Heat Nation Predictions: Which Miami Heat Players Are Staying and Leaving?

Heat Nation Predictions: Which Miami Heat Players Are Staying and Leaving?

Dwyane Wade smiling on the Miami Heat

2. Luol Deng

Luol Deng of the Miami Heat

Overshadowed by the news that Wade could opt out combined with Dragic’s impending free agency is the situation of Deng.

Like the aforementioned players, Deng holds a player option for the 2015-16 season worth a little over $10.1 million. However, unlike Wade and Dragic, it’s unclear as to how badly the franchise really wants Deng back.

In his first season with the organization, Deng wasn’t bad, but he didn’t exactly make the kind of impact Pat Riley envisioned when he called the signing of the veteran “one of the biggest signings in Heat history.”

The two-time All-Star averaged 14 points per game in 72 starts. While he was one of the healthiest members on the Heat roster, it’s hard to pinpoint many highlight moments for Deng in his lone season in Miami because there just weren’t any.

In between Wade’s struggles with injuries and Bosh’s season-ending ailment, Deng had every opportunity to seize the moment and he just seemed to be content playing a third or fourth option role for the entire season.

At the age of 30 and clearly on the downside of his career, the Heat just might send a clear message to Deng by drafting a small forward with the No. 10 overall pick.

It would send the message to the veteran forward to opt out of his contract and sign elsewhere if he wants to remain a starter in this league.

Prediction: Leaving

Next: Goran Dragic

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