Report: Heat working on Danilo Gallinari extension to finalize trade with Grizzlies, Thunder
The Miami Heat are working to flesh out a contract extension for Oklahoma City Thunder forward Danilo Gallinari as part of a complex three-team trade with the Memphis Grizzlies, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
The Heat first lined up a trade to acquire Andre Iguodala and then sign him to a two-year, $30 million extension (second-year team option) and are now looking to do similar with Gallo, who is a free agent after this season.
However, the challenge lies in Miami’s desire to preserve cap space for the summer of 2021, when a lot of teams will be setting their sights on reigning MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo. Whether it is The Greek Freak or another star on the market, the Heat are hoping to position themselves for a max-level star a year and a half from now.
Miami could do something like what it did for Iguodala, a one-plus-one with a team option for the second year, yet coming up with the right number is very important, considering Gallinari is still a serviceable player who is playing his best basketball at 31 years old.
Gallo is averaging 19.1 points, 5.7 rebounds, and 2.3 assists this season, all while improving as a defender and knocking down 41% of his shots from downtown as well as a crisp 90.3% clip at the foul line — invaluable assets for the Heat, who are hoping to load up in the midst of this Eastern Conference arms race.
The Philadelphia 76ers recently added Alec Burks and Glenn Robinson III from the Golden State Warriors for three second-round picks. If the Heat finalize this three-team deal, they’ll be right on par to compete for a high seed in the East. The Milwaukee Bucks, Toronto Raptors, Boston Celtics, and Indiana Pacers are the other teams vying for Eastern Conference supremacy.