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Goran Dragic wants to return to Miami but will test free agent market

Goran Dragic

ORLANDO, FL - SEPTEMBER 30: Goran Dragic #7 of the Miami Heat handles the ball during the game against the Los Angeles Lakers during Game One of the NBA Finals on September 30, 2020 at The AdventHealth Arena at ESPN Wide World Of Sports Complex in Orlando, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2020 NBAE (Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)

NBAE via Getty Images

Goran Dragic, playing near his All-NBA level of 2014, was a key reason Miami made a run all the way to the NBA Finals. His frustration at being sidelined on that big stage by torn plantar fascia was obvious.

While he wants to return to Miami and make another run at a ring, Dragic told Shams Charania of The Athletic he planned to test the free agent market.

“So, of course, I know Miami wants to bring me back. I’m hoping we can finish this championship run next season, but I know this is part of the business. It’s a lot of options here and we’ll see. I’m open to all suggestions, and from there on, we’re gonna see which one is the best possibility for me and for my family. So, yeah, Miami’s up there. They were great to me and we’ll see. Hopefully, we can make a deal.”

Miami is expected to offer Dragic a big one-year contract, probably north of $15 million a season. The Heat want Dragic back but also wants to keep their cap space open for the 2021 offseason. That could open the door for a team in need of a point guard, such as the Los Angeles Clippers, to come in and offer their full $9.3 million mid-level exception for three or four years. That would give Dragic more guaranteed money and stability over a few years.

Ultimately Dragic will have to make a choice. It will be about money but also fit with his family, playing time, and the ability to chase a ring. The conventional wisdom is Dragic chooses to stay with the heat, but anything is possible.