Jimmy Butler is “very interested” in signing with the Heat when free agency begins Sunday, according to the Associated Press.
It would likely have to be a sign-and-trade scenario, similar to the type of deal that has been speculated between Butler and the Rockets. That type of offer would be the only way the Heat could obtain Butler because their cap situation prevents them from signing him as a free agent, Heat Nation notes.
While the 76ers are also reportedly interested in keeping Butler, he also has been linked to the Lakers and Nets. He is expected to visit Miami Sunday before meeting with the Rockets in Los Angeles next week, according to an ESPN report. Butler is in hot pursuit of a big deal.
Sources: Jimmy Butler expected to meet the Miami Heat in South Fla. Sunday. Butler/Rockets meeting likely early week in LA. Sixers haven’t ruled out working with Butler on sign-and-trades, which Miami and Houston need to acquire the All-Star guard.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 29, 2019
“Hopefully I’ll get a max contract anywhere I choose to go,” Butler told reporters about his free agency last month. “You always want to be able to win, I think that’s key for sure. You’re looking at coaches, you’re looking at the city. There’s a lot that goes into it.”
He began the season with the Timberwolves before he was dealt to the 76ers in mid-November. He averaged 18.2 points and 5.3 rebounds while shooting 33.8% from 3-point range in 55 regular season games with Philadelphia.
Butler helped the 76ers reach the Eastern Conference semifinals before they fell to the Raptors in seven games.
As expected, he declined his player option that was worth more than $19 million for the 2019-20 season.