The Miami Heat are reportedly looking to trade reserve center Dewayne Dedmon.
Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald looked at the Heat’s struggles over which reserve center to use and noted a scenario in which Dedmon is dealt before next week’s trade deadline.
“The Heat has explored trading Dedmon, who’s making $4.7 million this season, for a player earning less, which would give them an opportunity to add two players: the one acquired and a 15th player on a standard contract,” Jackson wrote.
The 33-year-old Dedmon was originally signed by the Heat in April 2021 and has primarily come off the bench for the team since then. This season, he’s averaging 5.9 points and 3.7 rebounds per game, numbers that are similar to his career averages.
One of the likely reasons why dealing Dedmon away is being considered is connected to the Heat’s finances. Currently, the team is less than $200,000 away from going over the league’s luxury tax line, which would result in a financial penalty being assessed to the team.
In recent years, the Heat have been reluctant to go over that threshold and appear to be carefully watching their bottom line with the trade deadline just one week away.
It’s uncertain exactly what the Heat would get in return for Dedmon, with trade rumors first surfacing last month. A number of unsigned centers are currently on the market, which could allow the Heat to get back a different type of player in exchange for Dedmon.
One important point to note is that if the Heat are unable to free up some cap space, the wait to add a player to fill the 15th spot on the roster would likely be for an extended period.
That’s because it wouldn’t be until late March that the Heat could add a 15th player and remain under the tax threshold. After Heat center Orlando Robinson fractured his right thumb, depth in that area continues to be an issue.
Last month, Dedmon was suspended for one game after arguing with coaches and throwing an item onto the court during a game. Since returning to the team, he hasn’t appeared in a single contest.
Despite that incident, Dedmon’s uncertain status with the team seems to be more connected to his paycheck than his personality.
The Heat are currently trying to make a move up among the Eastern Conference playoff contenders. At 29-23, the team currently has the sixth-best record in the conference and is coming off a clutch road victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Tuesday night.
Next up for the Heat is another road clash on Thursday night at Madison Square Garden against the New York Knicks.