The coronavirus pandemic has created numerous financial problems for the NBA.
However, it appears the Miami Heat will still have max cap space for free agency in 2021.
“The Heat is on track to have cap room for one max free agent in 2021 to potentially add to its All-Star core of Bam Adebayo and Jimmy Butler, even with the COVID-19 pandemic impacting NBA economics,” wrote Anthony Chiang of the Miami Herald. “The cap is currently projected to rise to $125 million for the 2021-22 season, but that number will almost assuredly drop because of a dramatic decrease in league revenues caused by the pandemic.”
“But the Heat could survive the 2021-22 cap dropping by as much as about $10 million from the $125 million projection and still achieve max space if it doesn’t add any other salary commitments for that season and declines Andre Iguodala’s $15 million team option for 2021-22 . And even if the cap drops by more than $10 million, the Heat likely would be close enough to open a max slot if needed.”
The NBA free agent class of 2021 is shaping up to be one of the best groups ever.
A few of the players that could be available include Giannis Antetokounmpo, Kawhi Leonard, Anthony Davis and Paul George.
The Heat reportedly have their target fixed on Antetokounmpo.
The 25-year-old Milwaukee Bucks forward is putting up 29.6 points, 13.7 boards and 5.8 assists per game this season.
In addition, the reigning MVP’s stardom and leadership have the Bucks with the best record in the league.
Although the chances of luring the international standout away from Milwaukee appear slim, Heat president Pat Riley has a knack for pulling off the impossible.
After all, the Heat shocked the world by signing LeBron James and Chris Bosh in 2010. The marriage between the superstars and the Heat led to four consecutive NBA Finals trips and two championships.
Surely, Riley will use that evidence to attract any potential star free agents next summer.