Any long shot chance of Josh McRoberts voiding his Heat contract was eliminated Tuesday when agent Mike Conley told The Miami Herald that McRoberts will exercise his opt-in and return to the Heat for $6.021 million next season.
The Heat likely will renew efforts to try to trade McRoberts in an attempt to create additional salary cap space but similar efforts were unsuccessful last summer.
McRoberts, who signed a four-year, $22 million deal with the Heat during the summer of 2014 (when LeBron James left), has played in only 17, 42 and 22 games with the Heat in his first three seasons.
He missed the final 51 games last season with a left foot injury.
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“He’s healthy and he likes Miami,” Conley said, adding he has not had discussions with the Heat regarding its plans for him.
McRoberts, 30, has averaged 4.1 points, 2.8 rebounds and 2.0 assists, while shooting 39.8 percent from the field and 33.3 percent on three-pointers, in 81 games over three seasons for the Heat.
His decision to opt-in leaves the Heat with just over $36 million in cap space this summer.
Regarding fan frustration over his injuries, McRoberts said last September: “I completely get it. I’m the big white guy who gets hurt all the time. I wouldn’t like me either. So, I think I completely understand where it comes from. I get it. I want to be out there. It’s not like I got hurt walking a dog. I got hurt trying to play for the Heat, trying to help the team win.
“That’s just part of it. I’ve had bad luck and I’ve done everything I can to be healthy. Trust me, if anybody is frustrated, it’s me, more so [than the fans]. So, I definitely understand the fans [frustrations]. I’m a fan of other sports, too. Guys get hurt and you are like ‘Man, we need that guy. We need him to play.’ I get it.”
The Heat has the option of releasing McRoberts and using a “stretch provision,” which would carry cap hits of $2 million each of the next three seasons instead of $6 million next season.
Two other Heat players have opt-out options, with Dion Waiters expected to opt out of a contract that would pay him $3.1 million and Willie Reed expected to bypass an option to return at $1.5 million next season. Neither player has stated their intentions regarding their opt-outs but both have expressed an affection for the Heat, with Waiters repeatedly stating a desire to return.
Here’s my update on the Chris Bosh situation from earlier today.