Report: Heat expected to have ‘stiff competition’ for Haywood Highsmith in free agency

Haywood Highsmith Heat
Haywood Highsmith will have suitors outside of Miami in free agency. (Photo by Soobum Im/Getty Images)

Haywood Highsmith is expected to be one of the Miami Heat’s most sought-after free agents as Sunday’s 6 p.m. negotiation period for free agents opens. And, according to NBA insider Michael Scotto of HoopsHype, the Heat could have “stiff competition for Highsmith’s services,” he reported Sunday afternoon.

“The Miami Heat have already spoken with their free agent forward Highsmith and his agent, Jerry Dianis, about the possibility of a return, per the Miami Herald,” Scotto wrote.However, Miami is expected to have stiff competition for Highsmith’s services on the open market.”

Scotto mentioned that teams with cap space, such as the Detroit Pistons, Charlotte Hornets, San Antonio Spurs, Philadelphia 76ers and Utah Jazz, are expected to have interest. He also mentioned teams with mid-level exceptions ($12.9M) available–such as the Sacramento Kings and Indiana Pacers–could have interest as well.

Given the expected interest in Highsmith, his free agency value could land him as much as the non-taxpayer mid-level exception, around $13 million,” Scotto wrote. “Previously, ESPN’s Bobby Marks projected Highsmith in the $8-10 million annual range.”

The Heat own Highsmith’s bird rights, so they could theoretically sign him to any amount up to the max. But they are just a few million away from the apron after Caleb Martin, Kevin Love and Thomas Bryant all opted out of their respective player options Saturday.

The 27-year-old averaged a career-best 6.1 points on 46.5 percent shooting and 39.6 percent from 3-point range. He also posted 3.2 rebounds, 1.1 assists and 0.8 steals in 20.7 minutes across 66 games, including 26 starts.

Highsmith’s consistently been one of the Heat’s best point-of-attack defenders, using his lanky 7-foot-1 wingspan to generate deflections and eat up opposing ballhandlers on the perimeter. He’s also been one of their top rebounders and has been excellent at roaming the baseline.

Highsmith made it known on multiple occassions that he wanted to return to Miami. Though if he’s getting $13 million American dollars on the open market, Miami might be priced out. We don’t know what’s true or what’s not due to leverage, but Highsmith deserves whatever bag he can get from organizations around the league.

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2qbn

He gone. Hey hey sign Bey 😛

SunManFromDogBone

Time to find alternatives to Martin and Highsmith. It should clarify rotation if neither returns.

  • Rozier, Herro, Butler, Jovic, Bam
  • JRich, Duncan, Jaquez, Love, Ware
heat for life

coolio both ty n dunc cant be back.boston won because of their defense

heat for life

have u been consulting with rc?

Reality Czech

If Highsmith wants much more than about $5-6 million a year, I don’t think it will work.

ZechMerquise

we’re still kinda short. Hope we get a big, maybe Jalen smith. heck, Yurtseven got waived, lets go get our boy back

Last edited 12 days ago by ZechMerquise
2qbn

Don’t tease me with Jalen Smith.

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