Aside from Kevin Durant, Miami Heat center Hassan Whitside is arguably the most intriguing (and somewhat befuddling) free agent of 2016. Any number of teams are set to make a run at him, with the Los Angeles Lakers being the most recent to join the fray. But as with many unrestricted free agents, luring them away from their incumbent teams is no easy task, especially given that their current franchise can more often than not offer them the most money.
The Heat front office have expressed a certain amount of ambivalence about extending Whiteside a max-level offer, but they seem to have warmed up to that idea in recent months, given that it’s almost surely what he’ll command in the open market. As far as his personal preference is concerned, well, that remains somewhat of a mystery as well, depending on how you interpret these recent comments.
However, the 27-year-old center also said that he hopes to resolve his situation as soon as the free agent moratorium period begins on July 1.
That’s a scenario that almost certainly favors the Heat, but a lot could happen if they can’t work out a deal that’s agreeable to both parties before the melee ensues next week and he starts the courtship process in earnest.