The Miami Heat were one of three teams in pursuit of Gordon Hayward during Free Agency, which urged them to put things on hold until Hayward made his decision. On July 4th, Hayward chose to sign with the Boston Celtics, and the Heat quickly moved on.

Re-signing their own free agents

Since they were unable to sign Hayward, Miami’s next goal was to keep the roster together after the team went on a major run during the second half of the season to nearly snatch a playoff spot. Dion Waiters and James Johnson were the two most important pieces, and the Heat got the job done by retaining both.

First, they signed Waiters to a four-year, $52 million deal. The young shooting guard had a breakthrough year for Miami and was finally able to showcase his true potential. Afterward, Johnson signed a four-year, $60 million deal. The 30-year-old became a key part of the team’s success, as he showed major efficiency on offense and brought immense energy on defense.

To keep the band together, the Heat also guaranteed Wayne Ellington’s $6.3 million contract. Ellington was injured for half the season but came back midway through and helped the Heat with his efficient three-point shooting.

Signing another piece

In addition to keeping the corps together, the Heat also signed Kelly Olynyk to a four-year, $50 million deal.

Although Miami may have given him a large contract, Olynyk could be a sufficient fit alongside Hassan Whiteside because of his ability to stretch the floor. He figures to become the starting power forward, and with an increased role, he should be able to produce much more.

Shedding salary

To be able to sign all these players to these huge contracts, the Heat had to shed some salary.

Sadly, they had to waive Chris Bosh to create roster space since he isn’t able to play basketball due to blood clots. Next, they traded Josh McRoberts to the Dallas Mavericks for A.J. Hammons. McRoberts was also dealing with multiple injuries, which hurt the Heat.

The 2017 NBA draft

The one player the Heat allowed to walk in free agency was backup center Willie Reed, and that was because they replaced him with rookie Bam Adebayo, a big man with great strength and defensive abilities.

He will become the new backup to Hassan Whiteside and has a lot of upside.

Although they were unable to snag Gordon Hayward during free agency, the Heat accomplished their goal of keeping the roster together, which wasn’t easy. They have constructed a roster that is likely playoff bound, which is the result of a rather successful offseason.

Roster outlook

  • PG: Goran Dragic/Tyler Johnson/Derrick Walton
  • SG: Dion Waiters/Wayne Ellington/Josh Richardson/Rodney McGruder/Matt Williams
  • SF: Justise Winslow/James Johnson
  • PF: Kelly Olynyk/Okaro White/Udonis Haslem
  • C: Hassan Whiteside/Bam Adebayo/A.J. Hammons
  • Coach: Erik Spoelstra

Offseason Grade: B