The 2015-16 NBA season is young, but the Miami Heat are already making moves.
The team has agreed to send guard Mario Chalmers and forward James Ennis to the Memphis Grizzlies in exchange for guard Beno Udrih, forward Jarnell Stokes, and a future second round pick in separate trades. The deals is awaiting final approval by the league office. The moves was first reported by Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports.
While speculation about the Heat moving Chalmers to Memphis was first reported by Marc Stein of ESPN on November 3, who is also reporting that Miami is seeking a third team may be involved, the mysterious situation surrounding guard Gerald Green’s hospitalization looked to temper the talks. Now that Green has been released and with guard Tyler Johnson playing very well so far this season Chalmers became more expendable.
In moving Chalmers and his $4.3 million contract Miami is saving $6 million in luxury tax, something that has been on the team’s to do list since the summer.
When it comes to Ennis, it was a matter of playing on borrowed time. He would have been cut by the Heat in the summer if not for him restructuring his contract twice to give the team more flexibility. Miami did value Ennis’ athleticism but with the defensive showing of rookie forward Justise Winslow earning him big minutes from head coach Erik Spoelstra there was little time on the floor for Ennis to make his case.
The Heat play the Los Angeles Lakers tonight at 7:30 EST at American Airlines Arena.