.5/4.3/3.8 line during the team’s stay in Las Vegas and shows signs of becoming a rotation player as a rookie.

“If we need a guy that can handle, get us into offense, if we need him to be pick-and-roll, if we need him to come off catch-and-shoots, he’s shown he can do it all, and we feel comfortable in any of those spots,” said Eric Glass, who coaches the Heat’s Summer League squad.

There’s more from Miami:

  • The Thunder’s offers in a potential Chris Paul trade haven’t been “enticing enough” to spark the Heat’s interest, Jackson tweets. Miami has been mentioned as the possible next destination for Paul, who is headed to Oklahoma City in a deal with Houston. Heat officials will continue to listen if the offers improve, Jackson adds, but they’re not actively pursuing the 34-year-old point guard.
  • Even though Miami’s Summer League season ended today with an overtime playoff loss, Duncan Robinson helped his quest to stay on the roster with a 26-point performance, Jackson notes in a separate story. The guarantee on Robinson’s salary for the upcoming season will jump from $250K to $1MM if he remains on the roster through Monday. Jackson states that it seems likely Robinson will be kept, but he hasn’t received any assurances. His full $1,416,852 salary won’t become guaranteed until the league-wide guarantee date of January 10.
  • Yante Maten and Kendrick Nunn also have non-guaranteed deals, and the Heat’s hard-capped status may work against them, Jackson adds. Miami is less than $1MM below its $138.9MM cap and can’t add any players, such as veteran free agent Udonis Haslem, without waiving someone first. Maten has a $100K guarantee that will rise to $150K if he is kept through August 1, then another $150K if he makes the opening-night roster. Nunn will also receive a $150K guarantee on August 1, rising to $450K if he’s still around for the first game.

Heat Notes: Hard-Cap Crunch, Dragic, Nunn

The Heat may have a logjam for their final roster spots in 2019/20, Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald writes. Given that the team is hard-capped due to the Jimmy Butler sign-and-trade, Miami’s best bet of avoiding the $138.9MM hard cap may well be to avoid adding a 15th player.

Removing that 15th slot makes Pat Riley‘s task of rounding out a roster all that much more difficult. According to Jackson, all of Yante Maten, Duncan Robinson, Kendrick Nunn and even Udonis Haslem could be competing for Heats’ 13th and 14th roster spots.

Riley’s no stranger to making difficult decisions but with Butler on board and a higher ceiling now within reach, the Heat may still be inclined to add external support, too. Jackson presents DeMarcus Cousins as a possibility.

Jackson notes that the Heat are still exploring trade options and it’s understandable why. Simply consolidating talent could solve both the team’s problems, freeing up a roster slot while potentially adding an impact rotation player.

There’s more from Miami today:

  • Among the consolation prizes for the Lakers if they do end up missing out on Kawhi Leonard could be Heat veteran Goran Dragic. Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun Sentinel speculates that the 33-year-old could be a good, short-term fit for the squad as it builds out its roster.
  • There’s a chance that Pat Riley may have drafted differently had he known that Jimmy Butler would be on his roster by the end of the summer, but Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun Sentinel reminds readers that lottery pick Tyler Herro will still have plenty of value as a shooter.
  • If the Heat want to convert Kendrick Nunn‘s standard contract into a two-way deal, they’ll need to do so before August 1, Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun Sentinel reports. On that day, an additional $150,000 of his contract becomes guaranteed. The collective bargaining agreement forbids teams from converting players with more than $50,000 protection over to two-way deals. Waiving Nunn would expose him to waivers and he may get claimed.

Heat Notes: Conley, Nunn, Dragic

The Mike Conley-to-the-Heat talk is just that at the moment. It’s strictly speculation, according to Ira Winderman of the Sun Sentinel, though the scribe wonders if there’s a potential deal that makes sense for both Miami and Memphis.

Matching salary would be easy if Hassan Whiteside opts in and the Grizzlies are willing to take back the center as a main pillar of the trade. However, what would Miami have to add as an incentive for Memphis to make the move? The Grizzlies would get out of Conley’s contract, which runs through the 2020/21 season, though the franchise would undoubtedly want more than just cost savings if they deal their long-time point guard.

The Heat are not in a position to trade away their first-rounder this year (No. 13 overall), having given away their 2021 selection in the Goran Dragic deal. The organization could offer Dragic (assuming he opts in) in place of Whiteside, but that kind of deal doesn’t really move the needle for Miami.

Then there are the financial repercussions for Miami in taking back Conley. He’ll collect approximately $32.5MM and $34.5MM in each of the next two seasons (Conley has an ETO on the 2020/21 season, but it would be shocking if he opts out). As it currently stands, the Heat’s first shot at sizeable cap space is prior to the 2020/21 season and trading for Memphis’ point guard would delay that eureka moment by an entire calendar year.

Here’s more from Miami:

  • Kendrick Nunn is guaranteed $50K if he’s on the roster come July 1 and Winderman contends (in the same piece) that Nunn’s future with the Heat could be tied to the team’s draft. If Miami acquires a second-round pick—Minnesota owns their 2019 selection—then Nunn’s spot on the team may be in jeopardy.
  • A source close to Dragic would be “very surprised” if the point guard opts to hit the free agent market this summer, Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald relays. Dragic likes playing for the Heat, though the decision could come down to whether his camp gets the sense that a long-term lucrative deal awaits him this offseason.
  • The Heat are operating under the assumption that both Whiteside and Dragic will opt into their respective deals for next season, Winderman writes in a separate piece. Whiteside’s player option for 2019/20 is worth approximately $27.1MM while Dragic’s comes in at roughly $19.2MM.
  • Patience with Dion Waiters and James Johnson was wearing thin during the 2018/19 campaign, Winderman adds in the same article. Both players have had injury woes throughout their respective contract with the Heat, though Winderman writes that it doesn’t mean there isn’t an “avenue for redemption” next season. Each players’ contract runs through the 2020/21 season, though Johnson’s pact contains a player option on that final season.