All eyes have been on the Miami Heat in recent weeks, as they've for All-Star forward Jimmy Butler. That process has been frustratingly slow for everyone involved, and Butler remains on the Wolves, but on Friday evening the Heat did get one deal done.
Miami Heat forward Justise Winslow has agreed to a three-year, $39 million contract extension, league sources told ESPN.
Roc Nation completed the deal with Heat president Pat Riley and general manager Andy Elisburg on Friday afternoon, league sources said.
Winslow was eligible for his rookie extension as part of the NBA's Draft Class of 2015 and faced a Monday deadline to complete an extension. Without an extension, those players can enter restricted free agency on July 1.
Speaking of a potential Butler trade, this extension now makes it highly unlikely that Winslow would be involved.
The signing of Winslow's extension comes with short-term financial implications in any trade scenario that would make it extremely difficult for Miami to include Winslow into an outgoing deal.
Assuming instead that the Heat plan to keep Winslow and make him a part of their core moving forward, this is a solid deal for both sides when viewed in a vacuum -- especially considering that according to Shams Charania, the Heat will have a team option for the final season. While Winslow hasn't quite lived up to expectations, he's shown flashes of being a very disruptive player on the defensive side of the ball, and is still only 22 years old. Keeping him around for a few more seasons to see if they can unlock his offensive game is a pretty low-risk gamble. And for Winslow, of course, he gets at least two seasons of making $13M per year. That's not half bad.
The problem for the Heat, is that you can't view this deal in a vacuum, and must instead take it in conjunction with their other moves. And unfortunately for them, this is yet another example of locking up a very solid, but not great player. On their own, deals in the $10M-15M range for the likes of Winslow, Josh Richardson, Kelly Olynyk and James Johnson are nice moves. But making your entire team out of solid guys on solid deals not only limits your ability to acquire a star, but also lowers your ceiling, as the Heat have found out in the past few seasons.