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Miami Heat, Bulls’ DeMar DeRozan Share Mutual Interest

The Miami Heat has expressed interest in Chicago Bulls free agent guard DeMar DeRozan, and DeRozan also has an interest in Miami, according to Barry Jackson of Flasports Buzz.

The Heat is among several teams, including the Lakers, vying for the six-time All-Star. However, despite the mutual interest, Barry believes significant challenges could prevent a possible union.

Barry writes, “At the moment, the only way that Miami could add him would be if he accepts the Heat’s $5.2 million non-taxpayer midlevel exception or even less likely, a minimum contract. Those are the Heat’s only non-trade avenues to add players. That $5.2 million is below what DeRozan is seeking. If DeRozan took that, Miami would be just below the second apron and would not be able to re-sign Caleb Martin or Haywood Highsmith, who remain in a holding pattern while the Heat explores other options.”

DeRozan appeared in 79 games for the Bulls last season. He averaged 24.0 points, 4.3 rebounds, 5.3 assists, 1.1 steals, and 0.6 blocks while shooting 48.0% from the floor, 33.3% from three, and 85.3% from the free-throw line.

Besides the Heat, the Lakers are also potential suitors. It’s unclear if there are any other free agent targets for whom LeBron James would take a discount, so if the Lakers are unable to land DeRozan, LeBron would likely be on track to sign a maximum-salary contract with the team.

DeRozan signed a three-year, $85 million contract with the Bulls in August 2021 as part of a sign-and-trade deal with the San Antonio Spurs.

He has career averages of 21.2 points, 4.4 rebounds, 4.1 assists, 1.0 steals, and 0.3 blocks with the Toronto Raptors, Spurs, and Bulls. He’s made three All-NBA teams and six All-Star teams.

The Miami Heat could form a formidable trio of DeRozan, Adebayo, and Butler next season if they can acquire him.

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