It took almost a year wait, but the Miami Heat got their whale in free agency.
According to various reports the Heat are working on a sign-&-trade deal to get free agent Jimmy Butler from the Philadelphia 76ers. The trade package will likely include sending Josh Richardson and Kelly Olynik to Philadelphia and Goran Dragic to the Dallas Mavericks. The signing was first reported by ESPN‘s Adrian Wojnarowski.
The acquisition of Butler has been in the works for Miami since last summer. Back then Butler made his desire to be traded from the Minnesota Timberwolves and it became one of the strangest sagas in recent NBA history. The Heat were at one point on the verge of a deal with the Timberwolves until it was sabotaged by Minnesota’s then coach/president Tom Thibodeau. Ultimately Butler was dealt to Philadelphia.
For Miami this gets them a high caliber player that both wanted to play for the Heat and whose personality fits the team’s culture. Butler’s friendship with the now-retired Heat franchise player Dwyane Wade going back to their time together with the Chicago Bulls also played a factor as this can be seen as a passing of the torch.
For the 76ers the team gets another young piece in Richardson on a good contract that will help on both ends of the floor.
For the Mavericks the team gets a veteran point guard and a mentor for young star and countryman Luca Doncic.
UPDATE: Dragic looks to be staying in Miami as the Mavericks will instead get Olynik and Derrick Jones Jr. as part of the trade.