Miami Heat Rumors: Monta Ellis, Rajon Rondo, Brook Lopez Free Agency Options Without Dwyane Wade, Goran Dragic, Luol Deng Returns?

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Jun 25, 2015 10:16 AM EDT
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Monta Ellis (R) of Dallas Mavericks in action against Dwyane Wade of Miami Heat
Monta Ellis (R) of Dallas Mavericks in action against Dwyane Wade of Miami Heat during the NBA basketball game between Miami Heat and Dallas Mavericks at the American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas, on November 9, 2014. "

The Miami Heat could be an active team in free agency this summer, as Dwyane Wade, Goran Dragic and Luol Deng all could be on the market as free agents and this comes as players like Monta Ellis, Rajon Rondo, Greg Monroe, Brook Lopez and David West could be targets if Wade or Dragic do not return to South Beach.

Wade and Miami are in a bit of a contract dispute heading into the summer, as Wade is looking to sign a lucrative, long term deal after opting out of his contract. According to the Miami Herald, Wade has a player option for $16 million next season, but he wants to sign a three year deal with a salary of around $20 million per season. The Herald reported that Miami wants Wade to take a "below market" deal so the team does not have "limited financial flexibility" moving forward as they rebuild the roster.

Miami has a number of issues to deal with that have impacted Wade's situation, including bringing back Goran Dragic and keeping money available to sign Hassan Whiteside back next summer. Deng could opt out and consider returning and all this comes as Wade reportedly feels that he deserves to get a market value deal after taking less money multiple times in the past to help the team. Wade took less money to help Miami sign Chris Bosh and LeBron James, while the Herald reported that he also took less money for the team to keep Udonis Haslem.

Dragic is coming in after being acquired in a trade from the Suns and what happens with him will have a major impact on how Miami handles free agency. Dragic has opted out of his contract and is going to be a free agent and according to Marc Stein of ESPN.com, the team is prepared to offer him a five year deal, but not at the max. Dragic said earlier in the offseason that the fifth year would be important in his decision. The team reportedly is offering $80 million over five years, which is about what other teams can offer but on a contract that is only four years long.

Dragic could take meetings with other teams and with the Lakers, Knicks and Kings all reportedly interested, there is a chance he could leave Miami. The five year max for Dragic would be at $100 million and with Wade likely opting out and Hassan Whiteside needing a new deal next year, the team is hoping to get Dragic for less than that. The team is also reportedly interested in going after Kevin Durant next summer.

There is a chance the team could go after Rajon Rondo, as he reportedly is interested in signing a one year deal, while Monta Ellis and Brook Lopez are also potential targets. Ellis reportedly is opting out of his contract to be a free agent and according to Chris Broussard at ESPN, the Miami Heat and Indiana Pacers are potential options for him to sign with. Miami is looking to retain their top free agents without hamstringing the salary cap over the next few years so they can chase Durant.  

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