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NBA Free Agent Rumors: Heat Eyeing Marcin Gortat?

The Miami Heat are expected to pursue free agent center Marcin Gortat as part of their retooling.

Marcin Gortat
Marcin Gortat

USA Today Sports Images

The Miami Heat are expected to pursue free agent center Marcin Gortat as part of the “retooling” team president Pat Riley recently indicated the organization needs to undergo to preserve its run of four straight NBA Finals appearances.

Around the league, the 6-foot-11, 240 pound veteran Gortat is viewed as an “excellent fit” to LeBron James’ style and versatility. Though technically a free agent himself, the four-time league MVP is expected to return to the Heat next season along with recently opted out Big 3 veteranDwyane Wade and Chris Bosh.

With the Wizards advancing to the semifinal round of the Eastern Conference playoffs this season and knocking off the Bulls in the first round, Washington reportedly has made resigning Gortat a team priority, desperately hoping to be able to reteam the six-year, 30-year-old veteran with Nene in what proved to be one of the league’s most potent inside frontcourts.

Gortat averaged 13.2 points, 9.5 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 1.5 blocks per game for the Wiz last season while shooting 54.2 percent from the field and nearly 70 percent from the free throw line.

After nabbing UConn star guard and NCAA Tournament MVP Shabazz Napier late in the first round of this week’s NBA draft, the Heat are also rumored to be hot on the trial of Toronto Raptors, free-agent point guard Kyle Lowry. The 28-year-old Lowry, who averaged 18 points, seven assists and five rebounds, is rumored to have a “mutual” interest in joining the one-time, two-time defending champs.

And then there is all the growing chatter about Carmelo Anthony, the NBA’s No. 2 overall scorer behind league MVP Kevin Durant. Riley has talked about the Heat’s would-be interest in landing Anthony and forming a new and improved Big 4, but pretty much quickly dismissed the idea because of salary cap restrictions.

Now with as much as $55 million in cap space available, largely stemming from salary givebacks by the Big 3,  that possibility doesn’t appear quite so far-fetched.

 

 

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