LAS VEGAS - The Heat’s summer league sojourn ended with a loss to Boston on Saturday, but the Heat wants to retain two former Southeastern Conference standouts from its summer team.
The Heat has offered contracts to both undrafted Arkansas point guard Daryl Macon and undrafted Georgia forward Yante Maten, their agents said Saturday. Both are considering the offers but also are weighing opportunities with other teams, the agents said.
According to their agents, the offers from the Heat and other teams are known as an exhibit 10, which guarantees $50,000 whether the player makes the team or not. If they sign with Miami, either would then stand to earn close to $35,000 if assigned to the Heat’s G-League team in South Dakota but close to $700,000 if either makes the Heat.
Reggie Brown, Macon’s agent, said Macon has exhibit 10 offers from four NBA teams and also has attracted interest in Italy, Spain, Belgium and Korea.
If Macon signs with Miami, “he will have one of the best organizations in the league,” Brown said. “They do an unbelievable job of developing players.”
But the decision where to sign isn’t simple, Brown said, because of economic challenges for Macon and his family. By contrast, the offer in Korea would guarantee him $225,000.
Maten, meanwhile, has exhibit 10 offers “from half the league,” according to his agent, Austin Walton of NEXT Sports. “We will sift through what we have and make a decision.”
Walton said he wants to talk to a few teams about the possibility of a two-way contract for Maten, with two-way deals considered more preferable than an exhibit 10 contract.
Walton said the Heat told him that it wants to hold its second two-way contract (the first went to Robinson) and have multiple players compete for that slot in training camp.
Macon, 6-1, averaged 7.5 points and 7.5 assists in three games in the Sacramento summer league and has averaged 9.5 points and 4.0 assists in four games in Las Vegas entering Saturday evening’s game against Boston.
He had an unremarkable finale Saturday, with two points and two assists (1 for 6 shooting) in 16 minutes. He closed the summer program shooting 9 for 25 on threes.
Macon averaged 15.1 points and 3.1 assists and shot 45 percent from the field and 40.5 percent on threes in two years at Arkansas after two years at Holmes Community College. He was named to the All-SEC first team by the media and was the first Arkansas player ever to be named SEC player of the week at least four times.
“Macon has kind of an unknown quality,” said Chet Kammerer, the Heat’s vice president/player personnel. “He’s gifted as far as his athleticism, his length and quickness, his ability to shoot. He’s an 87 percent career free throw shooter. Not many college guys shoot the ball that well from the line.”
Maten, a 6-8 forward, entered Saturday averaging 9.8 points and 5.5 rebounds in Las Vegas and played well Saturday (11 points, four rebounds in 15 minutes). He averaged 19.3 points and 8.6 rebounds at Georgia last year.
“We saw him play in the SEC and he was player of the year [as a senior],” Kammerer said. “He’s been a solid player over his career at Georgia and had some individual highs over the course of his career. He started kind of slow but he’s really a solid basketball player. Versatile. He’s got a bright future ahead of him.”
Kammerer declined to say who the Heat is considering for standard contracts.
Miami has 11 players under contract and Dwyane Wade and Udonis Haslem have invitations to return. Teams can carry as many as 20 in preseason (Maten and Macon would be among those 20 if they accept the Heat offers) but can carry no more than 15 players once the regular season starts, plus an additional two players on two-way contracts that limit their NBA time to 45 days.
Three players on the Heat’s summer league team have contracts with Miami – Bam Adebayo, Derrick Jones Jr., and Duncan Robinson, who has a two-way contract.
▪ The Heat was scheduled to fly home Saturday night after losing 74-72 to Boston at The Thomas & Mack Center on the UNLV campus. Miami went 2-1 in the Sacramento summer league and 2-3 in Las Vegas.
Adebayo sat out Saturday, with the Heat having seen enough of him this summer. Jones missed his third game in a row with an ankle injury. Robinson, who sustained a minor leg injury in Thursday’s game, also rested.
Derrick Walton Jr. has played much better since the Heat withdrew its qualifying offer to him on Wednesday, making him an unrestricted free agent. He closed with 15 points and five assists Saturday but missed a potential game-winning three-pointer at the buzzer.
Heat summer league coach Eric Glass spoke of several individual players afterward: “Duncan came in. We liked him in college. He came in and really played well and shot it like we thought and showed us that he can do a couple other things on the court that we liked. And obviously a two way came out of that, which he really earned.
“Derrick Jones put in a lot of work this summer and he was outstanding for those 3 1/2 games he played. We were really happy with him. Bam showed a lot. Bam showed a lot of leadership, a lot of the little things you guys might not see on the court that we’re really on him on the main team. Overall, we’re very pleased with the performance at summer league.”
If you missed it, here’s my in-depth piece from earlier Saturday on where the Heat’s relationship stands with Hassan Whiteside and issues they must resolve.