With little more than two weeks until the start of one of the biggest NBA free agency periods in recent memory guard Goran Dragic of the Miami Heat made his intentions known.
In a move that was highly expected Dragic informed Miami today that he was exercising his $19.2 million player option for the final year of his contract. The move was first reported by The Athletic.
Dragic, who is coming off an injury-plagued season where he only played 36 games, chose financial security over being part of a deep free agent pool that will include guards such as Kyrie Irving, Klay Thompson, and Kemba Walker among others. The move will also make Dragic on of the top available players next summer.
While opting in technically means Dragic will be in Miami next season, it also gives Heat team president Pat Riley the ability to include him in possible trade packages this summer. Dragic’s injury history along with the emergence of Justise Winslow as a viable option at the point will have Miami be open to trades, especially if can alleviate the salary cap logjam the team is under.
The Heat have two other expected moves looming. One being center Hassan Whiteside also opting in on the final year of his contract and the other being the team waiving forward Ryan Anderson before July 1.