Heat Telling Players They Have $12 Million To Spend In Free Agency

With LeBron James’ heart reportedly set on earning a maximum-level salary, it appears Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh are taking one for the team. According to multiple reports, Pat Riley and company are telling free agents they will have approximately $12 million to spend, indicating that the remaining members of Miami’s Big Three are set to take sizable pay-cuts.

ESPN’s Brian Windhorst has more on the story.

As they chase free agents to join with their superstars, the Miami Heat are telling free agents they expect to have as much as $12 million in salary-cap space after getting LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh to re-sign, sources told ESPN.com.

With James demanding a maximum contract starting around $20.7 million, this indicates that Wade and Bosh are willing to take drastic pay cuts to help the Heat add talent to the roster.

This has freed up the Heat to become a serious bidder for free agent point guard Kyle Lowry, with whom they are seeking a meeting, sources said.

Also of crucial note in Windhorst’s report is that Wade and Bosh’s agent has refuted a report by John Canzano of The Oregonian that the two would sign sign four- and five- years contracts worth $12 million and $11 million, respectively. Other sources have reported similar news.



Regardless, Riley’s actions loom large and still point to his two stars agreeing to contracts below market value.

That would give the Heat flexibility to sign Lowry or a player of his caliber without the free agent in question having to take a massive pay-cut. He and Luol Deng are the two biggest names Miami has reportedly chased since free agency’s opening.

As for Lowry specifically, Adrian Wojnarowksi of Yahoo Sports reports that the point guard has yet to meet with the Heat and is mulling offers from the Toronto Raptors and Houston Rockets.

As the Miami Heat pursue a meeting with free agent Kyle Lowry on Tuesday night, free agency’s best point guard is huddling with his agent Andy Miller and mulling offers to return to Toronto or Houston, league sources told Yahoo Sports.

Miami president Pat Riley has been pushing for a sit-down meeting with Lowry, but Lowry is taking time on Tuesday afternoon to consider his next step in the process. Lowry met with Toronto general manager Masai Ujiri and coach Dwane Casey on Tuesday afternoon in Philadelphia after meeting with Houston GM Daryl Morey and coach Kevin McHale in the early morning hours.

Lowry has long been enthusiastic about returning to the Raptors, and nothing has happened in free agency to derail that momentum, sources said.

Only Wade and Bosh ultimately know how much money they’ll be willing to sacrifice for the Heat to add a substantial piece in free agency. Until then, following Riley’s ambitions is the best evidence we’ll have of their plans.

Will Wade and Bosh take big pay-cuts?

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