Goran Dragic is set to be one of the top free agents on the market this offseason and the NY Knicks, LA Lakers, Houston Rockets, Dallas Mavericks and Indiana Pacers could be interested in signing the point guard in free agency and this comes as many expect him to stay with the Miami Heat on a max contract.
Dragic was traded this season to the Miami Heat for first round draft picks and most media members see Dragic re-signing with the team on a max contract. All season Dragic has said that he plans on testing the market, but with Miami able to give him the longest contract for the highest amount of money, there is a good chance that he stays. According to the Palm Beach Post, Dragic said that Miami is his "first choice" in free agency this offseason and that he wants to be in a "happy environment and a healthy organization."
Things did not end on a good note with the Suns when Dragic was traded and moving forward he is looking for security on a max contract. Dragic has a player option for this year at $7,500,000, but all season the media predicted that Dragic will opt to be a free agent over using that option. Dragic won the most improved player the previous season and he is expected to get a substantial raise no matter where he signs. The Dragic situation could have an effect on Dwyane Wade, as the Heat are trying to avoid "limited financial flexibility" on his next contract, according to the Miami Herald.
While Dragic is expected to return no matter what happens with Wade, it could affect his decision moving forward. The team also has to sign back Hassan Whiteside after this season and according to the Miami Herald, the team wants to chase Kevin Durant in free agency next summer. Dragic is expected to be a target for numerous teams, including the Los Angeles Lakers, New York Knicks, Sacramento Kings and Houston Rockets. The Rockets previously had Dragic and could be interested in bringing him back, while the Knicks and Lakers are also expected to chase the point guard.
The Knicks and Lakers both have issues at the position and the motivation to spend money and they should be able to offer Dragic a lucrative contract. Dragic has said that the extra year Miami can give is "important" and if he is looking for financial security and team stability, Miami is the likely destination. The Herald also reported that the New Orleans Pelicans and the Milwaukee Bucks could be sleeper options for Dragic, as both those teams could have substantial money to spend in free agency.
The Lakers have Jordan Clarkson emerging as a point guard, but the team may want a veteran option over using him as a starter. Dragic reportedly was interested in getting traded to the Lakers before his move to the Heat, but LA did not want to give up draft picks for a player they could potentially lose in free agency. The teams that miss out on Dragic likely will go after Rajon Rondo on the market, while Reggie Jackson also could be a potential option.