The Miami Heat have been linked to a number of players this offseason. They were unable to get Kevin Durant or Donovan Mitchell via trade despite being known to have interest. They were rumored to have interest in LaMarcus Aldridge and even in acquiring Jae Crowder for a reunion with the former Heat starter. However, Crowder isn’t the only Heat fan favorite that has found himself again attached to the franchise. After a social media post from Jimmy Butler went viral, fans are clamoring for a reunion with another former Heat big man.
Jimmy Butler Ignites Kelly Olynyk Rumors
Jimmy Butler posted a picture to his Instagram story with former Heat player Kelly Olynyk with the two of them out to dinner. The photo was quickly screengrabbed and shared to Twitter by Brady Hawk with the appropriate caption, “Jimmy out here recruiting whales again with that hole at the 4.” The photo was shared to Butler’s 7.4 million Instagram followers.
Brady Hawk noted that perhaps Butler is recruiting Olynyk to fill the hole at the power forward position that was left by the departure of PJ Tucker to the Philadelphia 76ers. Olynyk played three and a half seasons for the Miami Heat and averaged an impressive 10 points and 6.1 rebounds per game in his best season in South Beach.
Olynyk also fit in quite nicely with Bam Adebayo defensively. At one time the duo was ranked first among 101 2-man lineups who’ve played at least 250 mins for a month of NBA basketball. While at one time the two combined for a solid defensive lineup, Olynyk certainly isn’t the defender that Tucker is or even another former Heat player that is linked to the Heat in Jae Crowder.
It is important to note that Olynyk is currently under contract with the Detroit Pistons, and so a move remains unlikely unless the Heat trade for the veteran three point shooting big man. Even if he was a free agent, however, the Heat wouldn’t be able to sign him due to salary cap and luxury tax reasons.
Heat Unable to Sign Free Agents
Earlier this offseason, Heat beat writer and reported Ira Winderman of the Sun Sentinel was asked about the potential for the Heat to re-sign their veteran forward Markieff Morris after he battled injuries all last season, and Winderman reported that all Heat moves rely on the status of Udonis Haslem.
“Q: Is the door still open for Markieff Morris? – Ted.
A: That is up to Udonis Haslem. If Haslem returns for a 20th Heat season, then he will fill the Heat’s 14th standard roster spot and put the Heat too close to the luxury tax to add another player. At this point, Haslem basically controls whether the door is open for anyone else, barring a trade that sends out more players than are brought in,” Winderman wrote.
Haslem ultimately committed to return to South Beach for his twentieth NBA season, a goal of his, and cemented the Heat’s roster unless they make a trade to acquire other players, but the move suggested the team will be running it back next season.