Miami Heat big man Kell Olynyk is expected to stay in South Beach, but the team might still consider trading him this offseason.
After losing a hard-fought championship series to the Los Angeles Lakers this past season, the Heat could be exploring more options to bolster its current roster.
The squad is evidently lacking post players in the series against the Lakers, but they were able to utilize the skills of back-up center and forward like Olynyk.
Olynyk played a significant role in the Heat’s unsuccessful campaign in the NBA Finals this year.
He has been one of the Heat’s vital cogs over the course of the championship series, registering almost 12 points per game. In the regular season, he averaged eight points and four rebounds per game, mostly coming off the bench.
However, his contract doesn’t guarantee anything about his future at this point.
According to Sun Sentinel’s Winderman, who has covered the Heat for years, there is still no definitive timeframe as to when Olynyk will activate the player option inserted in his contract.
But at the moment, Winderman said that there’s a huge possibility that the 29-year-old would re-join the Heat. However, the 2020 Easter Conference Champions might not rule out the idea of including the former Gonzaga star in a trade deal.
“I do expect Kelly Olynyk to opt in,” the insider wrote. “At his price point, $13.1 million for 2020-21, I do not see enough cap space available elsewhere to make opting out a viable alternative. That doesn’t mean the Heat couldn’t then turn around and trade him once the new cap calendar begins.”
In an earlier statement, Winderman also weighed in on Olynyk’s current situation. Based on his analysis, the aforementioned player, as well as 2015 NBA Finals MVP Andre Iguodala, could become key factors in Heat’s chances of landing a big-name star in a huge trade deal this offseason.
“Should Olynyk opt in, his 2020-21 salary then would become available to be utilized in a trade,” Winderman wrote. “Paired with the $15 million the Heat owe Andre Iguodala for next season, those two salaries, when combined in a trade, would leave the Heat positioned to deal for a player earning as much as $35 million in 2020-21.”
“While there are trade kickers that would factor in for both players, and while a trade partner, with the exception of one looking for a salary dump, assuredly would want additional assets, the combined Olynyk and Iguodala salaries would represent a starting point for a large-scale move,” he added.
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