The odds of Dinwiddie remaining in Brooklyn dropped significantly just weeks ago when the seventh-year guard declined his $12.3 million player option for next year, as first reported by ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
On July 9, New York Daily News‘ Kristian Winfield named the Heat as one of the top teams interested in the 28-year-old guard: “Multiple reports also suggest the Miami Heat are interested in signing Dinwiddie to join Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo.”
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Bleacher Report‘s Dan Favale, however, believes Dinwiddie would be making a mistake by taking his talents to South Beach. Favale says he doesn’t fit offensively alongside the Heat’s core duo that is Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo:
Dinwiddie brings a lot of the offensive qualities the Heat could use to soup up their attack in the event their cap space — a little over $20 million projected — cannot bag glitzier names, but the offensive dynamics between he and their two best players would be murky at best and unworkable at worst.
For his part, though, he needs to end up somewhere that forecasts as a less complicated offensive fit. In other words: somewhere he doesn’t have to spend so much time off the ball.
Dinwiddie Only Played 3 Games This Season, But He’s Looking for a Max Contract
Even though Dinwiddie appeared in just three games due to a torn ACL, he will not have a lack of suitors looking to sign him this summer. The 28-year old’s performance during the 2019-2020 season was one of the best campaigns of his career, averaging 20.6 points and 6.8 assists per game for Brooklyn across 64 appearances.
Favale noted how impressive it is that so many teams are willing to acquire Dinwiddie without having seen him play in nearly a year:
Teams willing to look past Spencer Dinwiddie’s recovery from a partially right torn ACL stand to get one of the league’s more understated initiators. He keeps defenses on tilt with varying cadence and directions, has the vision to pilot lineups devoid of other playmakers and manufactures easy offense with his rim pressure and the shooting fouls that come with it. Operating in tandem with other ball-handlers is also not out of the question. Dinwiddie is a shaky shooter (career 31.8 percent from three), but he has done it often in Brooklyn.
Financially speaking, Dinwiddie looking to get paid, which is hard for the Nets to pull off considering they’re already juggling the monster salaries of James Harden, Kyrie Irving, and Kevin Durant.
Dinwiddie said while appearing on The Crossover podcast that there was still a chance he would remain in Brooklyn next season:
Now, for all the fans that think because I opted out I have to leave or something like that, no, this is very much in the Nets’ hands, you feel me? I think my full max is like five [years], 196 [million] or something like that. And nobody’s sitting here saying I’m going to get five, 196 — so before anybody tries to kill me, nobody’s saying that.
But the Nets have the ability to do something that other people can’t. If they come to the table like that, and they’re being aggressive and are saying, ‘Hey we got five, 125 for you,’ I would say there’s a high likelihood that I go back to the Nets, you know what I mean? But if they don’t come to the table like that, and they’re like ‘Oh, we’re going to give you a three for 60,’ well, anybody can do that.
Miami Heat Wanted to Trade for Dinwiddie Before the Deadline
The Heat’s interest in Dinwiddie is nothing new. On March 23, Yahoo! Sports‘ Vincent Goodwill revealed that in exchange for Dinwiddie and a second-round pick, Miami offered Brooklyn the following three players: Moe Harkless, Avery Bradley, and Kendrick Nunn.
At the time, it benefited Miami to acquire Dinwiddie before the March 25 trade deadline instead of picking him up in the offseason. There’s a distinct advantage trying to re-sign the 2018 All-Star Skill Challenge winner through a trade deal, as then the Heat would’ve also acquired his Bird rights.