The Miami Heat have spent the entire offseason looking to upgrade their roster in order to bolster the chances of an extended playoff run.
One player who definitely fits that category is Minnesota Timberwolves forward Jimmy Butler, who wants out of his current situation with the Timberwolves. The problem for the Heat is that their interest in him is greater than the quality of their bargaining chips to make a solid offer to the Timberwolves.
Am told Heat holds Butler in very high regard. So yes, there is interest. But question, as usual this summer, is whether Heat has enough to entice a team with disgruntled star. Highly debatable.
— Barry Jackson (@flasportsbuzz) September 19, 2018
One possible concern they face is trying to accommodate Butler’s $19.84 million salary for the upcoming campaign, given that they’re already set to pay a luxury tax this season. Technically, Butler is currently signed through the 2019-20 season, but he has a player option for that final year and will almost certainly opt out of the deal.
In addition, the list of players that the Heat would be using in such a deal are either older than what the Timberwolves would prefer or lack the potential to develop into standout players.
Ira Winderman of the Sun Sentinel points out the value in acquiring Butler before he opts out:
“Any team acquiring Butler would be able to move forward with a maximum extension next summer, with his Bird Rights accompanying him in a trade. Therefore a team acquiring Butler would not need to utilize cap space in the 2019-20 season for such a contract.”
Training camp for all NBA teams gets underway next week, with the Heat set to open up next Tuesday, Sept. 25.